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The Renegade Rip

Tower of Power returns to KC Fair

Martin Chang

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Tower of Power played a high energy set at the Kern County Fair Budweiser Pavilion stage to an appreciative audience.

TOP played to a nearly full audience on Sept. 28. The audience was responding to the beginning of each song by yelling and clapping.? At the end of some songs the clapping lasted as long as nine seconds. The audience had a similar response to many instrumental solos and songs they recognized.

For several songs, whole sections of the audience were standing and dancing. The audience laughed at lead singer of the band Larry Braggs’ stage banter that included him saying things like “Time to get funky like a bow-legged monkey.”

Emilio Castillio, a founding member of TOP, calls the band’s music “Urban Soul Music.”?

They have been around since 1968.? Along with founding member, Stephen Kupla,?Castillio has written most of the band’s original catalog.? Since their start they have been touring consistently.

Of the people interviewed, all mentioned a love of the genre that TOP plays.? Some called it “blues,” and others called it “funk.” Several pointed out the “groove” of the musicians as an attraction.?

Raul Duarte, an attendee at the concert, saw their music as innovative and called them “musician’s musicians.”?

He particularly liked the playing of the horn section and the drummer. He has been a long time fan and estimated that he has seen them “20 or more times.”

Another attendee, Arlene Taylor, had been vaguely aware of the band, but she did not become a fan until she saw them at the fair last year.

She said, “They had a lot of energy. I like the venue where you can really see the group, because every seat is a good seat here. I like the rhythm and blues style.”

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The news site of Bakersfield College
Tower of Power returns to KC Fair