The Dysfunctional Family Jazz Band is a mother, father, daughter group who are often accused of functioning just fine, at least musically. Patty Carpenter and Melissa Shetler lead up the group on vocals. Their voices have an uncanny kinship and the harmonies blend seamlessly. Whether it’s through their original compositions, John Prine’s “Angel From Montgomery” or Bobby Timmons Vocalist/composer Patty Carpenter and poet Verandah Porche wrote their shared lives into songs chronicling years in rural communes and big cities. The band includes talented family members (including Scott Shetler on sax, clarinet, and mandolin) as well as Tony Garnier (bassist for Bob Dylan), James Wormworth (Tonight Show drummer), and Brian Mitchell (Levon Helm’s organist). Mastered by Grammy®-winning producer Rob Fabroni (Bob Dylan, Bonnie Raitt, Keith Richards, Melissa Ethridge).
The Dysfunctional Family Jazz Band is a mother, father, daughter group who are often accused of functioning just fine, at least musically. Patty Carpenter and Melissa Shetler lead up the group on vocals. Their voices have an uncanny kinship and the harmonies blend seamlessly. Whether it’s through their original compositions, John Prine’s “Angel From Montgomery” or Bobby Timmons “Moanin,” they bring new flavor to every tune they touch. Melissa’s father (and Patty’s ex) Scott Shetler plays tenor and baritone saxophones, clarinet, mandolin, penny whistle, and whatever it takes to back up these lovely ladies. Scott’s also been known to bring the house down with his unique interpretations of great classics like “Let’s Go Get Stoned” or Bobby Gentry’s “Ode to Billie Joe.”
The new album Come Over brings the band into the studio for it’s first album of entirely original music. Patty teamed up with her long time friend and writing partner, poet Verandah Porche, to craft their life into song. The resulting album muses on the ups and downs of lives lived on rural communes and in big city communities – from raising children and barns, to losses, lovers and friends. From the reggae beats of “Love Bound” and the Turkish dobro of “Nancy,” to the down home roots of “Solace”, this is a true album, crafted not as a conglomerate of songs but as a complete tale from beginning to end. Scott produced and arranged the music for this one, drawing on his experience with Gene Pitney, Johnny Adams, Mighty Sam McClain, Michael Hurley, and many others.
Playing in New York and New England for the last ten years, the band has established itself with a killer rhythm section. Bassist Tony Garnier (Bob Dylan’s long time bass player and musical director) and drummer James Wormworth (percussionist for The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien) keep the performance in the pocket. Brian Mitchell (Levon Helm Band) adds accordion and organ to round out the sound. Grammy® award winner Rob Fraboni (The Last Waltz soundtrack, Bonnie Raitt, Keith Richards, Wayne Shorter, Bob Dylan, and more) brought his experience and incomparable ear to mastering Come Overat Real Mastering in Connecticut. He loved the album and made Come Over one of the first releases on his new label, Hand Made Recordings.
Patty Carpenter is an acclaimed vocalist and pianist whose versatile repertoire includes original music and favorites from the 1920s to the present. Patty grew up playing the guitar and piano during the 1960s in Rochester, New York. At the University of Massachusetts she studied in the jazz program under such master musicians and teachers as Max Roach, Archie Shepp, Billy Taylor, and Reggie Workman. It was Workman who advised, “if you want to sing the music, learn the history.” She’s worked the woods ever since, honing her craft.
The historian and jazz writer Marty Jezer said about Patty, “She has a strong, clear and wonderfully buoyant trumpet like voice and an affinity for long, swinging straight ahead lines like those of her favorite tenor saxophonists John Coltrane, Dexter Gordon and Wayne Shorter. She is extremely versatile singing Jazz, Blues, Rock, Gospel, and Latin tunes. Whether you swoon to Sinatra or Jitterbug to Goodman, the Dorseys and Count Basie, you’re sure to be touched by the marvelous lyrical singing of Patty Carpenter.”
Previous releases: The Dysfunctional Family Jazz Band Under My Hat and Patty Carpenter Memories Of Love’s Refrain and This Time It’s Love.
“Patty Carpenter displays the casual professionalism that one would expect from someone who’s worked the woods as a singer…. She has an approach that clearly lets her shift from style to style without violating the essence of what she does. She knows and loves these songs. She’s comfortable with them, and treats them all as good friends, taking them as they are and enlivening them gently. She doesn’t bully them with ersatz hipness. She just keeps them company, and that hominess comes through to the listener.”— David Dupont, Cadence Magazine