Like Dorothy and the Tin Man, the Lion and Scarecrow - sometimes people will each find their way coming from different directions, and then simply converge together as if it's the most natural thing in the world. And that's how it all began for the New Orleans Suspects, only it didn't happen in Oz, it all fell together in another colorful and magical place - the Big Easy.
Talk about being in the right place at the right time, the New Orleans Suspects was formed in 2009 as the result of a jam session at the Maple Leaf in New Orleans. Not only were there musicians playing with over a century of combined international road experience, but the chemistry among them was irrefutable, so they decided to form a side-project super-group. Drummer, “Mean” Willie Green had been playing with the Neville Brothers band for three decades, bassist Reggie Scanlan played with The Radiators – the longest running rock act in the history of New Orleans - for 33 years, saxophonist Jeff Watkins played with James Brown for the last 12 years of Brown's life, then toured with Joss Stone for another five, guitarist Jake Eckert was with the Dirty Dozen Brass Band for six years before converting over to the New Orleans Suspects, and CR Gruver who's a classically trained pianist has toured with nationally known bands like The Meters Experience, Outformation, and singer/songwriter Angie Aparo.
After a couple of years into the "side project," the New Orleans Suspects began to solidify once The Radiators played their last shows, freeing up more of Scanlan's time, and they began touring more extensively. It was six months of sold-out shows that convinced Jake Eckert to leave The Dirty Dozen Brass Band, joining the rest of the guys as full-time members of the Suspects, and it's been pedal to the metal every since.
In 2012 the New Orleans Suspects released not one but two albums of their unique brand of New Orleans funk music, a self-titled debut CD, and a live album recorded at The Maple Leaf where it all began for these guys. They are currently working on a highly anticipated third album, and have shows all over North America scheduled throughout October.