Published on March 5th, 2019

If you never saw the late, great Charles Bradley or any of his Dap Records cohorts, you missed an experience that only soul music can provide. All great art makes the user feel something; soul music touches your entire being, an all-encompassing embodiment of what it means to be alive.

Artists like Amy Winehouse had a lot to do with re-introducing a ’60s soul sensibility to a new mainstream. Yes, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings, the Detroit Cobras and many others had been at it long before Winehouse’s “Back to Black” album broke through in 2006 with the Dap Kings as her studio band. But her fiery embrace of the music in all its soul-stirring glory — and her uncut 21st Century lyrics and persona — created a pop phenomenon.

So bands like the Sh-Booms owe a bit of gratitude to the fallen British songbird as well as to Bradley and the late Jones. And none of those forbears is with us any longer to help keep the soul revival stoked. So with that genuflection properly seen to, let’s move on to how the Sh-Booms, with singer Brenda Radney front and center, will blow your mind with their nine-player rock and soul revue.

The band made its bones in Orlando, which remains a base and a source of community support even as the Sh-Booms have gained national momentum touring with big-name acts including the B-52’s, being profiled on NPR’ s “Weekend Edition” and having their music featured in an episode of the CW’s “Supergirl.”

The cool thing about being in a soul band in 2019 is how wide-open the frontier is. The Sh-Booms have shared stages with hip-hoppers and indie, punk and garage bands as well as fellow soul stylists. It’s measure of how free of borders kids are today in their pursuit of musical good times. With “The Blurred Odyssey” due March 22 on Miami’s Limited Fanfare label, the band will have its first full-length album album as a calling card, and more fuel to keep the soul torch blazing.

The Sh-Booms, with Hurricane Party, the Haunt, Summer Gill and Ella Herrera play 8pm March 15 at Voltaire in West Palm Beach. ~ Tim Moffatt

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