By Beatriz Miranda, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Tonight, August 18th, the American band Postmodern Jukebox performs at Vivo Rio, at 9PM. Playing in Brazil for the first time, the group will present jazz, rhythm ‘n’ blues, swing and ragtime versions of contemporary pop hits.
Composed of twelve artists, including instrumentalists, singers and dancers, the group first started with a YouTube channel in 2010.
In September 2012, with the release of Miley Cyrus’ “We Can’t Stop” doo-wop version, the Postmodern Jukebox gained huge visibility across social media, getting over 4 million video views in only two weeks.
Today, Postmodern Jukebox’s YouTube channel has around three million subscribers and 800 million views. In June 2014, its first stage experience, in Toronto’s Great Hall, attracted an audience of 1,200 people – most of them dressed up in classy vintage outfits, just like the band typically does.
“From then on, everything changed. It was the first time we saw “real life fans”, outside the internet. We have now been to four continents, having just arrived in the fifth, South America”, says Scott Bradlee, the project’s creator.
The idea of the Postmodern Jukebox came to light when Bradlee, who studied jazz music at college, was working as a pianist in New York restaurants. There, he started to experiment the 1980s hits in jazz and ragtime musical arrangements. After recruiting some musician friends, he created the “A Motown Tribute to Nickelback” band, which would soon become the world famous Postmodern Jukebox.
“It was back in 2010, and I was living in a basement apartment in Astoria, NY, trying to figure out just what I was going to do with myself. I had been toying with the idea of “classing up” pop music for a while, but I finally decided to make the jump into putting together a full band for a recording of Lady Gaga’s hit song, “Paparazzi”. I didn’t have any music prepared, just a general idea”, tells Bradlee in the Postmodern Jukebox official website.
Postmodern Jukebox’s career currently includes 17 albums and over 200 hundred shows, and its popularity continues to grow on the internet. Apart from Miley Cyrus’ above mentioned song, the most popular YouTube videos include a vintage version of Radiohead’s “Creep”, a jazz rendition of Lorde’s “Royals” and a New Orleans-style jazz interpretation of White Stripes’ “Seven Nation Army”.
Tonight’s show promises to bring Bluegrass & Folk versions of Major Lazer, Robin Thicke and even Nicki Minaj; soul covers on Ariana Grande, Andrea Boccelli and The Police; Doo-wop renditions of Kety Perry and the Chainsmokers; a tap dancing performance, among other attractions. What’s more, the line-up may include classics by Tom Jobim, of whom Scott Bradlee is a great fan.
What: Postmodern Jukebox
When: This Friday, August 18th – 9PM
Where: Vivo Rio – Avenida Infante Dom Henrique, 85 – Aterro do Flamengo – Tel: (21) 2272-2901
Entrance: R$140 – R$600