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England’s tuba-led Sons of Kemet set to make Belly Up debut Saturday

Sons of Kemet
Drummer Eddie Hick and tuba player Theon Cross of Sons of Kemet are shown performing in London in 2021. The four-man band will make its San Diego debut this weekend at the Belly Up.
(Jim Dyson / Getty Images)

Genre-leaping English tenor saxophone sensation Shabaka Hutchings leads so many different bands it can be a challenge to keep track of them all.

But his most distinctive group to date is very likely Sons of Kemet, which teams him with tuba player Theon Cross and drummers Tom Skinner and Eddie Hick.

Together, they fuses calypso, jazz, funk, soca, hip-hop, dub-reggae, trap and more into an invigorating, propulsive whole that provides fuel for thought and dancing in equal measure.

Now on a belated tour to promote their fourth album, 2021’s socially conscious “Black to the Future,” Sons of Kemet is attracting a young following that may not be as familiar as more seasoned jazz listeners with Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, Pharaoh Sanders and the other sax legends who inspired Hitchings.

Happily, Sons of Kemet’s music is powerful enough for both audiences.

9 p.m. Saturday Belly Up, 143 South Cedros Ave., Solana Beach. $20-22. (858) 841-8140. bellyup.com


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