Snarky Puppy - Culcha Vulcha

Snarky Puppy - Culcha Vulcha


Culcha Vulcha is an album by American jazz fusion group Snarky Puppy that was released on April 29, 2016. The album includes performances by a number of musicians associated with the band and called "the Fam". The band's first studio album in eight years since Bring Us the Bright, it was recorded at the Sonic Ranch in Tornillo, Texas near El Paso and Atlantic Sound Studios in Brooklyn, New York, by Nic Hard.

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Notes by Scott Hull


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Snarky Puppy is a weird name, don’t you think?
— Winston Churchill

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The Masterdisk Review


Right. Dinner’s over and the guests have all gone home. Now what? Well, you loosen your tie, maybe put on your comfy pants, and get back to doing your thing, which, if you’re Snarky Puppy, means returning to your own special brand of groove-based goodness. Unlike Family Dinner, Volume 2, which immediately preceded it, Culcha Vulcha is a proper studio recording: no cameras, no audience, no guest stars.

One of the great strengths of this band is the ability to take in so many influences, run them through the collective Vitamix of the assembled ‘family’ members, and craft a result that is neither derivative nor overly self-indulgent. Yes, solos abound, but as a listener, there’s always a feeling of being invited along for the ride, and this time around the ride goes deeper and darker than previous efforts. The flights of virtuosity--there’s a lot of really delicious keyboard here--are couched in compositions that are more mature; more reflective. There is also a real feeling of studio-as-compositional-tool, where the end product feels curated and intentional--pains have been taken to get it just so--as opposed to “we’re on a budget, roll the tape and let’s bang this out.”

Perhaps it’s that intentionality, or perhaps it’s the copious amount of bass, both electric and keyboard, that makes Culcha Vulcha feel so anchored. To groove that hard while still knowing where you’re going is an achievement worth celebrating, so while it may not be a family dinner, it’s still a party.

- Justin Poroszok


About This Record

Mixed at
Sonic Ranch Studios, Atlantic Sound Studios

Mastered at

Release Date
April 29, 2016


Photography by
Marcelo Woloski, Nic Hard, Stella K

Recording Location
Sonic Ranch Studios, Atlantic Sound Studios

Distributed by Universal Music Classics, UMG Recordings, Inc.

Produced by
Michael League

Jazz, Latin, Funk, Soul

Mixed by
Michael League, Chris Bullock, Justin Stanton, Marcelo Woloski

Recorded by
Nic Hard

Liner Notes by
Michael League


Mastered by
Scott Hull

Lacquer Cut by
Scott Hull

Artwork by
Emilia Canas Mendes

Pressed by
GZ Media


Snarky Puppy performing Tarova from the record "Culcha Vulcha" Live from NN North Sea Jazz Festival 2018 with Metropole Orkest conducted by Jules Buckley


Michael League - Bass, Bass [Moog Bass], Ukulele [Ukulele Bass], Keyboards, Guitar [Nylon-String Guitar]

Bob Lanzetti, Chris McQueen, Mark Lettieri - Guitar

Bill Laurance, Bobby Sparks, Cory Henry, Justin Stanton -Keyboards

Keita Ogawa, Marcelo Woloski, Nate Werth - Percussion

Bob Reynolds - Tenor Saxophone

Chris Bullock - Tenor Saxophone, Bass Clarinet, Flute, Alto Flute, Keyboards

Jay Jennings - Trumpet, Flugelhorn

Mike "Maz" Maher - Trumpet, Flugelhorn, Vocals

Zach Brock - Violin

Shaun Martin - Vocoder, Talkbox