MAZE, featuring Frankie Beverly, are proud guests at the Saenger Theatre this Friday (13 December) and Saturday (14 December) for two special performances. The stage on Canal and Basin is where, in 1980, the group recorded their first live album, Live in New Orleans.
Although the group have roots in both Philadelphia and San Francisco, they've long considered New Orleans their true home base. The album went Gold fast, reaching #3 on Billboard's R&B Albums chart. Recording the album is what solidified Maze and Beverly's affections for the city.
In the band's early days, they caught attention from Marvin Gaye, with whom they toured as an opening act. Gaye suggested they change the band's name (formerly The Butlers and later Frankie Beverly's Raw Soul). Original member Roame created MAZE.
Despite the come-and-go nature of music groups, MAZE remains among the greats which emerged consistently popular. They still perform concerts to this date, touring across North America and Europe.
Original members include:
- Frankie Beverly (leader/lead vocalist)
- McKinley “Bug” Williams (percussion/background vocals)
- Roame (congas/background vocals)
Other members include:
- Larry Kimpel (bass guitar)
- John “Jubu” Smith (lead guitar/background vocals)
- Carl Wheeler (keyboards/background vocals)
- Vance Taylor (keyboards)
- Calvin Napper (drummer)