The Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio performs at The Birchmere, Dec. 9, 2022. From left, Jimmy James on guitar, Julian MacDonough on drums, and Delvon Lamarr on organ. (Photo by Ari Strauss)
An old friend from college told me a couple years ago, “If the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio (a.k.a. “DLO3”) is in town, you must go see them. You will love it!” My friend is wise, and I’ve been heeding that advice ever since.
My most recent DLO3 experience was their Dec. 9 show at The Birchmere in Alexandria where the Seattle-based soul/funk/jazz trio treated the crowd to a two-hour set of great music and downright humorous banter.
Founded in 2015, DLO3’s mainstays have been Delvon Lamarr on the Hammond B-3 organ and Jimmy James on guitar. The percussion position has seen some turnover through the years. Drummer Julian MacDonough joined the band in August 2022.
The band’s music is rhythm-based and rooted in the 1960s and 1970s soul-jazz, funk and blues styles, reminiscent of Booker T. & the M.G.’s and The Meters. Delvon describes their sound as “soul music with a strong jazz influence,” and credits it to the chemistry of the band members.
The bandreleased its most recent album, Live in Loveland, in April 2022 through Colemine Records. The live performance was recorded on Record Store Day (RSD) in 2018 outside of Plaid Room Records directly to tape and was engineered and mixed by label owner Terry Cole. Interestingly, this show was the first time that the label crew had met the DLO3 in person. The results are fantastic.
Listen to Live in Loveland by The Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio on Spotify:
Anyone who has seen DLO3 perform live will attest that the band’s chemistry is strong, both in terms of music and on-stage wit. Jimmy and Delvon take turns playfully jabbing each other like only good friends can do about from their clothing to just anything. Its quite clear, the camaraderie is strong with these guys.
The DLO3 are road warriors — playing over 100 shows in Europe and the U.S. this year alone — but each show is unique. You get the idea they come to the stage with a loose playlist in their heads, but frequently between songs, Delvon asks the others, what should we play next?
I asked the band after the show if I could have a copy of the setlist. The response was, “yes of course, but we can’t necessarily provide it in the same order it was played on stage.”
Their repertoire is deep. In addition to playing their own songs – the band has released five albums to date — they frequently mix in a diverse spectrum of covers whose genre spans from Jimmy Hendrix to George Michael to Cindy Lauper. Each cover, despite its original genre, is interpreted through DLO3’s funky soul sound. Its amazing.
(provided by Delvon through his wife and Road Manager, Amy Novo)
- Say It’s Alright (D. Dumas, J. Williams)
- Don’t Worry Bout What I Do (D. Dumas, J. Williams)
- Bounce (D. Dumas, J. Williams)
- Move On Up (C. Mayfield)
- Can’t Hide Love (Earth, Wind & Fire)
- Buttered Popcorn (D. Dumas, J. Williams)
- Ain’t It Funky (J. Brown)
- I Wanna Be Where You Are (Jackson 5)
- Girly Face (D. Dumas)
- Raymond Brings The Greens (D. Dumas)
- Aces (D. Dumas, G. Schroff)
- Careless Whisper (G. Michael)
To everyone reading this, I will offer you the same advice my college friend offered me: If the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio is in town, go see them. You will love it. I promise!
Enjoy some photos from the Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio performance at The Birchmere in Alexandria, VA on Dec. 9, 2022. All images are copyrighted and provided courtesy of Ari Strauss.