Playing Around 

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Phat Daddy and the Phat Horn Doctors at Festival Fridays Sangre de Cristo Arts & Conference Center, 210 N. Santa Fe Ave., Pueblo Friday, Jan. 6, 5:30-6:30 p.m. $4 in advance, $5 at the door; call 719/295-7222 for more info.

The term "phat" harkens back to a simpler, "Rump Shaker" era, when Sir Mix-a-Lot and N.W.A. blasted from boomboxes. Phat Daddy and the Phat Horn Doctors have reclaimed the word and restyled it for their own funky purposes.

The Colorado Springs-based group was started in 1994 by singer Keith "Phat Daddy" Stovall, who admits the moniker came from his children. The backing Phat Horn Doctors' eight-piece ensemble includes Clay Stultz, Tom Dennis, Curtis Lucky, Eddie Leon, Guy Dufort, Frankie G, Dennis Hoshijo and singer Rachel Stovall, whose three-octave vocal range makes grown men weep and ladies shake their groove thang.

According to Keith Stovall, it's not in how well you play a cover song, but how you can make it your own: "First we learn it the way it's written, and then we go further with it."

Phat Daddy and crew will be playing in the first installment of Sangre de Cristo Arts & Conference Center's annual Festival Fridays. There you can see what 12 years of working together have made them: a local fixture whose performances of funk, soul and blues classics from the last 40 years have earned them the distinction of being a fantastic live act.

-- Kara Luger


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