The Landmark Theater in Syracuse was the place to be to ring in 2014. Sophistafunk hosted 40 Below’s B(e)LOW-OUT New Years Eve Bash and tickets were sold out almost as soon as the show was announced. Everyone in attendance was dressed to the nines for the classiest party in the city that included an open bar, VIP lounge with private DJ, hors d’oeuvres, photo booth, and a silent auction with items from local vendors. Sophistafunk’s keyboarder Adam Gold started the party as DJ, playing tunes ranging from new hip-hop to some old funk and soul standards.
Shortly after 10pm, Jack Brown and crew took the stage to start off the show. The first set was a mix of new songs and old, including crowd favorites, “Gimme Some Space” and “Gotta Walk” featuring keyboard solos by Adam Gold. For the majority of the first set, the third story stage and dance floor stayed mostly empty. The party’s guests were enjoying gourmet food and deserts and bidding on local goods downstairs until just before midnight, when everyone amassed upstairs for complimentary champagne to bring in the New Year with the band and dance the night away.
After a short break, Sophistafunk turned it up to a new level, bringing the funk they’ve become notorious for. Jack Brown’s progressive lyrics backed by a solid rhythm section, keys, and effects were the perfect vessel for the band’s positive message. “Hard Enough,” from their new album Freedom Is, also seemed to be a fan favorite. Sophistafunk also included some older hip-hop classics from Notorious B.I.G. and “So Fresh and So Clean” by Outkast. The Landmark Theater was home to what proved to be the best party in upstate New York and had the best hip-hop funk trio in existence to make it truly epic.