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Last modified: Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Guest artists to highlight IU Soul Revue's spring concert April 26 in Bloomington

NOTE: Publication-quality photographs of current and past IU Soul Revue ensembles and music by the group are available on the Web at Tyron Cooper, director of the IU Soul Revue, is available for interviews and can be reached at 812-855-5828 or

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The IU Soul Revue at Indiana University Bloomington will perform its annual spring concert on April 26. The concert will feature guest artists Felton Pilate, an award-winning music producer and former co-lead singer of the R&B group ConFunkShun, and Kyle Quass, a trumpeter who has performed with several jazz legends.

The concert will begin at 8 p.m. at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, 114 E. Kirkwood Ave. in downtown Bloomington.

Founded in 1971, the IU Soul Revue is one of three performance ensembles of the African American Arts Institute. Under the direction of Tyron Cooper, the IU Soul Revue has become noted for its high energy, impeccable musicianship and soulful delivery. The concert will feature a wide range of selections from the group's repertoire of traditional rhythm and blues, soul, funk and contemporary black popular music styles.

Able to play just about any instrument he gets his hands on, Pilate is a master of trombone, guitar and keyboard. He is also a prolific songwriter, producer and engineer. He originally captured the national spotlight as co-lead vocalist with the 1970s-80s rhythm and blues/funk band, ConFunkShun, which enjoyed a formidable run of 10 big-selling records, including a platinum and four consecutive gold albums.

In 1986, Pilate made an indelible mark on the music industry as a producer with Capitol Records, turning out M.C. Hammer's rap album Please Hammer Don't Hurt Em, which sold 30 million copies from 1989 to 1992. The project also earned him a Grammy nomination for producer of the year, as well as accolades from the MTV, American Music, Billboard and Soul Train awards. He also served as musical director for Hammer's 250-date world tour, which included the Earth, Wind & Fire horn section and over 40 musicians, singers, dancers and rappers.

Quass is an Indiana-based jazz trumpet player with an exciting and distinctive harmonic and rhythmic style who has performed across the United States and in Europe. He has performed with the late saxophonist Joe Henderson, trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, saxophonist Greg Osby, drummer Charlie Persip and others. Regionally, he has performed with the Gyrogenics Quartet, Amy Stephens, Guest House and Organic Theory, and with his current working band, Fifth Way. He has recorded with the Gyrogenics Quartet, David Baker, Amy Stephens and Guest House.

Advance tickets are $8 for students and seniors, and $13 for adults. Prices on the day of the show will be $12 for students and seniors, and $17 for adults. Tickets are available in advance at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater's Sunrise Ticket Office, 812-339-6741.

Over the last three decades, the IU Soul Revue has maintained its reputation as one of the finest collegiate popular music ensembles in America. IU Soul Revue performances feature original compositions along with arrangements of works recorded by Stevie Wonder, Earth, Wind & Fire, Patti Labelle, D'Angelo, Mary J. Blige and others.

Several Soul Revue alumni have gone on to professional careers in the music industry. They include Crystal Taliefero, former backup singer and instrumentalist for both Bruce Springsteen and John Mellencamp, now with Billy Joel; Keith Mitchell and Kevon Edmonds of After Seven; recording artist Georgia Jones; and James Strong, bassist and band leader for L.L. Cool J. Many other alumni have gone on to successful careers in business, education, law and other professions.

The talents of the IU Soul Revue have not gone unnoticed. Michael J. Powell, producer of popular recording artists such as Anita Baker and Patti LaBelle, said of the ensemble, "I was pleasantly surprised at the cohesion of talent, professionalism and quality centered within the Soul Revue."