Tuesday Artist Spotlight: Nik Greeley
When you’re a front man who draws comparisons from reputable music critics to the likes of James Brown, Joe Cocker, and Jim Morrison, you know you must be doing something right. And that’s exactly what Philadelphia’s Nik Greeley has accomplished since launching his solo career a few years back. Nik released his solo debut EP, Town Gypsy, in the Spring of 2015, and has since established a reputation as one of Philly’s hardest working musicians with no indication of slowing down.
In addition to a fruitful solo career, Greeley’s also a musician’s musician that musicians want to play in their band with other musicians. To this end, he’s one the newest members of Philadelphia’s up-and-coming funk powerhouse, Swift Technique, where he shares the role of lead vocals with his friend and common collaborator, Chelsea ViaCava. Swift Technique’s truly on a role this year. Earlier in 2017 the funk outfit opened for one of Philadelphia’s best known bands, The Disco Biscuits, in their shared hometown at one of the hottest and newest venues in the city, the one-and-only Fillmore. The Swift Technique horns section also sat in with the Biscuits that same night for a horn-backed cover of Rick James’ “Give It To Me” during set 1, “King of the World” in set 2, and then finally a legendary cover of the late David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance.” What’s more, this year Swift Technique has taken advantage of their current complete stack comprised of Greeley and ViaCava on vocals and their standout funk-fueled instrumentalists of Jake Leschinsky (bass), Andy Bree (guitar), Johnny Perry (drums), Greg Rosen (trumpet), Ian Gray (trombone), Brian Blaker (tenor sax), and Jay Davidson (keys) to produce what the band feels are their best two singles to date, “Lucky Bump,” and “Reason to Be.” To get a feel for the “fiery funk extravaganza” that is Nik Greeley and Swift Technique, enjoy this new music video of “Lucky Bump” that was put out in late March.
Now when I mentioned before Greeley has developed a reputation as a musician’s musician who’s known to work just as hard if not harder than any other artist in Philadelphia, I wasn’t kidding. Greeley’s not only juggling his solo career with Swift Technique, but also another Philly-based funk band called Nik Greeley & The Operators. Members of Swift Technique also perform in The Operators, namely the band’s acclaimed horns section. It includes producer/drummer Joe Baldacci, longtime friend & bassist of Greeley’s, Freshy, lead/rhythm guitar player Andrew Warren, and members of prog-fusion juggernauts, Out of The Beardspace such as Zach LoPresti (lead guitar) & Sam Gutman (keyboards). Similar to Swift Technique, Nik Greeley and The Operators are off to a hot start in 2017 releasing new music including their latest single, “Maybe There’s a Reason,” which the band released in late February. In addition to new music, Nik Greeley & The Operators have a string of upcoming shows starting in Bethlehem, PA this week on June 15th, and then eventually arriving at the newly-opened and renovated Hall at MP in Brooklyn the following week on June 22nd. The venue will serve as the perfect incubator for The Operator’s high-octane music, where the band will perform as a part of Nolafunk’s funk-filled show with support from Boston’s STIG, Brooklyn psychedelic funk 5-piece, Futurist, and singer/songwriter Aeolus White. Tickets for the show are still on sale with premium reserved seating available at this link. In the meantime enjoy this new music video from The Operators, and check out the concert poster below.