Durand Jones and the Indications bring their soulful sound to The Current studio

Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
Durand Jones of Durand Jones and the Indications performs in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
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Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio (full session + interview)
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  • Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio (full session + interview) 24:16
  • Durand Jones and the Indications - Can't Keep My Cool (Live on The Current) 05:57
  • Durand Jones and the Indications - Is It Any Wonder? (Live on The Current) 04:06
  • Durand Jones and the Indications - Smile (Live on The Current) 03:45

Reluctance once characterized Durand Jones's singing aspirations. As a youngster, he sang around the house until his grandmother put him in the church choir, where he made his first public performances. As an undergrad, Jones was focused his saxophone playing despite the urgings of a vocal instructor who told Jones he had voice talent that should be pursued. Later, as a graduate student and teaching assistant at Indiana University, Jones reluctantly accepted an invitation to sing with the IU Soul Revue, who were short on male singers that year. "I reluctantly said yes," Jones recalls. "I didn't really want to do it, but I did it."

The decision was pivotal. It was through singing with the IU Soul Revue that Jones met guitarist Blake Rhein, and eventually the rest of the guys who would become Durand Jones and the Indications: .

Any reluctance, to say the least, is gone. "As soon as [Jones] got on stage, he lit up, the crowd lit up," says drummer Aaron Frazer, recalling the band's first gig. "He's a natural like I've never seen."

In town for a show at the 7th Street Entry in Minneapolis, Durand Jones and the Indications stopped at The Current for a session hosted by Jade.

Thinking about his onstage presence, Jones looks to iconic influences for inspiration. "I'm an introvert through and through," Jones admits, "so what makes it really easy for me to front a band is I call on Sharon Jones, I call on Charles [Bradley], I call on Otis [Redding], Sam [Cooke], Marvin [Gaye] — I call on all them folks and I really try to emote it the way that they do on stage because they're all my heroes."

Now, with a string of successful shows around the country, as well as placements in commercials for companies such as Toyota and Google, Durand Jones and the Indications are taking the long view. "It's been a pretty fun ride so far," Jones says. "And we've got a lot more work to do. We've got to show some folks what we're capable of. The eight tunes on the album are the first tunes we ever wrote together. We've been writing a whole bunch; we're getting ready to hit the studio for our next album. I'm super excited because I think we're really going to be able to show people more of what we're capable of this time around."

The live shows remain at the center of what Durand Jones and the Indications are all about. "[Soul music] touches everyone," Jones says. "Soul music generally is something the whole family can enjoy. We've been all up and down the West Coast with people bringing their kids to the shows. Older folks, younger folks — it's just such a mixed crowd, and that really makes me feel good."

Use the audio player above to listen to the complete in-studio session.

Songs Performed


"Can't Keep My Cool"
"Is It Any Wonder?"
"Smile"
All songs are from Durand Jones and the Indications' 2018 self-titled debut album, available on Colemine Records / Dead Oceans.

Hosted by Jade
Produced by Anna Reed
Engineered by Michael DeMark
Web feature by Luke Taylor

Resources

Durand Jones and the Indications - official site

15 Photos

  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Guitarist Blake Rhein of Durand Jones and the Indications performs in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones performs in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones performs in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones and the Indications perform in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones of Durand Jones and the Indications performs in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Bassist Kyle Houpt of Durand Jones and the Indications performs in The Current studio. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications in The Current studio
    Durand Jones relaxes before his in-studio session at The Current. (Josie Spry for MPR)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications live at the PledgeHouse SXSW
    Durand Jones and the Indications live at the PledgeHouse SXSW (MPR Photo | Nate Ryan)
  • Durand Jones & The Indications
    Durand Jones & The Indications (Photo courtesy of the artist.)
  • Durand Jones and the Indications live at the PledgeHouse SXSW
    Durand Jones and the Indications live at the PledgeHouse SXSW (MPR Photo | Nate Ryan)

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