Recently, No BS! Brass band played a surprise pop-up show at the auto service Paradise Garage and nobody batted an eye. They were simply ready to get the party going.
At its heart, the electrifying brass band is the music of the people, a joyful Richmond calling card, and anywhere it shows up, whether it’s a garage, the Kennedy Center or NPR’s Tiny Desk concert, good times are sure to kick off.
Its leader, trombonist Reggie Pace, is one of the most familiar and hard-working musicians on the scene. And if he’s touring the globe with bestselling artist Bon Iver or rocking regional festivals with No BS Brass, Pace is preaching the gospel of Richmond.
“The brass band is like the closest thing Richmond has to a football team to me,” Pace says. “I met all my people here and the arts scene is pretty familylike. A lot of us step into many different genres and everyone is supportive of each other.”
And it isn’t just about wearing his No BS Brass T-shirt while on “Saturday Night Live.” Pace is supportive of other local musicians, tutoring them, playing with them and trying to push Richmond music through his new Jellowstone Records, distributed nationally by Ropeadope.
His regular gigs at Balliceaux show up-and-coming musicians what it means to be consistent and play regularly, no matter what hype you get. “He works with everybody, and shows up at their gigs even when he isn’t playing,” Style jazz critic Peter McElhinney says. “Even as a leader he is a supportive team player.”
So far, Jellowstone has put out one release by DJ Harrison and has records on the way from Butcher Brown, as well as a local hip-hop project by the Pacecadets and experimental jazz by Trio of Justice scheduled for later this year. “We make records and we play shows — we go to work,” Pace says. “That’s that Southern, blue-collar influence.”