Nightsphear is a series of open stage performances held at various venues throughout the Chicagoan area and was developed to enable local musicians to showcase their original music on a platform that would get it out to the world. Ted Putbress is one of the foundering members of Thadeus Project, a band that along with TMinus 10 Partners has helped to spearhead this unique performance series. We talked with Putbress about his music, his inspiration in working on Nightsphear and the upcoming grand finale of Nightsphear happening at the Arcada Theater on May 25th with featured musical guest Mr Blotto.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: You had been a musician for many years before starting Thadeus Project. How did the concept of the Thadeus Project come about and what is the significance of the name?
Ted Putbress: After many years of raising a family and building a Financial Services company my wife, family and myself were at our house in Central Mexico and I picked up the guitar and found I really missed it. I decided to start playing a little at churches and met the music director there, Martin Funderburk, and decided to buy some recording equipment, which got me very excited about music again. Funderbunk and I decided to do an album project called Y? I contacted my old and current singer/guitarist and co-songwriter, Glenn Folwarski to see if he was interested in being involved in the project as well. It all came together and in the year 2000 and we started to record. The name Thadeus Project came about because it was a nickname a business associate used to call me. Glenn and I thought we should call the band Thadeus Project that in the end gave us complete freedom to do original music the way we want. As they say the rest is history.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: It seems that the band is constantly in the studio recording, how do you keep the motivation and creativity fresh?
Putbress: All of the members of the band have played so many different styles of music over the years and, with our current line up of Chuck Nilson (Drums/Percussion), Jeff Schullo (bass) and of course Glenn Folwarski and myself we found that we really can create on the fly. The chemistry in this band is just right so we can write music and improvise quickly which enables us to create in the studio and record regularly. We sometimes will also bring in a guest artist to work with us, which helps to keep things fresh.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: Another project you started along with TMinus 10 Partners Inc.is called Nightsphear. What is it and how did you develop the idea?
Putbress: Months ago I had the opportunity to team up with Dan LaBelle and Marty LaBelle from Tminus 10 Partners,Inc. and work on this program called Nightsphear. The idea was to create an open stage where musicians and bands can come perform and try to foster a new creative music scene in Chicago. Thadeus Project has had radio play in over 35 countries with a huge Internet base and following. We wanted to give back a little and help some young artist have a opportunity. It’s been very rewarding.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: How many bands have you been able to feature during this season of Nightsphear?
Putbress: Hundreds of artist, bands and musicians have come through Nightsphear. I personally have lost count but we with have quite a few at our Arcada Theater concert coming up May 25th in St, Charles.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: As a musician how important is it to have a place to perform and meet other musicians on a weekly basis? How does it help your playing and creativity?
Putbress: Its wonderful, the friendships that are made. We have had a few guests in our studio and I also help to coach and advise many groups and artist along the way. It’s been a lot of work and as a producer player and songwriter but I personally have learned a lot. Melding different styles is how you learn.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: You have the grand finale of Nightsphear coming up May 25th at the historic Arcada Theater in St. Charles, IL. What bands will be featured at this performance and is this the grand finale of the season or the series?
Putbress: Thadeus Project is the host band and producer along with Daniel LaBelle & Marty LaBelle from T Minus 10. This is the Grand finally of season one. First of all we have to give credit to Mr. Blotto as our special guest and featured band. They have been playing in and around Chicago for a longtime. This year they are celebrating their 25th anniversary as a band. Other artists performing at the Grand Finale will be The Michele McCarthy Band, One Season, Fire The Canon, A.P.S. to name a few. Andrew Salgado who has recently co written songs with Brian Wilson and, Jim Peterik and has toured with the likes of super stars such as Carrie Underwood will also be featured at the grand finale. We also want to acknowledge Ron Onesti and all the staff at Arcada. Also the people that will be filming the evening, the advisors for formulating the show, our director Joe Bonadonna and of course the master of ceremonies Michele McCarthy.
I would also like to thank all sponsors, Tito’s Hand Made Vodka, Wyoming Whiskey, Your Elegant Occasions, All Tan Everything, WINDAM 560 The Answer and media involved in this project! We would like also to thank Mike Jeffers and Chicago Jazz Magazine for covering Nightsphear and supplying our back lined drum kit!
Chicago Jazz Magazine: What do you have coming up after the Grand Finale on May 25th? Will Nightsphear continue for another season in the fall?
Putbress: Nightsphear will continue to season 2 this fall and we will have to see where it takes us.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: What projects or shows does Thadeus Project have coming up in 2016?
Putbress: We just had our current video Load The Wagon nominated for best video on National Radio Hits and have a new single national, international release coming June 1st this year. We are recording and filming our performance at the Arcada Theater on May 25th so that may be released at some point in the future. We also have many different radio interviews coming up in the next month and we will have a new music video coming out soon. Currently we are in the studio recording songs for our 8th CD, which will be released later this year. In addition we are recording a studio album series with world-renowned Artist and keyboard player Garsot. This will be a studio project as a follow up to our Cd release in 2012 Circuits. We have festivals and many gigs coming up this summer and fall.
Chicago Jazz Magazine: How can people get more information about Thadeus Project and Nightsphear?
Putbress: They can go to YouTube, CDBaby, I-Tunes and they can go to http://thadeusprojectreverbnation.com/ & for most information. Or you can always track at Nightsphear on Facebook or www.nightsphear.com or at www.facebook.com/tminus10productions
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Contact Daniel LaBelle at Tminus10 Partners,Inc. 773-814-8416 for further information and bookings.