Interview: Hibbity Dibbity Conjurs Up Some Swamp Funk at Boom Boom Room April 4th

03/29/2015

When you hear a name like Hibbity Dibbity you aren’t sure what to expect, and thats by design. These youthful rockers channel an old soul as they play a blend of southern rock, funk and blues. Their blend of swamp funk can get a crowd up and dancing everywhere, from big stages to local clubs and bars.

They have stopped by my local watering hole, The Abbey Tavern, a few times and they leave everything they have on stage. I’ve witnessed raucous, three-plus hour sets that had everyone from the old Irish construction workers to college kids up and dancing.

They band is playing the Boom Boom Room on Saturday April 4th and it is bound to be one hell of a party. Tickets are just $12 bucks and you can pick them up here.

Check out a live recording of the song “Young Peter” below, and check even more music at their Bandcamp here.

I had a chance to ask Chris Braun and the rest of the guys some questions ahead of their next headlining show at the iconic Boom Boom Room.

SFCritic: How did Hibbity Dibbity come together? How did you settle with Hibbity Dibbity as the name of the bad?
Hibbity Dibbity: [We] had a simple beginning, as Tom Relling and Chris Braun started handcrafting tunes, and singing them to the SF locals at small cafes, and church basements. As their songbook grew, their sound became fully realized. We expanded the membership to include Parker Simon on the Fender Bass, Jack Gehegan on the drums, and Will Kyriazis on the organ. The name came about during a journey that Chris took through the Golden Gate Park, and the words Hibbity Dibbity popped into his head. It fit instantly with the music that we had been making so it just stuck. People either love it or hate it, but it always elicits a reaction which means it’s working.

SFC: For young guys your music seems to have an old soul, how do you describe your sound?
HB: We are old wizards trapped inside of the bodies of young boys. The sound is swamp funk. It’s a big ol’ boogie stew. The music harkens back to a lot of old soul and blues grooves, and we all focus on creating a deep pocket for everyone to glide around in and cast their spells.

SFC: Who are your biggest musical influences?
HB: We all have different influences, but we all grew up on the blues and classic rock groups. Zeppelin and Hendrix were foundations for everyone but we draw from a lot of world music and psychedelic 70s sounds as well as R&B, funk and gospel. We also draw a lot of influence from plants, crystals, magnets, the elements, and planets.

SFC: Do you put yourself in a specific genre?
HB: That would be swamp funk. During a set we play a lot of different styles of music, and a lot of people tell us that they can’t put a finger on what our genre is. That makes us feel good, because we have many dimensions. We play music that makes us feel good, and that makes other people feel good and dance which creates a beautiful portal between the people on the stage and the people in the audience.

SFC: In your sets I’ve seen you mix covers and original songs. How do you find the right balance between playing people’s favorite songs as well as displaying your own song writing chops?
HB: It really depends on the set, most shows we stick to our own tunes, but when we are doing a marathon 4 hour set it is great to spice it up with some choice cuts to get people hyped and dancin’ strange. We don’t really make set lists anymore because we want to vibe off of the audience and let their energy create the show. Oftentimes the band has no idea what song we are going into but we all figure it out eventually.

SFC: What are some other local acts you think people need to check out?
HB: Chuck Suckit, Royal Jelly Jive, and WAG are the first 3 that come to mind. The Bay Area scene is taking off lately. There is a lot of inspirational music bubbling up lately, go check out as much as you can wrap your ears around it.

SFC: Controversial question here, favorite SF burrito spot?
HB: Tough question ….Taqueria Cancun (mission location) is always a delight.