What kind of music does 7 Come 11 play? “It’s funk. Make peace with it,” Gianni Staiano deadpans, suppressing a smile. “We jam as well—extensively.” He tells no lies. Over the past two years, 7 Come 11 has been packing The Crepe Place Tuesday nights with dedicated fans, throwing down a gauntlet of funk so fierce that patrons can’t help but dance along to the heavy groove.
“One of the reasons I moved to Santa Cruz was the audiences,” says Staiano. “I’ve played all over the place and the best reactions I’ve ever gotten were here in Santa Cruz; there can be five people in the bar, but they’ll be so stoked and tell you about it. Even if you don’t have a big draw, you feel good that you’ve played. But people have just been coming out to see us consistently, it’s awesome.” The trio’s latest lineup features the finesse of Beau Bradbury on drums, the versatile Danny Mayer on guitar, and Staiano simultaneously laying out bass and solos on his 300-pound Hammond organ. “We have an EP and a seven-inch record, [and] we’re probably gonna release it early next year,” says Staiano, “It’s the best work we’ve done hands down … We’re working with the producer of New Master sounds, he’s worked with the Neville Brothers and The Meters, all these people that are our idols, and we’re lucky enough to work with him.” According to Staiano, having an expert producer has made all the difference. “It’s amazing to have someone that you can trust with your music. We just lucked out. We’re hoping to do a lot of touring this year. All of our efforts right now are focused on making that next step. Once we have all that stuff together, and all our equipment works right, we’re gonna go.” | SCOTT MORLEY
INFO: 7 Come 11 performs a free show at 9 p.m. every Tuesday at The Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz. 429-6994.