Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band

By Derek Halsey (reporter@mountaintimes.com)



Article Published: Nov. 14 | Modified: Nov. 23
Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band

Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band features Mary ‘Mama Funk’ Frances on keyboards and vocals, Al
Al ‘Sweet Nassty’ Ingram on bass and vocals, Derrick ‘Dr. Ock’ Johnson on trombone, J.P.
‘Smoke Machine’ Miller on guitar and Lee ‘Insta Funk’ Allen on drums.

Photo submitted



With a name like Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band, there is no doubt as to the funky nature of this Asheville-based group.

The band has been around for more than a decade and currently performs 150-plus shows a year nationwide, from California to New Hampshire to New Orleans.

On the evening of Friday, Nov. 22, Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band will throw down the grooves at Legends at Appalachian State University, with local favorite Supatight opening.

The members of the Booty Band include Mary “Mama Funk” Frances on keyboards and vocals, Al Al “Sweet Nassty” Ingram on bass and vocals, Derrick “Dr. Ock” Johnson on trombone, J.P. “Smoke Machine” Miller on guitar and Lee “Insta Funk” Allen on drums. The band is touring behind its new album, called “Onward!”

“We’re out in California, getting ready to buy a new van for the tour,” Frances said in an interview with The Mountain Times. “We lost our transmission last night, so that’s what I am up to. Every time we come to California, we lose a car. It’s a long journey out here to the other side of the country.”

Frances said that the band is able to tour widely because the appetite for its kind of music is ravenous.

“They are hungry for the funk,” Frances said. “We’ve had a lot of success. We sold out our San Francisco show, which was awesome, and we’ve had some wonderful turnout in all of the markets out here. I think there is a big resurgence for funk all over the country, and soul music. A lot of people love coming out to hear high-energy live music, and we put on that show, so they are ready to get there and get their funk on.”

This will be a bit of a homecoming for Frances when the band performs in Boone, because she is an ASU alumna.

“The band started in Boone back in 2002,” she said. “That is where the roots of the Booty Band are, and I went to college there at Appalachian State. I went to the (Hayes) School of Music there and graduated in the music therapy department. I loved living in Boone, and I partied hard while I was there. I saw a lot of awesome shows back when Rafters was open, and in the early days back when Boone Saloon was still the Caribbean Café. I saw a lot of special and unique shows when I was in college there, so my ASU days were really fun.”

While touring extensively can be a grind, the members of the Booty Band make the best of their time on the road.

“Touring is always full of different experiences, and we take it as it comes,” Frances said. “We’ve had a lot of unique experiences that have contributed to our songwriting. We’re writing a lot of new music and meeting a lot of new faces. So, for us, touring is what feeds the music and what keeps it fresh and current and always moves it forward. I love being on the road. I’ve been doing it for about eight years, and I was born to do this. You’ve got to live in the moment, and we live to play music.

"It’s a great experience to travel the whole country. We always make time to do special trips. We did some hikes in Zion National Park, and we’ve been through the redwoods a little this trip. We get to see how beautiful our country really is, and, when we have a day off, we go hiking or kayaking or camping in the woods, whatever we can do. We appreciate nature in addition to playing kick-butt shows all over the country.”

Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band will show this appreciation Friday, Nov. 22, at Legends, located on Hardin Street on the ASU campus. Doors open at 9 p.m. Tickets cost $10 for general admission and $7 for students in advance. Legends has a BYOB six-pack limit with proper identification.
For more information, visit http://nu.bootyband.com.

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