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HPMA Showcase Spotlight: The Suffers, "Houston's All-Star Soul and Reggae Supergroup"

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In the weeks leading up to the Houston Press Music Awards showcase on Sunday, August 4, Rocks Off will be profiling a handful of performers each day, mostly in their own words - part of the best top-to-bottum lineup the showcase has ever had, in our humble opinion. See the showcase schedule and ticket information at HPMusicAwards.com, and watch Twitter (@hprocksoff) every day until the showcase for your chance to win tickets.

To which member are we speaking? What are you nominated for? This is Kam Franklin. The band is nominated for best Ska/Reggae/Dub and Patrick Kelly is nominated individually for best keyboards.

Please list all of your regular band members and what instruments they play. Kam Franklin, vocals; Patrick Kelly, keyboard/vocals; Nick Zamora, drums/vocals; Alex Zamora, rhythm guitar/vocals; Jose "Chapy" Luna, percussion/vocals; Adam Castaneda, bass; Kevin Bernier, lead guitar; Michael Razo, trombone; Cory Wilson, saxophone; Jon Durbin, trumpet.

Describe your band in four to seven words. Houston's All-Star Soul and Reggae Supergroup.

Who is your single biggest musical influence and why? With this many people, that question is almost impossible to answer. We're constantly sharing our individual influences with each other,and that is definitely heard in the music we create.

What recordings (if any) do you have readily available? We just released our first single, "Slow it Down" b/w "Step Aside". That can be purchased digitally and on 7-inch vinyl at thesuffers.com/shop. The 45s are also available in Houston record shops and digitally on iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play.

Have you ever been HPMA-nominated before? When and what for? We were nominated last year for Best New Artist, Best Reggae/Ska/Dub, and Best Female Vocalist. We were lucky enough to win all three.

Where and how often do you perform (publicly) around Houston? Recently,we've been stepping out of the box as far as venues go in Houston. Our last three Houston shows were at Khon's Rooftop, FPSF, and the Orange Show. We try to play at least once a month, but recently the focus has been on writing and recording new music.

In the meantime, we're also always on the hunt for a cool idea or venue for our next live performance.

What is the next step for your band? We've been demoing a lot of new music,and we're focused on putting out another release before the end of the year.

Finish this sentence: "Houston music is..." Houston music is the set we rep.

The Suffers' HPMA showcase spot is 6 p.m. Sunday, August 4 at House of Blues (Music Hall), 1204 Caroline. See more about the band at thesuffers.tumblr.com or facebook.com/thesuffers.

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