Arts and Entertainment

Party Safari takes it outside


The Mirror

The Party Safari band usually plays in casinos and clubs, so its members are excited to perform an outdoor family concert next Wednesday.

The south King County band will take the stage at 7 p.m. at Steel Lake Park as the most recent performing group in the summer-long Summer Sounds at the Beach concert series.

Russ Sorkness, saxophonist for the band, explains Party Safari’s music as “dance, funk, reggae, R&B.” The group focuses on dance-oriented tunes with strong beats and utilizing saxes, bass, drums and keyboard. Audience members tend to get into the music, he said. 

“I hope people will just get up and dance” at Wednesday’s concert, he said. “It should be fun.”

The band has original songs, said Sorkness, but the songs it will perform at the concert are all cover songs. The repertoire includes a wide range of songs, from classics to those still playing on the radio. Covers performed in past performances include Bob Marley’s “No Woman No Cry,” Jimmy Buffett’s “Margaritaville,” Usher’s “You Remind Me” and Marc Anthony’s “I Need to Know.”

Party Safari has been together for about one year. “We are a fairly young band,” Sorkness said, but added, “We have years of experience of playing.”

The roots of the group begin with Sorkness and his brother, Mike Sorkness. The two have played together since they were young. Russ plays saxophone and keyboard and does percussion, while Mike plays bass guitar and sings lead vocals.

Three years ago, drummer John Rush joined the brothers. Two years ago, they gained guitarist-vocalist Leon Christian. Lead vocalist Tina Boewe joined one year ago as the fifth and final member of Party Safari.

Party Safari has performed across Washington. The members are looking forward to playing a concert in a different venue with a new kind of audience, Russ Sorkness said.

The Steel Lake performance will be part of the Summer Sounds at the Beach series put on by Federal Way’s Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department. The free concerts feature live bands from the Puget Sound area.  Each concert has festival-style seating; audiences may bring chairs and blankets.

News intern Trish McMahon:

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