Sugar Free Allstars
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Sugar Free Allstars

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2000

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States
Established on Jan, 2000
Band R&B Children's Music




"Time Magazine: Stars of Kindie Rock - Sugar Free Allstars"

Another favorite of XM-Sirius' Kids Place Live, the witty duo of Chris Wiser and Rob Martin blends blues, New Orleans funk and gospel to create an original, high-energy sound. The title of its newest CD, Funky Fresh and Sugar Free, says it all. Of its humorous yet jammin' lead song, "Rock Awesome!," Chris Wiser says, only half-jokingly, "We figured the genre needed its own anthem song."

- Time Magazine/

" Children's Music: Sugar Free Allstars - All on a Sunday Afternoon"

Sugar Free Allstars invite listeners to hit the dancefloor once more with All on a Sunday Afternoon, their latest family music release. Kids' music friends Trout Fishing In America, They Might Be Giants' Marty Beller, Shine and The Moonbeams' Shawana Kemp (aka Shine), and Keller Williams join in the fun, as well.

The Band

Organist and sax master Chris Wiser and drum thumper Rob (Dr. Rock) Martin have been at the Sugar Free Allstars game for a while. Having met at Southwestern Oklahoma State University, the duo finally gelled as a musical twosome after the exit of guitarist Mike Satawake and original drummer Andy Moore. Three CDs into their career, the Sugar Free Allstars decided it was time to turn the kids on to their brand of Memphis soul, New Orleans funk, and amusingly witty lyrics. All on a Sunday Afternoon is the band's third CD for kids and their families, beginning with 2007's Dos Ninos, 2010's Funky Fresh and Sugar Free, and 2012's All on a Sunday Afternoon.

Music from 'All on a Sunday Afternoon'

All on a Sunday Afternoon kicks of, literally, with an insistent kick drum thump demanding that everyone's "Gotta Get Up" and get on with another exciting day. Kids' music friends Jack Forman from Recess Monkey and Shawana Kemp of Shine and The Moonbeams join Sugar Free Allstars on "Gotta Get Up." Next comes the swaggering, bluesy "Hiccup," driven by Wiser's Hammond B3 organ and punctuated by the quirky, jerky rhythms of a kid's hiccups in the chorus.

Dr. Rock's snazzy drums (very well-recorded, by the way) begin a "Sunday Afternoon" celebration of family togetherness, highlighted by the bass and guitar of the kids' music duo Keith Grimwood and Ezra Idlet, better known as Trout Fishing In America. The rhythm workout "Put 'Em Away," sounds like a cross between a New Orleans drum line and a Philly Soul 45, and features percussion help from Marty Beller, They Might Be Giants' drummer and sometime singer; the swaying, soulful pop of "Very Best Friend" seems to invite listeners to clap their hands and sing along during the chorus.

More Music from 'All on a Sunday Afternoon'

Everyone is familiar with that preschooler who constantly asks "99 Questions" about the way the world work, and Sugar Free Allstars celebrate this inquisitiveness with an all out organ-driven gospel romp. "Stay Up Late" is Sugar Free Allstars' second inclusion of a pop song cover on one of their CDs. The first was a jaunty rendition of The Beatles' "Ob-La-Di Ob-La-Da," from the Fab Four's 1968 record The Beatles (aka "The White Album"), found on the Allstars' 2010's CD Funky Fresh and Sugar Free. This rendition of Talking Heads' Top 40 hit "Stay Up Late" doesn't stray too much from the original version found on 1985's Little Creatures, but the Allstars give it their own funky seasoning.

Dig the groove of "Love Train," wherein Chris Wiser lyrically references Don Cornelius, James Brown, The O'Jays, the Motown and Stax record labels, and his own Hammond B3. And if a kids' song can be called badass, it's "Ice Cream Truck," a head-bobbin' ode to summertime frozen snacks. The album closes with the quiet storm of "Ready to Give Up Teddy," as Wiser croons about a kids' decision to go without his teddy bear tonight.

The Verdict

Sugar Free Allstars' third kids' music release strengthens their hold on the funk genre of family music entertainment. But don't think of All on a Sunday Afternoon as strictly a booty shakin' party: Chris Wiser and Rob Martin's songs are celebrations of family gatherings, of the minutia of growing up, of lazy Sunday afternoons that should be enjoyed "'cause it'll be gone soon." -

"Time Out New York: Sugar Free Allstars release new album"

Oklahoma City rockers, the Sugar Free Allstars’ latest disc for children, Funky Fresh and Sugar Free, certainly lives up to its name. Funk abounds in songs such as the sax-heavy “Tiger in My Backyard” and “In My Pocket,” a toe-tapper about a tyke with pockets stuffed with Play-doh, bubblegum, a race car and other kid stuff. “SFA Disco Dance Party” will get the shindig started with its retro beats and Barry White-like opening, “Awwwww yeah, we gonna have a party, ya’ll.” Check out the band’s latest video below, “Rock Awesome!” If it gets you groovin’, you can always buy the CD.

- Time Out New York

"People Magazine: Funky Fresh and Sugar Free"

Sugar Free AllStars, Funky Fresh and Sugar Free: If Kid Rock made a kids album, it would sound like this. Recorded by New Orleans-based Chris “Boom” Wiser and Rob “Dr. Rock” Martin, it features simple, yet-sonically big tracks full of infectious, sing-a-long ready lyrics. - People Magazine/

"L.A. Parent: Michael also recommends......"

Probably the funkiest band in family music, The Sugar Free Allstars hit the groove again on their latest album. Without a question, “99 Questions” is a great tune, and the duo also shines on their Talking Heads cover “Stay Up Late” and originals like the humorous “Hiccup.” - L.A. Parent

"Booklist: All On A Sunday Afternoon"

In this collection of 10 mostly original songs, Sugar Free Allstars (Chris Wiser and Rob Martin) and a sparkling cast of guest musicians, including Marty Beller, Keller Williams, and Trout Fishing in America, reach back into the funky past, including the storied days of Motown and Stax Records. Young listeners won’t feel there is anything old, outdated, or inaccessible in these satisfyingly soulful tunes, beginning with a blast of energy in “Gotta Get Up.” The performers seem bent on having pure fun, evidenced in “Hiccups” and “Stay Up Late,” and they show their sensitive side in “Very Best Friend” and “Sunday Afternoon,” warm considerations of friends and family time. Complete with choral backups, the silly and profound “99 Questions” projects an energetic gospel mood. This boisterous, rousing, thoroughly enjoyable CD comes packaged with a 40-minute concert DVD.

— Paul Shackman
- Booklist Online

"Cool Mom Picks: Can I get a witness? Sugar Free Allstars latest CD will make you a believer in their funky sound"

If I had to pick a CD to take with my family onto a desert island this summer, it'd be the Sugar Free Allstars' latest release. The ten tracks pack a whole lot of funky deliciousness into 36 minutes, with lyrics that always perk us up and make us smile---which would come in handy as we look for coconuts and leave messages in bottles.

All on a Sunday Afternoon's title may sound like music created for hammock swinging, but it's better suited for a playful backyard cookout or post-bath dance party. And for you children of the 70's, like me, you'll find much to love from this duo who incorporate all the cool sounds of that era without any of the polyester ick.

What makes the pairing of Chris "Boom!" Wiser and Rob "Dr Rock" Martin sound so different in the world of awesome kindie music is the Hammond B3 organ that we loved so much in their last release, paired with rocking drums, and Chris' unique voice.

Ranging from soul to funk to gospel, their sound will appeal to all ages, though their lyrics definitely speak to the kids. My son laughs every time he hears Hiccup which would be hilarious to see live, and Ice Cream Truck is a perfect-for-summer ode. And I adore their remake of the Talking Heads' Stay Up Late, and their nod to the O'Jays in Love Train. Less successful for me are the slower songs like Ready To Give Up Teddy or Very Best Friend, though I suppose everyone needs some downtime now and then.

But to get you back on your feet, 99 Questions has Chris Wiser as a singing preacher of sorts, asking all those important questions our kids want to know in a hands-clapping revival---you can almost see the gowned chorus singing backup as he stands at the pulpit. This song alone will make you a believer in the Sugar Free Allstars' music. -Christina

- Cool Mom Picks

"Celebrity Parents Magazine: The Sugar Free Allstars - All On A Sunday Afternoon"

The Sugar Free Allstars are releasing their third family CD, All On A Sunday Afternoon. The 10 new kid-friendly songs have a decidedly rhythm-and-blues vibe. In fact, the rock solid grooves pay a deep tribute to America's great musical heritage, particularly the golden era of Motown. Guest artists on the album include Marty Beller, Keller Williams, and Jack Forman of Recess Monkey. The CD also includes a full-length Sugar Free Allstars concert DVD!

The songs encompass everything kids do on a Sunday afternoon in summertime, ranging from themes of staying up late and waiting for the ice cream truck. We liked the fast-paced beat of "Put 'Em Away," and also the Sunday gospel church-esque vibe of "99 Questions." The CD
All On A Sunday Afternoon is a fun, relaxed CD, with enough fun funk tunes to keep you grooving with your family, all on a lazy summer Sunday afternoon.
- Celebrity Parents Magazine

"Funky Fresh and Sugar Free - Gold Award Winner"

This album is produced well enough to be on any radio station and speaks right to the child in all of us. From stuffing toy army men into one’s pocket (“In My Pocket”) to imagining wild beasts in one’s yard (“Tiger in My Backyard”), the listener is taken on a journey with the fullest two-man band you’ve ever heard. Though there are only two guys and their instruments – organ and drums – the sound fills the album to such an extent you never would have guessed it without reading the liner notes. Chrism, the organ player, has a mean left-handed bass and the vocals are so compelling and “in the pocket” – these guys are more than enough to create a complete musical experience. - National Parenting Publications Awards

"Sugar Free Allstars "Funky Fresh and Sugar Free""

The Sound: Imagine the organist at your local minor league ballpark showing up for day game duty after a night of binge-listening to Booker T & The MGs, Ray Charles and George Clinton. He’d be a little bit fuzzy and a whole lotta funky. He also might be Chris “Boom!” Wiser of Sugar Free Allstars.

In the Cafeteria, They Sit With: King Pajama, Putumayo Kids New Orleans Playground, Funky Mama

Best Moments: As entry points go, the sparse rocker “Rock Awesome!” (video below) sets the tone for an album maybe better than any lead track that has come before it. Unknowingly, but awesomely, Wiser channels his best Shaun Smith (circa mid 90's Satchel) right from the start with “Hey everyone / won’t you listen to me / we’re gonna have a good time / let’s wait and see”. What follows is a study in restrained rock-n-roll exuberance and a kiddie rock anthem for the 21st century. You will rock awesome. It’s as much a promise as it is a marching order.

Swirling organs, punchy horns and a steady backbeat lay the foundation for “SFA Disco Dance Party”, easily one of the coolest kid’s songs of this year or any year. If you’re not feeling a tingly-about-to-bust-a-move sensation within 5-seconds of hearing the high hat drum intro, there is absolutely something wrong with you. “SFA Disco Dance Party” should make Sugar Free Allstars a household name in the kid’s music world – you hear me XM Kid’s Place Live and Radio Disney?

If you’ve ever fancied yourself a trumpet talent or have an elementary school musician in your house with such a limited repertoire that they could easily be the one singing “Yankee Doodle Went to Town, Mary Had a Little Lamb, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, and This Old Man / these are songs I learned to play / only ones I can / this is just another day / I’m in the 6th grade band”, you’ll appreciate “6th Grade Band” – even if you’ve never been locked inside a tuba case. - Out With The Kids

"Funky Fresh and Sugar Free"

The Sugar Free Allstars—Chris Wiser (on keyboards, saxophones, and bass clarinet) and Rob Martin (Dr. Rock on percussion) —perform with gusto 10 original songs in New Orleans funk, Memphis soul, Hammond organ gospel, hip hop, and disco. Two of the songs, "Tiger in My Backyard" and "The Train Beat Song," were also performed on their recent music DVD Gettin' Funky with the Sugar Free Allstars (SLJ, June 2010, p. 46). Wiser, who was also a guest musician on the recent Recess Monkey album, The Final Funktier (SLJ, Aug. 2010), does a mean saxophone solo on a couple of tunes. "6th Grade Band" features a section of horns playing "Mary Had a Little Lamb" in typical elementary school fashion—out of tune and out of sync. "Rock Awesome" is a terrific call-and-response song with an excellent children's chorus (who join in on other songs as well). The duo also performs a wonderful arrangement of the classic Beatles' tune, "Ob-la-di, Ob-la-da." Other song topics feature red wagons, pockets, and vehicles. This outstanding album, with outstanding musicianship, clever lyrics, and sassy tunes, will have listeners on their feet and dancing.–Beverly Wrigglesworth, San Antonio Public Library, TX - School Library Journal

"Sugar Free Allstars do, in fact, rock awesome"

Sugar Free Allstars do, in fact, rock awesome
I know some purists who think kids' music education should focus only on the "classics," and, thanks to Rock Band and Guitar Hero, we've got that down. But, you don't need to hear my 7 year-old warbling Barracuda to know that there is something great about real rockin' music with clever lyrics written just for kids.

Enter, the new, kid-friendly Sugar Free Allstars' release Funky Fresh and Sugar Free which has me thinking of tossing my piano out the door and finding me a Hammond B3 Organ like the one on these tracks. There is just no funkier-sounding instrument out there (besides maybe James Brown's voice) and the kids and I are totally hooked on it.

We also love the distinctive voice of Chris "Boom!" Wiser, the hard-rocking percussion of Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin and songwriting chops that don't make me feel silly yelling We're Gonna Rock Awesome! even if the English major in me wants to correct: Awesome-ly.

You'll smile and grimace through the memories retold in 6th Grade Band and sing along with the bouncy chorus of Little Red Wagon. And I dare you not to embarrass the stuffing out of your kids with your moves in the SFA Disco Dance Party. Hey, I am a child of the 70's.

With a sound that is a bit like gospel, disco, funk, rock and soul thrown into a blender and served up icy cool, this is one sugar-free musical treat we can all enjoy without having to fudge the lyrics. -Christina

- Cool Mom Picks

"Kindiefest 2010: Sugar Free Allstars"

At some point during the Sugar Free Allstars set at Kindiefest, I turned to the person standing next to me -- at that point in the set we were all standing -- and said, "Hard to believe they generate that much from just two guys." And it's true -- it's not that Chris Wiser and Rob Martin are playing 3 instruments each, it's just that they get the maximum sound out of their organ and drums.

They both also worked hard, Wiser especially, to get the crowd dancing, Wiser exhorting folks to stand up and wringing every last bit of energy out of their funky 17-minute (20-minute?) set. How much energy did they have? They finished the set quickly enough that they had time for an extra song. They also had time to pull Jeni Cosgrove, Mindy Thomas, and Jeff Bogle up to show their disco moves on "SFA Disco Dance Party" -

"The Rockin' Chair: Sugar Free & Fun For All"

Music means many things. At its best, it's a pure artistic expression - a language that existed before we had the capacity to form words, a common way to speak to universal truths that bind humanity together. Music provides the essential connective tissue of our collective consciousness and serves an exalted place in our societies as a function of ceremony, military precision and artistic expression. But, what really makes it the best, what makes it so enjoyable to play, to dance to, to listen to and talk about is that it's just plain fun.

Nobody knows this more than Oklahoma's Sugar Free Allstars. This two-man soul rock outfit has been making groove-heavy but light-hearted music since their self-titled debut album in 2001. With 2004's Dos Machos!, the band had solidified their lineup as Chris Wiser on Hammond B3 organ and saxophone and Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin on drums. That was all they needed.

Their music is firmly entrenched in the Memphis soul sounds of folks like Booker T and the MGs, enhanced with a rock sensibility. But, their lyrics are derived as much from Sesame Street as McLemore Avenue. At first listen, their quirky verses just seem downright silly. Upon closer inspection, they are also witty and satirical. Sugar Free pokes fun at well-known archetypes - we all know the "Buddhist In A Beemer" Chris Wiser lampoons - while at the same time goofing off with romps like "Great Big Car." All of this is indicative of an attitude that music is primarily for dancing and laughing and having fun.

With all this unabashed giddiness in their DNA, it makes perfect sense that these dudes would make a children's record because who likes acting silly and laughing more than kids? Who dances like no one is watching? Toddlers have it down pat. Along with Return of Dos Machos, their "adult" album, they've simultaneously released Dos Ninos, an album specifically intended for tykes. The kid's album contains slightly sillier tunes, and the adult album contains a guest appearance by Little Feat's Fred Tackett. The truth is, each record is equally appealing to little and big kids alike.

According to Wiser, the process of writing the songs is the same. "It's just a slight lyrical twist," he says. "Music-wise, it's the exact same. And really even lyrically it's not any different. I'll just think of a funny idea for a song and I'll think it'd be good as a kid's song and then the process is the exact same."

Perhaps because of the vast void of quality heartfelt and groove-heavy music in the children's music world, it was the kid's album that gained the most notice, garnering them their biggest radio airplay ever as "Bathtub Boy," an irresistible little ditty about, yes, taking a bath, shot up the charts to number one on XM Radio's kid's channel. There's no reason that the little tykes shouldn't enjoy good music too. We're born with ears after all.

"Before they can understand words, kids get the beat," says Wiser. "We're finding, after learning about the kids' music world, that there's really nobody doing the style of music that we do for kids. It seems weird to me because the beat is the very first thing kids respond to. Just our regular stuff is quirky. Some of the subject matter is off-kilter and not so serious. It's more lighthearted, and kids like that."

Sugar Free Allstars
After all, kids ought not be saddled with crap by a purple dinosaur, the Doodle-Bops or whatever else is coming through the boob tube. So, by happenstance, the Sugar Free Allstars find themselves in the world of kid's music. They came by it almost accidentally.

"Even when our first album came out, people with children would come up to us and tell us that their kids loved our songs," says Wiser. "Then one day we got a call from the Library System in Oklahoma City and they wanted us to play a bunch of shows for kids."

SFA join a long line of musicians who've taken it upon themselves to play real music for kids. As a new parent, I've been engaging in a crash course in so-called Kid's Music (nevermind that I usually listen to it when my son is asleep or with my headphones on). Yes, the tried and true copy of Jerry Garcia and David Grisman's Not For Kids Only has been getting lots of play lately. There's also The Johnny Cash Children's Album, Shake Sugaree: Taj Mahal Sings And Plays For Children and all kinds of good music intended for kids that's just as enjoyable to adults. To be honest, I think young Jack likes Thelonious Monk and Wilco just as much as any of the above-mentioned albums, so maybe the kid's albums are for me.

You don't have to be a kid to dig kid's music and you don't have to be an adult to like Monk, but the fun factor is raised a little bit by a silly lyric from Dos Ninos like "I love my Poppy and Mee-Maw/ they like cornbread and Hee-Haw/ when I was little they would put me on the see-saw." So, don't be afraid to put on a so-called kids record and dance along. Even if it just gives you an excuse to bust out la -

"CD Review-Dos Machos!"

Two dudes, lotsa groove.
One doesn’t often hear of Norman, Oklahoma as a hotbed of hard-rocking Southern soul. But the home of the Sooners is exactly where the Sugar Free Allstars hail from and they’ve got it in spades, with a sly sense of humor to go along with it.
These Allstars-Chris Wiser on saxophone and a dizzying array of keyboards (most notably the Hammond B3) and Rob “Dr Rock” Martin-brew up a fuzz-toned soul that’s equal parts Booker T and Mister T.
“Buddhist In A Beamer” is reminiscent of Keller Williams’ observational quirkisms. “Bender To Ender” recalls the goofiness of Ween. And on “Cornbread” the duo executes a fairly straight forward soul jam.
But what keeps it all together are the irresistible hooky riffs provided by Wiser. You’ll find yourself shakin’ and humming along on the first listen.

-Tom Speed
- Honest Tune, The American Journal of Jam and Roots

"Interview with Chris Wiser"

HGMN: How long have you and Rob been playing together as a band?

Wiser: We started out as a 3 piece with a guitar player in 2000 with a different drummer. Rob, or Dr. Rock as we shall henceforth refer to him, joined in about 2002. The guitar player quit in 2004, so we've been kicking it as a duo for about 3 years.

HGMN: You've been in multiple bands with a variety of styles before settling with Sugar Free Allstars . Briefly describe that journey and how you feel about SFA compared to the rest.

Wiser: It's funny, each group I've been in got smaller and funkier. I think SFA is the best of the bunch because it definitely has a "thing" that separates it from the rest. There aren't very many organ/drum duos that sound like a full band and write catchy, quirky tunes and try to put on a high energy, entertaining show. We say that we're a product of corporate downsizing.

HGMN: Your music has been described as funky, groovy, and very lively. How would you best describe your music?

Wiser: G. Love and Special Sauce meets Booker T. and the M.G.s mixed with the quirkiness of Cake. Then you bump the energy level up a notch or two and you have the Sugar Free Allstars

HGMN: We all know there is a struggle that musicians face when trying to get their talent out there for people to hear. What was it like for you and the band?

Wiser: It's easy and hard at the same time. Hard because of the awful state the music industry is in as far as how corporate it's become thus making it difficult for music with any merit to get through, but as a reaction it seems like many college and community radio stations and websites and organizations such as Home Grown Music Network have taken more to the quality acts that the industry seems to be ignoring, which in some ways makes it easier.

HGMN: Who was your inspiration when growing up? Who are your favorite artists/bands?

Wiser: My extended family is very musical and they would always sing and play at family reunions (still do). Also my Jr. High band director was an inspiration as well. Favorite artists/bands include Ben Folds, Dr. John , The Meters, Billy Preston (RIP), the Blues Brothers. Mainly older funky stuff.

HGMN: So what is it that you have playing in your cd player right now?

Wiser: We actually listen to more vinyl than CDs. I just found a Dr. John album called One Night Late on Karate Records that I never knew about, it's really good. Also just today I found George Harrison's Concert for Bangladesh for cheap, I'm actually listening to that right now.

HGMN: Tell me what it's like for you to travel, tour, be part of something that you have probably always dreamed of?

Wiser: Well it's definitely cool to be doing something you love for your job, but just like with any job it can get old. There's a lot of things involved in making music a business that are never a part of the dream. As you get older the traveling can definitely wear on you more than when you're a young man. Having said that it is awesome to be able to say that you're at least partially supporting yourself with something you've created. That's definitely a cool feeling.

HGMN: Dogstock Music festival is an excellent way for people to join together for a great cause while enjoying their favorite music. Did this have an effect on why you chose to perform there?

Wiser: The cause is very cool as well as the camaraderie. Just about every band that we're friends with from different parts of the country will be there. It will be great to hang out and jam with all our buddies.

HGMN: So I have to ask, do you have any dogs? If so, will they be joining you for the trip?

Wiser: No dogs, we're cat guys. Easier pets to have when you have to be gone for several days at a time.

HGMN: What is your tour schedule like these days?

Wiser: We're getting all the way up to North Dakota, down to Texas, out to Memphis and over to Colorado. Thinking about working on a tour to either of the coasts when gas prices come back down.

HGMN: Any big summer plans in mind?

Wiser: We're doing a couple of library tours as part of a kid's summer program. We've got a children's album coming out and these shows will be to help support that CD. We're excited, as this will be something completely new for us.

HGMN: Chris thank you very much for taking the time to answer some questions for music goers to learn a little bit about what Sugar Free Allstars is all about. From someone who had not heard a lot of your music before, I love your style and will be sure to spread the word around. Have a great summer!

-Kacy Stabler - Home Grown Music Network

"CD Review-Return of Dos Machos"

Ladies and gentlemen, step right up and don't be shy. Chris Wiser and Rob Martin - the Oklahoma duo better known as Sugar Free Allstars - have the cure for what ails you. With Return of Dos Machos, the disarmingly talented band demonstrates their uncanny knack for performing muiscal feats seemingly beyond the reach of any mortal two-man outfit.

The spoken inro, "We think that YOU are gonna dig this..." precedes the opening track, "Blame It On the Monkey," an outright Southern drunken-funk groove establishing an infectious tail-wagging vibe that seamlessly segues into the driving boogie-woogie of the next track, "Cadillac Lady." Wiser's skillful Hammond B3 and organ bass chops almost take a back seat to his playful lyrics, but Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin's exceptional drumming keeps things focused. The satirical "Jesus Chrrist Super Center" (the title alone is a stroke of comic genius) exemplifies Wiser's skewed lyrical sense of humor, while the Tom Waits-inspired "Compose Myself A Letter" follows a darker yet equally absurd theme. the sole piano-driven track, "Mighty Mississippi," respectfully pays homage to New Orleans legends Professor Longhair and Dr. John, and equal props are doled out (quite hilariously) to the questionable trends of the 80s in "Parachute Pants," a spot-on tribute to MTV, jelly shoes and synthesizers.

What could possibly left to cover you ask? A fat, heady reggae twist further expands the arsenal of styles by way of "Man Without A Home," a bass (organ)-centric detour hightlighted by a-typical somber lyrics. A guest appearance by Little Feat's Fred Tackett on guitar lends a sweet, easy stroll to the light yet swinging "Big Brown Eyes," and the closing track, "Wichita," hints at a heavier, thick rock sound.

Infectious and addictive, Return of Dos Machos is essential listening for any fan of funky fun.

-Gooch Walker - Liner Notes Magazine

"Sugar Free Allstars: On Tour Forever"

In a world full of guitar/guitar/bass/drums, it’s comforting to see bands that completely wreck the standard setup. The Sugar Free Allstars are composed of Chris Wiser (Hammond B3 organ, saxophone, vocals) and Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin (Drums/back-up vocals). That’s it. There’s no guitar or bass- just two men armed with what instruments they’ve got, melodies to spare, and a zany sense of humor. Atypical pop with a sly grin is what the Sugar Free Allstars have to offer, and we caught up with the very busy Chris Wiser to hear about what’s been going on in the SugarFree camp.

Independent Clauses: You've been playing a lot of shows outside of Oklahoma lately. How has the response in other cities been to your music?
Chris Wiser: It's been going very well. People outside of Oklahoma aren't used to seeing some dummy hauling a full size Hammond organ around and they seem to be impressed. A lot of folks respond well to the fact that we have no guitar, just because it's something different that they haven't seen that often, if ever.

IC: What's your favorite town outside of Oklahoma to play?
CW: Probably Manhattan, KS, but Fargo (yes THE Fargo), North Dakota is rising up the charts pretty fast.

IC: Who have you been playing with lately, and how has that been
CW: We've been doing shows with Madahoochi from St Louis, 56 Hope Road from Chicago, Brother Bagman from Kansas City, and Mama's Cookin' from Gunnison, Co. It's been going very well. We're good friends with all of these bands, which has helped our crowds in other towns.

IC: If you could tour with anyone playing right now, who would it be?
CW: Ben Folds, Little Feat, Galactic, Dr John.

IC: Any show stick out as particularly interesting and notable lately?
CW: We got to do the official after show party after the Dr John show at Feat Fest in Eureka Springs, Arkansas. We were personally invited by Little Feat and our friend Fred Tackett, who plays guitar for them, played several tunes with us.

IC: How long and how far do you plan to tour?
CW: Not really sure. We realize we can't do this forever, but we'll keep going until it's not practical anymore. We just want to try to build a fan base in as many places as we can before we're done.

IC: You've also been recording a new album- how has that gone?
CW: It's been great. The tracks have been done for a while, but we've delayed the release to get Fred Tackett, who I mentioned before plays for Little Feat, to put some guitar on one of the tracks.

IC: How is the songwriting different than on your last album Dos Machos?
CW: It's really not. Some of these songs have been around since before Dos Machos. We just try to put together songs that go well together.

IC: What are some bands/things/experiences that influenced you on this new album?
CW: One song "Cadillac Lady" was influenced by something Dr Rock (drums) said, "Jesus Christ Super Center " was influenced by Adam and the Ants. Most everything was influenced by things I heard or saw.

IC: Explain your favorite song on the new album and the story (or
lack thereof) behind it.
CW: I think right now the 2 that are my favorite are "Jesus Christ Super Center" and "Parachute Pants" because we got creative with the studio arrangements.

IC: Who recorded/engineered/mixed the album? Any funny recording stories?
CW: Trent Bell at Bell Labs. We've been recording with him for 30 years now.

IC: What are you listening to right now?
CW: I'm pretty ADD when it comes to listening to music. I buy a lot of cheap vinyl so whatever the last thing I bought ends up being what I listen to for about a day or so. Let's see, the last records I bought were Starlight Mints’ Built on Squares (blue vinyl, very cool), Badfinger No Dice, Mungo Jerry and Gordon Lightfoot. I recently bought the newest Ben Kweller CD and really like it a lot.

IC: What CD release are you looking forward to (besides your own, of
CW: I'm looking forward to Ben Folds' next studio album of new material. I liked his last one alright (Songs for Silverman) but I prefer his more sarcastic material. I'm hoping he returns to that style of writing.

-Stephen Carradini - Independent Clauses

"CD Review-Return of Dos Machos"

True to form, this album dives headlong into the fun. "We think that you will dig this," intones frontman Chris Wiser on "Blame It On The Monkey," the opening salvo in this grinning slacker attack on all things of the responsible nine-to-five daily grind. "Cadillac Lady" narrates a frustrating ordeal of facing the back bumper of a certain plodding road hazard encountered by many unfortunate motorists. Its uptempo beat is a perfect match for the impatience expressed in the lyrics.

"Every Drunkard Has His Day" may be the catchiest number on the CD, but they're all pretty darn catchy. It's definitely intended for an adults-only audience. This track would be a fun, excellent fit karaoke in any number of smoky bars. "Jesus Christ Super Center" gets a little conroversial as well.. The song may offend some Christian listeners, althought it's a thought-provoking criticism leveled at religious institutions where glitz is more emphasized than God. It also might be a criticism of the commodification of Christ in some retail outlets.

"Compose Myself A Letter" goes back into the territory of goofy fun, as does "Mighty Mississippi," a rolling meditation on the New Orleans' enduring fun-loving side and the Big Easy's apparently boundless capacity to inspire artists of all stripes.

"Parachute Pants" takes the prize for funkiest track on the album, calling up echoes of Rick James' superfreaky stylings even as it advocates reviving the billowy trousers favored by the James-influenced rapper Hammer. I guess it's time haul my pair out of the closet. Maybe.

"Man Without A Home" shows the band's roots in reggae and is easily the most serious song on Return of Dos Machos! but "Big Brown Eyes" is simpy great fun. While it is sweet and maybe a bit on the lovey-dovey side, the guest guitar work by Little Feat multi-instumentalist Fred Tackett is enjoyable and adds a little spice.

"Wichita" (almost) wraps up the album on a "thump-thump" note that reminded me a bit of Electric Light Orchestra, but harder and less urgent. These dos machos know how to have fun and put a smile on your face. Speaking of smiles, a spacy hidden track awaits the patient listener. Just discover it yourself, for it most likely will bodysnatch your blues and replace them with a pickled grin, earthling.

-Adam Scott - Norman Transcript-Pop Magazine

"CD Review-Dos Ninos"

Who knew Oklahoma could be so funky? The two dudes from Norman, Ok, who call themselves the Sugar Free Allstars lay down some stinky poo grooves with nothing but a Hammond B-3 and a drum set, showing that less is more on their first CD for kids, Dos Ninos. this here is a booty-shakin' affair, y-all, so open up the Toddler Time floor for some free form dancin'!

Organist and sax master Chris Wiser and drum thumper Rob (Dr. Rock) Martin have been at the SFA game for a while. Having met at Southwestern Oklahoma State University, the duo finally gelled as a musical twososme after the exit of guitarist Mike Satawake and original drummer Andy Moore. Three CDs into their career, the Sugar Free Allstars decided it was time to turn the kids on to their brand of Memphis soul, NOLA funk, and amusingly witty lyrics.

From the group chant chorus of "Bathtub Boy" to the vaudeville jaunt of "Petting Zoo", from the southern California funk of "It's P. Kitty Time " to the raging Deep Purple rock of "Banana Pudding", SFA let their unique style shine through on Dos Ninos, diverting nary a whit from their trademark sound. In fact, "He's OK (The Spider Song)" is a remake of a tune that originally appeared on SFA's eponymous debut CD back in 2001. Grandparents get a funktabulous shout out in the silly but sweet "Poppy and MeeMaw". and the appropieately titled instumental "Stinky" will put a crick in yer neck, for sure. The album ends with "Buck Up Little Camper", a nostalgic diversion that sounds more like the closing song to one of those RKO westerns.

After you've listened to Dos Ninos, check out "Wichita" from Return of Dos Machos!, "Exercise the Demon" from Sugar Free Allstars, or "The Way That I Felt Today" from Dos Machos! Heck, just go ahead and get all their CDs, throw 'em in the player, and have a party. the kids'll love love it, the grownups'll love it, and you'll probalby grab a few of your neighbors' ears, as well.

-Warren Truitt - Kid's Music That Rocks-Children's Librarian, NY Public Library

"CD Review-Dos Ninos"

The kids need love too, or at least Sugar Free Allstars believe so. the drum and organ duo from Oklahoma have released Dos Ninos, it's third proper release, and one just for the kids.

Quirky has long been an adjective for this band, but when singing about taking a bath ("Bathtub Boy") over organ vamps that could turn Sesame Street into an all night dance party, this eccentric approach makes sure-fire fun fo the whole family. "Poppy and MeeMaw" struts like Big Bird with a pimp cane, and "Petting Zoo" explores the outdoor frights seen through small eyes, both infused with a distinct funk flavor. While most childrens music is dumbed down completely-from music to the lyrics-Chris Wiser and Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin take a different approach, adding child friendly wording to the duo's trademark sound.

Who needs the Wiggles or Barney when the Sugar Free Allstars are making true, intriguing music, but with a childish bent.

-Jamie Lee - Honest Tune, The American Journal of Jam and Roots

"CD Review-Dos Machos!"

Contrary to their name, the Sugar Free Allstars aren't without anything. Even as a duo, Chris Wiser (vocals, Hammond B3 and sax) and Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin (drums) pack wit, off-kilter themes, and immense virtuosity into a funky, twisted bowl of Oklahoma punch. Both musicians planted their musical seeds in seventh grade, and have developed their talents consistently through the years. The duo met while studying music at Southwestern Oklahoma State University, and since coming together, have set out to brew a sonic concoction that draws on the blues and funk elements of both New Orleans and Memphis, smoothed over with a pop sheen that is difficult not to embrace.

Clever wordplay, sing-along choruses and interlocking drum and B-3 arrangements populate Sugar Free Allstars' sophomore release, Dos Machos. Quirky lyrics and bottom-rocking funk abound over the album's ten tracks, poking fun at the contradictory plight of trust-fund kids at Widespread Panic shows in "Buddhist in a Beamer," the habit of tying on a multi-day buzz in "Bender to Ender," and "Cornbread" is an ode to a soul food staple. While the subject matter may seem slapstick, the Sugar Free Allstars back up their humor with serious grooves that leave a lasting impression, even after the laughter fades.

-Jamie Lee - Hittin' The Note-Documenting Up & Coming Musicians and the Sounds They Create

"Sugar Free Allstars, Atkins Approved Music"

In a genre that is defined by guitar solos and long improvisational jam sessions the Sugar Free Allstars have created something completely original and all their own. With only two members, one of which plays the drums and accompanies the vocals, and one who plays a Hammond B-3 organ called “Mama” or sometimes “Satan”, the saxophone and lead vocals these guys create a sound that remains untapped by many others. “Being a duo is not the norm and especially when you have no bass player or (god forbid) no guitar player. I think people like the music because it's quirky and different but still catchy and fun at the same time. It's good-time groove music with some substance behind it.” Remarked Chris Wiser, the lead singer and organ player for SFA.

As a band of two, the Sugar Free Allstars play “Funky Organ Rock, Groove Music”. The key word being music. “It's funny because we don't really view ourselves as a jam band, but the same crowds like what we do. Maybe what we have to contribute is the minimalizing of the music a bit more. To us the groove and the song are most important…the soloing/improv is secondary.” Acknowledged Wiser. The fact that SFA tries to make songs is very apparent in the nature of their music. “We tell people that the Sugar Free Allstars is what you get if G. Love's drummer and Booker T put together an organ duo, then bumped it up a notch or two, and threw in a little Cake/Ben Folds sarcasm for good measure…” stated Wiser. This sarcastic wit is heard in songs like “Buddhist in a Beemer” and makes the audience smile, if not laugh aloud, as they shake their booties on the dance floor.

After playing here in April and with a new CD that has yet to be titled coming out in mid to late November, SFA is excited to come back to Fargo and introduce the crowd to some new music as well as share some old favorites. “We hope to have a rocking show and hope we see some familiar faces and see some new ones. And just have a good rock time with plenty of debauchery.” Commented Dr. Rock the drummer and backing vocals of SFA. After playing Fargo SFA will continue their touring schedule that will bring them all the way down to Texas and back up to there home state of Oklahoma. “We like to travel to places where no one knows us and we can see if we can stand on our own two feet... err I guess that’s actually our own four feet. (8 if you count the Hammond B-3). I think we are up to playing in 15 or so states. And a European tour is in the works…if I can just figure out this passport thing.” Declared Dr Rock.

With all the touring that the Sugar Free Allstars are doing, be sure to catch them as they pass through Fargo, because they will not be back for a while and no one will want to miss their unique style and humor. “The main thing that makes us different is we haven’t been convicted of a felony, accused but never convicted. I think a lot of people like us because we don’t take ourselves too seriously. We like to have fun and I have found very few people who don’t.” mentioned Dr. Rock. So, if you like to have fun, be at the Nestor on the 12th for the Sugar Free Allstars.

-Spencer Palder - High Plains Reader

"CD Review-Dos Machos!"

Contrary to their name, the Sugar Free Allstars aren't without anything. Even as a duo, Chris Wiser (vocals, Hammond B3 and sax) and Rob "Dr. Rock" Martin (drums) pack wit, off-kilter themes, and immense virtuosity into a funky, twisted bowl of Oklahoma punch. Both musicians planted their musical seeds in seventh grade, and have developed their talents consistently through the years. The duo met while studying music at Southwestern Oklahoma State University, and since coming together, have set out to brew a sonic concoction that draws on the blues and funk elements of both New Orleans and Memphis, smoothed over with a pop sheen that is difficult not to embrace.

Clever wordplay, sing-along choruses and interlocking drum and B-3 arrangements populate Sugar Free Allstars' sophomore release, Dos Machos. Quirky lyrics and bottom-rocking funk abound over the album's ten tracks, poking fun at the contradictory plight of trust-fund kids at Widespread Panic shows in "Buddhist in a Beamer," the habit of tying on a multi-day buzz in "Bender to Ender," and "Cornbread" is an ode to a soul food staple. While the subject matter may seem slapstick, the Sugar Free Allstars back up their humor with serious grooves that leave a lasting impression, even after the laughter fades.

-Jamie Lee - Hittin' The Note-Documenting Up & Coming Musicians and the Sounds They Create


My Daddy's Record Collection (2014) *vinyl 45 record* produced by SFA and Trent Bell
All On A Sunday Afternoon (2012) produced by SFA and Trent Bell
Funky Fresh and Sugar Free (2010) produced by SFA and Trent Bell
Dos Ninos (2007) produced by SFA, Trent Bell and Kevin Webb
Return Of Dos Machos! (2007) produced by SFA and Trent Bell
Dos Machos! (2004) produced by SFA and Trent Bell
Sugar Free Allstars (2001) produced by SFA

For Booking: Chris Wiser, 405-514-5676



Imagine that Deep Purple and Sly and the Family Stone had a love child that grew up in New Orleans listening to Ray Charles, Black Sabbath and Booker T. That love child would be the Sugar Free Allstars. With their diverse musical influences and unusual instrumentation, this funky organ/drum duo from Oklahoma City can be hard to classify. The music blends New Orleans funk, Memphis soul and Hammond organ-drenched gospel, wrapped in a colorful rock and roll package.  Add to the mix a touch of pop songwriting sensibilities, humor and a high-energy live show and you’ve got the Sugar Free Allstars.

Chris “Boom!” Wiser (Hammond B-3 organ, lead vocals, saxophone) and Rob “Dr. Rock” Martin (drums, backing vocals) make up the dynamic duo of Sugar Free Allstars. As Wiser multi tasks the outfit covering bass lines on the B-3 and cranking out soulful sax solos, Martin lays down a rock-solid beat that keeps the heads bopping and hips shaking.  The connection and fire between the two musicians is obvious in their live performance. “We try to provide a good mix of humor and a tight performance,” explains Wiser. “Even in our kids’ shows, it’s meant to be a rock and roll party for all ages.”

Over the past five years the band has released three family music albums, the most recent being 2012's All On A Sunday Afternoon, which features guest appearances by notable Kindie artists such as Keller Williams, Marty Beller, Jack Forman of Recess Monkey, Shawana Kemp of Shine and the Moonbeams and Trout Fishing In America. This album, along with 2010's Funky Fresh and Sugar Free and 2007's Dos Ninos, has helped solidify Sugar Free Allstars' place in the Kindie music scene as purveyors of Family Funk. They have also garnered national critical acclaim and accolades such as mentions in Time, People and Parents magazines, starred reviews in School Library Journal, two #1 hits on SiriusXM's Kid's Place Live, a Parent's Choice Silver Award, a National Parenting Publication Awards (NAPPA) Gold Award, airplay on the #1 NPR show “Car Talk”, and inclusion of a song on the anti bullying compilation “All About Bullies Big and Small” which won the 2012 Grammy for Best Children's Album.

SFA is always on the road and have performed at venues all over the United States and Italy. Since beginning their foray into family music in 2007 they have played the Jiggle Jam Family Fest in Kansas City, the Little Rocker’s Stage at the Norman Music Festival in Oklahoma, the Kindiefest Family Music Conference in Brooklyn, NY, the Austin Kiddie Limits kid’s stage at the Austin City Limits Music Festival in Austin, TX, Symphony Space in Manhattan, NY, McCabe's in Santa Monica, CA and the Rumpus Room at SiriusXM's Kid's Place Live studios in Washington D.C. The educational aspect of their music shines through at elementary school performances and library summer reading programs all over the country. SFA is listed on the Oklahoma Arts Council's Touring Roster as well as the Mid-America Arts Alliance's Artist Registry.

Band Members