Tathata (pronounced Tah-thah-tah) started when members of a backup belly-dancing group crossed paths with some fire circle attendees. The result, according to their press release, is "Albuquerque's grooviest pagan dance band." The release says Tathata "pulls from various local scenes such as festival, foot stomp and frolicking feast" but many might be tempted to label them as a "jam band."
"We're a specific flavor of jam band," says Mattie Greenman, Tathata's singer and guitarist. "We have the jam band motif, but with some spirituality overlaid on top of the music." Tathata's debut album, Vesica, features lyrics derived from some of the oldest available texts, including some Sumerian and Taoist chants. Vesica also has some damn fine flute and pennywhistle playing (courtesy of Kimi Foree), and Greenman's flamenco-ish guitar makes for a continually brisk tempo. Add a couple all-percussion songs to perk up the ears of the drum-circle-savvy, and you've got more than enough to satisfy the earth-conscious pagan in all of us.
The band has already created a sizeable contingent of "Tathata-heads" who share the group's passion for highly danceable rhythms and their collective concern for the planet. "Tathata shows are a great place to network with likeminded individuals," Greenman says. "We've made some really strong connections with our community of fans." If you like where Greenman is coming from, stop on by The Factory on 5th performance space and gallery (1715 Fifth Street NW) on Friday, Sept. 30, where the band will play an all-ages show starting at 8 p.m.