Stew and The Negro Problem
First there was the Negro Problem, a band that rose through the ranks of L.A.'s indie scene in the late '90s and early aughts. Deemed "L.A.'s best band" by the L.A. Weekly in 1992, the unit - propelled by Stew and Heidi Rodewald - recorded three critically acclaimed albums: Post Minstrel Syndrome (1997), Joys & Concerns (1999) and 2002's Welcome Back. The New York Times cited the last as "perhaps the finest collection of songs an American songwriter has come up with this year." When Stew and Heidi began work on Passing Strange, the theater production that went on to become both a Spike Lee-directed movie and Tony Award winner for "Best Book of a Musical," The Negro Problem was put on hold. This past year, however, the band returned to sell out six nights at St Ann's Warehouse in Brooklyn, NY, performing primarily new material. The inspiration was born to record their new album Making It and take the band on the road once again.
“Wringing heart from hard truth, beauty from cooked curls, joy from concern." —L.A. Weekly