It's no easy feat to maintain a popular free weekly residency in downtown Phoenix and still be one of the biggest-drawing bands in metro Phoenix. But desert reggae band Black Bottom Lighters manages to find a way. Even though the group cranks out acoustic tunes every Wednesday at Copper Blues in downtown Phoenix and recently picked up a regular Thursday gig at the bar's Tempe location, BBL manages to pack fans into the Marquee Theatre every time it takes the stage there.
"All the promoters say the residency is going to hurt us. But from our experience, the more connected you are with the people -- the more you see the people -- the more likely they will want to come out and support you," says BBL singer Ryan "Stilly" Stillwell.
For the band's long-awaited album release show, Black Bottom Lighters intend to pack their massive fanbase into Scottsdale's newly minted Livewire concert venue as the first locals to ever play the new space. Selling out a 1,200-person venue for an album-release party may be a pipe dream for many Phoenix locals. But for BBL, it's not really a stretch.