Baby boogalu birds leave the nest

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What: 3 Litre When: 10 p.m. Saturday Where: Mahogany Ridge Brewery and Grill, Fifth Street and Lincoln Avenue Free

Saturday night, when 3 Litre takes the stage at Mahogany Ridge Brewery and Grill, it will be the band's first show outside of its hometown of Denver and the first step in what its members hope will be the career of a national touring band. But they have a lot of work to do and hours of road to travel before they get there.

Three Litre plays a kind of music similar to boogalu, which had its hey day in the late '60s but now is making a comeback through bands such as The Iguanas and Greyboy Allstars. The music is based on a combination of R&B and Cuban music that formed in the clubs of Spanish Harlem.

Three Litre discovered boogalu and the sounds of '60s and '70s funk via the Greyboy Allstars and Karl Denson who it covers extensively in its live shows.

The band is only 8 months old and is still searching for its voice. Its music is heavily organ-driven with a set list full of covers of Richard "Groove" Holmes, John Scofield, Galactic and Stevie Wonder.

"Right now, we play the music we like to listen to," said Jonathan Lumly, who lists his influences among Pancho Sanchez, Giovanni Hidalgo, Tito Puente and Domingo Ortiz.

"I play my congas sitting on the floor," Lumly said. "The style of music we play is more of a funky jazz, but I definitely try to bring in some of the Latin rhythms."

Until this weekend, 3 Litre has mostly played gigs at Herman's Hideaway in Denver. No one is quitting his office jobs, but the band members are setting their sites toward eventually making the band a full-time gig.

After its Steamboat gig, the band has plans to take some time off and work on developing more original songs.

"We've been playing pretty heavily for a while," Lumly said. "We had three shows last week."

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