Sol Bridge Band
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Photo by Dante Fontana
A genre hybrid of rock, funk, hip-hop, reggae, with assorted Americana influences of country blues and bluegrass has been rocking and rolling all over Placerville.
Seven years ago a chance encounter at an open mic night at the Cozmic Café changed the lives of five young gentlemen. Jonny Mojo Flores and Joaquin Fioresi were paired together without even knowing the other’s name.
The two took the stage and received a standing ovation after finishing their three-song set. Fioresi says he told Flores it was great to meet him to spur this idea. “We instantly connected musically and formed ‘The Bridge,’ an improvisational/spoken word jam band,” Fioresi says.
Fioresi says the sound in the beginning was fresh and spontaneous, way ahead of its time. The two then met the bass player and drummer, in which the band then evolved into writing songs that were both thoughtful and heart provoking. The band came up with the name “bridge” because their message has always been to inspire hearts and minds to open and come together. They later changed to Sol Bridge (“sol” means sun in Spanish) because all members have a great affinity for sunshine.
The now five-member band includes: Joaquin Fioresi as the lead vocalist and rhythm guitar; Dan Abbott on bass and saxophone; Colt Langstaff on percussion; Jeff Westcott on guitar; and Jonny Mojo Flores plays guitar, mandolin and harmonica. With diverse members, most of the bandmates can play more than one instrument. Fioresi never played an instrument until he learned how to play drums for a local African dance troupe eight year ago, but has been singing since he could talk. “I like the psychological growth I encounter during a performance,” Fioresi says. “I have learned so much about who and what I am.”
According to Fioresi, music is a science; full of unique ingredients, cooked together with many intelligent members and then displayed in a public environment. Some of the band’s inspiration comes from a variety of musicians including The Grateful Dead, Muddy Waters, Otis Redding, Bob Marley, Michael Franti, and Spearhead.
The band recently introduced their first full-length studio recording, The Naked Truth. People can buy it at Main Street Music, and at Zia’s Cafe on Main Street in Placerville as well as at MoonShadows in Shingle Springs. They band plays regularly at Powell’s Steamer, every other Sunday from 6-9 p.m., and at the Cozmic Café in Placerville. In the summer, the group performs in Coloma at Marco’s Café. They also plays private shows and house concerts, both acoustic and/or electric guitars.
“We have received great support in the foothill community,” Fioresi says. And he says even though most of the members live in Placerville, Sol Bridge can travel to San Francisco, Reno or Santa Cruz for a show. Sol Bridge plans to continue living the life in the foothills, as well as to create quality meaningful music.
To listen to their music go to myspace/solbridge.com. For more information, call 530-391-1794.