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The California Honeydrops are proud to have won the 2009 SF weekly award for Best R&B/Soul band in the San Francisco Bay Area. The group has developed a tremendous following in California, selling out shows at Yoshi’s in Oakland and the Lindy Groove in LA, and are just starting to break into the international scene performing recently at the Rawa Blues festival in Poland with exceptional response. The California Honeydrops were also recently nominated by The Blues Foundation for a national Blues Award for Best New Artist.
Digging deep into the roots of American music, The California Honeydrops embrace the traditions of Blues, Gospel, Second Line New Orleans Jazz, and early R&B. With stellar performances of traditional material as well as their own innovative music, The California Honeydrops get people out of their seats and onto the floor, dancing and singing along.
Formed in November 2007, The California Honeydrops first performed on the streets and in the subways stations in Oakland, California. Playfully crossing genres from Roots and Blues to R&B and soul, The California Honeydrops’ sound is tied together by soulful vocal harmonies, colorful shouts from brass and horns, and a funky, good-times New Orleans rhythm section. They quickly gained a reputation as the best party in the Bay Area.
Born in Warsaw, Poland, band leader and front man Lech Wierzynski began playing blues and jazz as a teenager at after-hours jam sessions in Washington D.C. After studying trumpet with Marcus Belgrave (Ray Charles), Lech continued his career after moving to Oakland. Honing his craft with some of the biggest names in American music, such as Maria Muldaur, Dan Hicks, and Jackie Payne, Lech has grown equally as a trumpeter, singer, and guitarist.
The vibrant rhythm section of The California Honeydrops is fueled by piano veteran John Cocuzzi (Jimmy McCracklin, Doc Cheatham, Floyd Dixon), and drummer Ben Malament (Terry Reid, The Marvelettes, The Jelly Roll Souls). Adding an unprecedented energy is saxophonist Johnny Bones (Eddie Palmiere, Nell Carter, Steve Lucky and the Rhumba Bums).