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Biography

Boss 501 is a passionate group of musicians brought together by their shared love of the traditional sounds of Jamaica. The cosmic convergence from which Boss 501 would be spawned began when the legendary Esco Chris left his home in Southern California to seek adventure in lush Chico. Powered by reggae music, he soon encountered Nick Danty, singer and saxophonist and fellow reggae enthusiast. The two passionate young musicians knew that they were destined to form an epic band that would bring true early reggae to the people of Chico.

Ben Stone, bassist supreme and long-time friend and musical collaborator of Nick's joined the crew, bringing the extra-heavy sound. Hearing the call of the reggae beat and feeling the unique energy, Danny Walcoff brought his masterful drumming into the mix, and the groove was made tight. Reggae fever struck Charlie Francis, so he grabbed his trombone and his golden voice, and the reggae flowed through Chico; the sound was Boss. The mighty sound of sweet reggae music drew the attention of the musical demon Sterny, infamous wielder of the big sax, who brought his vicious sounds to the bottom of the horn section. Brian Matisek added his super-tight rhythm guitar, and the full sound of Boss 501 was finally realized.

Boss 501 brings a sound that is uniquely their own, though it clearly draws very heavily upon early reggae music as its basis. Boss 501 is also significantly influenced by Skinhead reggae, traditional Jamaican ska, as well as dub music. Boss 501 is a contemporary band, however, and acknowledges that they have also been influenced by 2-tone music and punk rock, as well as American soul and jazz, and everything other sound that has entered their ears.

Boss 501 has thrilled audiences in venues large and small, and has been fortunate enough to perform with acts including The Wailers, Lee "Scratch" Perry, Mystic Roots, Chris Murray, The Impalers, Deals Gone Bad, and See Spot. The members of Boss 501 bring extensive experience in the Jamaican styles, having performed in numerous groups prior to forming Boss 501, including The Pedaltones, One Big Step, The Titans, and The Allentons.

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