Under Construction...


In the beginning of the Somos Son band ... very few photos or videos due to the lack of cameras back then 1995+ and also due to the Tea Fire in 2008 which destroyed all my belongings!!   The black & whites are from my house in the Santa Barbara Riviera where Somos Son rehearsed sometimes (this is around 1999).  The group shot is from the Goldmine recording studio in 2003 ... founder Robin Moore had already departed.

This was the Somos Son band at the MultiCultural Festival in Oak Park - Julie McLeod hired us many years in a row - this around the year 2000, captured from some video in the audience. Jose Luis Gomez was the lead vocalist at this time.  Listening to the video, I had no idea at how good we were ...  hindsight!!  Adolfo Acosta (now with Tower of Power) on lead trumpet, the late Tommy Saito on bongos.   Photo credits Linda Gregory:

Somos Son at the Stateside in Santa Barbara November 2008.  This just happened to be my birthday, and less than a week before I had lost all my belongings in the Tea Fire, including my pianos and all my music.  Notice the keyboard I borrowed is on top of some bar stools - I had no stand anymore!  Solange Sanhueza was such a sweetheart and brought me a birthday cake!! Photo credits Isaac Hernandez:

And then Solange asked Somos Son to play for her wedding in May 2009 at the then Red Lion Hotel on the Santa Barbara waterfront:

The Buena Ventura Social Club created a very fun event of dinner & dancing in a large hall - check out the cool poster!!!  Raul Pineda was on drums/timbales that evening for us:

Somos Son played 7 years in a row (2006-2012) at the Casa Cantina in De La Guerra Plaza for the Santa Barbara Fiesta.  What a scene !!!  Usually both Friday & Saturday nights.  Dancers surrounded us on all sides!!  This is from August 2009:

Somos Son at the Santa Barbara Biltmore Hotel CoralCasino December 12, 2009 for a party where Spanish royalty were in attendance:

Probably our most distant gig away from home was Somos Son playing at the San Manuel Casino in Highland CA southeast of LA July 2010:

Somos Son playing at the Casa Cantina in De La Guerra for the Santa Barbara Fiesta August 2010.  My brother Jan brought our 85-old mother to see the band and help celebrate - what a treat!!:

One of Somos Son's first gigs in December 1995 was at the SOhO music & supper club, where they usually featured a different band every night of the week every week.  Quite a feat in the little provincial town of Santa Barbara.  We ended up being one of the few "house" bands there, one Friday or Saturday night a month for over 15 years 1995-2012!!  We were lucky to have a lot of great LA musicians come up to play with us:  here we have Dayren Santamaria on violin, Larry Meregillano trumpet, Dante Pascuzzo bass, Ariel Moya bongos & congas. At other times we had on trumpet Steve Giraldo or Sal Cracchiolo; on bass Eddie Resto, Jonathon Pintoff, Brian Wright or Edgar Hernandez; Luis Conte on congas; Robertito Melendez or Papo Rodriquez on bongos; Ruben Ordiano or Cougar Estrada (Los Lobos) sitting in on timbales; Gilberto Torres on flute & vocals, and many others. This is from January 29 2011, photo credits Rob Hoffman:

Also a regular gig for Somos Son was playing on the Stow House lawn in Goleta one Tuesday evening every summer.  A large crowd would also show to picnic and dance ... this is July 26 2011:

Somos Son at the Stow House July 31, 2012 our last time here, photo credits Rob Hoffman:

Somos Son officially retired in December 2012, but of course there were a few gigs more, minus a number of former core members.  I had always dreamed of playing with local luminary Randy Tico ... ironically he played bass for the band once for the very last gig together, at the Foley vineyard in Los Olivios September 13 2014:

Some final miscellaneous pictures of me with the Somos Son band:

I took a bunch years off from performing publically, and playing in general ... until the Mezcal Martini band asked me if I would take Bruce Bigheno's place at the piano ... here is my first gig with the band for "First Thursday" in May 2018, in front of whatever incarnation of the building at the time at the corner of Canon Perdido and State Sts:

Mezcal Martini at the I Modinari chalk painting festival at the Santa Barbara Mission May 27 2018:

Mezcal Martini at the Stow House in Goleta July 17 2018:

Mezcal Martini at the Stow House in Goleta summer 2019:

Mezcal Martini playing at a Party in the Mission Canyon foothills July 2019:

Mezcal Martini on the Main Stage in the De La Guerra Plaza at the Santa Barbara Fiesta August 1 2019.  (We had played there also the previous year in 2018.)  This was quite a thrill!!  Quite a large and appreciative crowd: