In three weeks’ time Mariposa Cruises will be hosting our very first Blues Cruise aboard the Northern Spirit on Thursday October 1st.
It will be a night of great food, great city and harbour views and great live music by Toronto blues band Sons of Rhythm.
To get to know our feature act just a little bit better we asked lead singer/bassist Mick Maratta some questions about the band. Here’s what he had to say….
How would you describe the sound and performance style of Sons of Rhythm?
I would say that we try to put a modern twist on traditional blues. We are also all very influenced by soul and funk music, which contributes to our unique sound.
Tell us a little something about who is in the band and what they play.
I (Mick Maratta) am our Bassist/Singer. Deriving influence from the tight and funky bass lines of masters such as James Jamerson, Larry Graham, and Bootsy Collins, my groovin’ bass lines are a sure way to keep an audience moving towards the dance floor. Newly graduated with an Honours Degree in Music from York University, I am currently taking mentorship from Rock & Roll Hall of famer Prakash John (Alice Cooper, Lou Reed, Parliament Funkadelic) and I’m looking to establish myself as one of Toronto’s leading frontmen.
Mike Carbone is our up and coming drummer. He is quickly rising as one of the Nation’s most in-demand drummers. With an impressive resume spanning all musical genres and armed with an Honours Degree from Toronto’s formidable music institution, York University. Mike has recently had the great opportunity of opening for bands such as Hollerado, Big Wreck, and David Willcox. He has also performed with The Lincolns, The Blues Angels, Jordan John, Zakiya Hooker, Donny Walsh, Dan Aykroyd, and many more. As a young drummer extraordinaire, he is destined for a rightful place among the who’s who of musical luminaries and contemporaries.
Federico Luiu is our guitarist. New to the Canadian music scene, he started his career as a professional musician at the young age of 18 in Italy. Eager to make a name for himself in Toronto, Federico performs along side greats such as Prakash John (Alice Cooper, Lou Reed, Parliament Funkadelic), Jordan John, Al Cross (Big Sugar), Bjorn Anderson (Alannah Myles), and many more. It won’t be long before he secures his place in Toronto’s thriving Blues community.
How long have you been playing together for? How did the band come about?
We have been playing together for almost two years. Myself, and Mike Carbone met about 6 years ago in University and have played in countless projects together over that span. When we met Federico and played together for the first time we instantly felt a connection and began rehearsing immediately.
Who are your major influences?
We draw from so many different styles of music, which makes this blues band unlike many. We obviously draw from the blues legends such as BB King, Albert King, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and many other well-known blues artists. More modern artists such as Doyle Bramhall II, Derek Trucks and Kirk Fletcher also influence us. Our love for soul and RnB music cannot be overlooked and makes it’s way into our sound with artists like Sly and The Family Stone, Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles.
Where have you performed? What are your favorite and least favorite venues?
We’ve performed at venues across the GTA and have started to stretch out to places like Hamilton where there is a real love for blues music. We enjoy playing every venue. What is most important to us is having an interactive crowd who is enjoying our music.
Do you write & perform any of your own songs?
Yes we do write and perform originals. We are currently in the process of writing our first record.
Which songs do you perform most frequently?
Depending on the mood of the night we will change our set-list to fit the atmosphere. The tunes that we play most frequently are probably ‘Boogie Thing’ and ‘Flip,Flop,Fly’.
You are the feature act for Mariposa Cruises’ Blues Cruise. How do you see the night going?
I see the night being a lot of fun. I have played on one cruise before and it was an awesome party and the view can’t be beat!
Will you take requests on the night?
Unfortunately, we do not take requests. If it is a song on our repertoire list we will gladly play it. We take a lot of pride in rehearsing our repertoire and coming up with original and entertaining arrangements, which makes it difficult to play songs we are not familiar with on the fly.
Do you have anything else to add?
Looking forward to seeing you all soon it is going to be a great night!
There are two fabulous Toronto Blues Cruise Experiences to choose from: Our Buffet Dinner Blues Cruise or our casual Cocktail-style Blues Cruise Mixer.
Tickets for our Buffet Dinner Blues Cruise experience are $72.95 + tax. Tickets for our Blues Cruise Cocktail Mixer experience are $29.89 + tax. Both include a 3 hour cruise through the Toronto harbour and live performance by Sons of Rhythm. Boarding starts at 6:30pm on Thursday October 1st. Come aboard for an amazing evening of live blues out on the water.