Michele Thomas and SoulMeme
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Michele Thomas and SoulMeme

Chicago, IL | Established. Jan 01, 2016 | SELF

Chicago, IL | SELF
Established on Jan, 2016
Band Jazz Soul




"Yusef Lateef"

"(She) has her own vocal sound, which is beautiful by the Grace of God."
- Legendary jazz artist, Grammy award winner

"Kevin Mahogany"

"Best singer by far! Great feeling! Great voice! I'm in love!"
- Warner Bros. recording artist


Messenger - 2012



It’s often been said that the sum is greater than its parts and in the case of rising jazz fusion outfit SoulMeme, that’s certainly the case. A collective formed by a longtime collection of musical friends who’ve become family, sharing their love of music together in the Chicago area for years, they now seek to harness their individual talents together in order to create something even greater. 

The ties that bind SoulMeme together run long and deep, formed over years of performing across the Chicago club scene. 

“Darren Scorza and Neal Alger started out playing together as the house band for a jam session at an old northside dive bar called ‘Big Joe’s 2&6 Pub’,” shares lead vocalist and visionary behind the group, Michele Thomas. “We were all fresh out of college and Darren hosted this jam every Sunday night. A mutual musician friend of ours told me about the session which I then started going out to sing at every week…After coming out to sing for a few months, they invited me to be a member of the house band as their resident vocalist.”

A few years on down the line, bassist Bob Lovecchio would join the troupe, joining the “Big Joe’s” house band while keyboardist Matt Nelson, who is the core group’s most recent addition, was added over the past few years. Yet, Nelson has been a quick fit, his musical chops seasoned with plenty of steady gigging and segueing seamlessly into the group’s familial dynamic with ease.

Individually these artists all bring strong resumes to the table. Michele Thomas’ career has led her to bring music across the world, her honeyed vocals earning her comparisons to acts like Ella Fitzgerald and Dianne Reeves while her husband and drummer Darren Scorza boasts a laundry list of gigs behind him, sharing the stage with artists like Bobby Enriquez and Richie Cole while serving as the house drummer for Chicago’s heralded Pump Room with singer Jim Rollins. Matt Nelson has had the opportunity to play alongside Grammy-nominated artist Matthew Santos and Graham Czach while Neal Alger and Bob Lovecchio have explored their inner muses, taking on a variety of genres and playing alongside almost innumerable acts along the way including Blue Note artist Patricia Barber and grammy nominated Angel Melendez & The 911 Mambo Orchestra .

Yet when these individuals come together as SoulMeme, they fuse together into a stunning act, one that takes their music to another level. And while the members of SoulMeme share a long history, it feels as though they’re embarking on a whole new journey together, as family, friends, and creative cohorts. And they invite you to journey along with them.