Sol Seed
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Sol Seed

Eugene, Oregon, United States | SELF

Eugene, Oregon, United States | SELF
Band Alternative Reggae




"A Conversation With Benny Pezzano of Sol Seed"

A Conversation With Benny Pezzano of Sol Seed
Nate Gartrell, EDN
Benny Pezzano is a bass player and singer for Sol Seed, a funk-reggae band that originated in Southern Oregon, but is now based in Eugene. Sol Seed has six members, including a saxophonist and didgeridoo player, which Pezzano said puts them apart from other reggae bands. They’re known to frequently play gigs at local clubs and other venues, and have released an EP, called Rising Roots, on iTunes.
Eugene Daily News: Can you explain the background story, of how you all got together?
Benny Pezzano: Sol Seed originated in Medford, between the lead singer Michael Lennon and the drummer Michael Sorensen. They were playing at Jackson Creek Pizza Open Mic Night, hosted by Frankie Hernandez, a local musician who was instrumental in creating Sol Seed. He was like our grandfather; he brought us together at the open mic.
About a year and a half ago, we all transplanted to Eugene at the same time. Here in Eugene, we recently picked up percussionist, MC, and didgeridoo player Sky Guasco. We most recently picked up Greame Pletscher, who’s our sax player. That was a huge step up.
EDN: Not a lot of bands have a didgeridoo player…
BP: Yeah, it’s a pretty unique and original instrument. It’s really cool.
EDN: How’s it been since you came out to Eugene? What’s the music scene like here, in your opinion?
BP: When we were fresh-eared, green musicians in Southern Oregon, we thought: “Eugene, dude! Reggae! Lot’s of reggae, huge of amount of bands, huge amount of music, it’s gonna be the perfect place.”
Then we get to Eugene, and in one sense, it was a perfect place, because there’s a lot of culture. But the music scene is a tough nut to crack, and there’s very little reggae. Even though we don’t play traditional reggae, it’s still really surprising that, aside from Medium Troy and a couple others, we’re the only ones. But now, we’ve figured out how to network. We’ve gotten a name amongst the local bars, local venues. A lot of people know the name “Sol Seed” by now.
EDN: It seems like you’re trying to push the boundaries of reggae a little bit. Can you talk a about your musical influences, and what your group is trying to accomplish musically?
BP: What’s cool about Sol Seed as a whole is that we all draw from really different influences. I draw from a lot of funk. Mike Lennon, our lead singer, he draws from a lot of folk and classic rock. Our lead guitar player, Kenny Lewis, is a huge blues guitar player. Mike Sorensen started out as a jazz drummer, Greame Pletscher has been playing jazz for a while on sax. But reggae serves as kind of a backbone, which comes out naturally. None of us were reggae musicians before we started playing in Sol Seed. It’s the brew that came out of our mesh of musical influences. I couldn’t imagine having more fun playing any other type of music.
We don’t like to fit into a genre. We’ve had to call ourselves a bunch of different genres, like, “Psychedelic Rock-Reggae,” or, “Reggae-Fusion,” but whatever it is, it’s not your typical reggae.
EDN: Anything else you’d like to say?
BP: We’re going on a spring break tour in the Bay Area, and a Northwest tour lined up for summer. And just recently, we were invited to this year’s Tayberry Jam. We got a good slot, and we’re looking forward to it. - Eugene Daily News

"Tribal member Kenny Lewis joins Sol Seed"

If you go

Sol Seed in concert

When: 7 p.m. Friday, April 29; dinner starts at 6:30 p.m.

Where: Tribal gym

Cost: Free admission; open to the public

More info:

By Dean Rhodes

Smoke Signals editor

Tribal member Kenny Lewis has packed a lot of living in his first 20 years.

He’s a black belt in martial arts.

He’s won a Native American Music Award as lead guitarist of the Jan Michael Looking Wolf Band and starred in the “Breakin’ Free” videos that can be seen on

And now he’s the lead guitarist of Sol Seed, a foursome who describe their music as psychedelic reggae rock with hints of jazz, blues, swing, funk, folk, Latin and hip-hop styles blended into the musical mix.

Think Jack Johnson meets Bob Marley with a dose of vintage Cat Stevens thrown in for good measure.

“It’s a good vibes feeling that all types of audiences enjoy,” the band’s Web site says. “And in the midst of this music fusion is a message of unconditional love, universal acceptance, and an urge to reach across social, spiritual and cultural boundaries.”

Lewis, who is the son of Tribal member and Commercial Real Estate Manager Ann Lewis and her husband, Ken, joined Sol Seed in early 2010 as his work with the Jan Michael Looking Wolf Band was winding down. The other three members of the band are singer and guitarist Michael Lennon, percussionist Michael Sorensen and bassist Benny Pezzano.

Lennon and Sorensen are the principal songwriters, but all four members participate in the creation and development of the songs.

Sol Seed will perform a free concert in the Tribal gym on Friday, April 29. It will not be their first performance there; they played the 2011 Tribal Jam on March 12. A video of that performance can be seen on the Tribal Web site,, under the Video page. (Their performance starts at the 51:30 mark of the video.)

Sol Seed also is being featured on Salem cable TV project “Salem Rocks.”

“Episode 1 – This Is Sol Seed, Part 1” airs on Comcast Cable channel 22 at 8:30 p.m. Fridays, April 15, 22 and 29, and 11:30 p.m. Saturdays April 16, 23 and 30. - Smoke Signals

"Sol Seed Transplants in Eugene"

Sol Seed, a young talented band from Southern Oregon, has relocated their home base to Eugene. Originally known as The MICS, founding band members Michael Lennon and Michael Sorenson were joined by Ben Pezzano in 2009 and Kenny Lewis in 2010. The group has developed their own unique style by combining aspects of rock, blues, hip-hop and reggae into what the band terms "roots fusion" music.

The four members of Sol Seed had the privilege of accompanying Jan Michael Looking Wolf, Native American Music Awards (NAMA) top artist of 2009, at this year's ceremony in Niagara Falls, New York on November 12, 2010. Looking Wolf received 2010 honors for record of the year for his album entitled "Breakin Free". Sol Seed acted as the backup band for Looking Wolf and performed for ceremony attendees and during the after-party.

According to Reverbnation, Sol Seed has rapidly climbed the charts in Eugene and has broken into the top ten out of more than 100 bands in a very short period of time. Their local hit song, Fire Rain, is still clamored for by its fans but check out the track Winter Warmth at for a wonderful example of root fusion music. - Associated Content


Still working on that hot first release.



Sol Seed brings a distinct sound combining the best elements of Reggae, Rock, Hip Hop and Psychedelic Jam to form a positive musical fusion that is uniquely their own. With conscious, thought-provoking lyrics, infectious reggae-laden grooves and high-energy, impressive live performances, Sol Seed creates an unforgettable live-music experience for people of all ages to enjoy.
Since transplanting to Eugene from Southern Oregon three years ago, Sol Seed has swiftly gained powerful momentum in the NorthWest music scene, creating a diverse and loyal fan base all over Oregon, Hawaii, Washington, Montana and California. They have been awarded Eugene WOW Hall Awards "Best New Act" 2011 and "Favorite Local Band" 2012 and 2013, in addition to "Eugene's Best Band" two years running by Eugene Weekly readers, and recently won the prestigious title "Next Big Thing", another Eugene Weekly award.
Dominating the NW summer festival circuit including Oregon Country Fair, North West World Reggae Festival, Kaleidoscope, Jefferson State Hemp Expo and more, Sol Seed has also shared the stage with national acts such as Ziggy Marley, Slightly Stoopid, The Green, Karl Denson, Pepper, The Expendables, Pacific Dub, Nappy Roots, Heavyweight Dub Champion and many more. 
After a number of small EP releases, the group released their first full-length album "Grown Deep" in September 2012, which immediately gained air-time on a number of radio stations all over the West Coast as well as the Hawaiian islands. 
After a very successful 2013 Kickstarter campaign to fund their next album release, "Family Tree", Sol Seed is in the studio with the full-lungth studio album slated for a Spring of 2014 release. 

This Oregon based band got their start in early 2010 when songwriters Michael Lennon and Michael Sorensen joined hands with fellow friend and musician Benny Pezzano through a Southern Oregon open mic. An undeniable synergy was all but tangible as their creative forces coalesced, and they immediately began to grow a diverse collection of original music. They soon joined with Native American Award winning guitarist, Kenny Sequoia Lewis, and in October 2010, transplanted to Eugene to pursue life and music, where soon after they linked up with MC, Didgeridoo player and percussionist Sky Guasco. With 5 members, each member boasting very different influences and skill sets, Sol Seeds depth and volume of sound increased exponentially.
With day-jobs being an ancient memory, the close-knit members of Sol Seed have fully embraced the band that has created much more- A movement, a lifestyle.  
With an infectious enthusiasm for life and an unequivocal knack to communicate its beauty, the group shares their message of perspectivism and unconditional love through uplifting music rooted in the soul. Sol Seed has certainly dug their roots. Coming to a city near you!

Band Members