The Wholetones, a local band from Naples, uses websites like Myspace and Facebook to get the word out about their music, and connects with fans on levels that most bands before the Internet were not able to do. Rock music today therefore is becoming more local, and less national than it was ten years ago. The Wholetones, a former rock duo, is now a trio, due to the latest edition of their new stand-up bassist. They tour all around Naples, Goodland, and Marco playing at local pubs and restaurants like Fred’s in Naples, the Bayshore Coffee Shop, and the famous Little Bar in Goodland. The Wholetones have an eclectic style outside any strict genre definition, giving their audience a fresh mix of Bluegrass, Folk, Americana, Jam, and Indie music.
On Saturday, May 15th, the Wholetones played at the Little Bar on Goodland, as they do every third weekend. They played a four-hour set (with only a couple of breaks), with the music spanning forty years of styles and artists, including extended jamming, original music, and covers ranging from Modest Mouse to the Grateful Dead. The Wholetones consist of vocalist and guitarist Taylor Freydberg; cellist, guitarist, and vocalist Alex Dorris, and their new bass-player Russ Dega. Taylor and Alex met three or four years ago under the Goodland Bridge during the yearly Troll Jam.
Musically, Taylor and Alex are masters at their craft, showing incredible dexterity when it comes to song craft and jamming. Alex Dorris shreds on the guitar as Taylor melodically plays along to either Alex’s cello playing, or his bombastic guitar and banjo soloing. Rage against the Machine, Bela Fleck, Modest Mouse, and Iron & Wine all inspire and influence this band’s eclectic sound. Taylor’s lyrics are inspired by the artist Iron & Wine.
The Wholetones have many plans for the future: There will be a tour throughout Florida this summer, with the band visiting cities including Orlando and Tampa. The band will also release their first EP (Extended Play). This EP will be called Clutch Life and will feature six original songs by the band. The album can be bought at their local shows or online. The Wholetones have played at the Little Bar several times, and they always love playing there. J Robert, the Florida Fiddler, jams with the band after his own gigs. J has known Alex and Taylor since they were young guys.
With bands like the Wholetones, the music scene is asfruitful and eclectic as it’s ever been. It has been nearly fifty years since the modern age of Rock music began. Before bands like The Beatles, The Mothers of Invention, The Who, The Rolling Stones, The Animals, and Pink Floyd, there were a wide variety of Rhythm & Blues bands, Soul, and Jazz music that dominated the industry. But bands like The Beatles and The Mothers of Invention ushered the music scene into what is now the modern day rock music industry, and changed the art of music forever.
Currently, there are a plethora of Indie Rock bands, and Heavy Metal groups that are very popular amongst young crowds. These bands put out a plethora of work year after year. Famous Jam Bands, popular Hip Hop groups, and the always great Zappa Plays Zappa, go through the festival circuits, including Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, and Coachella each year, creating an undeniable tour-de-force or rock music and great exposure.
Music websites such as Sputnik Music, All Music, and many other various blogs and Youtube channels write their own album reviews, and are always up to date on the latest news and information from the music industry. Many bands and groups receive most of their publicity through these websites. Due to the most spectacular invention of the last thirty years—the Internet, bands and artists from all over the world have the opportunity to show their music to millions of people every single day, and these up and-coming artists gain the attention that they deserve. All this said, there is an obvious difference between the industry today, and as it was before the 1960’s. With the dawn of the Internet, so many bands have had the opportunity to gain so much exposure this past ten years that the number of signed rock groups has doubled since 1997.
In addition to music sites, social networking sites, like Myspace and Facebook, give bands the exposure, and help prospective fans to find these bands by just a click of a button. The Wholetones have made exceptional use of this technology, broadening their fan base, while still connecting with their fans at live shows, like at the Little Bar. Due to the popularity in social networking websites, local bands like the Wholetones will have the great opportunity to show off their talent to a wider audience, and that is exactly what the music industry needs. According to J. Robert, the Florida Fiddler, “The Wholetones have exceeded any or all expectations; they’re always growing and always learning new things.” Come out and support local talent. The Wholetones need your support and love!