Part Of The Family

Area residents got a dose of roots reggae from Mosaic Foundation on Friday night that kept them dancing until Mojo’s closed.

Mosaic Foundation, a Rochester and Ithaca based group of musicians, entertained an audience at Mojo’s for nearly four hours.

Although Mosaic Foundation isn’t a local band, it is a group that is so welcome in Chautauqua County that they have played several shows a year in the area. In addition to consistently performing at Mojo’s with the likes of Smackdab, Funknut and AudioInflux, the band performed at the Great Blue Heron Festival last summer with guest vocalist Kevin Kinsella. And, because Mosaic Foundation did so well with their performance at the Heron last year, the band will perform their original tunes at this year’s festival without Kinsella.

“We’re going to play our own set on Saturday afternoon,” said John-Paul Nawn, drummer. “We’ve never done it before so we’re really happy – we feel blessed.”

According to Matt Baxter, booking manager for Mojo’s, it’s always a pleasure to have Mosaic Foundation perform for the people of Jamestown because they are a solid reggae band.

“You can’t get any better than that, especially not in this region – we’re lucky to have them located a few hours away,” said Baxter. “They are really solid at what they do, it’s the real deal roots reggae. People love them because it keeps them moving all night long. They always draw a big crowd, they’ve made a lot of friends here and they are all really cool guys – they’ve become part of the Mojo’s family for sure.”

The band played to a packed house during the Mojo’s show. In between tunes Yao Foli, lead vocalist, told Jamestown residents how much the band enjoyed performing at Mojo’s.

“We do want people to come have a good time and dance, but there’s also messages that we want people to be able to get and understand,” said Michael Corey, lead guitarist. “I’d say the biggest message is that ChaCha (Foli) runs an organization that promotes sustainability and builds schools in Ghana (Africa).”

Mosaic Foundation consists of Foli, lead vocalist; Nawn, drums and vocals; Michael Corey, lead guitar; Aaron James Sprague, bass; Ekwem Bogmis, keys and vocals; Ken Luk, rhythm guitar, melodica and vocals; Bryan Davis, percussion; and Zach Dumrese, sound engineer. The band has two albums out, an 11-track self-titled debut album and a 6-tune EP entitled “Do Right.” The band is also currently working on a new full-length studio album to be released later this year. Some of the new tracks include: “Reggae Escape” and “Stand Firm.” A couple of the band’s favorite tunes to play are “Love the Life You Live” and “Blood In the Water.”

“I actually just looked at all the songs and we only have one song that is in minor, so it’s all kind of happyish,” said Luk. “We wanted it to come out in the summertime, but we won’t rush it.”

Mosaic Foundation will perform tonight at a fundraising benefit called Jammin’ for Jamaica, in which all proceeds will go towards Eight 4 World Hope’s efforts in building schools in Jamaica. The show is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. at The Lovin’ Cup in Rochester. They’ll also make a return to the Great Blue Heron Festival in July, the Southern Tier Brewery Brewfest also in July , the Jamestown Savings Bank Arena in August, and for a CD release party in late fall.

For more information visit www.mosaicfoundationmusic.com or search for “Mosaic Foundation” on Facebook.