It’s been two years since the Trolls of Amsterdam released the album Wilson Drive, an eclectic mix of musical sounds, and on Thursday, the band will celebrate at the Soul Bar, 984 Broad St., with a free concert.
It’s not easy for band members to get together for gigs as they are scattered across the country with Stephen Wilson in North Augusta and other members in California and New York.
Wilson grew up in the area and his musical styles were developed, playing with bands such as Figure4 and jamming with other musicians such as billy s. Wilson said in the 1990s, he’d spend days in the Breezy Hill community where billy lived at the time, and those days of rehearsals still bring up good memories.
One major influence on Wilson was James Brown and his funky sound. Wilson met the Godfather of Soul and performed at one of the James Brown Birthday bashes, so it’s fits that the group is playing a venue that pays homage to Brown.
“He’s my favorite artist of all time,” Wilson said, and Brown’s influence can be noted on the song We Can’t Afford to Start ‘Em Up on Wilson Drive.
The album also features other sounds such as rock and blues. The exotic blending of styles give listeners plenty of options. Wilson said there’s something for almost every listener and if listeners don’t like one track to keep listening because there’s probably another one that they will.
And Wilson said he has a few vinyl copies of the recording still available.
Although he grew up in the area, Wilson left for several years, settling in Half Moon Bay, Calif., where he met the musicians who formed the group Trolls of Amsterdam in 2014.
The pandemic era wasn’t kind to Wilson, and he returned to a place where the peaceful trees soothe his soul.
The Thursday concert is one of four performances the group is doing this weekend in the region.
Joining the Trolls will be Fuzz Jaxx and rami411.
Charmain Z. Brackett, the publisher of Augusta Good News, has covered Augusta’s news for 35 years. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up for the newsletter here.
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