Kiss the Salt is a rock n’ roll band from North Hollywood, California. The band’s diverse range of influences draws from psychedelia, blues, country, Motown, and funk.
The group’s members – bassist Brandon Criswell, guitarist Richie Vaccaro, and singer Naomi Nektare – met while working together on another project and formed Kiss the Salt in 2011. They have performed in iconic L.A. venues, including the Key Club, the Viper Room, the House of Blues, the Roxy, and the Troubadour. They have also enjoyed a popular residency at the hip North Hollywood club Skinny's Lounge, as well as touring throughout the state.
KTS puts on a strong, tight, and raw electric show, but they also like to present their music as an acoustic experience featuring dulcimer, harp, banjo, mandolin, and ukulele. Their electric show is an explosion of foot-stomping funk and soul-splitting Rock n’ Roll—with touches of jazz. The acoustic show, on the other hand, reveals a delicately nuanced side of their music, showcasing the craftsmanship behind the songs and defining the unique songwriting talents of each member of the group.
Criswell’s bass playing is the glue that holds the band together. Yet, his style is also adventurous, adding depth to even the simplest compositions. Vaccaro’s guitar work is flamboyant, but always tasteful and compelling. The first sound that captures the listener’s attention, however, is Naomi Nektare’s voice. She wears on her sleeve her love for soul singers like Tina Turner and hippie stage-goddesses like Grace Slick and Stevie Nicks, but her singing and performing style is hers alone – powerful and lyrically poignant.
KTS has donated their time to perform at charitable music events including the Bakersfield Ride for Autism and Japan’s Blue Period (for tsunami relief). They have also performed at a number of festivals, including the Sheideck Music Festival, Lemon Festival, and the Lucidity Festival.
Last year the band played more than 100 shows all over California. They have also made numerous television appearances and have been featured twice on Santa Barbara’s Musical Cafe TV. The band has just released a new four-song EP, and also completed recording their forthcoming full-length album, which is currently being mixed. A tour of the Southwest is planned in the fall.
Many of their fans travel hours to see them. If you haven’t already experienced Kiss the Salt, now is the time.