Long time friends and collaborators Tobey LaRoche and Michael Harrist created Sol & Kiel in the fall of 2011.
Coming from a well-known musical family, Tobey is the son of the late Ken LaRoche. A flautist and multi-instrumentalist, Ken was a founder of the world music ensemble Do’a, who’s music was heralded by Dizzy Gillespie as “One of the important contributions to the future of our music.” Tobey has opened for Anais Mitchell and is highly sought after as an accompanist for singer-songwriters throughout New England. Michael is a double bassist who finds work throughout the northeast in many different traditions. He has toured the U.S. and Europe with the new music ensemble Capillary Action (www.capact.com) and plays extensively with the gypsy jazz group Ameranouche (www.ameranouche.com). Michael is a respected member of the Boston jazz and improvised music scene and plays traditional music at contra dances and western swing with the Honky Tonk Masquerade. In addition to his work on the double bass, Mike is an accomplished composer and songwriter.
When performing live, the duo’s music is augmented by Jesse Hanson on strings, guitar, and vocals. An accomplished singer songwriter in her own right, you can find Jesse and her debut album here: http://www.jessehanson.me/
Sol & Kiel’s music is a highly crafted space in which song, instrumental composition, and improvisation coexist. Roaming through various musical landscapes, the ensemble performs on acoustic instruments from all over the world including Malian balafon, Navajo flute, Ugandan adungu, and a plethora of percussion instruments. The group also draws heavily from western folk traditions including avant-garde jazz, fiddle music, and American songcraft.
Sol & Kiel strongly believe that music exists to serve something greater than itself. As a modest gesture in this regard, they have partnered with the Pine Street Inn homeless shelter in Boston. When performing locally, Sol & Kiel not only speak about the organization and hand out pamphlets at their shows, but also give the net proceeds from their EP “There Is No Easy Way From the Earth to the Stars” to Pine Street.