Wordsauce is a seven-piece, live-style hip-hip band rooted in funk. Alexander Bissel | Courtesy Photo

The seven-person, live-style hip-hop band with funk roots, Wordsauce, is a finalist in the social media contest for High Sierra Music Festival in Quincy, California. The festival prides itself on the genres of funk, new grass and jam bands. Out of 40 submissions, Wordsauce made it to the final five and has been working hard to get there.

Since winter of last year, Wordsauce brought on a marketing director, Thomas Dente, who improved their ratings. Eric Mattson, turntablist and producer for Wordsauce helped Dente record an album and saw how Dente promoted his own music. Mattson and the group thought it was time to bring someone in full-time for marketing and Dente was the perfect fit.

“The band was busy being a band,” Dente said. “They didn’t have time to do a lot of things like social media. They just needed to continue being creative and putting out tracks, because they all work and they need to use that time.”

Since being a part of the team, Dente’s influence has quadrupled the engagement with Wordsauce’s social media pages as he developed several projects to make them more than just a local band. For example, the social media contest that will give them the opportunity to play at High Sierra Music Festival will grow their fan base, according to emcee and vocalist Rick Loughman. The festival hosts 10,000 people every Fourth of July weekend for some of the biggest band names in Wordsauce’s genre of music.

“It’s a very reputable festival for the music and the bands that we look up to and aspire to. There is a lot of cool, big, funk jam bands and a lot of cool players,” Loughman said. “The chops are high.”

In order to enter the contest, Wordsauce made a music video in collaboration with Respect the Funk, a local production group, highlighting Loughman’s singing ability, as opposed to their classic style of wordplay and rap. According to Director Gabriel Santos, a lot of them didn’t have the energy when they first started, because of the different style, but Santos strategized a way to make the seven-piece band come alive before the camera.

“You can see in the video what I did is I broke it all down into individual players,” Santos said. “So there is one shot where the whole band is together, but even that shot is just a little too convoluted. By creating individual portraits, it was easier to edit and accentuate everyone’s instruments. You see each band member when they are doing a piano riff or solo.”

Wordsauce runs the Sauce Pot Recording Studios in San Luis Obispo where Cal Poly students record and play, Loughman said.

Through Dente, Wordsauce has taken the steps to spread their influence further than San Luis Obispo County. Watch the music video and find more information about the social media contest here.

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