Slapback is a rock band with a funk edge, a splash of blues and a dash of jazz. They are seasoned musicians who love to write, play and record music. They have found a certain formula together.
In the music world Steve Cole is referred to as a "Monster" bass player, who has an easy feel but serious technique and chops and is very humble about his vast musical sensabilities. He started playing bass at the early age of 14. At age 16 he studied privately with Berklee graduate, Andy Bergsten for a few years, which helped him get into Berklee where he studied for another six semesters. He also taught bass for 20 years.
Steve proceeded to expand his musical knowledge by playing in bands such as cover, original, rock, big band and all the way to a jazz trio. This is what has given him such a broad horizon.
In the 90's, Steve studied with another Berklee graduate, Joe Santere, who helped push him forward and closer to where he wanted to be.
He has done numerous recording sessions, for his own bands as well as for other bands and artists.
At this point, approx. 1992, he decided it was time to start writing his own material. He wrote instrumental music as well as songs that he had other writers contribute the lyrics and melody.
In his later years, 1999, he moved to TN and hooked up with friend Michele and they started writing songs together. He found he wanted to learn more and he was blessed to be able to study under the spectacular Reggie "The teacher" Wooten, who taught the likes of brother Victor Wooten, actually all his brothers and many others known and not known so much.
In his spare time, Steve has written and recorded, "bass and drum only" original material. He now has 2 cds with much more material in the vault to record for the future.....
Steve is an integral part of this funky unit.
Steve is now co-founder and co-writer for the band Slapback.
Michele has been singing since the early age of 8. She would sing with anything that came on the radio from Motown right on to later years with Heart & Pat Benatar. From A to Z which has given her a well rounded and instantly recognizable voice.
Early on trying to sing over a guitar player, she developed nodes. She found help in Steven Rizzo, guitar & vocals for the band, The Logistics. After some time Steven moved away and Michele began taking private singing lessons from, Charlie Sorrento, Berklee professor.
After high school, there were many bands, from sitting in with The Spores, a local Boston phenom, to joining bands: The Players, The States and co-founding the band Gear, in which she was blessed to work in the studio and beyond with the late Jimmy Miller, producer for the early Rolling Stones and manager - Joe Viglione. They became friends and she is still friends with Joe Vig to this day.
Michele has also done backing vocals for other individuals and bands, most notable, The Mighty, Mighty Bosstones.
Her stage presence is all her own. A quote from Jay Miller of the Patriot Ledger, Quincy, MA: "Michele who prowls the stage with her long Stevie Nicks-blonde mane swirling about, is a dynamic stage presence and a vocalist who holds nothing back". This was quoted in March, 1990 and still holds true in 2016.
In 1996, she moved to Nashville to, "check out the scene". Although there are an abundance of local talented musicians, she realized she was still a rock chick and that country was not her thing. She was going to move into a singer-songwriter thing, playing her guitar, but then Steve Cole informed her he was coming down and they hooked-up to play. They took their songs to a management company and were told the material was awesome but that it would only fly on either east or west coast.
They married in August of 2000 and moved back to MA. They have had a few different people in the guitar and drum spots and have finally found a twosome that want to write, arrange and play original music, which is where her heart has always been.
In January 2015, Michele started playing keyboard and it has now been integrated into the band.
Michele co-founded Slapback with Steve Cole. The two fell in love with each other's musical abilities, songwriting and each other, all simultaneously and the rest is history.
Michele's favorite quote is: "Music, it's not what I do but who I am".
At the age of 11, Mark started sneaking into his brothers room to play his drums which after many beatings, his brother realized Mark wouldn't stop or maybe he just got tired of punching his brother, either way those beat up white remo drums were finally Marks.
He then started his own cover rock band and they played famous and well-known songs comprising of Smoke on the water, by Deep Purlple. Admittedly the song list was quite limited. It was then that he had his "Ah ha" moment: he couldn't go through life with a one-song repertoire, so he started studying with local big band drum legend Frankie Shooshan. He continued playing and studying with numerous teachers along the way
He has been in too many bands to count ranging from an 8 piece soul band to jazz rock, pop, funk, funk rock and everything in-between.
Although he has flashes of brilliance, he is not flashy, just the opposite. He adds flavor and color to Slapback and has elevated the play of all other members.
He often dreams about finding the perfect pocket because he knows it's out there.
He hears licks in his head and then has Steve play them out, hence a new intro, bridge, or the start of a new song.
He is always trying to find the best arrangement for every song.
Marks need for perfection has made him what he is today, a rhythmic timekeeper who unleashes rhythms of all styles to match the song style.
For him, it's whatever fits the song. He is truly never happy with what is, so he keeps striving to make it and himself better.