Bandwidth: The California Honeydrops bring some New Orleans soul to Oakland

The California Honeydrops, an Oakland-based band, got their start playing at local East Bay haunts like the Cheese Board Collective in Berkeley and BART stations four years ago. They have now gone on to perform across the country and in Europe and recorded several albums. “We’ve played to crowds with screaming girls and places with old people falling asleep – it doesn’t matter, we’ll play,” said vocalist, trumpeter, and guitarist Lech Wierzynski.

The band has an upbeat and unique sound – soulful gospel, New Orleans-style second line jazz, blues, swing and R&B. The members of the band include drummer (and washboard strummer) Ben Malamant, Doug Stuart on bass, and pianist Charlie Hickox.“We always get people up and dancing by the end of the show,” Wierzynski said. There’s no doubt I don’t let them not get up. We say hey, ‘It’s OK people, do whatever you want to do. It’s a free country.’”

For more on The California Honeydrops and their full Bay Area tour schedule, visit the band’s website at To donate to the band’s Kickstarter campaign to help launch their latest album, go here.

You can check out past issues of our new Bandwidth series on Oakland and Richmond musicians here.

Do you have a suggestion for an Oakland or Richmond-based band that we should profile as part of the Bandwidth series? Send suggestions for Oakland-based bands to and for Richmond-based bands to


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