The Herd: Dynamic fusion of funk vibes brought by Ancient Spaceship


Photo courtesy of Ancient Spaceship

Zachary Lewis, Music Writer

A stream of consciousness, groove gurus, virtuous of vibe, the list could go on. These are a few phrases to consider when you talk about Ancient Spaceship. Based out of Clarence NY, this 60’s-esque psychedelic space group has been illuminating the local scene with nothing but the hottest jams. They have an innate ability to leave their audience in awe.

Ancient Spaceship is composed of 4 members who all have a deep love for the heart and soul of the ’60s but introduce a dynamic fusion of funk vibes.

Stone Camillo, bassist, guitarist, and lead vocalist holds down savory grooves. He started playing the electric guitar at 10 years old but lost interest. That was until he discovered The Beatles, this quickly determined the direction he was to travel. He found himself a drum set, Hofner bass guitar, a Fender Stratocaster and began practice immediately around age 15.

“The belief that I could create something dope compared to the music I listen to is why I started playing,” said Stone.
It took roughly 6 months but he knew recording was the way to go and released his first EP under the name Diamond Revolver. The music was quite good for such a young kid and is still available today.

Dale Wesolowski lead guitarist, bass, and vocals have an intense imagination that is clearly animated through the neck of a guitar. Heady licks with sweet bluesy undertones are his specialty. Dale took guitar lessons at 12 years old but didn’t have his own tastes in music yet. Like his bandmate, it wasn’t until he discovered The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix that he found his sound. Hendrix is his biggest influence.

Nick Capozzi is truly a masterful percussionist. Nick lays down the law, he’s can push the members to flow in any direction at will.  Starting out at a young age he jammed with his older brother and was introduced to many genres. His biggest influences are Yussef Kamaal, Ghost Note, and Lettuce.

Capozzi’s cousin Frank Bona is the main bassist in the band occasionally hoping on trumpet. Frank is great at getting the crowd amped up. He has been playing classical trumpet most his life and joining Ancient Spaceship gave him the “funky, jammy feel” he was missing. His biggest influences on bass are Joe Dart from Vulfpeck, Marshall “Rock” Jones and Bootsy Collins. On trumpet are Dizzy Gillespie and Arturo Sandoval.

If they could play anywhere in collaboration with anyone Dale and Stone chose Jam in The Van or KEXP with Kevin Parker, Steve Gadd, and Foxygen. Nick and Frank would play Red Rock with Herbie Hancock, Lettuce and Ghost Note with MonoNeon.

Ancient Spaceship is self-produced with aspirations to sigh with a label or perhaps start one their own. They practice two days a week and their efforts show. They have been gigging for over a year, most frequently at Marvin’s in Clarence NY and Hot Mamas in Buffalo. A usual gig consists of 2-3 mini sets lasting 45-90 minutes of intense jamming. The members all grew up in Clarence and most were long term friends. Stone, luckily, met a former member the last day of high school and was introduced to Dale, Frank, and Nick. Formerly “Isle Blue” then onto “Sonic Monks” the decided Ancient Spaceship was a befitting name for the music produced. Good relationships help, Dale said, “It’s like knowing someone for a long time, the conversations and connections get deeper, it’s the same for music in a band”.

The band wanted to share some advice for upcoming bands and musicians.
“Always have fun in what you’re doing, never let your passion for music differentiate from your professionalism. Jam, drink your juice and let loose!” said Frank. “comparison is the thief of joy” commented Dale. Stone said, “Never stop writing”. Nick stated, “Stay open-minded, be consistent.”.

We, the fans, can find their music on Spotify, SoundCloud, and YouTube. They play multiple shows a month and are ready to make your night end right.

“The Herd” is a new column by Zachary Lewis dedicated to exposing as many bands as possible. Read his last column about “Witty Tarbox.”