The Moonstone Riders head to Westside Bowl on Tuesday, August 22nd. No cover!
The Moonstone Riders started off as a corporate dance band called Winslow And The Rockefellers based out of Naples Florida. They were making good money but their souls were not being fulfilled. They quit the corporate project around 2020 during covid and split out on their own. Marcia and Matt Benfield formed a duo and went to work playing 3 nights a week at the Snook Inn and for numerous other venues. Matt had a fun contraption that he built in which he would beat on his acoustic guitar and loop beats. It was the new fun thing that they needed to get them away from corporate work. However the fun did not last long when Matt badly broke broke his ring finger in a tubing accident. Going 60 miles an hour behind a jet ski seemed like a great idea at the time but turned out to be detrimental. Or so they thought. This event would end up being a very important catalyst. Matt could no longer beat on acoustic for beats so they had to come up with a new idea. They then added Jeffrey into the project, who played bass in the old band. All three of them concocted a new way to loop beats. Matt would play a beat on an Octopad, run it through a looper and then pick up the guitar and jam with Jeffrey on bass. They then had a solid sound that was unique and skirocketed in popularity on Marco Island. They became closer than ever as friends during this time.
This is when they started to come up with their own original renditions of songs and began writing originals of their own. They had a new inspiration come over them when they formed the 3 piece. It was then that they decided to expand the band and give themselves a name. After many discrepancies they came up with Moonstone Riders. “Moonstone” was the name of the duo that Matt and Marcia had before adding Jeffrey. Moonstone is the Florida state gem. Once Jeffrey joined he suggested adding “Riders” to the end. They thought this gave it a nice country/folk flare. They then brought in the A team corporate band members back in. Jeffrey could not play on Sundays and Matt would be their third member on Sundays. When they all jam together it’s a feeling that can’t be described. There is a particular energy that exists within the field of consciousness, and at certain times they are all collectively able to tap into it. So much magic comes out when they are able to channel this as a band. Its an ever growing phenomenon that is still wing explored and they look forward to continue pushing the limits of what they can do! And that’s the gist of how the Moonstone Riders were formed!