*“Sonder,” the latest release from Gasoline Tequila, was written during COVID-19 quarantine as a symbol of the connection that band frontman Massimo Lusardi built with the complete strangers in his New York City neighborhood.
Sonder is defined as the realization that everyone around us, even those we don’t know, are living a life just as complex and chaotic as ours. It is the awareness that everyone has a story.
New York city was a ghost town during the first months of quarantine. The nightly 7:00pm cheer for the frontline workers was the only show of life, as shouts, bells, banging pans and whistles came from apartment windows and the invisible strangers behind them. As an act of solidarity, Massimo started rigging up his amp to his laptop, blasting a few songs each night from his balcony – an impromptu DJ set of sorts.
This simple gesture resulted in many magic moments, as neighbors emerged onto their rooftops, balconies or sidewalks to dance, others leaning out of windows to clap and sing along, together showcasing New York’s resilient spirit. Shouts of “thank you!” and “see you tomorrow” would bounce across buildings from unseen places – a glimmer of the energy and community that are at the heart of the Gasoline Tequila ethos. Massimo soon started receiving notes of thank you – from people alone in isolation, to parents at home with kids – and even song requests from neighbors. Incredible.
“Sonder” captures the emotions of this unprecedented time, building the narrative not with words, but with the universal language of guitar. The song’s musical arrangement and melodies are contemplative, nostalgic, and optimistic – everything that true New Yorkers are right now. As with most Gasoline Tequila tracks, there is a seductive layer that pulls you in, and an eruptive solo that feels like the lead part of the story in it all.
One night, Massimo decided to bring his guitar onto his balcony, blasting an early, live version of “Sonder” to his new found community through his amp. “It was one of those rich golden sunsets across the New York skyline, and I just let it rip full blast,” said Massimo. “I needed to get my feelings out and so did my neighbors – the cheering and bells and applause is something I will never forget.”
Taken aback by the reaction to the unfinished “Sonder,” Massimo knew he had to record it right away. Rather than waiting for lockdown to end to secure studio time, Massimo Lusardi recorded it right then and there, in his bedroom, with the most basic of equipment. The first track he’s ever recorded from home – raw, real, and tangible.
Gasoline Tequila is the passion project of restaurateur Massimo Lusardi. What started as an #IndieFlamenoRock music project continues to evolve, adding new layers of music, creative expression, and community. From curated private events to designing his own line of t-shirts, Gasoline Tequila is for the doers, the makers, and the risk takers of NYC and beyond.
Since 2016 Gasoline Tequila has performed across the United States and Europe, becoming the official sound of Oscar de la Renta collections, playing live on catwalks at New York Fashion Week, and performing for Cartier and Veuve Clicquot. The band has ignited some of the most exclusive rooms in the world with its energetic and seductive sounds.