Groundation is an internationally renowned roots reggae band with a jazz flavor hailing from Sonoma in Northern California. The name "Groundation" comes from the struggle to get everyone on the same level so they might educate each other and learn from each other absent of any hierarchical or class leveled system.
The band was formed in the fall of 1998 by Harrison Stafford, Marcus Urani, and Ryan Newman. In 1999, Stafford teamed up with Kris Dilbeck to found Young Tree Records following the release of Groundation's debut album of that same name. In 2000 they added David Chacherethe, a San Francisco based Jazz trumpeter, and Kelsey Howard, a North Bay trombone player, to the line up. Saxophonist Jason Robinson has since gone on to become the head of the Jazz program at UC San Diego. Also between 1999 and 2001, Stafford taught the first course on the History of Reggae Music at Sonoma State University. Drummer Paul Spina (Les Claypool, Will Bernardâ€™s Mother Bug) has been with the group since taking over for James Stafford in December 2001.