Joel Stopka (Trombone) discovered his passion for Afro-Cuban music while studying at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. Performing with local favorites, Orquesta Antonetti & Las Figuras Del Merengue, Joel was exposed to a many different styles of latin music & was very fortunate learn from such a talented group of musicians. 

   In 1991, Joel moved to Chicago & was prominent in the music scene writing, producing & performing with local groups & touring artist such as: Orquesta 809 (Isla), Orquesta Sabor, Los Mantas, DLG (Dark Latin Groove), Poi Dog Pondering, Frankie Ruiz, Lalo Rodriguez, Raphael de Jesus, Cheo Feliciano, Charlie Cruz, Huey Dunbar, Cano Estremera, Michael Stuart and Jimmy Bosch.

   Joel moved to SW Virginia in 2005 & has been working with several local bands & appeared on the albums, “Former Champion” (Lazy Man Dub Band), “Sure Ain’t Easy” (Half Moon) & recordings with Music Road Co & Seedpicker. 

   Joel Stopka has been leading his signature project, Jstop Latin Soul, along with partner Brian Mesko, since spring 2018 and is looking forward to upcoming recordings and shows with this exciting Afro-Cuban Jazz project.

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