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Showing posts with label Michael John and the Bottom Line. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Michael John and the Bottom Line. Show all posts

Monday, March 6, 2017

12th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival, A Spring SoCal Tradition, Keeping the Blues Alive

  Saturday, April 29, 2017 - Gates Open 10am, Music Starts 11:00 am 

   (Camarillo, CA)  - Announcing the 12th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival, a Spring SoCal Tradition, Keeping the Blues Alive for a dozen consecutive years, taking place Saturday, April 29, 2017, at Studio Channel Islands, 2222 E. Ventura Blvd., in Camarillo. Gates open 10:00 am, music begins at 11:00 am. Tickets $30. (Pre-Sale), $40. (Day of Show). Kids 12 and under, free with paid Adult General Admission. V.I.P. Tickets $125. (online only). Festival proceeds benefits Food Share and other Ventura County area charities (please bring a food item to donate). Info: (805) 501-7122 or visit

  "We look forward to carrying on this tradition for many years to come," says Michael John, Ventura County Blues Society President. "Because of the support of sponsors and the generosity of all the volunteers donating their time, we anticipate the Ventura County Blues Festival will continue to grow as it has each year."

 Two-Time Grammy Award winners, Phantom Blues Band, are 
  one of the 12th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival headliners.  


     Phantom Blues Band: The Phantom Blues Band was formed as a studio band to back up Taj Mahal on his CD, Dancing The Blues. Their association with Taj led to headlining clubs, theaters, and festivals throughout the U.S., Europe and Japan, as well as being honored with two Grammys and a W.C. Handy Award. At heart, the Phantom Blues Band's sound is a cross-breeding of numerous musical styles which includes blues, jazz, r&b, gospel, rock 'n' roll, and reggae. Inside Out, the band's thirds album, features band members Tony Braunagel, Larry Fulcher, Mike Finnigan, Darrel Leonard, Joe Sublett, and Johnny Lee Schell, with help from renowned session players Lenny Castro (percussion) and The Crusaders' founding member and keyboardist, Joe Sample.

   Debbie Davies: "She wields an electric guitar as if it were a wand." — LOS ANGELES TIMES
  Debbie Davies is an award-winning singer, songwriter, and guitar player.  A professional musician since the early 1980s, Davies has received ten nominations for Blues Music Awards, and in 1997 and 2010 won the award for Best Contemporary Female Blues Artist. Davies cut her teeth playing in blues and rock ‘n roll bands in the San Francisco Bay area before returning to her hometown Los Angeles in 1984, where she landed the lead guitar spot in Maggie Mayall and the Cadillacs, an all-female band led by wife of British blues pioneer, John Mayall. Davies 2015 release, Love Spin, is at once funky, rocking’, and bluesy. It’s  collection of all original tunes showcases an artist at her peak, and will no doubt put smiles on the faces of long time fans and bring many new ones into the fold.

  Chris Cain: Chris Cain's jazz-tinged, blues-soaked guitar and deep, warm vocals have the maturity and authenticity of bluesmen many years his senior. His expressive style is the result of a lifetime of study and the relentless pursuit of music mastery. His passion and intensity for music was ignited early in life by his mom and dad's deep love for blues and soul. Cain's debut recording, Late Night City Blues (Blue Rock'it Records-1987) garnered four W.C. Handy Blues Award nominations, including Guitarist of the Year. Dan Forte of Guitar Player wrote, "An impressive debut album by a top notch guitarist." The combination of his blues upbringing and his jazz studies melded to form the searing guitar style that sets Chris Cain apart and has moved him to the top ranks of the blues music scene. 

   R.J. Mischo: RJ Mischo is considered by critics and fans worldwide to be in the upper echelon of today’s great Harp players and singers. RJ’s vast discography features twelve of his own releases on several record labels. He also appears on at least twenty-five CDs as a guest or on compilations with Jimmie Vaughan, James Cotton, Kim Wilson, Candye Kane, G.Love, and John Mayall, to name a few. Mischo's original songs “King of a Mighty  Good Time” and “Two Hours From Tulsa” previously topped the playlist at No. 1 on SiriusXM Radio BB Kings’ Bluesville. RJ Mischo’s CDs, Knowledge You Can’t Get in College and Make It Good, have made the top 50 list of Living Blues Magazine’s Albums of the Year. He has contributed to two Mel Bay harmonica instruction books, and is acknowledged in The Encyclopedia of Harmonica.

  Michael John & the Bottom Line Featuring Mikey Mo: Michael John, Founder and President of the Ventura County Blues Society (and) Founder of the Ventura County Blues Festival, leads his band The Bottom Line. Since the Festival’s inception, Michael John & The Bottom Line have performed and donated their music. When you combine family and lifelong friends, you get a special musical bond that touches the hearts and souls of all music lovers. The band consists of Michael John (lead singer, guitar, harmonica), Michael John’s son Mikey Mo (lead guitar), Steve Nelson (electric, stand-up Bass), Eddie Z (tenor, alto sax), Jeff Dellisanti (tenor, baritone sax), and Tom “T-Bone” Broderick (drums, backup vocals). The group attracts people of all ages with their blend of Swing/contemporary rocking blues. They've received national airplay and have won multiple awards including placing in the Top Ten bands in the Finals for the International Blues Challenge.

  Crooked Eye Tommy: Purveyors of deep-seeded Blues and smoky Southern rock, “Brothers Marsh” Tommy and Paddy feature big guitars and even bigger vocals. Behind the strength of the group's CD Butterflies & Snakes, Crooked Eye Tommy has won “Best Blues Band” three consecutive years at the Ventura County Music Awards.

   Jim Gustin & Truth Jones: Jim Gustin is a blues singer and guitarist from Santa Clarita, California. He has a distinctive, powerful voice; soulful and deep with a smoky rasp, he is a passionate and energetic performer. He has well-written catchy songs that reveal his many varied influences to his groove-oriented blues. Gustin is also a solid guitarist with great tone and a funky feel. Jeri Goldenhar, a/k/a Truth Jones, has been singing since she was a little girl, although at over six feet tall, it’s hard to imagine her as a knee-high, little red-headed child. She has a big voice to match her impressive stature. She can belt out gospel and soul rarely heard from suburban white girls.




Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Final California Beer Festival of the Year - in Ventura, 3 Days of Cheer!


Friday, Sept. 18/Saturday, Sept. 19/Sunday, Sept. 20

New This Year: Friday's "Brew With A View" Invitational
(Food & Beer Pairing), beginning 5:30 p.m. at City Hall

Saturday: Craft Beer Beer Heaven (12:30 p.m.; Beer Sampling
from 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.) - World's Best Craft Beers!

Sunday: California Blues & Brews Festival: (11 a.m to 6 p.m.) - Featuring the Triumphant Return of Guitar Legend Walter Trout plus other Top-Name National and Regional Acts!

   (Ventura, CA) - The final and premiere California Beer Festival of 2015 promises to be the biggest, as this year it expands to three big days - Friday, September  18, Saturday, September 19, and Sunday, September 20, at Mission Park, 185 E. Santa Clara St., in Ventura. Tickets priced as follows: 3-Day VIP Pass, $149.; 2-Day General Admission Pass, $69.; Friday's Food & Pairing Competition, $60.; Saturday VIP Early-Bird Experience Craft Beer Heaven, $80.; Saturday's Craft Beer Heaven, General Admission, $55.; Designated Driver tickets (Saturday only), $25.; Sunday's Blues & Brews Festival (only), $30. Info: (805) 628-9588. Buy tickets now at:

   In keeping with the yearly tradition, a portion of the proceeds from each day benefit the Gen Giammanco Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides financial support to student athletes to assist in their pursuit of both scholastic and athletic success in Ventura County.

   Friday, September 18: BREW WITH A VIEW INVITATIONAL

    Start your California Beer Festival weekend off at  Brew with a View Invitational! Takes place Friday, September 18 at 5:30 pm, at City Hall overlooking Downtown Ventura. Five Brewmasters will be paired up separately with five Gourmet Chefs, all competing for your pallet and vote (for Best Food and Beer Paring). Live music by the Ross Harper Band and dance crowd favorites, Ventura's own, The Bomb. This VIP event includes food samples, beer, live music and (1) CBF souvenir pint glass. Must be 21 years of age or older to attend.

            Saturday, September 19: CRAFT BEER HEAVEN

   Saturday's Craft Beer Heaven (12:30-5:00 p.m.; VIP Session begins at 11:30 a.m.; Beer Sampling 1:00-4:00 p.m.) ends Ventura County Beer Week and is one of the largest yearly beer festivals in the state. With over 140 craft beers on tap, it's a great place to come sample amazing craft beer from all over the world. Come experience Craft Beer Heaven with beers on tap, food trucks and live music throughout the day. Live music by The Midnight Band; Orgone, L.A.-based septet whose genre-bending music blends elements of Funk, Soul, Afro/Disco, Boogie, and Afrobeat; and The Bomb. This is a chance to expand your mind and educate yourself on new and old styles of craft beer. Space is very limited; must be 21 years or older to attend.

Orgone, popular L.A.-based septet whose genre-bending music blends elements of Funk, Soul, Afro/Disco, Boogie, and Afrobeat, perform on Saturday at Craft Beer Heaven from 2:15-3:30 p.m.

   On Saturday at Craft Beer Heaven, sample such fine beers and food from Eureka! Restaurant Group; Telegraph Brewing Company; Mendocino Brewing Company; Colorado Brewing company; Lagunitas Brewing Company; Surf Brewery; Angel City Brewery; Einstok Beer Co.; Woodchuck Cider; Firestone Walker Brewing Co.; Enegren Brewing Co.; Chaucer Cellars; Cerveza Mexicali Beer; Pizza Port Brewing Co.; Allagash Brewing Co.; St. Killian Importing; The Lab Brewing Company; Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company; Mike's Hard Lemonade; Palm Breeze; Ace Cider; Barrel House 101; Wolf Creek; Westlake Brewing; Stone Brewing Co.

Guitarist extraordinaire Walter Trout (pictured), now fully recovered from last year's liver transplant, headlines Sunday's Blues & Brews Festival, performing from 4:45-6:00 p.m. 

            Sunday, September 20: BLUES & BREWS FESTIVAL

  Sunday's Blues & Brews Festival traditionally closes out the three-day California Beer Festival and each year features full sets by some of the biggest names in the Blues world, as well as the genre's rising stars.

  Headlining this year is Southern California-based, popular guitarist-vocalist, Walter Trout, now fully recovered from last year's liver transplant, back on tour, and set to release a new album, Battle Scars, in October. Also performing: Mingo Fishtrap, from Austin, Texas, whose jam-tastic music deftly blends blues with soul, R&B, and funk; the legendary Booker T Jones, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, record producer and arranger, best known as the frontman of the band, Booker T. & The M.G.'s (known for hits like "Green Onions", "Hang 'Em High", and "Time Is Tight", among many others); and Mr. Sipp, known as the "Mississippi Blues Child" who's a 2014 International Blues Challenge winner, and recently cast in the James Brown bio-pic, Get On Up. Two Ventura acts - The Bomb (dance-funk-party faves) and Michael John & the Bottom Line - fronted by Ventura County Blues Society president, Michael John, and his son, guitarist Mikey Mo - round out Sunday's stellar lineup.

Booker T. Jones - called "the living legend of the Hammond B3 organ" and past leader of famed soul ensemble, Booker T. & The M.G.'s - is a Sunday headliner at the Blues & Brews Festival, performing from 2:20-3:30 p.m.

Straight out of Austin, Texas, and jam-tastic: Mingo Fishtrap, who perform at the Blues & Brews Festival on Sunday, 3:30-4:45 p.m.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Ventura County Blues Festival

General Admission tickets:
Presale $20 (Limited Time Only)
$30 at Gate
Kids 12 and under are FREE
with paid Adult
VIP Tickets:
$100 (Online Only) all ages
For ticket info CLICK HERE!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Announcing the 9th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival

   (MOORPARK, CALIF) - The 9th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival on Saturday, April 26, 2014 returns to Moorpark College and features its best lineup to date with performances by Fabulous Thunderbirds front man, Kim Wilson's Blues All-Stars; premier Southern California-based record label Delta Groove Records' own Delta Groove All-Star Blues Revue featuring Sugaray Rayford with Kid Ramos and friends; soulful vocalist extraordinaire, Sista Monica Parker; festival favorites making a command return appearance, Jimmy Thackery & The Drivers; the stellar band fronted by VCBS President, Michael John and The Bottom Line and friends, including BMA nominee, vocalist Karen Lovely; and VCBS Band Challenge winner, Lightnin' Willie. Returning as Celebrity Emcee is noted actor-musician, Mickey Jones (Trini Lopez, Bob Dylan, The First Edition; and currently a regular on FX hit TV series, "Justified"). Food and craft vendors, guitar giveaway, and, for the first time, a Ticketed V.I.P. area. Benefits the American Diabetes Association and community charities. Presale General Admission tickets $20. in advance, $30. at the gate; V.I.P. tickets $100. (limited quantity available).  More information at
 "We're very excited about the 2014 festival,” says festival founder/Ventura County Blues Society President, Michael John. "This event opens many doors for service clubs in Ventura County and supports Moorpark College. New this year we have a Ticketed V.I.P area with private shade, restrooms and a bar. (The V.I.P. area) also includes a festival t-shirt, poster, two drink tickets, complimentary water and early entrance into the festival. We have had so many people ask us to do this, and your wish is our command.” Past festivals have entertained more than 4,000 people with acts like Blues Hall of Fame inductee Charlie Musselwhite, and last year, special guest George Thorogood.
  About The 9th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival Headliners
     Kim Wilson's Blues All-Stars: Kim Wilson is an American blues singer and harmonica player. He is best known as the lead vocalist and front man for The Fabulous Thunderbirds on two hit songs of the 1980s; “Tuff Enuff”, and “Wrap It Up.” Wilson was born in Detroit, Michigan in 1951, but grew up in Goleta, California, where he sometimes went by the stage name of “Goleta Slim.” He started with the blues in the late 1960s and was tutored by people like Muddy Waters, Jimmie Rogers, Eddie Taylor, Albert Collins, George “Harmonica” Smith, Luther Tucker and Pee Wee Crayton and was influenced by harmonica players like Little Walter, James Cotton, Big Walter Horton, Slim Harpo and Lazy Lester. Before he moved to Austin, Texas in 1974, he was the leader of the band Aces, Straights and Shuffles in Minneapolis, Minnesota; this band released one single. In Austin he formed The Fabulous Thunderbirds with guitarist Jimmie Vaughan, and they became the house band at the blues club, Antone’s, owned by Clifford Antone. Muddy Waters called Wilson, “The greatest harmonica player since Little Walter”. Wilson continues to perform up to 300 concert dates per year at blues music festivals and clubs all over the world, both as leader of The Fabulous Thunderbirds and with the Kim Wilson Blues All-stars. His powerful style of blues harp playing has been described as “loaded with the textures of a full-blown horn section.”
     Delta Groove All Star Revue Featuring Sugaray Rayford & Friends: When Sugaray belts out a song, you not only hear it, you feel it. The excitement in the room is palpable when he takes the stage; he is a superb vocalist and entertainer. His dynamic voice is large just like the man. With his old school vocal style, echoes of Muddy Waters, Otis Redding and Teddy Pendergrass can be heard. At 6’5” he is a big man, but he moves with grace and energy. His fluid dance steps will remind you of the Legendary James Brown. After moving to Los Angeles several years ago, Sugaray was asked to host a blues jam at Cozy’s in Sherman Oaks. It is through this venue that Sugaray met and played with innumerable world-class musicians. Suga’s desire to explore and expand his musical vision has been nourished by these musicians while his solo career has flourished in L.A. Sugaray has fronted his own band since 2010, called the Sugaray Rayford Band made up of world-class musicians including Ralph Carter on bass who is also his writing partner, Gino Matteo on guitar, Leo Dombecki on keyboards, Lavelle Jones on drums, Allan Walker on Sax, and Gary Bivona on trumpet. But the Sugaray Rayford Band is only one of his projects. As of May 2011, Sugaray became one of the lead vocalists for the Mannish Boys, who are under Delta Groove management. This international act performs 6-8 times a year. He sang lead vocals on 9 songs on Double Dynamite the Mannish Boys latest CD that won Best Traditional Blues Album in May 2013 at the Blues Music Awards. His first solo CD Blind Alley was a self-release in 2010, which garnered critical acclaim. His second solo CD Dangerous, was just released last September under the Delta Groove label, debuting at # 2 on Blues Debut Chart and #6 on the Roots Music Chart.
      Sista Monica Parker: She’s Blues! She’s Soul! She’s Gospel! and She ROCKS!Sista Monica Parker ‘The Blues Lioness’ is an award-winning singer/songwriter and performer. Her eleventh CD release “Living In the Danger Zone” recently earned a 2012 and 2013 BMA nomination for “Best Soul Blues Female Artist of the Year” by the Blues Foundation. Since then, she has traveled and toured worldwide and has been recognized for her captivating stage presence and rich contralto vocal power. Born in Gary, Indiana, Monica developed her vocal chops between Chicago and Detroit singing in church choirs and listening to singers on the city streets. Since those days she has stormed through the music scene traveling and performing major festivals and concerts venues in countries such as Italy, France, Holland, Greece, Canada, Norway, Mexico, and Spain. Sista Monica is dynamic string of melodies from up tempo Chicago style blues, heartfelt soulful ballads to feel good gospel – She brings her roots and connects with the audience with her own unique charisma. She sings, coos, belts, croons, and shouts according to her hearts delight and her fan’s amazement. She’s considered to be one of the best soul blues female performers in the country. Come see, hear and enjoy Sista Monica.
    Jimmy Thackery & The Drivers: Whether Jimmy Thackery headlines a festival in South Dakota or jams for hours in one of numerous blues bars that dot the musical landscape, he’ll always unleash an intense volley of rockin’ blues guitar guaranteed to leave crowds emotionally spent. His double edged guitar dynamics allow him to fire off tracer missiles, bend a note so it will fit under a limbo bar, run off dive bomber riffs, and find space within the trembling of one stinging note. “I put all my senses on hold and find the zone and follow what’s inside. There’s an electricity from your mind to your heart to your fingers. You just try and remember to breathe.” He’s one of the few blues guitarists who learned first hand from the masters of the blues, not off a blues record or DVD. Though most associate Jimmy with his 15 years as the co-founder of the Nighthawks, he ended his time with them in 1987. Since then, Jimmy has been on the road as a solo musician for 15 years doing nearly 300 shows a year proving each night that he is still the guitar powerhouse in the blues. Thackery has lived the life of a true road warrior; he’s absorbed the artistic lessons of life and filtered them into his guitar playing and song writing. To get where he is today, Jimmy has journeyed a highway of life filled with a series of twists and turns. He met all the right people and they have had a permanent influence on him. It was Thackery’s time on stage with Muddy Waters that is branded deep within his musical soul. “Muddy was one of those guys who was constantly encouraging. He never told you what to do, but he always told you what you were doing wrong. He never minced words about that."
                              Along With Very Special Performances By
    Michael John & The Bottom Line And Friends With Karen Lovely: Michael John, Founder and President of the Ventura County Blues Society, is also the Founder of the Ventura County Blues Festival and leads his band The Bottom Line. Since the festival’s inception, Michael John & The Bottom Line have performed and donated their music which now has become an annual tradition for the festival kick off. When you combine family and lifelong friends you get a special musical bond that touches the hearts and souls of all music lovers alike. The band consists of Michael John (lead singer, guitar, harmonica), Michael John’s son Mikey Mo (lead guitar), Steve Nelson (electric, stand-up Bass), Eddie Z (tenor, alto sax), Jeff Dellisanti (tenor, baritone sax), and Tom “T-Bone” Broderick (drums, backup vocals). The group attracts people of all ages with their blend of Swing to more contemporary rocking blues. They have received national airplay and have won multiple awards including placing in the top ten bands in the finals for the International Blues Challenge in Memphis Tennessee. Michael is a past recipient of the All Access Magazine award for Best Male Vocalist. Special guest vocalist Karen Lovely shot onto the blues scene out of  the Pacific Northwest like Stack O' Lee's .44 placing second at the 2010 International Blues Challenge followed by three 2011 Blues Music Award Nominations for BEST CONTEMPORARY BLUES FEMALE ARTIST, BEST CONTEMPORARY BLUES ALBUM and BEST SONG for her sophomore release STILL THE RAIN. Karen is a two time “#1 Pick to Click” artist on XM Radio Bluesville and has just been selected as the 2014 Featured Blues artist by KJZZ FM in Los Angeles. Lovely’s records have topped the national blues and roots charts and made the Top 10 favorite artist list for dozens of nationally syndicated radio stations. Known for her passionate, driven performances and always backed by stellar musicians, this powerhouse vocalist delivers a blistering mix of contemporary & old school blues. Lovely's standout performances have garnered awards, critical acclaim and standing ovations at festivals and venues throughout the US, Canada and Europe.
    Lightnin' Willie: Emerging from the clubs and bars of the U.S Blues scene, Lightnin’ Willie is an accomplished and hard-working guitarist, vocalist and songwriter. Now based in Los Angeles, Willie is a seasoned musician who has paid his dues. With four albums under his belt, this eloquent storyteller has his own story of time on the road, personal loss, fresh beginnings and an over-riding love of playing the “Devil’s Music.”
Originally from Texas, this blues-man’s years of steady gigging have given him as much polish as his performance. He is tall, with an expressive face, piercing eyes, and the kind of confident all-American swagger that allows you to walk up to total strangers on the street and introduce yourself. Lightnin’ Willie and the Poorboys are by no means destitute. In fact the musical vein they mine is rich indeed. They steer away from dry academia and combine a seductive exchange of swinging Blues and R&B with a hint of Rockabilly. A lively, interactive, face-to-face approach to their music has had audiences waving their banner throughout the United States and Europe for over ten years.
9th Annual Ventura County Blues Festival Media/Photo Passes Available.