We are excited to announce we have signed with Rip Cat Records! We are now label mates with The Blasters, Kid Ramos, The 44s, Alastair Greene, John Clifton Blues Band, Gino Matteo, Orphan Jon & The Abandoned, and many more greats! New CD is "under construction"...details soon!
01/17 Nominated for their 5th consecutive San Diego Music Award for "BEST ROCK BAND" (for the year 2016)! Also, BMIII now in association with Alchemy By Faust/ Cindy Faust for U.S. bookings!
12/16 Home from a highly successful 4 month, 5 country, nearly 60 show European Tour!
07/16 Scottie joins the TV Jones Pickups and Iconic Custom Guitars families, and will be rocking the 'T56 Telecaster on this year's European tour! BMIII also released their newest CD, an homage to Led Zeppelin titled "Black Country"!
06/16 Roxanne is now a "Quilter Amps Artist", using the new Bass Block 800!
12/15 Home from a 3 month, 9 country European tour. BMIII had a great time with Jackson "Naisu" Blinn on drums, and their great friends The Division Men, Jesus and Caroline Portillo, from Austin, TX! BMIII named "Rock Band of the Year" by Independent Musicians Promotions Radio (IMP Radio)!
08/15 Nominated 'BEST BLUES ALBUM" for "Vanarchy •Live•" by the San Diego Music Awards!
05/15 Released our 3rd CD, "Vanarchy •Live•"! BMIII on the cover of Boogie Magazine!
12/14 Home from a 3 month European tour, the second of the year!
08/14 Nominated "BEST BLUES ALBUM" FOR "BLACK ROSES" by the San Diego Music Awards!
06/14 Scottie is now a "Quilter Amps Artist"!
05/14 BMIII completes the first of two European festival and club tours this year, having great success in Belgium, Holland, Germany, France, and England! More European dates being added often, so please check back for updates!
11/13 Home from a great European tour! BMIII now endorsed by Boulder Creek Guitars, Wedgie Products, MotorCult Kustom Clothing, and Dunlop Guitar Accessories!
08/13 BMIII released their second CD, "Black Roses"!
07/13 Nominated "BEST ROCK ALBUM" for "Songs That Shake The Cage" by the San Diego Music Awards!
11/12 Home from our first European tour! Nominated BEST BLUES BAND at the /San Diego Music Awards!
09/12 BMIII released their first CD, "Songs That Shake The Cage"!
09/11 BMIII's first show at The Parkway Bar, La Mesa, CA.
Being on the road with your band can be a lot of fun, but can also be dangerous. Road conditions, weather, vehicle problems, unfamiliar territory, and many other factors can turn a good time into a nightmare in a hot minute.
While on a road trip with my band Black Market III in November of 2012, we were headed out to (what was uncharted territory for us) Virginia City, Nevada. A few days prior to the trip, the transmission in our Suburban completely quit so we were using my niece and nephew's Suburban. We already felt fortunate that it was available to us, and more so that the breakdown didn't happen on the trip!
When we arrived in Virginia City, we were met by some good friends from Reno, NV. As we were talking before the show they told us a little history of Virginia City, and the place we were playing, the Ponderosa Saloon. They said VC was known to be one of the most haunted cities in the United States. Furthermore, the Ponderosa was a bank back in the Gold Rush days and had the original vault still in it. There is a mine entrance and shaft in the back of the bar, and it is said to be the site of many ghostly encounters. We were told about how the spirits there were drawn to music, and many pictures taken of the bands playing there had ghostly orbs floating around them. Of course we had our friends take many pictures of us playing that night.
While we were playing our bass player, Roxanne, saw a penny on the floor in front of her. On the break I noticed her bend down to pick it up, but then leave it there. I didn't think anything of it since it was just a glance over as I headed to the bar. After the show we were all hanging out, and we all mentioned a feeling of relaxed calmness on stage and a real positive energy about the place.
After a great time we all said our goodbyes, and we went to our hotel. Being November it was getting really cold, so Roxy turned on the room heater for the night. As she looked down, in front of the heater on the floor was a penny. She then turns around and proceeds to tell me about the penny on the floor, in front of the stage, at the Ponderosa Saloon. She said, as she went to pick it up, she heard a distinct voice say to her "put it back". So she did! We kind of laughed and joked that it was the ghost of a banker.
After spending the day exploring VC and strolling through the old graveyard, we drove over the mountain to play a show in Reno. We checked into our hotel, cleaned up a bit, then went down to the casino for a drink and a few pulls on the one armed bandits. Roxy and I then went back to our room to start getting ready for our show at the 3rd Street Bar that night.
As we settled in, I happened to glance down in front of Roxy's nightstand. "Roxy! Look!" There was a penny on the floor. It had not been there before when we first came into the room.
We met up with our friends who were at the show the night before, and they were very excited about a picture they had taken of us. Clear as day, hovering above the band was a solid orb! (I later had a photographer and 'ghost hunter' examine the photo. He couldn't explain the orb.)
We had another night filled with positive vibes and a lot of energy in the room. Our friends took more pictures of us that night and there were a couple more shots with clearly defined orbs, one big one in front of my chest!
The next day we drove to my parent's home in Fresno,CA. As we are telling them about all of this my dad stops us and says, "What do you see in this orb (the one from VC).?" We zoomed in on it, and we all saw the same thing. It looked as though there was a man and a woman embracing!
We have always believed that we are being looked after on our road trips and tours. So many times disaster has been averted by maybe even a couple minutes. Sometimes we are given reminders of this. The penny showed up on stage in Modesto, CA as we loaded in for a show at T's Cocktails. On a return trip to Modesto a couple months later, the penny greeted us on stage as we loaded in for a show at a place called Hero's.
We are on another trip to Fresno, Virginia City, Reno, and Sacramento as I am writing this. I'll let you know if the road spirits made themselves known to us again.
After recently being turned down for a show and being told the venue only books 'real and traditional blues', I had to stop and reflect on this a bit. I also have bitten my lip many times when I hear this kind of sentiment coming from 'purists'. (Keep in mind as you read this I do get that some venues want more old style blues versus the modern styles. I am equally adept at playing both.)
Over the past 26 years I have always viewed myself a blues guitarist in what I consider the most purest of terms...even when playing styles not usually considered to be 'blues'. I play completely from my heart, soul, and gut...period. As far as writing, all my songs are from my 'real' experiences...using either literal of figurative/poetic words. I cut my teeth with an OG bluesman by the name of Tomcat Courtney (whom I still play with today whenever I can), learning the styles and nuances of Lightnin' Hopkins, Jimmy Reed, and T-Bone Walker. More importantly I have learned how to create my own style and express my true self.
In my experience and opinion, real blues is an individual's expression of their own experiences and emotions put into a song. Hopefully by sharing the song, others can identify. This can be a celebration of the good times, a healing for the bad times, a call to action or protest against any kind of oppression, or even to tell a good story.
I think the words 'real' and 'traditional' are many times used to mean the same thing. This can be correct, but also they can be completely different as well. Even within this idea I think the word 'traditional' has two meanings, and is often misused. The blues as a musical style traditionally is played in a 12 bar format (sometimes 8 bars), mostly consisting of the I, IV, and V chords of any key. It is traditionally identified by its rhythm, ie: shuffle, slow blues, etc. These are just a technical identifiers.
What about the traditions of where the music originated? It comes in the communities, hearts, souls, and guts of the people creating it. This is where my definitions of 'real' and 'traditional' differ from many. I believe the blues is MOST real and traditional when used to express oneself in one's own individual way (pretty bluesy to use the words oneself and one's, huh?! ;-). Since all modern styles of music have their roots in the blues, I believe anyone who is honestly expressing themselves and their emotions (musically related to the blues form) is being 'real' and 'traditional' in the purest sense of the words.
I also do believe in REVERENCE and RESPECT for traditions. This is strictly my opinion and is regarding playing other people's songs. There's nothing wrong with playing someone else's music. We are all influenced by those we like and those whom we really understand...those who speak to us. I believe when playing someone else's song it is of utmost importance, reverence, and respect to play it in the style and attitude of the original, but equally as important to still express it individually.
BUT... is it being 'REAL' to try and be someone you are not? To copy their vocal style? To copy their guitar solos note for note? To take their music and write your own words to it? To dress like them? Early on B.B. King was trying to be T-Bone Walker. Buddy Guy was trying to be B.B. King, who was trying to be T-Bone Walker. Jimi Hendrix was trying to be Buddy Guy, who was trying to be B.B. King, trying to be T-Bone Walker. Stevie Ray Vaughan was trying to be Jimi Hendrix, who was trying to be Buddy Guy, trying to be B.B. King, trying to be T-Bone Walker. The point is this...they ALL ended up finding their own unique, individual, and true selves and bringing the music known as blues to whole new generations.
Another apect of all this comes into the recording realm. I've heard so many times from 'purists' how it's only real if it is captured in one take, band in the same room, no overdubs, warts and all, and made to sound 'lo-fi'. I will agree it is valid to say from an artistic view point, the way it was played was the way it was played, and 'real'. But there's a reason why the old records considered 'real' and 'traditional' sound the way they do. That was the technology available in their day. There wasn't multi-track overdubbing. To fix an obvious mistake required the whole band to play the song through it's entirey again until the best take was recorded. Were the songs as we know them recorded ever played the same way on subsequent takes, or live? Did they really sound like this live? Ask Buddy Guy about that...I did.
I love those records and approach too, but think about this next time any of you go to play and record 'real' or 'traditional' blues:
•Are you putting it out on 78, 45, and 33, or CD?
•Isn't making your recording to sound 'lo-fi' in reality using an effect?
•Isn't trying to embody someone else affect?
•Isn't putting the blues in a little box and labeling it as 'real' or 'traditional', keeping it to yourself and a small clique of like-minded people, really just being snobbish and elitist?
•Isn't making the blues akin to something that belongs in a museum really contributing to it's extinction as a living, breathing, form of human expression and spirit?
•Are you going to be a part of bringing the blues to a new generation, keeping it alive and evolving?
•Are you an artist, or someone with a pencil and a piece of tracing paper possibly trying to pass of someone else's drawing as your own?
•Are you really about the traditions of the blues?
We left the show that night with a calm sense of satisfaction, having savored every minute of the night. It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of a night like that, and we really wanted to enjoy it to the fullest and breathe it in.
We are coming up on the anniversary of our first year as a band, and I just have to say again how proud I am of Roxanne and Haley, their dedication, hard work, attention to detail, and always positive attitudes. We wrap up our first year filled with great local shows, some fun road trips, and a lot of family 'bonding', with the release of this CD and a fun night at the San Diego Music Awards.
We start off our second year with a month long tour through Belgium, Holland, Germany, and England. I am very thankful and grateful for the blessings that have come with being in this band and sharing it with you all.
I do want to thank and acknowledge a few people. Patti Fox, Dan Watson, Rosalea Schiavone, and Mark Schwartz for all your efforts, love, belief, and hard work helping us move this band forward.
Big thanks to Nena Anderson for playing a beautiful set to open the night with class. And to Stephen Rey & The Sex Trash feat. Low Volts for closing the night with some dirty rock'n'roll!
Thanks to Joe Rinaldi and The Griffin SD for having us, and being so supportive and accomodating. Joe, I've known you for many, many years...thank you for all you have done for the live music scene. And to brother Art Johnson--THANKS for doing a KILLER job with the sound, and just being a cool friend.
Thanks to Stacey Holland for the AMAZING photography through the entire packaging of the CD, and to my great friend Aaron Holland for being the model in the shots.
Thanks to Nena Anderson again for the beautiful layout of the artwork.
Thanks to Joey Harris, Roni Lee, Mick Fritzsching, Cami Smith, Carl Sonny Leyland, and Anson Funderburgh for sharing your talents with us on the CD!
I promised to not go on and on, so I will close by saying once again....THANK YOU!
(Photo by Eric Miller)
What a fun, whirlwind trip! We took a bunch of pictures throughout and stayed in touch with everyone through Facebook.
8/2--Left for Fresno. On the way we stopped for a little lunch in L.A. where Roxy saw a huge dog left in a car with the windows slightly cracked in 90+ degree heat. She found the owner and almost became Mrs. Mad Dog. The owner was snide and obviously embarassed in front of the whole place. When I quietly stepped in to calm it down, he got aggressive with me! Calmer heads prevailed and they left mumbling under their breath. Note...L.A. is a stressful place .
On to Fresno! Nice drive with a trailer in tow. Spent a great night with my folks and were surprised by my sister, and Roxy's and my 4 nieces and nephews! My mom made us a PERFECT dinner and breakfast...life on the road is hard .
8/3--Off to Reno with bellies full! Stopped in Stockton for some killer Mexican food. Sat in some traffic in Sacramento. Then drove through the picturesque mountains to Reno on Hwy 80! We made a 'pitstop' after Auburn, where the people in the restaraunt were SUPER friendly. Note...Clean mountain air and beautiful scenery=much less stress. Arrived in Reno and checked into our rooms at Circus Circus . Finding the rooms was like a scene straight out of Spinal Tap. We were ultimately successful in finding them.
The show at 3rd Street Bar was really special. Mick, Tim, and Joe treated us like old friends. We also made a bunch of new friends who had been told about us, and came out to welcome us. The show was SOULFUL!
8/4--Woke up and had a BIG breakfast. Before we checked out, we took a classic picture of our 'destroyed' hotel room . Drove to Sacramento and checked into our rooms at the Hilton . Spent the afternoon site seeing and eating some KILLER pizza in Old Town Sacramento. The show at the Fox and Goose was ROCKIN', and we played with two really good bands, The Vintage Vandals (rockabilly), and The Delta City Ramblers (bluegrass/country). It's nice playing to an appreciative audience who pays attention to the band... and not the TV's! Very cool night!
8/5--Our 3hr drive back to Fresno turned into 4 1/2hrs due to the fine people at Cal Trans. Actually, we will appreciate all the road improvements next go 'round. Dropped Haley and Roxy off at my folks so they could get ready for our early 5pm show at Shooters. I went ahead to set up. Luckily our friend and President of the BMIII Fresno Chapter Fan Club was there to help--Thanks Michael! The show KICKED ASS, and we were joined by Bill and John Clifton of the MoFo Party Band.
Show ended at 8pm. Now for the fun part...we had to pack up and drive all the way home to San Diego (Roxy had a mandatory meeting at 10 am Monday morning)! We were ahead of schedule after the load out, and decided to hit the McDonald's across the street. Bad move. Turned out to be a gang hang out, and there was a guy in one booth arguing with himself. We decided to take our orders to go . Hit the road at 10pm, and Roxy took us to Bakersfield. I drove the rest of the way home, arriving on our doorstep at 4:50am !!
We had a blast, played hard, and got closer as a band. Not one grumble or complaint the whole trip. I'm really happy being in this band with my two awesome friends and musicians, Roxy and Haley!
P.S. You can view the full photo album at http://www.facebook.com/BlackMarketIII
We have more recently gotten into the 3rd of Jack’s bands, The Dead Weather. Jack predominantly plays drums in this band. Members include the epitome of rock front woman, Alison Mosshart (the Kills), Dean Fertita (Queens of the Stone Age), and Jack Lawrence (Raconteurs). Roxy and I witnessed their performance front row a couple years back at the last San Diego Street Scene, and were completely blown away. It was by far one of the most unpretentious, raw, and solid Rock (with a lot of blues) shows we had seen in a very long time! Dirty, sweaty, emotional, raw, and LOUD!
Anyway, back to the point. Tom Waits spent his formative years in National City and Chula Vista, CA. He went to Hilltop High, which happens to be where my niece Veronica Rodriguez Konkoly graduated from. He frequented Lou Louis F Curtiss' Rare Records on Adams Ave, and another iconic SD diner called Rudfords (site of many notorious Mississippi Mudshark after-hours).
Another piece of trivia--Joey Harris (San Diego's own Beat Farmers), who also makes an appearance on the CD, spent his formative years with John Stewart...the singer/songwriter, not the guy from The Daily Show...and opened many shows for Tom Waits in the 70's.
So now we are honored to cover not one, but TWO of Tom Waits' songs on our CD. I wanted to include a video for "Black Market Baby" here, but the one's I found were more reggae influenced and not as deep and dark as the original that inspired us so much. For now, enjoy this video!
Lie To Me- Tom Waits