STONEY B - Band Leader, Guitar & Vocals

Stoney B (Michael Stone) was born May 29th, 1954 in Chicago, Illinois. He grew up listening to the blues. His father Lil' Howling Wolf, who now lives in Memphis, Tennessee, played and performed the blues in Chicago. Stoney B’s passion for the blues really took hold when he began teaching himself the bass guitar at the age of 13. Stoney B started performing at age 15 in his first band called The Rayshons. They performed and competed mostly in talent shows including one he recalls against The Jackson 5 at the Regal Theatre.

Since then he has continued to fulfil his heart felt desire of bringing his music to audiences around the US. In 2013, with 46 years of experience, he has become a highly accomplished guitarist, vocalist, songwriter and recording artist of the Blues. Stoney B not only has lots of talent but that wonderful gift of communication which grabs people’s attention as he brings them into a truly enjoyable, masterful and often humorous experience as he entertains them with the Down Home Blues. He feels and shares at a soulful level the essence of the blues with strong influences from Muddy Waters, BB King and Jimmy Reed.

After a number of years in the Army, where in his spare time he continued his self education on his Fender Stratocaster guitar, he came back to Chicago and started playing rhythm guitar for Johnny Guitar Embry and the Blues Kings mostly around the Southside of Chicago. He went on to play for Johnny’s wife, Queen Silvia Embry, opening sets for her. He sang and played the bass and then switched to the guitar when she came on stage. This began a number of years of playing in bands in Chicago including Junior Wells, James Cotton, Koko Taylor, Johnny Dollar, Lefty Dizz, Johnny Littlejohn, Lovelle White, Lovie Lee, Zora Young, Frank Pelligrino & The Kingston Mines All Stars and The Pete Allen Band, who backed up Buddy Guy.

He formed his first Stoney B Blues band in 1982 and soon after was featured on the cover of the Chicago Reader entertainment magazine. They performed regularly at The Kingston Mines, Lee’s Unleaded Blues, B.L.U.E.S., Momma Roseas and Wise Fools. Stoney B Blues captured the interest of Johnny Winters and Albert King who came to see his band perform. He also played in the Chicago Blues Festival with Queen Silvia Embry. Stoney B also played in a gig with his father, Lil’ Howlin’ Wolf, around this time. They have taken separate paths musically over the years, however, it is rumoured they will perform and record together some time in late 2010.

Stoney B left Chicago in 1986 and headed south to Greenville, Mississippi. In his 3 years there he played in Roosevelt Boobie Barnes band performing as his opening act and rhythm guitarist. He moved on to form another band of his own with some local musicians who played at the Flowing Fountain on Nelson Street, the home of Little Milton. Stoney B was then approached by Lockett Staple, the owner of the Rum Boogie Hotel in Leland, Mississippi, to play in the band he managed, The FM Stereo Band. They were the best R&B band in the Delta at that time. He also played with other local musicians Willie Mississippi Foster, Jessie Clay and T-Model Ford. In 1989 Stoney B moved to Atlanta, Georgia where he met Eric King who was a DJ on WRFG and booked the acts for Blind Willies, Atlanta’s most noted Blues Club. He quickly created a new Stoney B Blues band and played at Blind Willies along with well known blues artists Luther Houserocker Johnson, Chicago Bob Nelson, Sandra Hall and Butch Travette. Stoney B Blues were the house band at Muddy Waters in Sandy Springs , Georgia and played at Clancys in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Roosters in Macon, Georgia and Jerry Zambino’s Club in Savannah, Georgia.

On the move again Stoney B landed in New Orleans, Louisiana in late 1992. He began playing as a street musician and soon after his next Stoney B Blues Band was formed. His talent appreciated by local club owners had his band playing regular gigs along Bourbon Street. They played at The Funky Pirate, The Old Absinthe House Bar, where he also joined Bryan Lee on occasions, The Tricou House and The R&B Club.

He met another well known street musician, Elliott Small, during this time and the act known by many as Stoney B and Grampa was born. Stoney B created the character of Grampa through his quick wit and talent and Elliot took to it like a duck on water! Elliott Small continues to embrace that persona today as his musical identity being known by many as Grandpa Elliott. When they got together and combined Stoney B’s vocals and guitar with Elliott’s vocals and harmonica it came naturally and it was like magic. In Stoney B’s words, ‘We have never practised or rehearsed anything….Never!’ Yet they appeared as a highly polished act right from the beginning. Usually found on Royal Street in the French Quarter, their musical talents and experience created captivating entertainment for many travellers from all over the world.

They played blues favourites like Zz Hill’s Down Home Blues, Muddy Water’s Hoochie Coochie Man and Robert Johnson’s Sweet Home Chicago. Stoney B would serenade to passing couples with Jimmy Reed’s Don’t You Know That I Love You, Sam Cooke’s Bring It on Home to Me and Phil Phillips’ Sea of Love. He would then break it down with the “low down dirty stinkin’ don’t care ‘bout nobody… “ blues with songs like BB King’s How Blue Can You Get and original songs like A Friend and Louise. Throughout this accomplished performance of the Blues, Stoney B and Grampa would have the crowd highly amused with the crazy banter and tomfoolery between him acting as “an ignorant backwoods guitar picker who pretends to be smarter than he looks” and Grampa who “can see fine, but…pretends to be a blind harmonica player who pretends to be able to see”! “They know that it is their blues, the sorrowful, beautiful, haunting sound of bending guitar strings and weeping harmonica, that draws the tourists to them … but it is the show that makes the tourists stay.” (excerpts from an article published in The New York Times, March 26, 1996).

They played together on the streets for 12 years, were asked to perform every year at the State Fair in Franklinton, Louisiana and have appeared many times on local TV stations. They have been a part of numerous documentaries about the French Quarter and Blues down south. In their years together they recorded three CD’s: Blues French Quarter style, Blues for Days and Sea of Love.

However, this was not to last … a change was going to come … Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005 and Stoney B was evacuated to Lubbock, Texas. It was no time at all before his talent was discovered and he was soon doing benefits for the Red Cross, was on the local TV news more than once and invited to be a guest on Thursday Night Live on local TV in Levelland. While in Texas he was backed by the house band for the Cactus Theatre. They performed at the Lubbock Music Festival, Bleachers and the Blue Light Lounge. Grampa Elliott came from Houston to perform with him at the Mean Woman’s Grill in Levelland and they met up again in New Orleans in 2006 to play on the streets and again at the State Fair in Franklinton.

Stoney B has been moving between San Diego and New Orleans for a couple of years and has decided to settle in San Diego for now. He has had a number of video recordings produced on the internet during this time. The Purple Couch had him tell of his experiences in Hurricane Katrina, a video of his song ‘The Rain’, performed with Grampa, is still available for viewing on You Tube along with many others of him and Grampa, and a local documentary has been produced as well and available for viewing on the internet. He continues to play at the State Fair in Franklinton and on the streets of San Diego.

He can be found many days of the week on the corner of 5th and Island in the Gaslamp Quarter. He has performed for the Lion’s Club and a benefit for the blind and played at the Stage, Sidebar and the Cask Room. Recently, he has been a welcome guest at blues jams around town. The new Stoney B Blues Band is now hitting the popular venues around San Diego and Stoney B is ready this time to take his musical career to the next level.

San Diego is starting to discover just who Stoney B Blues is: A blue blood musician? For sure. An entertainer and crowd pleaser? Most definitely. A talented ambassador of the Down Home Blues? Without question.

Lance Dieckmann - Vocals and Harmonica

Lance’s versatility, solid vocals and unmistakable tone on the Harmonica makes him a perfect asset for the Stoney B Blues Band. He sings with power and conviction and has a formidable range. The voices of Lance and Stoney B blend in a very special way.

Lance gained notoriety locally as the singer and harmonica player for the rock/blues band, DA & The Hitmen, whose original CD’s ‘Looking Past the Blues’ and ‘Lucky Dog’ were both nominated for the Best Blues CD at the San Diego Music Awards. Lance was the front man for the Delta Heat Band having taken the place of Ken Schoppmeyer who sadly passed away in 2010. 

Born and raised in San Diego, Lance began his musical career as a Powerhouse Rock vocalist after completing his 3 years of active duty service in the US Army at the age of 20. As a talented young vocalist he fronted original bands such as Archer, Alley Rat and Gridlock, when they opened for a number of national acts including Blue Oyster Cult, Wish Bone Ash and Pat Travers Fog Hat.

Pat Kelley - Keyboards

"It's Pat Kelley" yells Stoney B..."there's only one Pat Kelley!"

As a child in the 1950’s and a teenager in the 1960’s Patrick (Pat) Kelley heard everything new. Pat’s older brother had a large record collection and it was comprised mostly of Blues and that ‘new-fangled’ Rock and Roll! Amongst Pat’s influences at that time were Sonny, Terry and Brownie McGee, Howling Wolf and Jerry Lee Lewis but there were many more. Pat learned to play piano when he was 11 years old and recorded his first single at RCA Studios with a band called Dave Travis and The Extremes when he was 16. He hooked up with a few of the sound engineers and played at a dub-down studio in Hollywood, California whilst working with local and San Francisco bands until 1971. He gave it a break to raise a family and moved to San Diego, California. Pat played with some local bands there but gave it up when the Disco hit the scene.

In 1999, Pat was invited to Blind Melons to sit in on a Blues Jam and there he was introduced to Barney Roach. Barney, who is one hell of a blues musician and Blues Promoter, asked Pat to join his new band, The Lease Breakers. In the 3 ½ years Pat played with The Lease Breakers they were one of the few bands who played twice in the San Diego Blues Festival and they opened for big acts such as Son Seals, Coco Montoya and Joe Lewis Walker. He has been going strong ever since playing keyboards for a number of different blues bands around San Diego.

Bob Prater - Bass Guitar

Bob Prater has been making music for most of his life. Playing upright and electric bass in surf bands in the 60’; blues, country and swing bands in the 70’s; rock and Top-40’s bands in the 80’s; and blues, jazz and swing bands in the 90’s and up until today. Bob has become a versatile player with a wealth of experience and talent capable of producing many styles.

He has played with the following Bands in the San Diego area: Swing Shift, Spectrum, Border Crossing, Straight-No-Chaser, Blue Tones, Blaizin' Trails, David Patrone Quartet, Rachel Lipsky Band, Mama Red, Blue Faro, D.A. & The Hitmen, Basin Street Band, Johnny Eager Band and Balboa Jazz Quintet.

Tony Peterson - Drums

Tony Peterson’s lifelong love affair with music began when he was 4 years old, listening to local radio programs and enjoying his older siblings record collections. Growing up on the South Side of Chicago through the 1960's and 70's, Tony was exposed to some of the greatest music of the 20th century: Gospel, Blues, Motown, Rock and Roll and Funk. His parents saw his interest grow and bought him a drumset for his 6th birthday. On that day, he knew: this is the magic carpet that would take him as far as his imagination would carry him

Throughout his younger years, Tony's teachers in the Chicago Public Schools encouraged his interest and musical education. During his weekends and vacations, Tony sought out local players that would be willing to share their knowledge and experience with an eager young musician, and was greatly rewarded with private sessions with Odie Payne, one of the great blues drummers of the Chess records label, as well as blues legend Willie Dixon, who taught the young up and comer how to play a blues shuffle and explained the origin of the shuffle: "...it’s the sound of a freight train, comin' down the track. Thats where the first blues songs was wrote". These early lessons from these and other legendary musical mentors (including the Staples Singers) and contemporaries helped mold the young timekeeper into a formidable groovesmith.  In college, Tony took classes that expanded his musical palette and broadened his worldview, excelling in ensemble performances and musical theory courses, while getting an education in digital recording theory and technique as well as live sound and audio production.

While serving his country in the U. S. Army and stationed in Germany, Tony performed with the Hanau Community Theater Orchestra as the principal percussionist. During this season of his life, Tony became fascinated with jazz. He again sought out the greats, only on recordings this time, and picked up lessons from the likes of Art Blakey (whos birthdate he and Tony share), Billy Cobham, Tony Williams and many others. He incorporated the skills and techniques he learned from listening into his own developing style. Big Band Jazz also fascinated Tony and Ed Shaughnessey, Buddy Rich and Louis Bellson remain some of his favorites, as well as Dave Garabaldi of Tower of Power and Danny Seraphin of Chicago. In 1992, Tony moved to New Orleans and continued his musical journey. Here he was befriended by and learned from some of the greatest drummers of our time, including Johnny Vidacovich, Herman Earnest and many others. He was also fortunate to tour with Lenny Williams (former lead singer of Tower of Power), G.C. Cameron (writer of So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday), Dennis Edwards and the new Temptations, as well as dozens of local groups. The winds of Hurricane Katrina blew Tony all the way to San Diego, where he landed in the drum seat of 145th Street (www.145thStreet.com), 2011 winners of San Diegos regional International Blues Challenge competition. Tony also anchors the rhythm section of The Stoney B. Blues Band (www.stoneybbluesmusician.com) as well as Stage 4 (www.stage4entertainment.com) and several other local and regional bands, as well as being a drum instructor at Rock n Roll San Diego and an active participant in the Blues in the Schools program. Tony does what he loves, and loves what he does, and that joy is evident in his performance!

Annette Da Bomb - Vocals

Annette McGee is a Blues / Jazz Singer and Entertainer. She was born in New York City and has been singing since the age of four. "I came up listening to Billie Holiday, Dinah Washington & Nina Simone. I knew I wanted to do nothing else but sing....it's that "special place" that I feel special in! I want to bring joy by singing to people, and that's what I do."

Her experience performing spans many years and many venues across the Unites States. Annette has done everything from cabaret and musical theater (Vegas Shows ~ Bottoms Up & Jesus Christ Superstar) to fronting her own Band, Mahli McGee and No Chaser.

She has many musical influences and likes all kinds of music. She sings blues, jazz, funk, gospel, soul, hip hop and Broadway. She is a captivating entertainer, whose energy is infectious to all. She sings with great passion and soul with a voice that is not only extraordinary but one that you will never forget. Music is her life, singing for you is her gift to life!

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UPCOMING SHOWS

  • Sep 3
    PROUD MARYS,  San Diego
     
  • Sep 6
    HOFFERS CIGAR BAR,  La Mesa
     
  • Sep 10
    GASLAMP SPEAKEASY,  San Diego
     
  • Sep 17
    GASLAMP SPEAKEASY,  San Diego
     
  • Sep 19
    THE RIVIERA HOTEL AND RESORT,  PALM SPRINGS
     

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