San Pedro Square Market Live Music: Join SPSM for live performances in Downtown San Jose the week of November 28th, 2016 featuring: Michael James System, Wacky Blues Professors, Mirage Band, and Mitchell Lujan.
Michael James System: Thursday, Dec. 1st @ 7:00pm
More recently, during the past few years, I have had the pleasure to perform with Greg Pane, as accomplished musician and composer known throughout the East Bay. Now, I’m pleased to be a part of the Michael James System along with James Kramer, who is also a very talented musician, who has terrific instincts and ability performing a variety of music on his 12 string guitar.
We became acquainted while working as Job Corps instructors on Treasure Island San Francisco Ca. I knew with James’ musical talent and 12 string guitar playing ability that we would make a great duo.
Wacky Blues Professors: Friday, Dec. 2nd @ 7:00pm
The beginnings of the band Wacky Blues Professors can be traced back to the year 2009, when Julijan Erič, a young blues rock guitarist and singer, met Miha Ribarič, who plays the bass guitar, and invited him to a jam session. Julijan and his high-school friend Zlatko Djogič, who plays the drums, had already been playing together in some bands, but at that time, they were looking for new musicians they could play and improvise with. Six months after their first meeting, Julijan, Miha and Zlatko began to regularly play and practice together. It was at that time that Julian’s brother, Miha Erič, an aspiring virtuoso on the harmonica despite his young age, joined the group as their newest member. Miha had already played with Julijan as a guest in previous ensembles. Inspired by Jimi Hendrix and old black blues artists, they slowly began to develop their own compositions. The main feature of their original music and various adaptations was improvisation, and this influence is still felt in their music today. Their first concert was held in 2009 at a small festival. Even though they did not have a fully completed repertoire, their concert was received with great enthusiasm, thus spawning new opportunities to play. They developed their own style, held as many concerts as possible and slowly made their way. The band was greeted with enthusiasm on almost every concert, for this type of music was not that common in Slovenia in those days, and on top of that, Miha spiced the music up with his energetic harmonica playing style, which made the listening experience even more magical. Zlatko catching thick-borne meningitis forced the group to take a break for a few months. When he got well, the Professors began to practice and play intensively. An important new feature of the band was introduced when Miha, the harmonica player, and Zlatko, the drummer, also took up songwriting and singing. Julijan was the only vocalist prior to this, and after this addition, the band gained two more very distinctive vocalists.
The name The Đipsiz (The Gypsies) was changed to The wacky professors of blues – the name that was previously used only as a slogan for a concert on the Academy of Fine Arts has now become the band's actual name. Being some sort of an eclectic consequence of different influences, their recognizable style was becoming more and more evident. Julijan’s major influences stem from the blues and rock tradition of the 60s, his brother Miha’s from blues and country music, Miha Ribarič’s from funk, rap and metal, and Zlatko’s from soul and rock and roll. But when these guys join forces, wonderful magic begins to unravel. The rhythm and energy they produce are so intense that the listener feels completely enchanted and mesmerized. In their own words, they often say that their music is a trance, some sort of meditation, which comes about through attentive listening and improvisation. The music is often dynamically brought to the climax, and when you get the feeling there is no more space left to lift the music even higher, they are able yet again to elevate it to unimaginable heights. Since 2013, they have been playing on practically every location in Slovenia, some places in Croatia and in Prague, Czech Republic. Their fanbase is growing rapidly and upon hearing them for the first time, one is immediately moved by the fullness of the sound. In 2016, they have recorded their first album titled Family. The keyboard player of the famous Yugoslavian band Buldožer, Borut Činč, was invited to participate in the making of Family that has 12 tracks, each one unique in terms of sound and style, which is a speciality of this album. Činč produced the album and his Hammond organ can be heard on 6 tracks. The album was published by the institute Zavod Orbita, established by Prismojeni profesorji bluesa and the versatile artist, Natalija Šepul. The album was very well received.
Mirage Band: Saturday, Dec. 3rd @ 7:00pm
With their catchy dance tunes, smooth jazz vocals, and signature sound, The Mirage Band has solidified themselves as one of the Bay Area’s most sought after performers. Since 1985, they have won over fans and crowds with their high-energy sets, professionalism and undeniable talent. For over 18 years as the former resident band at the famed Tonga Room in San Francisco’s Fairmont Hotel,it was quickly reinforced that The Mirage Band was more than just your ordinary cover band. With a set list that ranges from the golden oldies to today’s top 40, the band seamlessly moves from standard jazz, jazz fusion, disco, R&B, pop and rock as a lively five-piece band to a simple, sexy piano & vocalist duo crooning the standards.
Founder, William “Henry” Concepcion, lead vocalist Victoria “Marivic” and their team of experienced musicians and vocalists provide a musical chemistry that has captured the essence of all of the hits that you want to groove to – they get people on the dance floor and keep them there! The Mirage Band has become the go-to band for corporate events and private parties with a client list that includes Toshiba, Hertz, the World Series Gala and Cache Creek Casino and Resort, just to name a few. From intimate cocktail gatherings to full-blown music festivals, you can expect nothing less than an explosive performance from The Mirage Band.
Mitchell Lujan: Sunday, Dec. 4th @ 1:00pm
Soul singer and lifetime creative, Mitchell Lujan is a Bay Area native songwriter and producer with a definitive yet intimate presence. Mitch connects with people and their greater surroundings on a mental, emotional and physical level (dancing, of course). Mitchell draws influence from his Neo-Soul youth and the Alternative Rock he was drawn to once discovering guitar as a teen. His sound is most often compared to smooth vocalists John Legend and Allen Stone while his band’s experimental instrumentation is reminiscent of Incubus. His past performances include venues from Slim’s of San Francisco to Rockwood Music Hall of New York City. With over 10,000 views on “Blankets,” the single has sparked West Coast attention and inspired his continuing evolution as an artist. Mitchell’s “Subject to Change” EP is available now for download and streaming on iTunes, Apple Music, Spotify and more.