Steve Schuffert is a guitar player’s guitar player. A native of Newcastle, PA, he is also Sun King Rising’s first cousin. His long, eclectic career has crossed all genres and all boundaries. His songs have been recorded by George Jones, Kenny Rogers, T. Graham Brown, and many other Nashville stars.
He first came to prominence from 1981 with popular Ohio rock bands, Left End and the Godz. From 1995-2012 he released nine albums on Europe’s Fortune Records and attained massive popularity overseas with The Steve Schuffert Band.
He also carved out a place among Nashville session cats, playing on countless albums and singles. Back home, his work with the late B.E. Taylor on his hugely successful Christmas Tours won many more fans. Today, Schuffert lives in Utah and continues to record in his own studio for artists around the country.
Katherine O'Neill holds degrees in Classical and Jazz Studies from Baldwin Wallace Conservatory (B.M.), and Youngstown State University (M.M.). She is a member of Cleveland Music Group, and has performed with acts like Barry Manilow, Earth Wind & Fire, the TransSiberian Orchestra, Idris Phillips, JR Bruno Big Band, South Florida Symphony Orchestra, West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Cleveland Opera, Opera Western Reserve, Youngstown Symphony Orchestra, Warren Philharmonic Orchestra, Ohio Valley Symphony.
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(Bassist / Composer)
Bambo Kino is a bassist and composer from Youngstown, Ohio.
He began performing live in 1967 at high school dances around the Youngstown/Warren area. In 1970, began performing in area clubs. Beginning in 1979, he has taken several lengthy breaks from the music business to focus on her personal life and business. In the 1980s he turned his attention to composing and recording original material. To date, he has released four solo Jazz Fusion albums to critical acclaim and international airplay.
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(Drummer / Guitarist / Songwriter / Singer)
John Sferra is best known as drummer for the legendary NE Ohio band, Glass Harp, with Phil Keaggy. The band was formed in 1968 and quickly ascended to regional acclaim, eventually releasing three studio albums and a “Live at Carnegie Hall” album, as well. Following Keaggy’s departure to pursue a solo career in 1972, Sferra continued to write and produce albums as a solo artist and with various bands. Glass Harp reunited to perform numerous concerts around the country and Sferra continued to record with Keaggy on albums like his own “Northbound” in 1995 and Keaggy’s “Crimson and Blue” in 1992. His Warren, Ohio recording studio remains busy in 2020 with projects for regional recording artists such as Bambo Kino.
David Granati has performed over 5000 shows before more than 2 million people since first picking a guitar as budding rock star in Beaver Falls, PA. Along with brothers Hermie and Joey, he has carved out a place as one of Pittsburgh’s most illustrious musicians and performers. He has recorded more than 200 albums throughout his illustrious, 48-year career and toured the country with the brothers’ bands (G-Force, the G Brothers, etc.). The G-Force tour with Van Halen in 1982 has become the stuff of legend.
Today, Maplewood Studio in Ambridge, PA hosts many of Pittsburgh’s to recording artists. He has also devoted his life to teaching youngsters to play, record, and perform via his “For Those About to Rock Academy” schools.
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Shawn is an artist and musician based out of Nashville, Tennessee. For over the past 15 years, she has been sharing her soulful vocals and heart-stirring songs throughout the United States, Canada, Europe, and Australia.
Her voice is reminiscent of some of the greatest female singers yet uniquely her own. Shawn grew in May City, Iowa, population 43.
As a teenager, she worked on a hog farm and volunteered at the community’s fire department. She worked there until she moved to Nashville, drawing upon her tough farm upbringing to give her the determination needed to make headway in the music business. “If you work hard enough for something that you want, anything’s achievable,” she says. Shawn just released her latest single, “It’s Alright” in December from her upcoming full-length release scheduled for the second half of 2020.
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Jacob Wynne is a composer, educator, arranger, engineer and recording artist for Cold City Horns based out of Lakewood, OH. He graduated from Youngstown State University with a degree in Music Performance.
He has performed or recorded with a variety of bands/artists including Noel Gallagher, Trombone Shorty, Stuart Bogey (Arcade Fire), Brazilian Girls, Jose Feliciano, Antibalas, George Porter Jr.(The Meters), Kermit Ruffins and Mike Herriott (Michael Buble Orchestra).
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(Singer / Actress / Songwriter / Poet)
Kelly Connors launched her stage career at the age of five and recorded her first radio jingle while still only six years old. Five years later, Youngstown State University’s Dana School of Music tapped her to participate in its Youth Program.
In recent years she has performed as lead vocalist for multiple acts in Northeast Ohio and Pennsylvania at corporate events, wineries, country clubs and special events. She has also sung at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the House of Blues, and Night Town Cleveland.
Kelly is also a notable actress poet and actress. She has starred in musicals at YSU and the YSU Summer Stock program and is a recipient of the coveted Arthur Award from the famed Youngstown Playhouse for her performance in Jerry Herman’s “Jerry’s Girls”. She is currently working on her first book of original poetry.
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Rozz (Bunchie) Coleman
Rozz Coleman is a native of Warren, Ohio. The oldest of nine children in a musical family, she has been sing professionally for more than 40 years.
Known for her versatility, she sings everything from Aretha to Streisand. She is also and actress and playwright. Rozz has performed across America, currently as a member of the Backtraxx Band in Cleveland and Memphis Soul Brew and Just Us in Warren/Youngstown. She add a soulful feel to whatever she sings.
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Bob Esterle of Youngstown, Ohio has backed up such popular artists as Bobby Caldwell, Olivia Newton-John, Ray Charles, The Four Tops, The Temptations, Frankie Avalon, Martha Reeves, The Platters, and The Fifth Dimension, He has also performed for Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton.
Recording credits include Michael Egleton (Smooth Jazz Artist), Bambo Kino, Walter Williams (Lead vocalist of the O’Jays), and Italian bassist Stefano Capomag. He has also played on numerous jingles for the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, the Summit Toy Company, the Cleveland Indians, the Prudential Insurance Company, and various local radio stations.
Bob holds a Bachelors’ Degree in Music from Bowling Green State University and a Masters’ Degree in Music from the University of Akron.
Like so many musicians of his generation, George’s music career began the night he saw the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show. He was hooked.
After a false start taking guitar lessons, his cousin persuaded George to pick up his sticks and play the drums, instead.
A second life-changing moment came when he saw the Buddy Rich Big Band perform in the ballroom at Idora Amusement Park in Youngstown, Ohio. He committed himself that night to becoming a virtuoso drummer. And that he is! Few musicians anywhere boast a resume like his. He has toured the world and recorded with countless artists (Michael McDonald, Donna Summer, Reba McIntyre, etc.), composers, producers, singers, songwriters, and instrumentalists in all genres of music.
His stellar drum work can be heard on jingles, television, and film soundtracks. Now, he can be heard of Sun King Rising’s “Delta Tales, as well.
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Is the owner operator and “studio millwright” of Tune Town Recording in Newton Falls Ohio. www.tunetownrec.com. The current studio has been in operation since 1996. And have hosted artists like Glass Harp, The Lettermen, Joe Augustine, Billy Beck (Ohio Players), Youngstown Scoring Stage, and a host of other artists.
On 1985 Mike moved to New York City and worked at Right Track Recording. After 2 years became Chief Technician and worked with artists like: The Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Foreigner, David Sanborn, Bruce Springsteen and many more legendary music icons.
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Joe is best- known as the bassist for the progressive rock band “Crack the Sky.” The band’s 1975 debut album was cited by Rolling Stone as “Debut Album of the Year” and is ranked #47 in the magazine’s list of 50 Greatest Prog Rock Albums.
A Weirton, WV native, Joe has also worked with other legendary regional bands, The B. E. Taylor Group and Wild Cherry. After relocating to New York in 1974, Joe became an engineer and studio musician, performing with Jim Croce, David Sanborn, and Marie Osmond, among others.
He has also scored commercials and soundtracks for Pepsi, Burger King, McDonald’s, Ford, Nickelodeon, and Showtime. His “Cuppa Joe Music” Library and Sound Design tracks have become a staple in the commercial music production industry. Currently, he is signed to Melodic Revolution Records and is preparing to release a solo album titled “Joe Mac’s American Garage.”
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Holding down the bottom end on four tracks of “Delta Tales” is Jeff Bremer. Jeff plays 4 & 5 string electric basses as well as acoustic bass.
Jeff is from Youngstown, Ohio and he is a graduate of Youngstown State University.
He works in a variety of musical settings. playing blues, rock, reggae, jazz, classical, ethnic styles throughout Ohio and Pennsylvania. He has shared stages with Barry Manilow, Olivia Newton John, Earth Wind & Fire, Al Jarreau, Kenny Loggins, the Glenn Miller Orchestra, and many others.
He has also played with the Youngstown Symphony, Warren Philharmonic, among others. In 2000, he teamed with Youngstown’s Glass Harp to help develop their “Strings Attached “ concert and album featuring the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra . Besides teaching in his own studio. he has also taught at Hiram College, Akron University and Westminster College.
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(Keyboards / Voice / Songwriter / Producer)
Hermie Granati began playing piano by ear at age 3. In his teens, he teamed with promoter Rich Engler’s band, opening for David Bowie, King Crimson and Yes. He then joined Coconut, featuring B.E. Taylor.
After a song writing collaboration with Donnie Iris, Hermie was invited to join his legendary chart topping band, The Jaggerz. Next came the Granati Brothers.
With two major label record deals and two national tours as special guest with Van Halen to their credit, Hermie and the Brothers were busy recording and touring together steadily into the mid 90’s. At that time, he reunited with Taylor for an original Christmas show which quickly evolved into an annual tour, and national PBS broadcasts.
Hermie has done countless recording sessions, including two Joe Grushecky CDs. He and Joe performed together with Bruce Springsteen at the Pgh. Flood Aid Concert. He also co-produced The Jaggerz’ last three CD releases.
Hermie can be seen in DVDs of Taylor’s Christmas show, which aired nationally on PBS, and the critically acclaimed WQED “Tribute to the Beatles” featuring his signature version of 'Oh Darlin’.
He currently performs with the “G-Brothers”, The Jaggerz and B.E.Taylor. “during Hermie Granati’s nearly acrobatic keyboard attack, Bruce Springsteen, who’s seen it all, had the expression of a man who’d never seen anything like it” -Scott Mervis - Pgh. Post Gazette review of Pgh. Flood Aid concert
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Steven “Ace” Acker
Ace Acker was the guitarist of the legendary 70s Midwest soul-rock band, LAW. By time of the band’s discovery in 1975 by the Who, it had already carved out a national reputation touring with virtually every major act of the era.
After releasing three albums on MCA Records, Steve left the band in 1978 to pursue a career in advertising in Jackson, MS and Nashville, TN. His work as a copywriter and creative director for countless clients like Dollar General Stores, Sara Lee Foods, McDonalds has garnered national awards and generated millions of dollars in sales.
In 2007, his musical gifts were re-discovered by the owner of SST Studios in New York, John Hanti, with whom he signed a long-term development writing and production deal.
Despite a devastating 5-year interruption after Superstorm Sandy destroyed SST in October 2012, Steve continues to work for SST today as its marketing director and continues to write and produce records. Steve is currently writing a book with Hanti about their experiences in the music business. He currently lives in Niles, Ohio.