2002 Grammy Award winning musician Bobby Flores is a multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, arranger, producer, composer and first call session musician. He studied music theory and classical violin at Trinity University under the late Dominick Saltarelli, jazz guitar with Jackie King, and classical guitar with David Underwood. Bobby is featured on over four hundred albums, CDs and singles, including performances with numerous artists on major labels. He composes music for radio and television commercials airing throughout the U.S., Europe, and Australia. While Bobby feels at home in the country, pop-rock, jazz, blues, Latin and classical genres, he also enjoys composing for and performing with string quartets.
In 1968 at the age of seven, Bobby started his professional career by performing at local functions and Texas area circuits in a gospel duo with his mother Mary Jane Flores. Two years later Bobby began working nightclubs as a featured single artist with George Chambers & The Country Gentlemen, a well-known San Antonio area country band.
The next 10 years would set the precedence for Bobby’s career. He formed his first band at the age of thirteen and started opening for national artists such as Marty Robbins, Johnny Rodriguez, Tanya Tucker and Conway Twitty. To coincide with Bobby’s live performances he was also chosen to be a feature spokesman for the regional Big Red soft drink television commercials. Shortly afterward he recorded the first of four charting country singles and released his first LP album on the San Antonio based Joey Records.
By the middle 80’s, Bobby had become bandleader, show opener and fiddle player for Johnny Bush and the Bandoleros, vocalist/guitarist for Top 40 and rock bands, “Gone City” and “The Boiz,” and was also performing with the Trinity University Community Orchestra.
In 1988, along with brother, Greg, and sister, Sandra, Bobby formed the band Angel Fire and played the Texas “A” circuit until 1997, opening for numerous country superstars including George Strait and Garth Brooks. Shortly thereafter, he toured the US and Canada with David Kersh (Curb Records), including performances for Prime Time Country on TNN and numerous radio shows.
As fate would have it, this turn of events led him to his dream job by becoming first violin/fiddle player for Ray Price through 2001. This also inspired Bobby to record his debut CD, Just For The Record. He has since released an addititional six CD’s.
In 2002, Bobby received a Grammy Award for string and brass arrangements and violin performances on Freddy Fender’s CD, La Musica de Baldemar Huerta.
Bobby has received numerous awards over his music career, including being inducted into the "Texas Western Swing Hall of Fame" in 2007. Recognition from Governor Rick Perry came in 2010, for his 40 years in the music industry. He was inducted into the Western Swing Society Hall of Fame in 2013, the Country Music Association of Texas Hall of Fame in 2014, and the Independent Country Music Hall of Fame in 2017 in Nashville, TN. The state and national awards also continue to come, including "Western Swing Male" from the Ameripolitan Awards in 2015, the 2016 "Traditional/Classic Country Male Artist of the Year" from the Josie Music Awards, "Western Swing Male" from the AWA's Will Rodger's Awards in 2018 as well as the "Traditional/Classic Country Male Artist of the Year" and the "Entertainer of the Year" Awards from the Josie Music Awards in 2018.
"Bobby's recording of "I Wonder Who'll Turn Out The Lights" (from his "Festival" CD) is featured in the recent Tommy Lee Jones movie "Three Burials". His work on albums has had him nominated another two times for Grammy Awards. His record label, Yellow Rose Records, is also doing very well for him as he continues to produce great albums for a variety of artists (www.yellowroserecords.com).
Bobby Flores is continuously gaining recognition as one of Texas’ premier musicians and vocalists, both on stage and in the studio. Bobby can be heard all across Texas playing country dances with his band, The Yellow Rose Band, featuring three fiddles and some of the best musicians in the world. His music can be heard on radio stations all over including XM Radio’s “Willie’s Roadhouse”.
Bobby owns, directs and teaches at his live-performance music academy, the Bulverde Academy of Music, www.bam8.com and is joined there by several top notch music instructors on many instruments.
In addition, Bobby's recording and production talents have found a permanent home at B.A.M. Recording Studios in San Antonio, which Bobby owns. The ProTools studio features full recording and production capabilities, a grand piano, Rode and Neumann mics and the very best in mic pres. To contact the studio, please call 830-438-3565 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, check out the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/BobbysAudioMachine.
RJ Smith is a classically trained violinist as well as an outstanding fiddle player. She began studying violin at the age of 9, and at 16, joined a top high-school orchestra program at a local private school. During her 2 years there, she served as the principal 2nd violinist and a 1st violin section player. R.J. also served as the concertmaster of another local youth orchestra and played percussion in a youth concert band. She began studying classical piano and voice during this time as well. After graduation, RJ enrolled in college in South Carolina. While there, she majored in Spanish, but continued her violin studies through all 4 years with a minor in music. Along with her violin studies, she studied piano, percussion, theory and orchestration. RJ also performed with the University orchestra as well as in the pit orchestra during performances by the university opera association. She was also selected for and performed with the first South Carolina All-State Collegiate Orchestra.
After college graduation, RJ spent 3 years riding colts as an apprentice horse trainer. This brought her to Texas, and it was here where she heard Western Swing, Traditional Country and the music of Bob Wills and Ray Price for the first time. In 2006, she gave up her ranch job to focus on her first love, music, and began studying fiddle this time, with a focus on Western Swing, Traditional Country and Jazz. In February of 2007, she met and began studying fiddle with Bobby Flores at Bulverde Academy of Music. Just six months into her studies, she joined Bobby Flores’ Yellow Rose Band, as well as started teaching violin/ fiddle and music theory at Bulverde Academy of Music.
Since that time, RJ has toured with Bobby's band throughout Texas, New Mexico, Louisiana and several other states in addition to performing overseas at the Festival Rendezvous du Country in France, the Northern Nashville Country Festival in Scotland and the 31st International Country Music Festival in Switzerland. She has performed for the last five seasons on RFDTv’s TruCountry show and also on the KENS 5 morning show live. RJ has also been privileged to play on all nine of Bobby Flores’ Western Swing Cruises.
RJ has played for several other great artists and bands as well, including a performance with Ray Price in November of 2012 as a part of his string section. Truly a dream come true! Other notable artists she has performed with recently include Justin Trevino, George Chambers, the Drywater Band, the Bret Mullins Band, T Gozney Thornton, Kelly Spinks, Jimmie Bolado, Jim Raby Band, KR Wood and Gone To Texas, Nathan Colt Young, Allan Hendrickson and for Rick Orozco’s premiere and concert for his documentary film “This Is My Country”. At this event, RJ backed such great artists as Joel Guzman, Flaco Jimenez, Sunny Sauceda, Michael Salgado, Gabe Garcia and Rick Orozco.
The last few years have also seen the beginning of RJ’s recording and session career, including playing fiddle on Jim Chestnut’s album “Sipping Whiskey”. She also has released her first solo studio album, titled “Living My Dream”.
With all this going on, RJ still found time to study Studio Engineering with Damian Rodriguez at Bulverde Academy of Music and has become Staff Engineer at B.A.M. Recording Studios, with numerous great sessions in her credits already.
RJ is so thankful to have been given the chance to pursue what she loves and to “Live Her Dream”!
Amanda Bryant is a singer/performer originally from North Carolina, but now happily performing and teaching the greater San Antonio, Texas area. Having been raised in a very musical family, Amanda began performing on stage at age four with her mother. From there she continued performing on stages around eastern United States.
As a studied performer, she has acquired skills and techniques in multiple genres like rock, indie, pop, jazz, blues, gospel, classical, oratorio, opera and even rap! She has performed in broadway-style musicals, operas and many showcases. She has performed with the North Carolina Symphony, South Carolina Master Chorale, Lynchburg Choral Union, Opera on the James, Houston Symphony Chorus, and Opera in the Heights and several churches as a soloist. Ms. Bryant frequently performs on stages around Texas (NRG Arena/Stadium, Revention Center (Bayou Music Center), Houston Rodeo, performing for the Houston Astros, Houston Women's Roller Derby, and the list goes on) but is passionate about bringing people to their potential in their music and performing. With over 15 years of teaching private, professional lessons, Ms. Bryant continues to inspire others in music to audiences and her students.
A multi-instrumentalist from the flat lands of West Texas, Brady has seen a huge amount of success in his so-far short career as a professional musician. He studied Commercial Music at South Plains College. Brady’s musical instruments include Bass, Guitar, Bluegrass Guitar, Banjo, and Mandolin. He started the 5 - string banjo at age 13 and quickly fell in love with playing music. In 2017 and 2018, he placed 3rd and 2nd respectively in the TX State Banjo Championships. Having branched out from his Bluegrass roots to many other instruments and genres after just a few years of playing, his musical talents have pushed him right into the arms of some of the most prominent musicians in multiple musical scenes. With lots of help from many amazing musicians and people, Brady has mostly accredited his love of playing music to John Hartin. "Without John, I don't know where I'd be. Not only did he teach me a few ways to play things, he taught me to be a musician and be the best person I could be. Talk abaout a role model."
Flicka Rahn is an internationally known performer, teacher, sound therapist and composer. She is retired as Professor of Voice at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi where she taught for twenty-two years. She has also served on the faculties of Brandeis University, the Boston Conservatory of Music, and the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio. Ms. Rahn has sung major operatic roles throughout the United States, appearing as guest artist with companies such as the Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Concert Opera, Minnesota Grand Opera, and San Antonio Opera. She has performed on the stages of major concert halls both here and abroad, including the Boston Academy of Music, Boston Symphony Hall, and Carnegie Hall. Her most recent international recital appearances were in Bolivia, Spain, and Mexico as part of a Cultural Music Exchange showcasing American Art Song with author and pianist, Ruth Friedberg. Also with Ruth Friedberg, Ms. Rahn has performed, in the duo called “Los Bilbilicos”, a large repertoire of Ladino Song in many venues. As a Fulbright scholar, in 2011 she traveled to the University of Queretaro, Mexico, and taught courses on American Art Song and American Musical Theater. Rahn’s art songs have been published in the Southern Music Co. series of Art Songs by American Women Composers and she has participated in numerous conferences featuring the works of American women composers.
Renee’ Coale Willis is a prolific and accomplished professional singer/songwriter. She began her career at the age of 13, when she started shaping her thoughts, emotions and experiences into songs and performing publicly. Renee’ grew up in the rural Texas Gulf Coast town of Blessing, amidst rice fields and cattle ranches, in a family where music was a dominant every day feature. Her writing is a reflection of her southern roots with an insightfulness and honesty that quickly endears listeners to her music. Renee’s voice is strong, pure and full of emotion.
Renee’ earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications from Trinity University in San Antonio, TX, then moved to Nashville, TN in 1988 to join the professional songwriting community. Her songs are catalogued with such prestigious publishers as Almo-Irving, Hayes Street Music, Moraine Music Group, and Universal. Renee’ has had songs recorded by various artists in the U.S. and abroad. She achieved platinum level status with Sony artist, Rick Trevino, on his debut album with “Life Can Turn On a Dime,” a song co-written with Austin Cunningham and Allen Shamblin. The song was also featured on the Sony produced, Common Ground album. Renee’ penned, along with three army wives, “Charm of the Army (A Tribute to the Army Wife)” and “Rolling Along With the Army (A Tribute to the Army Spouse),” which have rapidly gained popularity on posts around the world when they gather for various social occasions and ceremonies. In 2016, the esteemed Bluebird Café produced a benefit album, “Keeping It Original for Alive: A Celebration of Songwriters Benefiting Alive Hospice”, and chose her song, “Love Is a Higher Power,” a collaboration with singer/songwriter, Billy Montana.
Renee’ is a professional member of the Nashville Songwriters Association International, of which she served from 1994-1995 on the Steering Committee, primarily addressing rapidly arising royalty issues related to internet downloading. She is also a voting member of the Country Music Association, and has been a registered songwriter with the BMI performing rights organization since 1989. Renee’ has her own song publishing company, Little Blessing Music. She has recorded three CD’s featuring her original songs: A Front Porch, A Kitchen Table and God, Love Is All That Matters, and Small Town Deep Within.
Renee’ has taught songwriting workshops and classes throughout her career. She was invited in 2011 to teach a formal self-written course on the fundamentals of professional songwriting as an adjunct professor at her alma mater, Trinity University, for the fall semester. Since 2013, she has been teaching her songwriting course for Incarnate Word High School, an all-girls college preparatory curriculum. She has additionally taught at the Warrior and Family Support Center at Ft. Sam Houston, and in various continuing education programs. She is a faculty member at the Bulverde Academy of Music, a conservatory for budding songwriters, musicians and sound engineers. Other writing credits include, “Manners for Life,” a short course addressing etiquette and civility for young women. Renee’ is also working on writing children’s books and a collection of inspirational thoughts based on life lessons. One of her aspirations for the future is to collaborate with various co-writers to create music for a theatrical play. She divides her professional time between Texas and Tennessee, and loves touring and performing with songwriter colleagues. Renee’ also participates in fund-raising concerts for non-profits, and is an inspirational and motivational speaker.
John Isaacks has been involved with music since his earliest years, beginning in grammar school when he took piano lessons from the church organist. He also took violin lessons from the well-known violist Dr. Tosca Berger Kramer, and performed with school orchestras and youth symphonies throughout grammar and middle school, and into high school.
While in middle school and high school John taught himself to play guitar. This, along with his violin and piano experience, enabled him to gain admission to Trinity University in San Antonio as a music major.
While at Trinity, John studied with prominent San Antonio guitarist David Underwood. John performed with various University sponsored
ensembles and choirs, traveling throughout the United States, in Mexico, and in Eastern Europe. He graduated from Trinity with a Bachelor of Music degree, with a concentration in Guitar.
Since graduating from Trinity, John has traveled and played popular music with the San Antonio based country/rock band Morning, as well as with other local bands and musicians.
John comes from a musical family. His mother was an accomplished pianist. His brother and sister are both skilled song writers and performers. There are two more sisters who also sing, and a passel of musical relatives. John feels fortunate to be able to work in the music business, and to be surrounded by musicians in his personal and professional life. He hopes he can pass some of his good fortune and enjoyment of music on to his students.
Travis Davis is a professional working pianist and arranger in San Antonio and the Central Texas area. Through the Suzuki method, he was classically trained from the age of 4. Upon graduating San Marcos HS as Drum Major in 1999, he attended Texas State University where he earned a BA in Jazz Studies and a MM in Performance, with a concentration in Latin music. During his time there he directed “Orquesta del Rio” and had the unique opportunity to study under Dr. James Polk, who was arranger for the legendary Ray Charles. He also won an Outstanding Performer award from the prestigious Notre Dame Collegiate Jazz Festival.
Since then, Travis has performed in festivals across the world in Germany, France, Switzerland, Mexico and Taiwan. Also, he has played on 3 Grammy award-winning albums with Little Joe y La Familia, Justo Almario with Henry Brun and The Latin Playerz, and Grupo Fantasma from Austin, Tx. Some of the notable names he has performed with include Augie Meyers, Flaco Jimenez, Eddie Palmieri, Tito Puente Jr., Jose Madera, Johnny “Dandy” Rodriguez, Frankie Vasquez, original Spanish Harlem Orchestra members Chino Nuñez and Chimbo Corniel, Javon Jackson, Dave Samuels, as well as Marcus Printup and Andre Hayward from the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra.
Locally, Travis has been the accompanist at First United Methodist Church in New Braunfels since 2010. He has also served as featured performer and clinician at the Vidal M. Trevino School of Fine Arts and Communication in Laredo. Since 2012 he has been a member and musical director of Johnny P The Wiseguys. He also plays around town with Natiao Latin Jazz, King William Jazz Quartet, and Henry Brun and The Latin Playerz.
Wardell Potts Jr. is a drummer, songwriter and producer whose list of credits includes three # 1 songs, several top 10 hits, and has provided beats for some of R & B’s most memorable bands. His professional career got underway when he passed an audition held by Leon Silvers. Leon was looking for a drummer to play for the group he was forming called “Dynasty.” He went on to become the house drummer for Solar Records, recording drums for Shalamar, The Whispers, Carrie Lucas, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Janet Jackson and Glenn Jones. The first song he recorded on with The Whispers went platinum called “And the Beat Goes On”. The second song he recorded on also went platinum, ”Second Time Around” which he recorded with Shalamar., He recorded drums on the # 1 hit “Miami” on the Big Willie Style album by Will Smith and on “Bring It All To Me” by recording artist Blaque.
Wardell Potts achieved commercial success when his composition “Show me the Way” became a # 1 hit as Regina Belle’s first single ever. He also composed the # 1 hit “Keep on Lovin Me” by the Whispers. “What’s it Gonna Be” a song Potts co-wrote with Anne Preven appears on Jellybean’s dance album “Spillin the Beans” which was the first single released and was the # 1 hit on the dance charts at that time. The track features lead vocals by Nikki Harris who was one of Madonna’s Back-up singers on the Blonde Ambition Tour. Recently he co-wrote and produced the song “She’s just a Child” for the movie, Woman Thou Art Loosed on the 7th day starring Blaire Underwood and executive produced by T.D. Jakes. He also wrote a song for the movie Remember Sunday on lifetime TV and the ABC network. Beginning in 2005, Wardell has actively participated in worship as lead drummer for Rosewood Christian Reformed Church.
Jacqueline Sotelo is a jazz vocalist, composer, and educator. Born in El paso, Texas, Jacqueline and her family migrated to the festive city of San Antonio when she was 11 years old. Her formal instruction began in High School where she studied classical guitar in addition to singing and playing guitar in Mariachi.
She received a B.A. in Music composition from the University of the Incarnate Word and performed with the U.I.W. Jazz Ensemble at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 2009. She continued her jazz studies at the Masters level at the University of North Texas where she performed with her peers in groups such as the U.N.T Zebras, Jazz Singers, Latin Jazz Ensemble and other small combo groups. While performing with the U.N.T. Zebras, a jazz flamenco project, the group won multiple student downbeat awards including best jazz vocals. She also performed alongside her professors in a Dallas based Brazilian band called Brasuka.
She currently works in San Antonio, Texas as a freelance jazz musician and educator performing with multiple groups in the region including her own combo group. She has served as a clinician for KRTU 91.7 FM’s Growing Jazz Initiative in San Antonio, Texas and the VMT Jazz Festival and Clinic in Laredo, Texas. In addition to her work as a musician and educator, she volunteers at a local non-profit radio station, KRTU 91.7 FM, as host of her own radio show called “Women in Jazz” which airs every Thursday evenings from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. Her show focuses on the contributions of women instrumentalists from the inception of jazz to the present.