Headlined Guests

Guest Occupation: YouEQ Founder, Speaker, Game Designer and Facilitator
Guest Biography:

"To synthesize is to combine numerous things into a coherent whole" and that's Brenda's role on the YouEQ team. She is the visionary for YouEQ and has a skill for attracting the exact talent required and inspiring these people to connect and contribute their wisdom to the project. Combining brain science, gamification and emotional intelligence, the YouEQ platform connects & empowers people.

Calling on over 20 years experience as a finance executive, business strategist and an expert of whole life health and vitality, Brenda contributes to the strategic direction, business structure and content of the platform. 

In the spirit of accomplishing this—with a lot more fun—we have drawn on the latest in brain science and gamification to optimize the learning and retention of information delivered through our multi-faceted platform. Through gamification, we educate people on intrinsic motivation, whole-health and develop multiple levels of emotional intelligence—teaching them to apply this to build powerful relationships.

A powerful speaker on the impact of neuroscience and communications, Brenda  specializes in sharing her wisdom on: Empowering People, Employee Engagement, Enhancing Productivity, Creating Powerful Corporate Cultures, Leadership Development, Business Strategy, Financial Modelling, through Public Speaking and You-EQ games.

Guest Category: Business, Health & Lifestyle, Kids & Family, Science
Pat Vegas Chats about his Legendary Native American Rock Band Redbone
Guest Occupation: Bassist, singer, songwriter,Author
Guest Biography:

P   A   T

V   E   G   A   S





R   E   D   B   O   N   E

According to co-founder,bassist,singer and songwriter Pat Vegas, it was Jimi Hendrix who talked the musicians into forming an all-Native American rock group. Vegas told Record Collector writer Jeremy Isaac, "Hendrix was a friend of ours.... and he was half Indian. Once he knew that we were Indian too he used to come and hang with us because of that. Jimi made me aware of my roots: He'd say, 'Native American is beautiful, man, be proud of that.'"

Redbone's story is interesting from more than one point of view. The band itself of course, who had a great career, with ups and downs. The fact that the musicians were all native Americans from different origins (Cherokee, Yaquis, Apaches and Shoshones...). Their political implication and the fact there were censored that shows a very interesting political and social background of the US nation. All this plus the fact that they produced a unique, powerful and soulful music!

The name Redbone itself is a Cajun term for a mixed-race person ("half-breed"), the band's members being of mixed blood ancestry. The band referenced Cajun and New Orleans culture many times in their lyrics and performing style.

The mid-seventies were the period of big success, not only in the USA but even more in Europe and especially in the Netherlands. Maggie, The Witch Queen of New Orleans, Come and Get your Love, Wounded Knee and even Suzy Girl were big hits in many European countries, some reaching Number One. This led the band to tour and play almost non-stop during this period.

They shared the stage at various times with Dr. Hook, Albert Hammond, and others. Highlights on U.S. tours include playing at Carnegie Hall in New York with Argent and Kiss, opening for Marvin Gaye at the Forum in Inglewood, California, sharing the bill with Parliament Funkadelic in Philadelphia, and playing with Steely Dan at the Convention Center in Las Vegas.

Pat Vegas has continued to write music over the years. Some tunes had been recorded since 1980, with Lolly of course, but also with Tony bellamy for some songs. Finally, in 2005 Pat puts this work out on a new CD called One World. It was released in 2005 by a small independent record company. It was reedited in 2009 and retitled as Peace Pipe. At the same period Pat Vegas recreates the band with new musicians. They tour mainly in the west of the United States since.

Redbone was inducted into the Native American Music Association Hall of Fame in 2008, as well as the New York Smithsonian in 2013.

In 2014, "Come And Get Your Love" experienced a resurgence in popularity – and has been thoroughly embraced by a new generation - when it was featured in the Marvel Studios film Guardians of the Galaxy as the very first, and many say most important song, on a mixtape made for the film’s hero, Peter Quill- “Starlord” It was also included on the film's soundtrack album, which reached the Number 1 on the Billboard Top 200 chart, where it remains.  When released as a single in 1974  it went certified Gold, selling well over one million copies, and it is a song that just does not fade away-- there have been over one hundred million hits on YouTube alone.

Since 2015 "Come And Get Your Love" has been used as the theme song for Netflix produced cartoon series “F is for Family” and the TV series “Big Shrimpin”.

For more information about Pat Vegas and Redbone visit …

http://www.redbone.be/  or


Guest Category: Entertainment, Music
Joel Franco
Guest Occupation: Owner at Chesapeake Films, Director/Producer of “ Youth Sports in America-A documentary film- What’s behind a $15 Billion Industry”
Guest Biography:

Joel Franco tells compelling stories with an elegant voice, a crisp Italian sensibility and beautiful pictures. Franco’s experience, vision and intensity bring leadership, heart, and an eye for detail to his films. His understanding of the human condition and his passion for authenticity combine to create artistic, highly commercial works that draw the audience in and make them feel. Franco’s genuine desire to protect the integrity of each story and to bring out the best in the actors and crew have made him a trusted source for getting the job done. Colleagues trust his refreshing character and understand that he is a man of commitment and does what he says he will do, when he says he will do it.

Joel Franco was born in Italy and came to the United States in his late teens where he quickly immersed himself in American culture and film. According to Franco, “I have always admired American films. The American school of acting has a long history of producing great actors and I wanted to be a part of the world of film–a place where captivating stories are unveiled. The creation of film plays into my strengths: I love that magic is the result of the creative process. There must be passion to nurture the momentum of the story. And one must have intense focus to get the job done.” 

Influenced by American filmmaker Sidney Lumet for his vigorous storytelling and Italian director Robert Rossellini for his social realism, Franco is dedicated to staying true to the story in a fast paced, realistic and refined style. 

In 2006, Franco partnered with Solidaris LLC to found Chesapeake Films, LLC. Chesapeake Films has option agreements to produce several feature films and plans to produce two features per year in-house and to collaborate with established film companies for additional opportunities.

Joel Franco is a graduate of University of Maryland/Baltimore, a graduate of the USC-Universal Producing and Directing Program, and holds an M.F.A. in film production from the School of Film and Television at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles.



Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Kids & Family, Self Help, Society and Culture, Sports & Recreation, TV & Film, Variety
Luke Davidson
Guest Occupation: Fitness Specialist & Franchise Owner of The Exercise Coach
Guest Biography:

I first experienced The Exercise Coach’s patented Smart 20 minute workout during my senior year at Trinity International University. A family member of mine talked me into trying out two free sessions to experience the workout. As a member of the Basketball team for Trinity, I couldn’t believe how effective 20 minutes of exercise could be! I began an internship with the Exercise Coach at their Corporate Headquarters in Lake Zurich. I also became Trinity’s strength and conditioning coach during my senior year, in which our team made it to the elite 8, set a school record for most wins and most importantly for me, had no missed games by any players due to injury! Towards the end of my internship and my time at Trinity, the opportunity developed to be part of The Exercise Coach here in Naperville. I graduated from Trinity with a Bachelor’s degree in Sport and Wellness Management with a minor as a fitness specialist and a minor in business. Being able to help people achieve their personal goals and seeing first hand their quality of life improve because of increased energy levels, reduction of chronic conditions and many other ways that The Exercise Coach impacts people’s lives has proven to be one of my most rewarding experiences ever!

Guest Category: Entertainment, Health & Lifestyle, Kids & Family, Self Help, Sports & Recreation, Variety
Jimi Yamagishi
Guest Occupation: Director and song writer
Guest Biography:


As the current director of the SongNet.org, Jimi Yamagishi brings over four decades of life in this industry to the table, helping other songwriters make those crucial connections while actively playing the circuit to keep current.  A veteran session musician with a wide variety of genres in his pockets, his solo material features lyrical wit similar to Michael Franks, smooth James Taylor-esqe guitar lines, with a lil’ spritual sauce on the side. 

Having written over a thousand songs, he’s currently working on archiving them on Youtube, having already released several albums & CDs along the way.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music, Spiritual
Nicole Drakulich
Guest Occupation: Artist / Graphic Designer, Wellness Activist
Guest Biography:


Artist / Graphic Designer, diagnosed with a rare genetic eye disease in 2008 is slowly loosing her eyesight but gaining her inner vision. She speaks about turning a negative into a positive with finding a new career path and appreciation for life through her spiritual journey. She is bringing an IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCE for ALL…

Travel through space and time in every class, inside immersive landscapes designed to elevate your soul and expand your consciousness using projected imagery and sound.

ORAYA offers a new paradigm of PILATES – YOGA – WELLNESS and proples this global movement toward a more connected and elevated human species.

Oraya’s mission is to create a heart centered movement through a global community that raises mind, body and soul awareness. Similar to Soul Cycle and Crossfit, Oraya’s Pilates and yoga classes will inspire beyond the physical, guiding participants toward an elevated fitness experience through curated teaching techniques and a unique, immersive environment combined with visuals and sound.

A big part will be giving back with a portion of proceeds flowing toward women’s education and the evolution toward a more balanced work force and, ultimately, world. Our goal is to boost the economy and expand female empowerment. This is the time for women to rise and come to the forefront.

Taking the mind body connection to a deeper level than other Pilates and yoga studios, we will offer meditation classes, inspiring lectures and workshops about spirituality, metaphysics, sacred geometry and healing modalities.

The wellness aspect will offer light medicine, Reiki, sound healing and detoxification.

Our organic bar offers snacks, juices, elixirs, tonics, coffee and teas.

We will also have a clothing line, skincare line, and yoga mats. A portion of all proceeds will benefit women’s education and women in the arts.

Guest Category: Business, Health & Lifestyle, Kids & Family, Philosophy, Self Help, Society and Culture, Spiritual
Cathy Segal-Garcia
Guest Occupation: Vocalist
Guest Biography:

“Musician’s singer” Cathy Segal-Garcia is a vocalist of “real music integrity” poignantly reports Critical Jazz reviewer.  Wherever she travels in the world, audiences and musicians are moved.

Segal-Garcia’s deep connection to rhythm and her earthy and organic voice bring a nakedness to her communication, a direct line in to one’s heart. Her repertoire includes original compositions and modern interpretations of standards and jazz musicians’ compositions.

 Critical Jazz says, “The vibeof artistic integrity coupled with honest emotion for a captivating experience.”  Don Heckman of the Los Angeles Times added, “Segal-Garcia’s most compelling quality is a warm, dark sound, luxurious enough to wrap a song in an envelope of lush timbres.” Segal-Garcia has been a tireless supporter and producer of the L.A. jazz scene for years.  Recognized for such by musicians,singers, jazz fans, students of jazz singing and organizations such as L.A.Jazz Scene, lajazz.com, CA Jazz Foundation, Jazzvocalalliance.com, Great American Songbook Preservation Society, CA Lawyers for the Arts, and named a“Jazz Living Legend” in L.A.

Recording and performing with jazz legends is part of her career heritage.  Guitarists Ted Greene, Joe Diorio, Larry Koonse, John Pisano. Pianists Ross Tompkins, Billy Childs, Otmaro Ruiz, Josh Nelson.  Drummer Peter Erskine & bassist Marc Johnson are on her recording “Song of The Heart”…Erskine says, “The freshest vocal project which I’ve ever been involved in, and it’s one of my favorite tapes of the past year…This recording deserves to be heard by as many people as possible.”  Marc Johnsonadds, “The choice of material is top notch — very interesting.  The duets were special, the interplay, dynamics, Cathy’s range and intonation are great!”

Her teaching is as well known as her singing, receiving accolades from her students who have had their voices and their lives changed. Her workshops for vocalists have been consistently produced since 1998,including such luminary guest clinicians as Mark Murphy, Cheryl Bentyne, Barbara Morrison, Rhiannon, Gretchen Parlato, Kate McGary, Nancy King,

Peter Eldridge, Meredith D’Ambrosio, Sachal Vasandani, and Rebecca Parris.

Cathy Segal-Garcia is known throughout the world for her performing and teaching, especially in Japan where she has toured every year for over 20 years, performing in jazz clubs and festivals throughout the country. She has 12 CDs to date, with another coming out in January 2019.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Anthony Montes
Guest Occupation: Award winning Actor, Director, Writer and Produce
Guest Biography:

Anthony Montes

Anthony Montes, is an award winning Actor, Director, Writer and Producer. Anthony has been part of the film and theater industry for over 40 years.

Anthony Montes has been teaching and coaching actors for 30 years. Anthony teaches his Acting Technique, the Montes Method Internationally and Domestically. Anthony has published 13 books of plays that are available on Amazon.

His Award Winning Feature Film, THE LAST NIGHT INN which he wrote and stars in as also available on Amazon. His 2nd Award Winning Feature, THE LAST TRAIN is currently looking for distribution. He has just finished a run of his uniquely original One-Man Show, OUTTA THE DARKNESS INTO THE LIGHT.

When Anthony was 27 he was tired of the struggle and tried to take his life by jumping in front of a train in NY. Once he hit the tracks, he knew that he couldn’t do that to his Mother and tried to jump out of the way, getting clipped by the train which fractured his arm.

He has taken that dark place in his life, and put it into his Writing & Acting to help others, to see that they are worth it.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Kids & Family, TV & Film
Guest Occupation: A capella BURBANK HIGH SCHOOL SIRENS
Guest Biography:


Burbank High School’s Sirens is an acapella group of eight young women. This year’s group features Senior Melanie Burckes, Senior Ali Diaz, Senior Kayla Pino, Junior Jasmine Cap, Junior Lindsey Miller, Junior Julia Skillsky, Junior Sydney Sugars, and Sophomore Bella Jade. They are under the direction of Mr. Brett Carroll, the musical director at Burbank High, and alumni Erin McGuire, who arranges the group’s music.

Learn More About the Burbank High School’s Sirens at https://www.bhsvocal.com

Check their performance calendar to enjoy the group in-person. The group can also be hired to perform at private parties, sporting events & celebrations.  Contact them at their website above.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Burbank High School’s Gentlemen’s Octet
Guest Occupation: A capella Gentlemen’s Octet
Guest Biography:


Burbank High School’s Gentlemen’s Octet is an a capella group of eight young men. This year’s group features Senior Christopher Aguirre, Senior Brandon Powell, Junior Noah Damasen, Junior Nathan Mai, Junior Travis Nichols, Sophomore Jonathan Coleman, Sophomore William Rodriguez, and Sophomore Eric Serna. They are under the direction of Mr. Brett Carroll, the musical director at Burbank High, and alumni Erin McGuire, who arranges the group’s music.

More About Burbank High School’s Gentlemen’s Octet at: https://www.bhsvocal.com

Check their performance calendar to enjoy the group in-person. The group can also be hired to perform at private parties, sporting events & celebrations.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Christy Wilhelmi
Guest Occupation: Gardening Geek
Guest Biography:


Christy Wilhelmi empowers people to grow their own food, to be more self-reliant, and to reduce pollution and waste, one garden at a time.

Christy is author of Gardening for Geeks, and founder of Gardenerd (gardenerd.com), the ultimate resource for garden nerds, where she publishes information-packed monthly newsletters, weekly blog posts, and podcasts. She also specializes in small-space, organic vegetable garden design and consulting. She holds regular organic gardening classes in California, and has co-taught organic gardening at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, CA. Christy has been a board member of Ocean View Farms Organic Community Garden in Mar Vista, California since 1999, and gardens almost entirely with heirloom vegetables.

Between 70-80 percent of her family’s produce comes from her garden of less than 200 square feet. Her writing has appeared in Edible Los Angeles magazine, Edible Westside magazine, The Good Food Blog, and LowImpactLiving.com and the Mar Vista Farmers’ Market Wrap-Up for Patch.com.

Christy’s newest book, 400+ Tips for Organic Gardening Success: A Decade of Tricks, Tools, Recipes, and Resources from Gardenerd.com was published in 2017 on Amazon. She lives in Los Angeles, CA with her husband, some chickens and two gardens.

Guest Category: Earth & Space, Plant & Animals, Education, Health & Lifestyle, Kids & Family, News, Self Help, Technology
Guest Occupation: Jazz Vocalist
Guest Biography:


2018! It’s been a good year so far for the Slim Man!

He just won Best Jazz Vocalist at the Coachella Music Awards! Third year in a row. Threepeat!

How did Mr. Man arrive at this point? What’s the skinny on Slim Man?

It’s a long story. Settle in, Slim People…

When he was 5 years old, Slim Man’s dad showed him a movie. That film was The Five Pennies, and when Young Slim Boy saw Louis Armstrong play the trumpet and sing, he told his Dad, ”That’s what I want to do.”

Slim Man studied trumpet for the next 9 years, and also taught himself how to play piano and guitar. After studying classical piano, composition, and harmony at Peabody Institute of Music in Baltimore, MD, Slim Man got signed as a songwriter to Motown Records. He’s had songs recorded by the Temptations, Angela Bofill, Carl Anderson, and other artists.

Slim Man also recorded a CD for Motown, which gave birth to his signature style–a unique blend of jazz, soul, and pop..

Slim Man went on to form the band BootCamp,who had two of the first 100 videos ever played on MTV. Those videos catapulted BootCamp into a successful concert career, performing with The Tubes, TheB-52s, Squeeze, Split Enz, Johnny Winter, and tons of others.

After BootCamp broke up, Slim Man organized and hosted a nationwide talent contest sponsored by Marlboro. It was during this contest that he got the nickname Slim Man. Slim’s big discovery during the talent contest was in Tulsa, Oklahoma, at a honky tonk called Tulsa City Limits.

The guy who won the contest that night was named Ronnie Dunn, who went on to win the national finals in Nashville, and later hooked up with Kix Brooks to form the multiple Grammy award-winning country music duo, Brooks and Dunn.

Slim Man then started writing songs for Brian Jack, a singer from a band called Child’s Play. The 12-song CD that Mr. Man wrote and produced landed Brian Jack a management contract with Dee Anthony (Frampton, J. Geils, Basia) and a recording contract with Epic Records, but the record company decided to cut Slim Man out of the deal.

Undaunted, Mr. Man went back into the studio, re-recorded some of the songs, and released his debut CD End of the Rainbow. This CD made many Top Ten lists for the year, and inspired JD Considine (Rolling Stone) to write…

“A near-perfect example of how jazz and soul can be combined as pop.”

That started the ball rolling, and it hasn’t stopped since. Slim Man has released 12 CDs; the latest is called “Young at Heart”. It’s a collection of Rat-Packin’, toe-tappin’ swinging songs from the 60s that sound like Vegas at the height of coolness.

In the late 1990s, Slim Man started another band, Bona Fide, an instrumental group whose combination of funk and jazz brought forth the Number One single “XRay Hip”. Bona Fide received the Best New Artist Award at the Smooth Jazz Awards. They’ve released 4 CDs, the latest produced by Marc Antoine.

Not content with just writing music, Slim Man has written screenplays, the latest of which, Marlboro Men, is currently being pitched around Hollywood.

Slim Man recently released a cookbook, Slim Man Cooks, which features 52 recipes of his own creation, and 52 funny stories about growing up Slim. There are links in the cookbook to more than 50 cooking videos.

And we thought we’d close with this…Slim Man sang for Pope John Paul II at the Vatican on Christmas Day, 1999.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Errol Gerson
Guest Occupation: Educator and Managing Partner at The Gerson Group Consultants
Guest Biography:


Curriculum Vitae –Errol Gerson:

Professional practice:

Errol Gerson is the Managing Partner at The Gerson Group Consultants, with offices in Los Angeles, London and Johannesburg, South Africa. The Gerson Group provides strategic Management consulting services to mid-size to large enterprises – specializing in strategic Financial Management planning, Strategic Tax planning, Succession Planning, Strategic Marketing and Management, Merger and Acquisition Strategies and Blue Ocean Strategy consulting.

After graduation from the University of Southern California (BS Accounting 1970, MBA Finance and Management 1972) Gerson worked in public accounting and Consulting for the first 6 years of his career. In 1978 he went out on his own and founded a Business Management and Accounting company which began with one employee, and ended up with over 80 employees in two states. He sold the company to his partners and so-founded cow, the first Interactive Design firm in the US in 1992 and subsequently sold his share to investors in 1998.

Gerson was then recruited to joining Creative Artists Agency in 1998 as Director of New Media Consulting, and was there until he was recruited to become the COO of the National Lampoon Television network which he ran for five years. Since leaving the Lampoon, he has been the Principal of the Gerson Group until today.

Educational Practice:

As an educator Errol Gerson has been teaching Business Management, Entrepreneurship and Leadership for Designers at the world-renowned Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, for the past 47 years. Errol has now taught some 6,500 students over a period of more than 141 continuous semesters at Art Center. During his tenure at Art Center, Errol Gerson has been the recipient of numerous Great Teacher awards, culminating with him being the recipient of the ‘first’ Legacy teaching Award given in 2006 for 100 semesters of teaching. Gerson teacher both The Entrepreneurial Spirit as well as Business 101, a course which was mandatory for most students for over 25 years. The course covered all aspects of operating, running and growing a ‘design based’ business, but the course content is applicable to virtually any and every small business. The advanced ‘Spirit of Entrepreneurship’ course is limited to 25 -30 students who have a desire to learn how to develop and grow an enterprise venture. Gerson also teaches a new course at Art Center called, “The Art and Practice of Leadership” which focuses on preparing designers for long-term leadership roles in their chosen field.

Errol Gerson has also guest lectured at his Alma Mater USC-Marshall, The Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate School, the Kelly School of Business at Indiana University, Cal-State Northridge and many other colleges and universities. He lectures on Negotiation Strategies, Blue Ocean Strategies, Sales and Marketing, Wealth Creation, and other related areas of business. He has taught professional seminars for the A.I.G.A., Advertising Photographers of America, Society of Illustrators, Industrial Design Society of America, Wedding Photographers International and others. Gerson has been widely published on a myriad of subjects related to the Business of Design, The Role of Design in Society, The basics of Entrepreneurship, Success and Motivation strategies, Goal setting and Life planning. Many of these articles can be found in LinkedIn, The Huffington Post, the AIGA quarterly, American Management Association, Journal of Social Science Review and others.

Gerson is on the Board of several local charities in Southern California, served as an officer of The USC-MBA association, The American Institute of Graphic Artists where he is the Senior Adviser) and also Mentors students each semester at the Art Center. He is a passionate golfer, avid English football (soccer fan) and is in the process of writing his first academic book entitled, ‘MOTIV8’ – the 8 Steps to keep constantly motivated. Gerson was awarded the prestigious “Fellow” award by the A.I.G.A. in 2017 recognising his decades of contribution to design education. Errol Gerson was born and raised in Johannesburg South Africa, where after high School he attended the University of the Witwatersrand studying accounting, prior to immigrating to the United States in 1966. Gerson received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Southern California (USC) in 1970, and subsequently earned an MBA at USC in 1972 majoring in Finance and Management. Mr. Gerson has also completed extensive coursework (non degree) in Management, Finance, Tax law, Psychology, Business Law, and attended the Harvard Negotiation Project

Gerson is on the Board of several local charities in Southern California, served as an officer of The USC-MBA association, The American Institute of Graphic Artists where he is the Senior Adviser) and also Mentors students each semester at the Art Center. He is a passionate golfer,avid English football (soccer fan) and is in the process of writing his first academic book entitled, ‘MOTIV8’ – the 8 Steps to keep constantly motivated. Gerson was awarded the prestigious “Fellow” award by the A.I.G.A. in 2017 recognising his decades of contribution to design education. Errol Gerson was born and raised in Johannesburg South Africa, where after high Schoolhe attended the University of the Witwatersrand studying accounting, prior to immigrating to the United States in 1966. Gerson received a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Southern California (USC) in 1970, and subsequently earned an MBA at USC in 1972 majoring in Finance and Management.Mr. Gerson has also completed extensive coursework (non degree) in Management, Finance,Tax law, Psychology, Business Law, and attended the Harvard Negotiation Project

Guest Category: Business, Health & Lifestyle, Kids & Family, Philosophy, Psychology, Self Help
Rebecca Whitman
Guest Occupation: Executive Director of Equinox International
Guest Biography:


Rebecca Whitman is originally from Cincinnati, Ohio and currently resides in Los Angeles, California. She graduated from Princeton University with a degree in English Literature and Italian Language and Culture. As an Executive Director for the direct marketing company Equinox International she developed and trained a salesforce of over one thousand individuals in 14 national offices. She was ranked number 3 out of 100,000 sales representative in personal sales volume. She went on to be a top producer at Mike Davidson Ford dealership in Jacksonville, Florida, where she helped them to develop new marketing strategies for their internet marketing division.

She moved on to the internet start-up company, FreeTaxPrep.com, where she was the Vice President of Business Development. In this company she not only exceeded her quarterly sales quota by 425%, she also hired and trained a sales team that developed a client base of over281 car dealerships in ten cities in a period of 90 days. As a Talent Coordinator for the Hollywood Group, she developed anew marketing strategy that increased the revenue of the company by $250k per year. She achieved between 100%and 400% of her sales quota for the Hollywood Group.

As the Vice President of Sales for Be Entertainment,she created a sales force that took the company from 0 to$15 million is sales revenue in the first year. She assisted the company’s expansion to 7 offices and managed 30sales reps. She also increased price points from an average of $1400 to $5000 per sale.

Rebecca is currently working for The Playground – A Young Actor’s Conservatory, where she increased the sales revenue of the company by $1 million per year for 5 consecutive years.In addition to her business acumen, Rebecca has done extensive study in the area of meta physics with such great teachers as Reverend Michael Beckwith, Esther Hicks, and Marianne Williamson. She has delved into the study of personal relationships with Dr. Pat Allen, Allison Armstrong, and Landmark Education. In addition, Rebecca has over 25 years of experience in the 12 Steps.

Guest Category: Business, Philosophy, Psychology, Self Help
Guest Occupation: Singer
Guest Biography:


Teresa James was born and raised in Houston, Texas where she was introduced to music at an early age by her father and grandfather, both guitar players in the old tradition. She starting playing piano at 5 and hasn’t stopped since.

Called a singer’s singer by many. (When the SAG Singer’s Committee got together to honor composer Randy Newman, Teresa was chosen as the soloist to perform his favorite song to him.)  She has recorded with Walter Trout, Eric Burdon, Spencer Davis, Tommy Castro,  Stephen Bruton, Randy Newman, LeeRoy Parnell, Neil Diamond, and many others. She has performed live with lots of other artists, including: Al Anderson, Marcia Ball, Levon Helm, Delbert McClinton,  Lloyd Jones, and the Derailers to mention just a few.

Blues Matters magazine in the U.K. is quoted “the girls voice does the talking alright with a knife edge when she wants rip your ears off or your heart out!”

The Pasadena Weekly said…”She is one of the most honest, gutsy, incredible singers you’ll find. The Texas-bred James takes creative chances, investing amazing soul and spirit in her music.”  

Levon Helm of  “The Band” said  “Teresa James is a true original. When she sings you can feel it in your bones.” 

         Here’s a little of what Bill Bentley from Sonic Boomers said about Teresa and her recent “You Know You Love It” cd. “This is the stuff they don’t teach you in school….. These are the keepers of the unknown language. Teresa’s voice is all-knowing, like she’s been to the places most of us aren’t able to go. It is a mixture of rejection and redemption, … be glad there are still people like Teresa James and the Rhythm Tramps who care enough to do this and share their spirits. Each and every one of them should receive a letter jacket with a big “S” for soul on it. Class dismissed. “ Teresa’s latest cd “Come On Home” landed a hard to get 4 Star Review in Downbeat magazine. 

            Teresa and her band the Rhythm Tramps are a Los Angeles based band 6 piece band made up of players that have either played or recorded with such artists as Eric Burdon & the Animals, Bonnie Raitt, Delbert McClinton, Jimmy Reed, Lightin’ Hopkins, Jimmy Vaughan, John Martyn, Big Al Anderson (NRBQ), Johnny Nash, Dixie Chicks, Jennifer Warnes, Smokey Robinson, Tom Jones, Tower Of Power, just to name a few and have had their songs recorded by Paul Rodgers, Kathy Mattea, Eric Burdon, Tommy Castro, Marcia Ball and others. As one critic said, “there are no clichés in this band”. They move easily through Texas style grease and blues into Memphis soul or New Orleans flavored grooves and all points in between with fun and abandonment.

            Teresa and the band have toured all over N. America and Europe and have played such music festivals as The Nottodden Blues Festival in Norway, Moulin Osprey in Holland, Tampa Blues Festival, iFest in Houston, Tx. Main St Arts Festival in Ft. Worth, Tx. Portand, Oregon’s Waterfront Festival and she has been one of the featured acts on Delbert McClinton’s Sandy Beaches Cruise for the past 14 years along with Delbert, John Hiatt, Keb Mo, Lyle Lovett…to name a few. She was nominated by the Blues Foundation in ’08 for “Contemporary Female Blues Artist of the Year”. She is now working on her 9th cd which should be out by mid-summer 2016. 

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
The Rhythm Tramps with Rebecca James
Guest Occupation: Music Band
Guest Biography:

The Rhythm Tramps

The Rhythm Tramps, has a long history: The first band to be called ‘the Rhythm Tramps’ was formed by Terry Wilson and Tony Braunagel when they were living in London back in the 70’s. They were touring at the time with the rock band, Back Street Crawler (which also featured the legendary Paul Kossoff on guitar and John ‘Rabbit’ Bundrick who has been a long time keyboard player with The Who) and they missed playing the Texas style blues that they had grown up with, so they formed the ‘Rhythm Tramps’ and performed in local pubs. 

It got to be quite a hang for London musicians – legendary singer, Frankie Miller was one of the regulars, which also included whoever happened to be in town. The transient nature of the players spawned the name, ‘the Rhythm Tramps’. 

In the years since Terry and I have re-established the Rhythm Tramp tradition, we have also had a lot of amazing players that have played with the band – some for several years at a time, some for just a few nights. Even though we have a steady group of players with us now, there are still occasions where we have the opportunity to bring in other players. 

Below our current roster, you’ll find a partial list (in no particular order) of some of the people that we have had the pleasure of working with over the years.

TERRY WILSON  born: Warren Arkansas plays: bass and vocals has played with… ERIC BURDON, JIMMY REED, JOHNNY NASH, BACKSTREET CRAWLER (PAUL KOSSOFF)
“Terry is the soul of the band. It is his vision and his songs that make up the essence of our music.”

BILLY WATTS  born: New Brunswick, Canada plays: guitars and vocals has played with… JACKSON BROWNE, BONNIE RAITT, MOJO MONKEYS, JENNIFER WARNES “Billy is a true musician and a joy to have in the band. He always seems to know just the perfect thing to play to bring out the heart of our music.”

HERMAN MATTHEWS  born: Houston, Texas. plays: drums and percussion
has played with… TOM JONES, TOWER OF POWER, KENNY LOGGINS, GEORGE DUKE Herman has an eclectic style that is unlike any other drummer that I have ever worked with. He brings a wonderfully unique flavor to our music.”

LEE THORNBURG  born: Danville, KY plays: trumpet, flugelhorn /arranger
has played with… RAY CHARLES, ETTA JAMES, TOM PETTY, SUPERTRAMP, TOWER OF POWER and many others. A member of the Tonight Show band for several years.

Together LEE and RON have performed with ROBERT CRAY, THE CRYSTAL METHOD, BETH HART and lots of others… 

I’m sure that I have forgotten somebody, so if I left you out or if you know of anyone that I didn’t include – PLEASE let me know and I will fix it – I don’t want to leave anybody out.  

(The * beside a name indicates active Rhythm Tramp status or special recognition for their contribution to the Tramps’ sound and the part they have played in the band’s legacy) 

Tony Braunagel* / Jim Christie* / Debra Dobkin* / Tom Fillman* / James Cruce* / Willie Ornelas / Jack Bruno / Lynn Williams / George Perilli / Dave Hunt / Dennis Edwards / Jack Kelly / Jay Bellarose / Brian Head / Sinclair Lott / Eddie Tuduri / Michael Jay Dohoney / Richard Millsap / Gary Ferguson / John Molo / David Raven / Jim Varley / Steve Hunter / Moon Calhoun / Gary Ray / Michael Clark / Brie Darling / Brannen Temple 

Tommy K* / Stephen Bruton* / Jimmy Don Smith* / Josh Sklair / Paul Warren / Johnny Lee Schell / Stevie Gurr / Don Evans / Dave Lewark / James Pennebaker / Rob McNelley / Dean Parks / Snuffy Walden / Mark Shark / Mark Karan / Carmen Grillo / Pat Thrall / Jim Gibson / Jon Woodhead / Randy Mitchell / Stuart Ziff / Bob Hawkins / Randy Cobb / Patrick Pearsall / Gurf Morlix / Larry Knight / Danny Weis / Ricky Zahariades 

John Herron / Marty Grebb / Danny Timms* / Mike Finnegan* / William ‘Smitty’ Smith / Lee Michaels / Red Young* / Lewis Stephens* / John ‘Rabbit’ Bundrick* / Kevin McKendree / Dillon O’ Brian* / Glen Clark / Michael Murphy / Tom Canning 

Jerry Peterson* / Sean Holt* / Joe Sublett* / Daryl Leonard* / Bill Churchville* / Mark Pender* / Warren Ham / Bill Bergman / Les Lovitt / Ron Dziubla / Paulie Cerra / Lee Thornberg 

Steve Mackie / Bob Glaub / ‘Hutch’ Hutchinson / David Jackson / Mike Mennell / Peter Freiberger / Taras Produniak / Will MacGregor / Ric Cortes

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Alan Busteed
Guest Occupation: Violinist
Guest Biography:


Alan Busteed is a violinist who has been a concertmaster and soloist for film scores recorded in Los Angeles. He is a violist who has performed with the San Diego, Fort Worth, and Santa Barbara Symphonies. He has served as staff pianist for opera workshop at the University of Texas Arlington and done free lance vocal accompanying at Loyola Marymount University. He coaches string players and singers at East Los Angeles Performing Arts Magnet High School.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Caleb Robbins
Guest Occupation: Percussionist and singer
Guest Biography:


Caleb Robbins is a 16 year-old who lives life passionately and all-in on whatever he is doing! His homeschooling life allows him to pursue his love for foreign languages, natural medicine, story-writing, animation, reading (up to a 1000 pages a day!) and music. Since his youth, he’s had a special gift for percussion and singing. As a baritone vocalist, he gets to use that loud ‘outside’ voice he always had as a child for the beautiful songs he expresses with his rich tone. While Caleb deeply appreciates all styles of music from Jazz to Rock to  Opera, he told his family when he was 12, “I was born for Swing.”  Caleb lives in Southern California with his mom and dad (who are also professional musicians and authors) and his younger brother, Seth, who harmonizes with him and accompanies him on the piano.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music
Stacey Robbins
Guest Occupation: Integrated Wellness Coach, Speaker, and Author
Guest Biography:


Stacey Robbins is a Renaissance woman who lives life by inspiration as an Integrated Wellness Coach, Speaker, and Author of An Unconventional Life: Where Messes and Magic Collide, You’re Not Crazy and You’re Not Alone, and Bloom Beautiful.

Her career began as a professional musician when she was 15, working as a songwriter, pianist, and vocalist in solo performance as well as with many other talented artists, but when she was 27 hit a health bump that dramatically shifted her life. After gaining 100 pounds in a year and becoming so ill that she could barely get out of bed, the doctors told her to get her affairs in order.

Stacey began pursuing her health from a deeply spiritual angle that led her to shine a flashlight down all the corridors of her life: Thoughts, Beliefs, Patterns, Relationships, Spiritual Practices, Self-Care, Food and Exercise. Through that experience and years of research of a diagnosis with Hashimoto’s (an autoimmune condition that affects the thyroid and therefore every cell in your body) she has been able to speak all over the US and reach people all over the world with her healing insights that she discovered through her own sacred journey.

Now, in addition to her coaching and book writing, Stacey creates gorgeous, transformational experiences through her international retreats and workshops, empowering women to live from what she calls their “Brave Soul Place.” Stacey resides in Southern California with her author, tech-geek, musician husband and their two amazing, curly-haired teenage sons.

Guest Category: Health & Lifestyle, Kids & Family, Philosophy, Psychology, Self Help, Spiritual
Mark Baranov
Guest Occupation: Professor and Philharmonic member and soloist
Guest Biography:


Mark Baranov joined the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s first violin section in the 1978/79 season.

Baranov was trained in the Soviet Union at the Gnessin Music Academy in Moscow, where he earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree. He served as co-concertmaster of the Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra under Gennady Rozhdestvensky, appearing as soloist on many occasions and touring with the ensemble in Eastern and Western Europe and Japan, as well as throughout the USSR. Baranov also performed as a leader of the orchestra’s chamber ensemble, Nonette. He was also a member of the Moscow Radio String Quartet. With these ensembles he toured throughout Europe participating in many important festivals and gave USSR premieres of works by such composers as Schoenberg, Messiaen, Denisov, and Schnittke, and made several recordings on the Melodiya label.

After coming to the United Sates in 1978, he became very active in the Southland’s musical community. In 1983 he founded the critically acclaimed chamber ensemble Trio West with Philharmonic cellist Barry Gold and Baranov’s wife, pianist Lina Targonsky. The ensemble has performed frequently throughout Southern California, including the Philharmonic’s Chamber Music Society series, as well as aboard the Queen Elizabeth II. In 1992 Trio West was invited to perform in Germany at the Festival Bahnhof Rolandseck near Bonn.

Baranov has also appeared as a soloist with the Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl and at the Music Center. He has been a visiting professor of violin at Biola University and UCLA. He frequently gives master classes throughout the USA and judges many violin competitions.

Guest Category: Arts, Entertainment, Music