Rising Stars 2016


An annual 12-hour music competition awarded its 8th Annual Rising Stars. In what has become a community music scene mainstay, over 40 local musicians performed on the Alex Thomas Plaza stage Saturday September 17th.

Pairing up with Ukiah Main Street’s End of Summer Show & Shine Classic Car Show, Rising Stars Music Competition musicians started performing at 10am. Ranging from Acoustic solo artists to full bands, musicians were placed in genre appropriate categories. Acts were judged individually by local music experts in the areas of talent, musicianship and audience interaction. After each judge awarded their individual points, scores were added up and winners were presented with awards in Solo, World Rock, Hip Hop and Metal categories. 1st, 2nd and 3rd place overall along with People’s Choice were awarded at the end of the night after a featured performance by 2013 1st Place Artists, The Whitetrash Superstars.

A wide range of musical styles were presented at the 8th Annual Rising Stars. Musicians were grouped into similar genres and assigned a scheduled time for performing. The following is a short biographical listing of all of the acts that participated:

Mendo Lake Credit Union Solo Artists

Simantha Karp has been a vocalist for many years, playing with a multitude of musicians and bands such as the Funky Dozen. A few years back decided to try her hand at guitar to truly find her own sound, and have had a sweet relationship with it ever since. She says music is and imbedded passion stemming from her roots, and she is consistently striving and learning to relay her heart with every lyric, melody and note.

Sarah Rose McMahon is a singer-songwriter, ukulele player and cellist from Willits California. In her intimate heartfelt original songs, she draws upon her own life experiences and travels: Sojourns to India and Africa, bluegrass in Asheville, backpacking in the Trinities and Cascades with her ukulele in tow, Scottish Fiddle festivals and camps and a childhood immersed in classical cello and folk music. Her wistful folk influenced songwriting is reminiscent of Joanna Newsom and First Aid Kit. (with backup vocalist Sarah Ryan)

Jacqueline Scoggins has been writing songs since she was 9 and ever since then she has always had a interest in music. When she performs she usually does only original songs. She loves music and one day hopes to share her music with millions

Douglas Johns has been playing and writing songs for 30 years. Played in open mics. At wineries and recently at the Salinas Country Music Revue and Reunion. Douglas also has written Christian songs and performed them at church. He is part of the duo The Madsen/ Johns Project with my nephew Josh Madsen.

Josh Madsen has been writing songs for a little over ten years now. He enjoys a great song in any genre. Josh grew up in Mendocino County, listening to top 40 radio (KWNE 94.5). He loves singing many genres of music, mostly country, folk and rock. Josh has tended to mostly write songs that he has been told seem kinda sad, always tries to end every song with something positive. Josh says that he just enjoys singing like nothing else, it really frees him.

Travis Rinker, Solo acoustic guitarist, performing musician and recording artist of twelve years. He plays a unique style combining Percussive Fingerstyle Guitar and using a Loop Station, creates ambient, reflective instrumentals."" Travis has shared the stage with some of his favorite musicians, Percussionist Jason K. Norris, Cellist- Billy Mickelson, Rick Hunolt(Exodus) and Grammy nominated Fingerstyle Guitarist Alex De Grassi. Travis is wrapping up his next solo Acoustic album ""Surrounded by Trees"".

City of Light Recording & Sound World Rock Division

Sounds Like Courage is a Craigslist formed band. They have been playing together for a year and a half. With an album nearly complete, it is time to get out of the recording studio and into some live events. The band was originally formed in Ukiah, and they feel that they have great music that all ages can enjoy.

Chad -
Francisco -
Issac -
Will –

The Mark Weston Band is a Classic Rock /New Country/Pop Alternative/Original three piece club dance band. The group prides themselves on their melodic harmonies and ability to keep a dance crowd on the floor without ever losing sight that job security is directly based upon audience participation and rapport.
The band's repertoire covers a vast variety of genres ranging from the Top-40 songs of Yester-Year up through the Cutting Edge sounds of The New Millenium, including a set of Originals which Mark showcased opening for Blackhawk.


Johnny Young Band "Boasting Country roots, with a Rockin™ soul, The Johnny Young Band delivers a high octane mix of Country, Rock, and Pop favorites guaranteed to set any dance floor ablaze. Based in Northern California, the band is made up of seasoned touring musicians, led by award winning Vocalist/Guitarist Johnny Young. Johnny and the guys have dedicated their lives to music, and as individuals have played a multitude of venues from NBC Today Show, to Warped Tour, to The Grand Ole Opry respectively. Since their inception a mere 6 months ago, The JYB can already be found performing in top venues around the West Coast. The band has their sights set on a national tour upon completion of their debut album, set for release next year.

Johnny -
Rik –
Nick -
Michael -
Sid -

Pura Vida Is a band of family & friends playing music with our partners & children. Their mission is to get the party started, & get people of all ages up & dancing to their special brand of """"salsa picante."""" Pura Vida's music bridges the Hispanic and African diasporas, blending rhythm and melody in a spicy mix.
They lost their band mate, friend, mentor, Ukiah health practitioner & teacher Amunka Davila to cancer three years ago; his musical legacy lives on in Pura Vida.



Max 93.5 Hip Hop Division

Young Bengy writes to relate, give advice and try use his power of voice to try to make this world a better place.. He has been writing for 13 years and is confident that if he gets heard by the right people his music would go worldwide..


In The Dro Reyes Cimina and Steven Bauer became friends over myspace. Having already started making their own music separately they noticed eachothers music on their pages, and reached out to one another. Steven met up with reyes and that was that. They have been making music together ever since.



94.5 Kwine Metal Division

As All Else Fails From Clearlake california, all grew up together playing in bands since they were 14 cause thats all they had, then helped rebuild the muisc scene in the small town and now enjoy giving back to our community through our music and helping friends and fans, Hoping to expand that to the entire world.


Root Rot "The black sheep of lake county are proud to present Root Rot, an experimental rock band with surgeons gloves and a rusty scalpel, grafting together a variety of musical stylings with gleeful haphazardry and sporadic improvisation. Fusing smooth reggae and catchy surf guitar riffs, jazzy piano melodies, bass lines oozing punk devotion, hip-hop inspired drum beats, and a unique assortment of vocals, Root Rot strives to blur genres in a rock setting between every song and every madman, energetic live performance to create something heavily stylistic and all their own We wish to passionately deconstruct and ruthlessly obliterate the human psyche.


Fog Realm Travesty(Guitar) and Taumas(Vocals,Bass) collaborated for the first time creating what would be ""Fog Realms"" first single ""Frozen Plain"". Bringing in unceasing Blast/Double-Bass Executioner ""Frosty""(Drums), more progress was made towards their vision in the name of Black Metal. Fog Realm combines Folky melodies, ambient clean dissonance, and tempo sped aggression, a scarce sound in Mendo and Lake Co region.


Wretched Faith has been together in various forms since 2008. In 2013, they started playing shows regularly, with their first show being Lake County's Black Magick Metal Fest 1, and their most recent show being Black Magick Metal Fest 4 in September 2016. They are a family affair, with Dan, who is the brother-in-law to our twin guitarists, Tanner and Taylor. Taylor and his long-time friend, Rich, started the band, and the bassist, Matt, is his brother-in-law

Dan Sauer
Matt Bottorff

Dirty Rice started in November 2015. They played their first show in February 2016. They are all from Ukiah. They are all teenagers. Three 16 year olds and a 14 year old. Though they don’t have a specific genre they like to play a lot of metal songs and a few punk songs. They’ve been mainly inspired by bands such as Megadeth, AFI, and Tool. And are just basically trying to find a way to mix it all, but actually make it sound good at the same time.


The winners of this event were:


Mendo Lake Solo Artist- Travis Rinker
City of Light Recording & Sound World Rock Artists- The Johnny Young Band
Max 93.5 Hip Hop Artist- Young Bengy
94.5 Kwine Metal Artists- Fog Realm

1st Place – Travis Rinker
2nd Place- The Johnny Young Band
3rd Place- Fog Realm

People’s Choice – Dirty Rice

Prizes for the winning acts included: Recording time at City of Light Recording and Sound, Cash, Gigs at Shanachie Pub, Voice Recording at K-Otic Studio, and dig! Music Gift Certificates.

Sponsors for this event were: Clark Pest Control, Ukiah Speedway, Lakeport Speedway, Advantage Towing and Transportation Services, Inc, dG Creative Branding, Martin Scheel for Lake County District 4 Supervisor, dig! Music, Alliance Auto Service, Mendo Mill & Lumber, Schat's Bakery & Cafes, Ruiz Mobile Detailing, Pardini Appliance & Mattress, Lyly's Radiators & Mufflers, Bayley's Coffee Drive Thru, Shag Salon & Supply, dfm Home Audio Video, Super 8 Ukiah, K-Otic Recording Studio.

Multiple vendors provided food service and shared information throughout the day. Non-Profits represented included: Ukiah Lions Youth Football & Cheer, Redwood Empire Lions and North Coast Energy Services. The event also annually donates a guitar to the Guitars for Troops Program.