KEVIN HAWKINS aka HIPBONE SAM: Lead Vocals, Rhythm Guitar
HOMETOWN: Keokuk, IA
EXPERIENCE: At age 5, Kevin watched his uncle's band practice in his grandmother's living room, and that sparked his passion for live music. As drummer & lead vocalist, he formed his first band in 6th grade called Stonegate. He landed his first paying gig in 1978 with Boge Rodent, and went on to play in The Next & The Slammerz. While drumming with The 1'z & Al Rone Band, Kevin had the chance to get out from behind the drums occasionally, so he began honing his skills as a front man. Later, he became the lead vocalist & front man for the award winning Last Chance Blues Band & Rolling Stones tribute band Jack Flash. During this time, he was also developing Hipbone Sam, learning to play guitar & recording some of his original music. In 2009, he decided to pursue Hipbone Sam full-time, and became the front man, lead vocalist, rhythm guitar player and manager of the band. He also continues to write and record his original music, which is on digital jukeboxes nationwide.
INFLUENCES: The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, John Cougar, Ray Stevens, Jerry Reed, Led Zeppelin, Kiss, Foghat, Brownsville Station, J Geils Band, Black Oak Arkansas, Bob Seger, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Aerosmith
FAVORITE THING ABOUT PLAYING LIVE MUSIC: "The energy that happens when the band is on, the crowd is dancing, and we all become connected as one. It's like magic, a moment of happiness that can't be explained. It keeps you coming back for more."
RICK MARI: Lead Guitar, Vocals
TIMOTHY "HAWKEYE" KANE: Harmonica, Vocals
HOMETOWN: New Berlin, IL
EXPERIENCE: Having always loved music, Hawkeye started playing trumpet at age 10 in his grade school band, and continued in high school and college bands. He picked up the harmonica in 2002 just for fun, but went on to dabble in the world of jazz trumpet and rhythm for the next 6 years. In 2008 he rejuvenated his love for the harp and has performed with numerous acts in the local music community. Since joining Hipbone Sam in 2009, he has toured regularly as the band's harmonica player, and played harp on the recorded Hipbone Sam original songs "Hope Ya Don't Mind" and "Tom Turkey."
INFLUENCES: Jason Mraz, The Who, Charlie Musselwhite, Corky Siegel, Huey Lewis, Aerosmith, The Blues Brothers, Joe Cocker, Old Crow Medicine Show, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Ryan Adams, The Traveling Wilburys, Dave Matthews Band, Blues Traveler
FAVORITE THING ABOUT PLAYING LIVE MUSIC: "I think being able to express myself, particularly my passion for music and my love for harmonica, having the privilege of working with such accomplished and skilled musicians, and the energy induced by entertaining a crowd have to be the biggest rewards any live musician could ever ask for. My name is Hawkeye... and I play the harmonica."
ROB ROSS: Drums, Vocals
MARK RIEFLER aka ST. LOUIE: Bass Guitar
HOMETOWN: Born in East St. Louis, IL, Lived in Springfield, IL since 1964
EXPERIENCE: Coming from a musical family, Mark was exposed to music at an early age and took piano lessons when very young. At 10 years old, he bought first guitar and started bass and guitar lessons at age 13. At 16, he joined his first garage band, Hollis Brown, and later played in Side Track Band. In 2010, he became Hipbone Sam's open jam bass player and back-up bass player for the band. In 2013, Mark joined Hipbone Sam as their full-time bass player and is actively touring with band. He also plays in a Beatles tribute band For The Love Of Lennon.
INFLUENCES: The Beatles, Yes, ELP, Little Feat, The Allman Brothers, Led Zeppelin, The Mothers Of Invention, Steve Howe, Frank Zappa, Duane Allman, Jimmy Page, Miles Davis, John Coltrane, Joe Pass, Peter Frampton, Steve Vai, Joe Satriani, David Oistrakh, Tony Rice, Barney Kessell, Tommy Emmanuel
FAVORITE THING ABOUT PLAYING LIVE MUSIC: "Being an integral part of a larger thing, the satisfaction of playing tightly with the rest of the guys. It's still fun like being in a garage band but we all know a little more now."