Posted: June 30th, 2011
Jake Banta and Rick Magee Rev-Up Bike Night

What’s a better way to spend a summer evening with some friends at happy hour? If that happy hour is three hours long and features top local musicians, then that is how you top it. Although there was some rain and construction on State Street, bike night was still on and Jake and Rick were tunin’ up their guitars.

Cell Block was the host for these two musicians whose names everyone has come accustomed to. Rick Magee of the Roadhouse Rockers is no stranger to the stage in Erie, or anywhere else. He and his band play at bike nights, rib fests, fairs in Erie and throughout the country.  They have even shared the same stage with acts such as Ted Nugent, Nazareth, Eddie Money, Molly Hatchet and more.  With Rick being a finalist two times in the Jimi Hendrix Competition, teaming up for an acoustic show with Jake Banta is a show you must see.

Who is Jake Banta you might say? Unless you live under a rock, he is one of Erie’s favorite, most talented musicians hailing from our gem city.  This Rock Erie Music Awards winner has recorded with Double Trouble, which was the late Stevie Ray Vaughan’s personal band.  Not only has he served eleven-plus years of tunes for Erie music lovers, but he has served countless years in the military for our country we call home.


Jake is truly the All-American Man.  It’s amazing how he is still in Erie, given the talent he has.  Quite frankly, I’d like to see him make it big, and I have full belief he can make it there.  I’m sure he’d love to trade is his rifle for his guitar to support his family.

Speaking of family, Jake and Rick were not the only ones displaying their music last week.

Jake’s son, Steve, vocalized his love of music on a few cuts.  A little shy, but once he starts singing, he seems to forget about who’s watching.  You can tell from his face alone that he gets lost in the music.  That’s my favorite part about music.

You listen to music it to make your day go by quicker, or to slow down…to forget about things and to remember them.  Just losing track of time is probably the best thing about music.  Loosing track of time with Jake and Rick in a live performance is the best way to spend a summer evening…especially on bike night.

Before I leave, I’d like to talk briefly about Jake’s Blues manager Lisa Bower.  She has been named the official entertainment booking agent for the PA Route 6 Artisan Trail. So if a business is showcasing a grand opening or is having a party and needs music talent, they contact her and she contacts local bands.  So if you’re looking for a place to book a show, give her a shout!  She also runs dirtydoglive.com where she features original music from the local area on Armstrong Cable.  Last but not least, you can catch her every Thursday morning on COOL 101.7 FM as she discusses local music events.

Be sure to check out the entire photo gallery (69 photos) on GoErie.com and keep a look-out on where I might be next.  If you’d like me to see a show of yours and snap photos, shoot me an email at info@rockerie.com.  Until then, be sure you sign up for the Rock Erie Music Awards! Friday, July 1st is the deadline!

-Steve Puskar

 

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