Sweetwater/Sons of the South Bay

The cd “Old Friends” by the Sons of the South Bay is officially released and available through this website for $15. If you would like to order one simply contact me through e-mail on this site. The cd was recorded at Ardent Studio in Torrance and is composed of R&B gems. The cd is dedicated to bassist/vocalist Max Noland who passed away last year. The Sons will be appearing at the Sweetwater 30th Reunion on Sept 22, 2012 @ Pier Ave. Auditorium in Hermosa Beach.

Sweetwater Reunion

This is the Sweetwater 30th Reunion 9-22-12 at Hermosa Beach Community Center with Vince Gill on mandolin.

“Song for Life” w/Ramona Ault and Laura Sinclair Carlson singing backup.

The Sons

Gary Ferguson, Ramona*, Rich Wenzel, Linda Wenzel*,  Jeff Wilson, Todd Robinson,Max, JC

“Old Friends”

Gary Ferguson – I first became aware of Ferg when he was about 13 and my guitar playing buddy Bruce Turner said, Hey you gotta come check out this kid playing drums. Some years later, I finally did hear him play when he showed up for a recording session I had. Let me put it this way, Ferg is the best period. He has toured and recorded with more people than we can mention here including; John Hiatt, Eddie Money, Steve Lukather, Edgar Winter, Billy Bob Thornton, Etta James, Leon Russell & Cher. He is definitely a world class drummer and continues to live in the South Bay where he raises his family and surfs.

Todd Robinson – If you’re a fan of burning guitar solos, Hot Toddy is your man. During the Sweetwater days he was a member of the Tim Wiesberg band and wrote a lot of the material for that group. For many years now, Todd has toured the world with Luis Miguel who is one of the world’s top Latin acts. When you see pictures of Luis live, you can usually see Toddo right next to him on guitar. Todd continues to live in the South Bay where he also raises his family and surfs.

Jeff Wilson – Jeff is one of the most talented people I know and one of the tastiest guitarist. Jeff joined Pure Prairie League with Vince Gill and co-wrote the hit “Let Me Love You Tonight.” Since then he has been involved in the movie industry. Today, Jeff is working on his home studio located in the South Bay and continues to write and record.

Richard Wenzel – I’ve known Richie since the fourth grade when we lived next-door to each other in Hollypark. Even back then he was a consummate musician, as I would hear him practicing while the rest of us were playing hide and seek. He is a top-notch keyboardist and arranger who loves the blues. For over twenty years he has been running Ardent Studios in Torrance where we recorded the cd “Old Friends.”

Bobby Tsukamoto – We picked Bobby to fill Max’s place because he has worked with Ferg and Rich for years and is one of the most accomplished bassist around. Back in the Sweetwater days he was in the Larsen-Feiten Band when they had their hit “Who’ll Be The Fool Tonight.”

Max Noland – We lost Max last year to the demon cancer last year. I can’t tell you how much we miss him and the cd is dedicated to him.

Other Players for the Reunion

Gene Libbea – Gene recently moved back to Southern California after years in Nashville and Colorado. For a long time, he was a member of the Nashville Bluegrass Band and toured the world with them. He is a highly respected acoustic bass player and quite famous in Bluegrass circles. He is also one of my oldest and dearest friends and I’m glad he is taking part in the reunion.

Allen Wald – Alsy was one of the original members of Byron Berline & Sundance who played regularly at Sweetwater. He is a multi-instrumentalist, as well as stylist. He was also a member of the Larsen-Feiten Band. Allen became involved in the music accessory business and for many years was the third man at Alessis. Today, he still lives in the South Bay and is involved in many projects.

Ramona – Everybody’s favorite Sweetwater singing waitress has had her own bluegrass band “Prairie Sky” down in the San Diego area for some time. She was involved heavily in Laura’s “Remembering House’ cd and will be singing in various spots in the show.

Dennis Fetchet – Denny Bob will be on fiddle for the Bluegrass set. Dennis played with Hoyt Axton, and has been a fixture at the Golden Horseshoe at Disneyland for many moons.

Also appearing; Joe “Vegas” Villegas (RIP), Larry Bridges, Melissa Collard, Michael Shuler, & Laura Sinclair Carlson

“Never Say No” from “Old Friends” by the Sons of the South Bay

* Daughter