Combo hoping return to live playing coming soon

Rockin The Blues ‘chomping at the bit’


As some dine-in venues across the West Valley begin the process of re-opening Monday, May 11, as Gov. Doug Ducey announced this past week would be possible, there’s a sense that local musicians, too, may start to get back to live bookings.

One band that’s a regular on West Valley stages, Rockin’ The Blues, is “chomping at the bit” to get back to doing what it does best, when safe conditions dictate a return to performing before live audiences. The blues combo features John Leo (vocals, harmonica), from Surprise, Sun City residents Guy Dobbins (drums) and Larry Kubyiack (bass), and Anthem resident Scott Severtson (guitar).

“It would be an understatement to say the COVID quarantine hasn’t been easy for nearly everyone in one sense or another,” Mr. Leo said via email May 9. “But it is just as true that adversity, while it may bring out the worst in some, definitely brings out the best in most.”

The band took flight when lifelong New Yorker Mr. Leo and his wife Joann relocated to Arizona in 2013, and the members shortly after each found one another and began blending blues with rock and roll for their original sound.

The guys are regulars at the likes of Birt’s Bistro, 16752 N. Greasewood St., Surprise; The Sun City Country Club, 9433 N. 107th Ave.; Corte Bella, 22155 N. Mission Drive, Sun City West; and Sunset Bistro at The Lakes, 19260 N. Westbrook Parkway, Peoria. But their last live gig to date was March 14 at American Legion Post 62, 9847 W. Desert Cove Ave., Peoria.

Quarantine conditions have also prevented them from getting together in person to rehearse.

“Nothing is the same as being together to play, or playing for our fans,” Mr. Leo said. “But each of us in the Rockin’ the Blues band has been using this ‘time out’ to individually hone our crafts, polishing up some old material and working on new stuff.”

Follow the band’s Facebook page for current updates on upcoming gigs.