Festival Review: Showbam-A-Rama at The Airliner in Los Angeles

Showbam-A-RamaPhotos by Dan Stensby

Showbams presented the first annual Showbam-A-Rama June 2, featuring nine various up and coming bands in the Southern California area at The Airliner. View set recaps and photos below.


Starting things off with a bang on the Hoe Down stage was Chop Surf, who brought in bassist Ryan Jeffs, which really complimented Paul Caruso on Drums. Their set was filled with high energy surf rock complete with swaying guitar riffs by Ryan Lynch. Jeffs and Lynch even traded instruments for the last song of their set, which showcased their wide range of musical ability.


Meanwhile upstairs at the Giddy Up stage, Spoh was absolutely killing their set of improv infused jazz that had the crowd gyrating early in the night. Second song in they busted out Phish’s “Julius”, which showed Stew Phillips’ lead guitar work à la Trey Anastasio. They closed their set with a jazzed out version of The Meters’ “Cissy Strut” that had this New Orleans music fan feeling it!


Grizwald came into the Airliner and turned many heads with his one man band that was full of looping drumbeats and well executed synth jams. Showbams will be keeping a watchful eye on Grizwald.


By the time I got upstairs to check out Chief, brothers Danny and Michael Fujikawa had already taken their shirts off, so I knew they were down to business. They tore through their set with mighty angst and the crowd ate it up! Chief knows how to harmonize with the best of them, and they showcased that on Sunday. They ended with the one-two punch of “Nice People” and “You Tell Me”, which was well received from the crowd.


Strandside played their set of psychedelic surf rock with great passion, and I really liked how they brought their new singer Nima Kazerouni up at various parts of their set. That truly kept things fresh throughout their performance and had many people talking about their show all night long. A highlight of the evening was the song “Knights Move North” that was played flawlessly. Looking forward to catching this South Bay act again soon.


Tall Tales and the Silver Lining had a stripped down band for their set on Sunday, but that didn’t stop Trever Beld- Jimenez from doing what he does best – captivating the crowd with his amazing voice and great stage presence. On this evening, Jimenez showcased his bass skills and really held his own while Tim Ramsey playing lap steel guitar helped with the overall tone of this set. A surefire highlight of their show was the beautiful cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Gypsy”.


Busy Living started things off with the title track from their first EP, Its A War Out There and didn’t let up from there. Mike Moonves led the band through many new songs, including one standout song of the entire night called “LYD” that included electronic drums, which blended perfectly with their sound.

Divola had the most high energy set of the evening, even though that energy was dark, twisted, and had Dion Tomasini in a black ski mask on drums for the whole show. Thomas Lynch has again proven himself behind the synth, and Justin Jacoby is the most animated on stage as he slays his bass ferociously. This is some seriously good psych-rock.


Shaky Feelin’ is a force to be reckoned with on the Ventura jam scene, and they brought their goods to L.A on Sunday night with standouts like “Train Station” and “Insider Mind”. Mark Masson on guitar has some ridiculous chops and Franklin Murphy on keys was truly a standout of the evening. They treated the crowd to two great covers by jam kings Phish in “Possum” and “Back on the Train”.

Showbam-A-Rama Music Festival: June 2nd in Los Angeles

Showbams is proud to announce our very own mini festival, Showbam-A-Rama! The festival will take place at The Airliner in the heart of downtown Los Angeles June 2nd and will feature nine diverse bands over two stages!

There will be two full bars to get your libation on, and a used vinyl store will be on site courtesy of Butter Vinyl for you to peruse through as you rock out. Be sure to get there early to catch all the acts. You wont want to miss this one! Showbam-A-Rama is a 21+ event, and you can buy tickets here. Cash only at the door for tickets, credit cards accepted at the bar.

Shaky Feelin’
Giddy Up Stage

Headlining the “Giddy Up” stage will be Ventura natives Shaky Feelin’,  bringing their high energy jam machine for what’s sure to be an amazing set full of shredding guitar solos from Mark Masson and thunderous drumming by both Paul Menchaca and Cameron Probe. Throw in Rob Jeffries on bass and recently added keyboardist Franklin Murphy and you’ve got yourself one hell of a jamband.  I wouldn’t be surprised to hear a Phish or Dead tune mixed into their set. Buckle up for this one.

Hoe Down Stage

Closing out downstairs at the “Hoe Down” Stage is the electronic funk trio Divola. Led by synth maestro Thomas Lynch III and the fierce drumming of Dion Tomasini, this band is really starting to make heads turn with their dark and gloomy electro sounds. Rounding out this trio is multi-instrumentalist Justin Jacoby, who lends his skill on bass to Divola as they take you on their satanic voyage across the underworld. So in other words, don’t expect any hula-hoopin flower girls at this set. Check out their EP “Black Magic Power” below.

Tall Tales and The Silver Lining
Giddy Up Stage

Tall Tales bring their laid back vibes to Showbam-A-Rama with their style of folk-rock surf tunes that could easily be heard blasting out of any Venice beach surf shack in the 70’s. Led by singer Trevor Beld-Jimenez and his wife Tania, Tall Tales will have you begging for more of their amazing harmonies and beautiful musicianship. Don’t get fooled by their mellow nature because these folkers can really turn it up a notch, and I expect their set to be turned up to 11, out of a possible 10 of course.

Busy Living
Hoe Down Stage

Los Angeles rockers, Busy Living, are ready to explode on the fertile LA scene with serious fire power. Front man Mike Moonves leads Jared Sohnen (drums), Josh Jove (lead guitar), Matt Leddy (keys) and Tim Hutton (bass) with a sound that’s bound to make people gyrate on the dance floor. Look for serenading croons by Moonves and extremely catchy riffs by his supporting cast of melody makers.

Giddy Up Stage

The story of Chief is one of two coasts. Though Evan Koga, and brothers Danny and Michael Fujikawa, were all born and raised in Los Angeles, they left for New York University, worlds away. It was in New York that they first got to know one another as collaborators, rumbling through a number of semi-serious projects and solo ventures before feeling swept away by a small run of songs Koga had penned and presented to them. In early 2009 they made there way back to the city of angels and Chief was born.  Expect beautiful harmonies and well executed jams throughout their set at Showbam-A-Rama.

Hoe Down Stage

South Bay surf rockers, StrandSide, who have been making a name for themselves at the legendary Lighthouse Cafe in Hermosa Beach, come to Showbam-A-Rama with quite the buzz. Consisting of Tyler and Alex Wolf holding down the rhythm section and Ryan Mckenzie bringing his fluid surf style on guitar, and Kevin Brown with his masterful lead guitar work, StrandSide is a must see show this year. 

Giddy Up Stage

Opening up the “Giddy Up Stage” this year is SPOH, a band from Los Angeles that is heavy on improvisational Jazz Psychedelia. Yeah you heard that right. Improvisational Jazz Psychedelia. Drummer Pedro Honess was hand picked for the Medeski, Martin, and Wood camp in 2012, so you know he’s ready to show off his skills behind the kit. Look for blistering lead solos by Stew Phillips on guitar, thumping bass lines from Pete Orlanski, and the delicate touch of Ben Sheridan on keys.

Hoe Down Stage

Hailing from Oakland, Grizwald makes his world debut at Showbam-A-Rama. This one man electro-funk set will feature many loops and bass heavy tunes that is sure to get your heart racing. 

Chop Surf
Hoe Down Stage

Also making their world debut and having the honor of opening up the first ever Showbam-A-Rama festival is the Indie-Surf Rock duo Chop Surf. Paul Caruso is a force to be reckoned with on drums, and his sidekick Ryan Lynch, also playing with Chief, will be manning guitar duties in this outfit. Expect to get your groove on with this duo.

Info and Set Times:

June 2nd, 2013 at 7:30pm – 2:00am

21+ only
$15 Presale
$20 at the door (cash only)



8:00 – 8:30 Chop Surf
9:00 – 9:30 Grizwald
10:00 – 11:00 StrandSide
11:15 – 12:15 Busy Living
12:30 – 1:15 Divola

8:30 – 9:15 SPOH
9:30 – 10:30 Chief
10:45 – 11:45 Tall Tales & The Silver Lining
12:00 – 1:45 Shaky Feelin’

Food – Fries The Limit
Vendors – Butter Vinyl – Used Vinyl Store!!!