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Tweed Funk

Smokey Vocals
Joseph "Smokey" Holman rose onto the national scene coming out of Gary, Indiana in the late 60's with the Domestic 4. The band became Love's Children and they were signed to Curtis Mayfield's Chicago based label, Curtom Records.  Their best known singles were 1971's Soul is Love and This is the End.  Soul is Love was a Soul Sauce pick by Billboard Magazine to hit the Top 20 on the Soul Charts.  Love's Children toured extensively for 3+ years and had the Ohio Players open for them at a show.  

Smokey left the band in 1972 and as with many musicians his road took a different path as he joined Marines, got married, and ended-up working in steel mill to make ends meet.  During the ensuing years he also faced his own challenges and personal demons that took him further away from the music he loved.  Eventually, Smokey righted his ship and in 1994 began performing in the greater Milwaukee area with Marvelous Mack and the Pressure Release Band. 

Smokey's smooth vocals capture the magic of the classic "soul era" and contain a sweetness and joy that evokes memories of a simpler time.  Meanwhile his journey and life experiences contribute to the grit and emotion as he belts out a blues shuffle channeling his "ups and downs" into every note.  A consummate showman, Smokey is always working it on the stage providing energy and entertainment to audiences large or small.


JD Optekar Guitar/Vocals

JD is endorsed by Lentz Guitars
JD Optekar continued to make a name for himself in 2010 on the regional and national blues scene while finishing up a successful run with the band he founded, Hounds Tooth.  Playing some of the top regional blues festivals including Big Bull Falls, Prairie Dog Blues Festival, Nothin But the Blues Festival, Paramount Blues Festival, and many others - JD's music has been heard across the Midwest.  JD spent the last year co-fronting Hounds Tooth along with Jared James Nichols and they played over 90 shows at festivals, fairs, blues societies, and clubs.  He has also opened up for some of the top names in the blues including Kenny Wayne Shepherd and Shannon Curfman.

His last CD with Hounds Tooth, Soul Rockin, also made the national charts hitting #41 on the Roots Music Report Top 50 Blues Albums.  JD continues to garner critical acclaim for his original song-writing and guitar playing:  "Solid guitar work, well written and well done original songs" - The Blues Blast Magazine.

JD has studied guitar locally under Reverend Raven, Misha Siegfried (Charles Walker Band), and Steve Cohen.

Donnie Mac Bass/Keys/Vocals

Donnie Mac is one of the top bass players in Milwaukee laying down the tightest grooves and playing some of the fastest funk out there with his unique style of poppin'-n-slappin'.  Additionally, he lends versatility to the band with his harmony vocals and his ability to simultaneously play the keyboards with his right hand and the bass with his left hand.  Donnie Mac got his start in music listening to Howlin' Wolf and father playing in the basement of their Westside Chicago home.  At age 7 Donnie Mac started his musical journey playing in bands and church.  His band opened for the Jackson 5 in 1969 at the Central Park Theatre in West Chicago.  Donnie Mac received a scholarship to play music at Fisk University and has played professionally for 35 years in Chicago and Milwaukee.

He has played with some of the biggest names in the business including a 5 gig stint with BB King in Chicago in the late-80s; and filling in for Chaka Khan's bass player for a single gig.  He continues to be one of the most in-demand bass players in Milwaukee, recording and playing with some of the top acts around town including:  Urban Soul; Faith, Hope, & Love; and Omar Sigma.  He has opened for some of the top national acts including Ludicrous.


Marcus "MG" Gibbons Drummer

MG has toured and recorded with some of the biggest names in US over the past 15 years of his professional career, including tours/gigs with Keisha Cole, Aaron Moore, Harvey Scales, The Esquires and as part of BB King's House Band in Memphis.  Additional credits include playing in the Broadway production of The Wiz; promo spots for BET network; a member of NAACP House Band; and working as a Nashville session musician for children's CDs.  Around Southeastern Wisconsin, MG has played  the top venues including:  The Pabst, Riverside Theatre, The Rave, Bradley Center, Turner Hall, and Summerfest.  MG's drumming style can lay down a funky groove, sit in the pocket, or hit hyper-drive with a flurry of fills and high-energy, mesmerizing drum solos. 

MG also displays versatility in his profession, programming drum loops for both live and studio work.  Additionally, he will be co-producing the Tweed Funk CD, which includes original tunes that he wrote for the band.