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Thank you to our artists, stage crew, production team, security staff, volunteers, vendors and attendees for making the 2017 Bowlful of Blues a success. Mark your calendars now for the 25th Bowlful of Blues on Saturday, September 22, 2018!

Our 2017 Performers

The Blues Angels Smiled

Thank you blues lovers of Ojai and beyond for helping make the 24th Bowlful of Blues a success. On behalf of our co-presenters, the Community Advocacy Coalition of Ventura County (CAC) and their affiliate internet/FM station, 99.1 Rhythm of the Coast, we appreciate all the support for this festival, from audience members to sponsors to volunteers to staffers to stellar performers to our A-1 stage and technical crew to ticket outlets and to the hosts of Libbey Bowl, the City of Ojai and their liaison Amber Young.

It was truly a joint effort that happened on a positive note, once again through the good graces of the community working together. We hope those who attended enjoyed the concert and Ojai’s version of celebrating this American musical tradition. Please watch for a forthcoming announcement about the distribution of the proceeds.

Local and area businesses who sponsored this year’s Bowlful of Blues, held on September 16, include, in alphabetical order: Attitude Adjustment Shoppe; California Solar Electric; Cal-State Site Services; Deer Lodge; DSR Audio; Don & Cheree Edwards, Realtors; JSL Technologies; La Barre Land and Development; Juan J. Lopez, D.D.S.; Nutmeg’s Ojai House; Oakridge Inn; Ojai Community Bank; Ojai Images, Ojai Lumber; Ojai Valley Imports; Pacific Western Bank; Papa Lennon’s Pizzeria; Parker Graphic Design; Donald Pavek; Rainforest Plant Co.; Santa Barbara Blues Society; Southland Blues E-Weekly; Topa Mountain Winery; Ventura County Blues Society; and Westridge Family Markets.

Thanks also to Julie Tumamait-Stenslie and the Tumamait Family, Joan Kemper, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Alumnae of Oxnard, Khaled and Waled Al-Awar of the Ojai Playhouse, the Ojai Valley News, Barbara Bowman, BD’s Earthtrine Farms at the Ojai Farmer’s Market, Villanova School, and Chisum Floors of Ojai.

How gratifying that so many local businesses, organizations and individuals contributed to making this annual event possible! In addition, further support came from the Bowlful family of ticket outlets: Cardinali Bros Music, Studio Sauvageau, Ojai Creates!, Attitude Adjustment Shoppe, Salzer’s Records, Coastal Postal on Seaward, Very Ventura Gift Shop & Gallery, Instrumental Music in Thousand Oaks, Island Outfitters in Carpinteria and Jensen’s Guitars and Music in Santa Barbara.

Since the Bowlful of Blues is truly a local, homegrown, “people’s festival,” we welcome input from all interested parties, either on these pages or to Michael or Lanny as we plan for our 25th anniversary on September 22, 2018.

Michael & Lanny Kaufer

Press Release: Nathan & the Zydeco Cha-Chas to headline 24th Bowlful of Blues in Ojai on Saturday, September 16

Direct from Lafayette, Louisiana, in an exclusive West Coast engagement, acclaimed Zydeco blues band Nathan & the Zydeco Cha-Chas will headline the 24th Ojai Bowlful of Blues in Ojai’s Libbey Bowl on Saturday, September 16. Ojai’s hometown American roots music festival, founded in 1983, will take place from 4:00 to 9:30 p.m. with gates opening at 3:00 p.m.

Nathan Williams formed the Zydeco Cha-Chas in 1985 and they first played the Bowlful of Blues as an opening act in 1991, billed then as the hottest up-and-coming band from Lafayette, the heart of Zydeco. They return in 2017 at the top of the bill, having brought their unique take on this regional South Louisiana music to all corners of the globe.

Inducted into the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame in 2005, Williams was honored in 2012 with the Zydeco Music Association’s Achievement Award. The Cha-Chas have been voted the top Festival Band in the country and have won the coveted Big Easy award for Best Zydeco Band for several years running. Their exciting new album, A New Road, is the first release on their own label, Cha-Cha Records.

Also featured at the locally produced, nonprofit benefit concert are Morganfield Burnett & Da Blues, Raw Silk, the Gypsy Blues Band with special guest Bill Flores, Cody LePow, and guest emcee, comedian Denise Carter.

On board as sponsors for this year’s event are DSR Audio, California Solar Electric, Oakridge Inn, Ojai Valley Community Bank, Papa Lennon’s Pizzeria, Cal-State Site Services, Attitude Adjustment Shoppe, La Barre Land and Development, Santa Barbara Blues Society, Ventura County Blues Society, Juan J. Lopez, D.D.S., Rainforest Plant Company, Topa Mountain Winery, Ojai Valley Imports, Don & Cheree Edwards, Ojai Deer Lodge, Parker Graphic Design, Ojai Images, and Pacific Western Bank. Businesses and individuals are encouraged to visit to join the list.

Cowboy John’s Smoken BBQ, L&T Catering, and All American Softy food trucks will be on hand to complement select Firestone beers on tap and fine wines by the glass. Arts, crafts, and blues music booths will round out the vending area.

General admission tickets for festival seating are $40 in advance and $45 at the gate and can be purchased online at or at a number of ticket outlets throughout the area. A limited number of $100 VIP tickets are also available. These tickets include select seating, reserved parking, VIP lounge with super premium wine and beer, complimentary snacks, exclusive artist access and more. Children 6 and under are free and youth prices (ages 7-15) are $20 at the gate only.

Ticket outlets include, in Ojai: Ojai Creates!, Cardinali Brothers Music, Studio Sauvageau, and Attitude Adjustment Shoppe; in Ventura: Salzer’s Records, Very Ventura Gift Shop & Gallery, and Coastal Postal and Video; Thousand Oaks: Instrumental Music; Carpinteria: Island Outfitters on Linden; and in Santa Barbara: Jensen’s Guitars and Music Co.

Bowlful of Blues is presented by the Community Advocacy Coalition of Ventura County and their affiliate FM and internet radio station, Rhythm of the Coast, in association with the Kaufer Brothers, longtime producers of the event. Proceeds will benefit programs providing music education and musical instruments for local youth.


2016: Fans Prompt Ojai Bowlful of Blues Return

Lanny and Michael Kaufer, Ojai’s real-life “blues brothers” at Libbey Bowl. Photo by Megan Lee (Dualistic Photography)

On Saturday, September 17, 2016, after an 11-year hiatus, Ojai’s Bowlful of Blues returned to Libbey Bowl, in Ojai’s Libbey Park.

“A big part of our reason for the return of the Bowlful of Blues after all these years is the fans,” said Michael Kaufer, Co-Founder/Producer of the festival in 1983, with the late Clarence Sterling. “Since the last concert in 2004 after Clarence’s death, people have continually stopped me on the streets asking for the concert’s return. Due to the event’s immense popularity, and the circumstances being right, the decision was made to reinstate the concert.  The 2016 event will mark Bowlful of Blues 23rd year.”

Those circumstances included the other half of the duo known as the “Ojai Blues Brothers,” concert promoter Lanny Kaufer, rejoining the team as Assistant Producer.

Nathan & the Zydeco Cha-Chas "Calinda"

Nathan & the Zydeco Cha-Chas live at the Grand Ole Opry!

Morganfield Burnett live: "She's Into Something"

Raw Silk featuring Leslie Lembo: "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours"

Gypsy Blues Band live!

Cody LePow live!