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Bio’s

The Caribbean Cowboys Band has been entertaining audiences for over 23 years.  They play primarily in WNC but have traveled through out the South East, from Key West, Florida to New York City and throughout the British Virgin Islands. They provide a wide variety of music and complete their shows in a respectable professional manner. They are highly respected in the entertainment industry in WNC. In addition to the original Caribbean Cowboys Band, they currently have two other projects … Mardi Gras Kings complete with a horn section, and Veritable Plethora.

Individual Band Member Biographies

Steve Weams, (rhythm guitar, lead vocals & harmonies) is founder and leader of the Caribbean Cowboys.  Steve has been entertaining people around the Southeast for over 23 years and has had the pleasure and honor of sharing the stage with such great artists as Eric Burden & the Animals, Dr. Hook, Zac Brown Band, The Drifters, Maurice Williams & the Zodiacs, Otis Day & the Knights, etc…  Steve is especially adept at getting audiences to participate in the party-at-hand. When you arrange for the Caribbean Cowboys as your entertainment-of-choice you can be sure that Steve will have everyone up and moving! Steve is also the booking agent for the Caribbean Cowboys Band. Steve is a founding member and Board Member for the Western North Carolina Parrot Head Club (recipient of the 2003 Golden Coconut Award presented by PHIP, Inc.) Steve graduated with a Masters Degree from Western Carolina University, where he also played baseball and soccer.  He has been a High School coach at several schools including locally Enka High School. Steve resides in South Asheville with his wife Gail and their black lab “Spooner”.

Donnie Harrell, (Bass, lead & harmony vocals) Donnie has been playing bass for 40 years and has played in some of the best regional bands around. He has opened for and shared the stage with such great artists as 38 Special, Colin Raye, John Anderson, Cheryl Wright and many others. His perfect falsetto & high harmonies put the cherry on top of the CCB’s tight vocals. His many influences have been Motown, 70’s & 80’srock bands and the one & only Leland Sklar. He credits the great regional bands that he has played with for “honing” his considerable harmony capabilities, including the CCB. Donnie has been a “part-time” “off & on” CCB, MGK and VP for 20 years.

Mike Rothacker, (lead guitar, vocals) Many of you know Mike as the CCB bass player for many years, but Mike has been playing guitar professionally since the age of 15. (Over 30 years) He has played in many different bands with many different styles which has primed him to take over the lead guitar chores of the CCB, MGK and VP & blend right in with all the different genres they cover.

Phil Rose, (drums, percussion & vocals) is a veteran of 38 years behind the “skins”. He grew up playing with Warren Haynes & has traveled the country playing from California to Key West with such artist as Rick Byrd, Dickie Smothers, JR, Woody Jenkins, Johnny Blackwell & Antsy McClain. Phil has played with the CCB “part-time” for 20 years and his powerful lead vocals & “spot-on” harmonies are keeping the CCB, MGK & VP tight & prominent on the musical scene.

Mike Barnes (lead guitar, vocals) is probably the most proficient musician of the Caribbean Cowboys. Also in great demand locally as a studio guitarist and instructor, Mike is on the faculty at the University of North Carolina in Asheville, teaching music, where he received a B.A. degree in music graduating with honors. He has also served on the Appalachian State University music faculty. Mike teaches individual lessons at Musicians Workshop in Asheville, NC. Mike’s musical influences have been John McLaughlin, Duane Allman of the Allman Brothers Band, Jeff Beck, who was with The Yard Birds, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Jimmy Hendrix. Mike also likes great jazz. Mike began playing the guitar in 1971 & first studied classical guitar with Jerry Young & then moved on to Jazz and other styles of music. A few of the bands during junior high & high school included Warren Haynes now of Gov’t Mule and The Allman Brothers Band. After graduating from Asheville High School in 1978 he then attended the University of Miami and was enrolled as a Studio Jazz major. From Miami, Mike then formed a group with Grammy award winner, Elliot Wadopian (now of The Paul Winter Concert) and toured the Southeast. After a year or so of touring Mike then enrolled at Musician’s Institute in California in 1980 & graduated in 1981. During his time at MI he studied with some of the world’s finest guitarists & musicians, such as Pat Martino, Robben Ford, Joe Diorio, Howard Roberts and Howard Alden to name a few. He was chosen by Tommy Tedesco to perform a solo on the Musician’s Institute graduating class album. After graduation Mike played in groups & performed studio work in & around the Los Angeles area & soon went on the road again performing all over the U.S. & Canada. Mike has worked as a session guitarist and performed in recording studios in L.A., Memphis, Nashville, Pittsburgh, Atlanta, Jacksonville, etc. He was signed as a recording artist for Polygram Records & Geffen Records and some of his work has been featured on shows such as Star Search, various T.V. commercials, and also on MTV with The Rock City Angels. He has had publishing deals with Cherry Lane Music & has performed & shared the stage with such artists as John Scofield, Greg Allman & The Allman Brothers, Maynard Ferguson, Jimmy Page, The Black Crowes, Branford Marsalis, Johnny Neel, Jeff Coffin, John Popper, Jeff Sipe, Jimmy Herring, Toy Caldwell, Col. Bruce Hampton, Joan Jett, The Georgia Satellites, Derek Trucks and Joe Walsh to name a few. Mike has played locally with numerous bands, including Dixie Deluxe, Praying for Rain & shares the stage each year with Warren Haynes at the Annual Holiday Jam in Asheville. Watch for Mike’s inspiring licks on the guitar!

The Caribbean Cowboys Band will provide you with a wide variety of music from Jimmy Buffett to other troubadours such as Peter Mayer, Scott Kirby, Jesse Winchester, Fingers Taylor, and the best of Classic , Southern & Trop Rock, Rhythm & Blues, Beach Tunes, and last but not least…a few classics such as Frank Sinatra and an awesome “Elvis” tribute along with the Caribbean Cowboys originals! Their original tunes bring you an island-sound consisting of reggae, calypso, and good old rock ‘n roll.

Veritable Plethora ~ Vocals and harmonies (from all members of the band) is their strongest asset in all three variations of the band, separating them from other bands… they all sing lead & harmony throughout any show. Veritable Plethora is more of a concert / background acoustic rock show that can be used in any situation. The focus is 3 part harmonies and songs that feature vocal acuity (i.e. America, the Eagles, SCNY, etc.)

Steve Weams & the Mardi Gras Kings ~ Music featuring songs from and about the spirit of ‘Nawlins. Mardi Gras Kings can be a 5 piece assemble complete with a horn section.

Steve will provide entertainment that is appealing to people of all ages and musical tastes, “solo” or with the band, depending upon your individual circumstances. Restaurant bars, dance clubs, private parties, fraternity functions, weddings, corporate events, country club theme parties, charity events, festivals, conventions and last but not least, those ever infamous “Parrot Head Phlockings” … just to name a few! Regardless of the occasion, rest assured you and your guests are in for a fun filled event.

NON-STOP MUSIC …when the Caribbean Cowboys play your event, they will also provide non-stop music by working as a DJ between sets complete with the latest dance crazes…

Steve and the Caribbean Cowboys Band are always glad to help out with a worthy cause.

They are the “official” band of the Western North Carolina Parrot Head Club, a charter member of PHIP. www.wncphc.com www.phip.com

Visit our “Press Kit” page for additional documentation (Biography, Fact Sheet, Memberships, Partial Song List, Prior Venues).