Jimmy Bowen & Santa Fe Band Bio

     Jimmy Bowen is the leader of Santa Fe and is considered one of the finest high lead/tenor voices in the field of bluegrass today. A native of Charlotte, NC, Jimmy is a multi-instrumentalist and has been performing since the age of eight. After earning an accounting degree from The Citadel, Jimmy chose to pursue a career in music. In 1988, Jimmy attained an invitation to the join the legendary Country Gentlemen. Jimmy traveled the United States and Canada with the Country Gentlemen during his 7 year tenure. The Country Gentlemen took him to diverse venues such as the Grand Ole Opry, Nashville Now TV Show, and the White House. In 1995, after leaving the Country Gentlemen, Jimmy had the pleasure of being a member of Continental Divide. Jimmy performed for almost 4 years with Continental Divide on such venues as Prime Time Country, TNN News, and was the recipient of the 1995 IBMA Emerging Artist of the Year award.

   Rick Briggs on banjo.  Rick was born in Huntersville, NC. He had a variety of musical influences as a child, most notably his father, Judd Briggs, who had his own 6-state radio show. Rick began his own musical trek with the saxophone at 11, then guitar at the age of 13. In 1976 at the age of 15 the bluegrass fever struck and he took up the banjo. Though he made a lateral move into country music during the mid 90's and worked professionally playing keyboards, the banjo remained his true love. Rick has performed with several recording artists such as; Chubby Anthony, Dale Ann Bradley, Connie Smith, Tommy Williams, and Southern Rail as well as to graduate from the National Radio Institute in Washington, DC for Electronic Music Technology. He worked the Old Dominion Opry in Williamsburg, VA as keyboardists, banjoist and vocalist from 1991-97 and eventually became their Musical Director and Assistant General Manager. Rick is a member of the teaching staff at the Roanoke Bluegrass Weekend in Roanoke, VA. He currently lives in Central PA with his wife Shelley and their two sons Dillan and Jarrad.

     Bobby Nicholas Bobby is very versatile in vocals as well as his great lead guitar work. Bobby employs contemporary styles as well as traditional melody-based leads. He is also a very accomplished songwriter and brings many new original tunes to the group. Bobby has his own publishing company and has traveled around the world with such artist as Patty Loveless and Terry Clark.

     Blake Bowen, was born into a musical family (the Bowens to be exact) and has been playing bass since the age of 7. His talents developed rapidly and expanded to the guitar and he even plays a bit of banjo as well. Blake performed with Jesse McReynolds and Amber Burks before joining Santa Fe full time. During his time off from school and the road, Blake is a member of the Youth Board for the Wilson County Fair, and he loves hunting and fishing. Blake is 15 years old.

Ollie O'Shea is well educated in the field of American country music. He has been playing guitar and singing most of his life and has worked with some of the best country musicians Nashville has to offer. Ollie is signed as a songwriter to Good Bit Music, a publishing company owned by one of Nashville's most successful songwriters Jim Lauderdale. Ollie has played fiddle with such artists as Hank Williams III, Gary Allan, George Ducas, Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale. One of Ollie's strong suits is playing country fiddle, which has kept his bread buttered for many years.

 

Jimmy Bowen is the leader of Santa Fe and is considered one of the finest
high lead/tenor voices in the field of bluegrass today. A native of
Charlotte, NC, Jimmy is a multi-instrumentalist and has been performing
since the age of eight. After earning an accounting degree from The Citadel,
Jimmy chose to pursue a career in music. In 1988, Jimmy attained an
invitation to the join the legendary Country Gentlemen. Jimmy traveled the
United States and Canada with the Country Gentlemen during his 7 year
tenure. The Country Gentlemen took him to diverse venues such as the Grand
Ole Opry, Nashville Now TV Show, and the White House. In 1995, after leaving
the Country Gentlemen, Jimmy had the pleasure of being a member of
Continental Divide. Jimmy performed for almost 4 years with Continental
Divide on such venues as Prime Time Country, TNN News, and was the recipient
of the 1995 IBMA Emerging Artist of the Year award.

Also, in Santa Fe is Rick Briggs on banjo. Rick Briggs was born in
Huntersville, NC. He had a variety of musical influences as a child, most
notably his father, Judd Briggs, who had his own 6-state radio show. Rick
began his own musical trek with the saxophone at 11, then guitar at the age
of 13. In 1976 at the age of 15 the bluegrass fever struck and he took up
the banjo. Though he made a lateral move into country music during the mid
90's and worked professionally playing keyboards, the banjo remained his
true love. Rick has performed with several recording artists such as; Chubby
Anthony, Dale Ann Bradley, Connie Smith, Tommy Williams, and Southern Rail
as well as to graduate from the National Radio Institute in Washington, DC
for Electronic Music Technology. He worked the Old Dominion Opry in
Williamsburg, VA as keyboardists, banjoist and vocalist from 1991-97 and
eventually became their Musical Director and Assistant General Manager.

Blake Bowen, was born into a musical family (the Bowens to be exact) and has
been playing bass since the age of 7. His talents developed rapidly and
expanded to the guitar and he even plays a bit of banjo as well. Blake has
performed with Jesse McReynolds and Amber Burks before joining Santa Fe full
time. During his time off from school and the road, Blake is a active member
and officer with the FFA and 4-H, he also enjoys hunting and fishing. Blake
is 17 years old.

Ollie O'Shea (fiddle) is well educated in the field of American country
music. He has been playing guitar and singing most of his life and has
worked with some of the best country musicians Nashville has to offer. Ollie
has been recently signed as a songwriter to "Good Bit Music," a publishing
company owned by one of Nashville's most successful songwriters, Jim
Lauderdale. Ollie has played fiddle with such artists as Hank Williams III,
Gary Allan, George Ducas, Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale. JB&SF are proud
to have Ollie join the team.

Joining Jimmy on guitar is Bobby Nicholas. Bobby is very versatile in vocals
as well as his great lead guitar work. Bobby employs contemporary styles as
well as traditional melody-based leads. He is also a very accomplished
songwriter and brings many new original tunes to the group. Bobby has his
own publishing company and has traveled around the world with such artist as
Patty Loveless and Terry Clark