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Mitch Kashmar


Born in 1960, Mitch started his band,The Pontiax, in 1980, just when “roots music” was to start enjoying new popularity (Stevie Ray Vaughan, The Fabulous Thunderbords, Los Lobos, Robert Cray, George Thorogood, The Blasters etc). “People we knew were MAKING IT”, he says.The Pontiax fast became  popular  all around southern California both on their own and backing all the true Blues legends living in the area such as Big joe Turner, Willie Dixon, Lowell Fulson, Eddie Cleanhead Vinson, Pee Wee Crayton, Jimmy Witherspoon, Lou Donaldson, Joe Houston to name a few.

The Pontiax released their original album “100 Miles to Go” in 1989, touring the US, Canada and Europe in the euphoria that followed The Wall coming down also in 1989, playing clubs, festivals and Blues Society concerts that to date have taken Mitch to over 25 countries. Solo releases followed, Mitch was the very first artist signed to the brand new Delta Groove records (now Delta Groove Music) in 2005 releasing “Nickels and Dimes” that same year followed by: “Wake up and Worry” 2006, “Live at LaBatt” 2008, “100 Miles to Go” 2010, re-issuing the original Pontiax record with added new tracks from a reunion of the band in the studio. 2016 brought the classic “West Coast Toast” with a stellar band featuring the classic sounds of upright bass, acoustic piano and fat-bodied guitar.

“Your playing and singing are superb”
                                    —— Charlie Musselwhite, harp legend

“The combination of Kashmar’s vocals and evocative chromatic solo, together with (Luther) Tucker’s speedy trills and (Al) Duncan’s light touch, made Little Walter’s “Blue and Lonesome” a superb finale.”
                                     — Don Snowden L.A. Times nov 1989

“Mitch was only 19 when I first heard him, he was already good  then but these days? Man, is he tough!”
                                       —- Kim Wilson harp legend
                                           founder The Fabulous Thunderbirds

” Harmonica players?  I’ve played and recorded with the best, including Paul Butterfield and Stevie Wonder, and Mitch is right there with them!”
                         –             —– Amos Garret, guitarist

“Great solo on ‘Mother Earth’ ”
                  —– Jerry Goldstein, music producer, after live concert Royal Albert Hall, London, Eric Burdon and WAR 2008

“Kashmar and The Pontiax short left-hook of a set nearly upstaged the main act (Stevie Ray Vaughn) — certainly for witty soulful brevity.”
                                          —- Joe Woodard Santa Barbara News Press oct 19 1985

“……….When it comes to writing, singing and playing them, nobody today handles the Blues better than Mitch Kashmar”
                                          —— Living Blues magazine 2006

‘……..Kashmar not only writes tunes in the best Blues tradition but sings them in a wonderfully flexible wholly unaffected tenor voice and blows a commanding harmonica that’s especially chilling in its upper register flights.”
                                           —- Lee Hildebrand, San Francisco Chronicle1988

“Can I sit in?”
           —— Stevie Ray Vaughan

“….one of the best harp players I’ve ever heard”
                                      ——– John Hammond Jr

“That was a bitch of a scale you ran there, youngblood”
                                       —— Eric Gale, studio guitar legend