Playing with Fire 2019 Artists

Saturday / August 24

Bios | Websites | Videos



Yankton, South Dakota, USA

Indigenous is no stranger to the Playing with Fire stage. Lead singer, Mato Nanji, who was raised on South Dakota’s Yankton Sioux Reservation, has played the stage twice. This year, he’ll be coming off the Experience Hendrix 2019 tour, where he’ll play with such artists as Billy Cox, Joe Satriani, and Dave Mustaine. Influenced by their father; the late Greg Zephier, Sr., a highly respected spiritual advisor and spokesperson for the International Indian Treaty Council; Mato (whose name means Standing Bear), his brother, sister, and cousin formed the band Indigenous in their late teens.

Since its inception, Indigenous has created an award-winning music video, toured with B.B. King, and had their sophomore release, Circle, produced and arranged by Stevie Ray Vaughan’s long-time friend and collaborator, the late Doyle Bramhall, Sr. The band’s sound is powered by Mato’s “grabbing original songs, soulful vocals and searing guitar riffs”, says The Mercury News. This is because he’s always been focused on his music. He was influenced and inspired by the Blues greats, and he strives to influence those who will come after him.

Don’t miss Indigenous’ music on the Playing with Fire stage in 2019!

Band Members:

  • Mato Nanji: Lead Guitar & Vocals
  • Bronson Begay: Bass Guitar & Vocals
  • Douglas Platero: Drums

Supporting Act:

Wille and the Bandits

Cornwall, UK

Hailed as one of the best live acts in the UK, Wille and the Bandits delivers hard-rockin’ roots blues and soulful ballads with a hint of psychedelic rock. They accomplish this with the rockin’-blues rarity of combining conventional and non-traditional instruments. Wille Edwards, a professed surf-lover from Cornwall, England, provides lead vocals, electric and acoustic guitar, electric lap steel, dobro, and electric weissenborn. Matt Brooks, runner up “Blues Bassist of the Year”, does the string arrangements, plays the six-string electric bass, five-string double bass, cello, and provides background vocals. Andrew Naumann, who has been awarded UK “Drummer of the Year” and dubbed the “beat master”, plays drums, djembes, congas, wood- and steel-tongue drums, udu, shakers, Jews harp, and provides background vocals.

These multi-talent musicians have toured and played alongside bands like Deep Purple, Joe Bonamassa, Status Quo, and Warren Haynes.The boundary-pushing sound and infectious songs created by this trio have inspired praise from Rock legends like Ian Paice, Francis Rossi, and Joe Bonamassa who said, “Wille is a superb slide player, I love what these guys are doing.” It also got them a spot at Glastonbury 2014, where BBC Radio 1 listed them at the top of the ten bands to see.

With the release of their sixth album, Paths, this February, the band will be touring throughout Europe before embarking on their first North America appearance in Omaha at Playing with Fire free summer concert series.

Hands down, you’ve got to see Wille and the Bandits on the PwF stage!

Band Members:

  • Wille Edwards: Lead Vocals, Electric and Acoustic Guitars, Electric Lap Steel, Dobro, Electric Weissenborn
  • Matt Brooks: Six String Electric Bass, Five String Double Bass, Cello, String Arrangements, Backing Vocals.
  • Andrew Naumann: Drums, Djembes, Congas, Wood and Steel Tongue Drums, Udu, Shakers, Jews Harp, Backing Vocals

Supporting Act:

Sebastian Lane Band

Omaha, Nebraska, USA

Sebastian Lane’s roots run deep in music and blues history. Both his father and grandfather are noted award winning blues musicians, and it’s obvious the music gene was passed down. Along with his lead vocals and guitar, the band he’s formed is full of local talent. It includes one of Omaha’s best keyboardists and OEAA winner, Mitch Towne; outstanding lead guitarist and notable BluesEd-alum, Ben Curran; and a tight rhythm section, with Dain Armbrust on bass and Kevin Fries on drums (both of whom are BluesEd alumni) keeping the groove. The modern-age rock band, with obvious blues influences, seeks to keep the live rock, southern rock, and blues performances relevant to their generation.

Sebastian Lane Band‘s debut album, Walkin’ By Myself, was released in July 2018 and gained them spots opening for acts like Jimmie Vaughan, Marcus King Band, and Robert Randolph to name a few. It has also topped various blues and rock charts and accumulated over a quarter million streams on Apple Music and Spotify, across over 30 countries. Sebastian was also recently nominated for Omaha Entertainment and Arts Awards’ “Artist of the Year” and “Best Blues Artist”. Playing with Fire is pleased to have this up and coming local group on our stage!

Band Members:

  • Sebastian Lane: Lead vocal, guitar
  • Ben Curran: Lead guitar
  • Dain Armbrust:Bass
  • Kevin Fries: Drums
  • Mitch Towne: Keyboard

BluesEd Opener:

Far and Wide

Far & Wide is a talented mix of middle and high school students from the metro Omaha area performing blues, funk and soul standards at a level much higher than their age would predict. The members of the band are all accomplished musicians and participate in many other school music programs, such as jazz band, concert band, show choir, etc. Several members have been selected to represent the best of Nebraska youth at the All-State Jazz, Concert and Choir program level for multiple years and have received various group and individual accolades for their performances along the way.  Far & Wide was formed in 2012 within the award-winning BluesED program and is sponsored by the Blues Society of Omaha.

Band Members:

  • Chloe Moore : Vocals
  • Elaina Clement:  Vocals
  • Drew Schilken: Drums
  • Jonathan Massey: Bass
  • Evan Johnson:  Guitar/Harmonica
  • Cooper Watkins: Guitar
  • Wells Johnson:  Keys/Organ
  • ArichFruehling: Saxophone
  • Carson Clarys: Trumpet


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