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Lakeridge alum brings roots rock to LO

Mayor's younger brother and his band play at the Gemini this weekend


Billy Joel and Steve Studebaker agree: It’s still rock ‘n’ roll to them. But Studebaker, younger brother of Lake Oswego Mayor Kent Studebaker, takes his musical passion a step farther than even the famous Piano Man. by: SUBMITTED - Steve Studebaker brings his band, Blind to Reason, back to Lake Oswego on Saturday.

To Steve Studebaker, 55, it’s still blues-and-roots rock ‘n’ roll.

A 1975 graduate of Lakeridge High School, Studebaker began his formal schooling at the now-closed Palisades Elementary School in 1963. He’ll bring his Castro Valley, Calif.-based four-man band, Blind to Reason, to town Saturday night for a one-evening show at the Gemini Bar & Grill.

Lakeridge alumni are especially invited, Studebaker said, but anyone is welcome to show up and hear Blind to Reason’s eclectic mix of blues, roots rock and soul at the venue, at 456 N. State St.

On his summertime swing through the Pacific Northwest, Studebaker hopes to see former classmates, friends, family members, University of Oregon fraternity brothers and “blues and soul fans,” he said.

Studebaker has been playing guitar and singing since 1968. A former disc jockey with an encyclopedic knowledge of blues and rock ‘n’ roll, he’s Blind to Reason’s main singer and songwriter — and has created an eclectic set list unlike any other local band’s.

“We play roots rock, blues and soul ... juke joint music,” Studebaker said. “If Otis Day and the Knights couldn’t make the gig at the Delta house, they’d call us,” he added with a laugh.

Two years after debuting its 2011 self-titled album, the band released a six-song recording earlier this year entitled “Soul Supplier,” which is also the album’s title track. Blind to Reason, Studebaker said, is his “first and last band,” playing gigs around the Bay Area and as far north as Seattle.

The music in Studebaker’s head started nearly 50 years ago, however.

“When I heard the Beatles in ’64, it lit a fire in me that burns to this day,” he said. “I got my first BB King record when I was 14, and that was it.

“Though I’ve loved Motown, rock and roll, new wave and Americana, for me it always comes back to the blues.”




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