A 2014 International Blues Challenge Finalist, Brad Stivers has always found love in being completely immersed in music of all kinds. As a child, Brad would sit in a trance listening to his dad play records on the home stereo from. He joined a school band program in California learning the trombone and saxophone and developing an intense passion for music and new instruments.
Soon after taking up these new instruments, his family moved to Washington State and Brad started learning the guitar with his brothers, taking lessons and hanging out at the local music store, soaking up as much as he could listening to conversations between gigging professional musicians who would come through the store. Brad was introduced to Blues by his guitar mentor at a local jam in Marysville, Washington. Hearing songs from artists like BB King, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Joe Louis Walker, Brad developed a love and excitement for digging up the roots of the blues.
His next move was to Colorado to attend The University of Northern Colorado where he earned a degree in Music Business and studied Jazz Guitar. He formed his own band with other students at the university quickly gaining the attention of the local blues society and earning a chance to represent Colorado in the Youth Showcase at The International Blues Challenge in 2012. The next two years were spent playing clubs and festivals all over Colorado working to sharpen his skills as a bandleader. In 2014 Brad’s first band, Bad Brad & The Fat Cats, won the local Blues Challenge and the opportunity to represent the Colorado Blues Society in Memphis once again. This time he performed in the adult part of the competition. Brad and The Fat Cats were one of only nine bands that qualified for the finals out of hundreds that competed for a spot to perform at The Orpheum Theater in Memphis, Tennessee.
Brad now resides in Austin, Texas where he is soaking in the rich musical culture and learning from the many talented artists that also call Austin home. He has shared the stage with local heavy-hitters such as Greg Izor, Jai Malano. He has had the honor of playing at The famous Continental Club, C-Boys Heart and Soul, and the Legendary Blues Club, Antone’s, and many other well established Texas clubs. He has recorded two blues and roots influenced cd’s while in Austin: “American Music” and “Took You Long Enough”. “American Music” takes on the older sound of Blues while adding a modern edge to the music. “Took You Long Enough” approaches the Blues with a more modern sound while featuring some of Austin’s most beloved singers, Malford Milligan and Emily Gimble. Brad is on his way to becoming a well known artist and staple in the Blues and Roots Music Scene.