In 2005, Amy Celeste made a decision that changed the course of her future- she decided to sing. Early on in her career, she was a featured artist, sitting in with blues bands in Northern California (Karma Kings, Rube & The Rhythm Rockers, Big Mo & The Full Moon Band). “Smooth as silk one minute and powerfully raw in another, the Magalia resident is making a name for herself” wrote Trevor Warner in describing Amy Celeste’s voice (Paradise Post, March 6, 2010). Working the musical circuit she became acquainted with bluesman-by-birth, Son Rey Garcia (The Road Rockets, The Rolling Blackouts). The two established a strong friendship and in 2008 and it was this connection that eventually became the foundation of “The Amy Celeste Band”.
Bringing drummer John Hale (Rube & The Rhythm Rockers, ART Trio) into the fold was a natural fit as Amy had already been playing with him in the blues arena. John added a latin/jazz/island flavor to the mix, which Amy felt fit many of her original tunes.
Son Rey was familiar with bassist Jack Lemley (Mossy Creek, The Armadillos) and his style and history; Son was confident that Jack would add an experienced, jazz-influenced flavor to Amy’s soulful voice.
The four slowly began to gig, first accepting offers at Butte College (Commencement, Diversity Days, Family Days, the Wired Cafe), then adding festivals (Johnny Appleseed Days, Paradise Blues & Brews, Paradise Chocolate Festival, Relay for Life-Chico, Paul Bunyan Blues Festival.) They have been featured at restaurant/bars (The Canteena, La Posada) along with unique venues like The Paradise Grange 490 Showcase and Café Flo.
The band cut their first CD in July of 2011. Self-titled and crafted in the Electric Canyon Studios with Dale Price, the product is an impressive first effort.
In 2011, the band welcomed Jim Schmidt (The Groove Diggers, Ladibluez) into the fold on keys. The result was a richer and fuller big band sound.
With blues at the heart, their repertoire is diverse to say the least. From Michael Jackson’s “The Way You Make Me Feel” to Patsy Cline’s “I Fall to Pieces”. Modern hits are included, like Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” and Duffy’s “Mercy.” The band caters their sound and set list to the venue and/or production.
The ACB was included at the 1st Annual Chico Cabaret Blues Showcase. Chico-based community radio KZFR has featured the band live on different occasions and has had their music played on Basically the Blues and The Dinosaur Hour shows. The Paradise Post featured the band in several articles. They were nominated five years (2008-2012) for the CAMMIES (CN&R) award. In 2012, Chico News & Review write-up Jason Cassidy wrote, "Blue-eyed blues doesn't get much more soulful".
All members of the band contribute to Chico's Midnight Blues Society.
The Amy Celeste Band is more than a Blues Band- their blend is unique, with soul at the heart of it all.