John Roberts Y Pan Banco will perform at festival Tuesday

Star Staff
Friday, July 12, 2019

The weekly Cowtown Moosic Festival, which is on Tuesday evenings in downtown Miles City through Aug. 6, continues on Tuesday with a concert by John Roberts Y Pan Banco. Family-oriented activities begin at 5 p.m. in the 800 block of Main Street and will end around 9 p.m. That block of Main Street is closed to vehicle traffic during the festival.

The concert is free and open to the public, according to a news release from the Cowtown Moosic Festival Committee.

Roberts began playing the piano at the age of 5 while living on an isolated ranch in southeastern Montana, according to his website. He picked up trombone to play in the grade school band when he was 11 years of age. After graduating in 1996 from Montana State University in Billings with a bachelor of arts degree in music performance, Roberts moved to Los Angeles to earn his master of fine arts degree in western orchestral trombone performance from California Institute of the Arts.

Feeling equally comfortable in orchestral and commercial music realms, Roberts has been touring, recording, and performing in Los Angeles, around the United States and around the world, including Mexico, India, Asia, Europe, the Caribbean, Australia and Africa. Amojng his tours are Ricardo Lemvo and Makina Loca (Congolese/Cuban), Bobby Womack (Soul), Los Pinguos (Argentine),The Temptations, The New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, and more. Other performances and recordings include American and Latin Grammy concerts, Sting, Mariah Carey, Lady Gaga, Frank Sinatra Jr., Chaka Khan, Cher, Christina Aguilera, Disney, and others.

After 17 years based in Los Angeles, Roberts is currently on staff at MSU in Billings teaching Jazz, music theory, low brass and world music. He regularly works and performs as a clinician and guest artist in schools around the country.

Roberts is active in the Montana and Los Angeles performing and studio scenes as an arranger, bandleader, session player and composer. When not dabbling in the world of music, he is gallivanting about the mountains or prairie via foot, 4-wheel drive, skis or mountain bike.

His many years of national and international touring, recording and performing experiences with Afro-Latin, Orchestral, Funk, Soul, Salsa, Pop, Jazz and R&B ensembles have led to his current project. With vocals in Spanish, English and Portuguese, Roberts and his group are melding Funk, African and Latin dance grooves with instrumental solos, sharing musical diversity and positivity with the audience. The family-friendly band is always recording and booking for festivals, concerts, club dates and educational clinics.

In addition to the family activities and concert on Main Street, the Farmers Market also will be set up and there will be food vendors and children’s activities.

Monetary donations and sponsorships to help with this event and volunteers to help with set up and tear down each week are always appreciated. Civic or non-profit groups with members who may wish to run or supervise children’s activities and vendors who would like to sell their products on Main Street also are needed.

Vendors may contact either Vicki Leesburg or Dawn Simpson at Vintage and Rustics, 813 Main St., phone 234-7878. Food vendors may contact Nancy Pasha at LaCasa Diamonds, 23 N. 8th St., phone 234-1224. Potential sponsors or donors may contact Mandi Heinle at BuyMT.com, 819 Main St., phone 351-9943 or Tara Moore at LaCasa Diamonds. Volunteers may contact Elizabeth Patten at Miles City Area Economic Development, 1010 Main St. No. 18, phone 234-2705. For more information about the Farmers’ Market contact Verlin Miller at 234-1639 or email verber57@midrivers.com.

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