John Denver "The Tribute"

JOHN DENVER The Tribute has performed to encore-demanding audiences all over the world. 

John Adams takes the stage, leading his John Denver tribute band that consists of top-rated professional musicians that elevate the audiences experience to an unmatched performance from any tribute concert they’ve ever heard. Each John Denver song is performed effortlessly as audience members can relax and reminisce about an age long gone. 

Each musician takes an active role in celebrating the music that pays tribute to John Denver. The music is performed exactly how fans remember hearing from the Rocky Mountain legend himself.  Songs like Rocky Mountain High, Take Me Home Country Roads, Annie’s Song, Calypso, and Thank God I’m a Country Boy combine with the personal stories that John Adams shares about his poignant times spent with John Denver. 

John Adams’ voice alone is the highest tribute to John Denver. During a TV show in Europe, Denver admitted, “He sounds just like me.” A veteran of performing a John Denver tribute show for over forty years, his professionalism and ability to connect with the audience brings them back over and over again. 

John Adams Band tribute to John Denver has taken them across the globe. They’ve honored the Rocky Mountain Legends music in places like Beijing, England, Belgium, Holland, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, and in the continental United States such as New York, California, Idaho, Utah, West Virginia, Illinois, Nevada and many more. From natural surroundings like Red Rocks Amphitheatre and Central Park to small venues in small towns, they’ve filled the air with John Denver’s music. 

No matter how large or small of an audience, how young or how old, a John Denver tribute will not exclude a single soul. The music is simply timeless and can be applied to any place, any time and to any situation. Like all music, it is meant to touch people where words cannot reach. Come join John Adams and his band and spend an evening in a world that only the best John Denver Tribute Show can take you. 

John Adams
Lead vocals
6-string guitar
12-string guitar

John Adams was born December 30, 1958 in Utrecht, Holland. After being introduced to music through the boys’ choir at the city’s local church, he soon learned how to play the guitar, which was given to him by his cousin at age 11. Ever since that day in 1969, guitars have always been with John Adams, and the music and lyrics have traveled right along with them. In the latter half of 1972, John Denver became a big hit in Europe with his very popular song; Take Me Home, Country Roads. Despite his love for Rock & Roll, John Adams’ taste in music changed instantly and he became dedicated to the music of John Denver.

After buying every available album and music book, John began to learn his guitar style, while singing along with the recordings. Loving and following the music, he had the chance to attend two of John Denver’s concerts in Amsterdam in 1977 and many followed after that.

Just eleven years later, John Adams won a song contest in Holland with John Denver’s Leaving on a Jet Plane. After winning the contest and performing a duet with John Denver of Whispering Jesse on live national television, the possibilities became endless for John Adams.

After moving to the United States in March 2000, John continued to perform John Denver’s music exclusively where ever he was invited, which evolved into: JOHN DENVER The Tribute and has performed in many parts of Europe and the United States and even as far as Beijing, China. Since October 2000, the JOHN ADAMS BAND celebrates the life, memory, and music of John Denver in their show: JOHN DENVER The Tribute. At all their concerts, John takes his audience of hundreds and sometimes even thousands on an unforgettable and poignant journey back in time with some of John Denver’s most beloved songs like; Rocky Mountain High, Annie’s Song, Sunshine on My Shoulders, and many others. Some of the band’s highlights were concerts at the prestigious Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Denver/Morrison, The Ellie Caulkins Opera House, and The Buell Theater, all in Colorado.

Other memorable John Denver tribute concerts were 15 shows at the Historic Wheeler Opera House in Aspen, CO, and performances with the Lakewood Symphony, Grand Junction Symphony, Boulder Symphony, Aurora Symphony and the Colorado Chamber Orchestras. 

Amanda Adams
Violin, Fiddle

Amanda Adams started playing the violin in 1997 while residing in Kansas. She continued playing throughout her high school career, receiving top scores at regional and state level competitions. In 2003, she attended New Mexico State University, holding a contract with the professional Las Cruces Symphony. During her time in New Mexico, she was also a member of Mariachi Cuerdas De Oro, lead by Guillermo Quezada. She shortly thereafter returned back to her home state of California. She gained concert-mistress standing in Rio Hondo’s Industrial Orchestra while studying with Adrian Rudnyk. In the summer of 2005 she was accepted to participate in the Starling-DeLay Violin Symposium at the prestigious Julliard School of Music in Manhattan. She received her Associates in Liberal Arts in 2006. For the fall semester of 2007, she attended Stony Brook University in New York to further her studies in violin performance, while assisting David Barg in the production of his conducting manual. She graduated New Mexico State University in December of 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts in English with a Creative Writing option.

Amanda moved to Colorado after graduating and joined the John Adams Band in the summer of 2010. Performing with today’s best John Denver Tribute Band in the world was a dream come true for her. She and John got married in the summer of 2012. Amanda, also known as “Fiddle Diddle”, is finalizing her Masters of Education in Secondary Education from Grand Canyon University and will go on to complete a Doctorate in Organizational Leadership in Higher Education.          

Over her 15 years of playing, Amanda has studied under numerous famous conductors and violinists such as: David Barg, Juan La Manna, Itzhak Perlman, Brian Lewis, and Scott Conklin. She has participated in the music program entitled Sound Encounters in Ottawa, KS for two years, studying conducting under Maestro David Barg while simultaneously playing in the orchestra. She has also been a “guest” in the Azusa Pacific University’s Symphony under Barg’s baton. She has played the masterpieces of orchestral literature, including Mahler, Tchaikovsky, and Shostakovich in previous encounters with David Barg and Lonnie Klein, conductor of the Las Cruces Symphony. 

Jeff Ingram
Flute
Tenor Recorder
Alto Sax
Penny Whistle

Jeff was born in Denver and spent his youth in Aurora, Colorado.  His passion for music started in the summer before 5th grade playing the Tenor Saxophone. After graduating from High School, Jeff attended college at the University of Colorado and finished his degree at the University of Denver in music education.  After 32 wonderful years in the public schools teaching all levels, Jeff is now retired and free to pursue all that life has to offer outside the educational system.  Currently he plays in several bands in the Denver/ Boulder area, enjoy home improvement, gardening, and have started attending yoga classes and healthy cooking.

Right after his retirement, Jeff was asked to join the John Adams Band.  Although he was aware of John Denver, he was more interested in the big bands and other forms of jazz and rock music.  "Since spending time with the band, I have come to appreciate and love what John Denver was all about.  I am constantly amazed at the power of his music, the stories, and the effect he had on his fans when he was performing. I feel truly blessed to have had the opportunity to help carry John Denver's legacy forward and to be able to perform his music to those who love his music.  It is as if the power of opportunity to play with the John Adams Band has opened up a whole new world to me."

Currently Jeff lives in the West Highlands area of Denver with his roommate, an Italian Greyhound he found in the alley next to my house. "After 50 years of performing music, I hope to see everyone at a John Adams concert.  We can relive John Denver's music and will have a great time."

Jerome "Jerry" O'Malley
Piano
Backing Vocals

Jerome "Jerry" O'Malley is a multi-instrumentalist known for his imaginative keyboard solos and high vocal harmonies. He began his musical life in Somers Point, NJ playing guitar and singing John Denver Songs at age 9. At age 13 he relocated to the Golden State and studied guitar at school and keyboards privately. He later attended Cal State University at Long Beach as a piano performance major. Jerome has worked as a live keyboardist and recording session player and producer with artists such as Brenton Wood (Just Give Me a Little Sign Girl), Arlene Hattori, Kevin James Healey, John Adams (John Denver Tribute Artist), and other local Denver acts. His musical influences are: Hirome Uehara, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Chick Corea, Oscar Peterson, Nat King Cole and Chet Baker.

Robb Heskett
Drums
Percussion

Robb started playing drums at the age of eight. His father was a drummer and that’s all he ever wanted to play! His various musical styles include and range from Jazz to Rock, Blues, Funk/R & B to Country/Gospel and Latin. Robb lived in Los Angeles for several years and attended LACC for music and studied with Hank Bellson, Roy Burns and Richie LePore. He played up and down the West Coast including shows in Las Vegas. He toured back and forth across the country playing shows in Atlanta/Chicago/Dallas and Nashville. He has also played orchestral percussion for many popular Broadway style shows.  

Robb’s interest in playing bongos, congas and Latin percussion was influenced at a concert he attended by the world famous Tito Puente and his orchestra in Winter Park, Colorado. Robb spent 21 years as a percussion product specialist in the retail and wholesale side of the music industry doing clinics and promotional events with LP and Toca artists for music stores. He has over forty years of professional experience playing in bands for concerts, clubs, shows and corporate events.

Playing drums and percussion in the John Adams Band has been “a fantastic experience.” John Denver’s music demands both creativity and expression when it comes to playing percussion. The music we play allows for lots of different percussive sounds and gives me an opportunity to play with freedom and musicianship!!!

Robb teaches private drum and percussion lessons at his home studio in Highlands Ranch, Colorado.

Education: Dick Grove Music School - Los Angeles City College-LACC - University of Colorado @ Denver-UCD

Steve Wilson
Bass

  Steve was born in Baton Rouge into a musical family. His mom was the pianist/organist in a gospel church, and his dad was a bluegrass/country musician. His dad began teaching him guitar and lap Steel  in 1956. Steve switched to bass around 1958, when he was allowed to play a upright Kay bass at a Cajon Jam Session in Plaquemine LA. His hands were too small to hold the strings down, but if the notes were on the open string tunings, Steve played them and muted the rest. He fell in love with the sound and feeling that bass produced. Bass has been his instrument of choice ever since. 
Steve’s professional career began in Illinois playing in local R&R garage bands until 1967 when he joined a established touring R&R band (Loose Endz) and toured the Great Lakes area until 1969. Joined Mark Andrews and The Jet Tones (Country) in 1969 and toured the same areas.  In 1970 formed Silver City Review (Outlaw Country) with Tim Morris and began working the Fair Circuit in Illinois until 1972. From 1972 until 1990, Steve gave up music career and went to work for the Railroad. Without a doubt, his dad is his greatest influence. Not only his talents as a vocalist, guitarist & pedal steel player, but his philosophy about music itself. His teachings on how to think about music is the mainstay of how Steve plays today.  To quote a one of his many philosophical approaches “Don’t just learn to play the notes, listen inside you to the feeling the music is producing. This will develop a personal passion for the music you are playing, whether it is something you or someone else writes”.  Listening and watching Mom and Dad playing and singing the songs they loved was a lesson in music Steve still sees and feels today. When watching and listening to John Denver’s music, Steve gets the same image of passion for the story and the music he watched when he was a child. The stories in his songs create such melodic, heartfelt visual images that express the essence of the beauty around us. When I play John Denver’s music, I’m always in hopes of capturing some of that essence he so fluently expresses, Steve says.
  

Randy Utterback
Lead Guitar
Dobro
Mandolin

Randy Utterback was born and raised in Council Bluffs, Iowa.  This is when he started playing the guitar at age nine. His mother had a violin and when he was in the fifth grade, he began taking violin lessons. Randy spent his youth playing in different bands in southwest Iowa and Omaha Nebraska, mostly playing the guitar and violin.  He continued to add string instruments to his skill set, to include the Mandolin and Dobro.    

In 1995, Randy moved to Colorado and met John Adams in 2000, automatically joining the band. Randy admits that he was only familiar with a couple of John Denver songs. “I’ve grown to love John Denver’s music and had no idea of the many wonderful songs he sung.” Randy currently performs with several bands and songwriters in western Colorado, recording and performing locally.  Being a jack-of-all-trades, Randy usually brings at least four instruments to most of his gigs playing guitar, violin, mandolin and Dobro. Randy currently lives in the Western Colorado town of Paonia, with his ten year old son, Calen.