The Rockets

The Rockets are a Portland-based band consisting of 3 members of the Oregon Music Hall of Fame—Lloyd Jones, Jon Koonce, and Denny Bixby—and Albert Reda, who has a pile of Muddy Awards from the Cascade Blues Association. The combo was formed in the Spring of 2010 and has been gathering an enthusiastic following ever since.  It has performed at house parties, for the 2010 AIDS Walk in Pioneer Square, and regularly packs the house at O’Connor’s in Multnomah Village. 

The band’s list of songs covers R&B, blues, classic rock n’ roll, soul, and original music. All four members sing and take turns leading this multi-talented group of players. Individually, their impact and influence on the Portland music scene has been widely and publicly recognized for a very long time. They are highly respected by musicians and audiences alike. A quick overview of the parts that make up the whole:

Jon Koonce has led his own bands for 30 years, including Johnny and the Distractions, who were signed to A&M Records.  Jon has been at the forefront of the Portland scene ever since it began in earnest in the early 1970s. He is a true original, vastly knowledgeable and highly recognizable, and is a great example to younger musicians.

Lloyd Jones began his stellar career in Portland with Brown Sugar, the seminal 1970s blues band that also featured Paul DeLay and Jim Mesi. His career as a solo artist has taken him across America, Canada and Europe. His enduring success and high profile are owed as much to his vision and work ethic as to his unique talents as guitarist and singer. 

Denny Bixby returned to Portland in 2005 after an 18-year stint in Nashville, Tennessee. He has recorded and toured the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Europe extensively with 7 Grammy-winning artists. Since returning to Portland he has played with the finest singer/songwriters in the region, and leads his own trio. 

Albert Reda, after moving to Portland from Philadelphia, was quickly recognized as a major talent.  His incredible voice and work on keyboards and bass can be heard with many of the area’s top artists—he’s one of the busiest musicians around for good reason. 

When The Rockets perform, it is not unusual to see other players in the audience.  That’s because it is not common for four such individually renowned and respected musicians to work together in one group. The joy they feel and the good time that they have in doing so is evident to the audiences for whom they play, resulting in one of the most enjoyable and unforgettable listening (and dancing) experiences to be found in the Portland area.  

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