ED BLAUMr. Blau grew up in the Bronx and, as a young man, graduated from Harvard Law School and served as an Air Force officer. His career in the entertainment industry began with the MCA talent agency in New York where he worked closely with the legendary Lew Wasserman. He then moved to L.A. and worked with some of the most prestigious law firms in the country. Mr. Blau first met Johnny in 1962 when he was brought on board to represent and counsel him.
Dick HardwickIt seems Dick has always been in show business. From the eleven-year-old who played drums for college bands to the popular comedian he is today, Dick has always been a multi-faceted entertainer.
RICHARD HOLSTENRichard Holsten was John’s lighting director. He was another one who had been with Johnny for decades, and seemed primed for decades more. "After more than 30 years I still enjoy, very much, listening to John sing. I consider it a great blessing to have the privilege of working with one of the best in the business. I treasure the friendships I have from meeting many of John’s fans. I still enjoy the travel, except the airport hassles these days." Richard started working at Rojon Productions in 1972, and had just celebrated his 40th Anniversary with us in December 2012. Sadly, Richard passed away in early 2013, and he will be truly missed.
SCOTT LAVENDERJohn’s gifted pianist-conductor is John Scott Lavender. Before Johnny, he’s worked with Glenn Yarbrough and Toni; he’s conducted orchestras throughout the Canada, Great Britain, and the US, including the National Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Baltimore Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Atlanta Symphony and more.
JOE LIZAMAJoseph Lizama is Johnny’s accomplished percussionist.
When in his last year of college, he had the opportunity to play percussion (not drums) for Johnny Mathis on a five-day California tour. Following several other tours and travel, he moved to Las Vegas to embark on his professional career.
Later, while on the road touring, Joe received an important telephone call offering him the job playing drums for Johnny Mathis. Twenty years later, the job working for Johnny Mathis is one that he still enjoys.
GARY MULE DEERGary Mule Deer’s unique comedy and music have set him apart as one-of-a-kind. He has performed on every major concert stage in the country and made over 350 television appearances, including many on both The Tonight Show and The Late Show With David Letterman.
MARIA NiEMELALike many of Johnny's millions of fans, Maria began to collect all his albums and to attend his concerts/shows in Los Angeles & Las Vegas in 1957. She never dreamed that she would ever meet Johnny, let alone become a part of his organization.
DIANNA POLINGDianna and two friends settled in Burbank in 1987. Just by luck, her first week in California she found a job working temporarily, then part-time and soon, full-time for our favorite singer.
GIL REIGERSAnyone who’s seen a Johnny Mathis concert has seen Gil. Gil is the multi-faceted guy who plays guitar, sings and is Johnny’s Production Manager.
A few years later, Gil began taking on production/stage managing and is now Johnny’s Production Manager. He says that he, “really enjoys working with agents, contracts and buyers. It’s very satisfying to see something start as a phone call or memo and turn into one of Johnny’s performances with all of the people that are involved and will attend.”
LEE RICKMERSThe person responsible the lush sounds the audience hears of Johnny, his musicians and orchestra Lee Rickmers.
“I started with Mathis in 1988 as a monitor mixer. That is just for the people on stage to hear themselves. I did that till the position was absorbed by the House Mix position. I liked the people I was working with so I drove the equipment truck”
After the House Mix person left, Lee was offered the position and hasbeen with Johnny since. “I’m still learning every show, and I’m glad Mr. Mathis has the patience to let me get better. He is the best at what he does, and I couldn’t have a better job. I know it’s good when I get to play with big stereo equipment and get paid for it! Not too bad.”
Ricky RobinsonAfter over two years with Johnny, Ricky is the “newest” staff person. He is also one of the most enthusiastic. Ask Ricky what he enjoys most about his job, and his reply is, “I work for Johnny Mathis. That’s the best part. He’s an icon.”
George RusselGeorge Russell was Johnny’s long time friend and promotions manager. “Chances Are” if you’re listening to Johnny on the radio, George had a hand in it.
ROBERT SCOTTFresh out of school from Leuzinger High School in Lawndale, Robert was studying German at El Camino College. Soon afterwards, he moved to Hollywood and transferred to L.A. City College.
“Working for John has been one of the best jobs I've had. Now, I'm not saying that because this is going on his web site! You don't have to look too far in the music business to see that John and everyone at Rojon are some of THE best people to work with. The gig is definitely about John and his singing, but, unlike so many other stars there's so much appreciation of all the people involved that you never feel like you're being slighted; you feel an important part of the show.”
Along with playing bass for Johnny Mathis, Rick freelances as a bass player in Los Angeles. He play for TV shows like JAG, Enterprise, and The Simpsons.
MARK TROYERMark serves a very important function, that of controller for Johnny’s companies. You will rarely see Mark on the road at concerts because he is always busy at the company offices in Burbank taking care of the finances.
Brad UptonBack in high school, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson was the only place for Brad Upton to watch comedians. It was also where Brad became a huge fan of Johnny Mathis.
STACEY WESTBROOKStacey has worked in the lighting industry for 25+years. Since starting with the Mathis Band in January 2013, she says that working for Johnny Mathis is the equivalent of winning the Lotto. "It's a rare thing to truly like your job as well as all the people you work with. It is simply marvelous to be surrounded by this much talent. Mr. Mathis makes my job seem easy. I hope that Richard would be proud." When not on the road, she calls Chicago home. She's the Art Director at DK Design/Production, enjoys experimental cooking and hanging with her man Mike.