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UPDATED: 'SCV Rock Star' judges panel adds fifth expert

Contest finale Sept. 19 at Sports Complex

Posted: August 18, 2008 4:36 p.m.
Updated: November 11, 2008 5:00 a.m.

KROQ-FM specialty show DJ/producer Brian Vasquez has worked with upstarts and veterans alike. His remix of the Beasties' "Ch-Check-it-Out" was No. 1 on KROQ's 5@9 segment for two weeks. He'll be on the judges panel on SCV Rock Star Night at the Santa Clarita Sports Complex Friday, Sept. 19.

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Organizers of the "SCV Rock Star" contest, presented exclusively online by in association with top Santa Clarita Valley rock promoter Higher Level Productions, have unveiled the panel of expert judges who will help name the winners at the contest's Sept. 19 concert finale.

"Each has sharp eyes and well-tuned ears for talent, is active in the contemporary music scene, and has extensive experience working with young artists," said Stephen K. Peeples, online editor of and SCV Rock Star contest creator and co-producer. "It's a well-rounded panel and helps provide the credibility the contest deserves."

The esteemed judges are (in alphabetical order):

* Craig Duswalt, known as "America's RockStar Business Coach." The Stevenson Ranch resident is founder and author of the RockStar System for Success and the RockStar Business Seminars. His background includes touring with Guns N' Roses as Axl Rose's personal assistant/manager, and with Air Supply as the band's personal assistant.

Joe Elliott, a vice president at the world-renowned Musicians Institute college of music in Hollywood. Also a guitar player and instructor, Elliott is a member of the rock band Mama-O, which includes other MI instructors and performs at venues such as the Baked Potato in North Hollywood. He's a Canyon Country resident.

Adam Philipson, managing director of the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at College of the Canyons. He has a 16-year professional acting career off-Broadway, on-Broadway and with national touring companies behind him. Philipson has appeared in more than 25 television programs and feature films as well as more than 100 commercials for national and local television and radio.

Thea Stern, principal of the Stern Talent Agency. The former model and actress and her Hollywood-based management company represent clients who have appeared in films and TV programs including "High School Musical," "That's So Raven," "Zoey 101" and many more, as well as up-and-coming artists and bands signed to labels and preparing CD releases. Stern, also active in SCV arts and entertainment, is the entertainment chair for the Boys & Girls Club's Sept. 20 "Day for Kids."

Brian Vasquez, a DJ/producer/remixer for KROQ-FM/Los Angeles. His work is featured on speciality shows mixing rock and electronic beats. He's also producer/creative image director for Radio Perez, the showbiz gossip feature hosted by Perez Hilton. Vasquez has worked with and produced for Beastie Boys, Audioslave, 311, Godsmack, Green Day, Foo Fighters, Jane's Addiction, LL Cool J, Porno for Pyros and many others.

Online voting, live judging
Online voting in the SCV Rock Star contest closed Sept. 7. Twenty-one artists and groups who submitted their videos by the Aug. 8 deadline were eligible to vie for the "SCV Rock Star" title and valuable prize packages.

Sept. 19 "SCV Rock Star Night" concert finale
The top three finalists in the contest's Amateur category -- North of Paradise Leather, Johnny Strat and Aaron Wong -- were determined by the online votes.

Due to rampant manipulation of the online voting in the Professional category, contest administrators have thrown out all online votes. To keep the contest fair, the three Pro finalists will be determined by the same panel of judges who will judge the live performances Friday night, Sept. 19 at the Sports Complex in Canyon Country.

At the concert, the finalists will perform shorts sets and judges will add their scores to the finally tally and determine the first-, second- and third-place winners in each category. A Best Video winner will also be named from among the entries.

Prize packages
Top SCV Rock Star contest prizes include time at Command Recording Studios, time at Hubbadaddy's rehearsal studios, a new performance-based music video produced by Artistry Cinematics, a professional photo session from Paige Photography, a separate headlining concert produced by Higher Level, and coverage in The Signal newspaper and on

'Rockstar Reality'
Finalists may also be included in "Rockstar Reality," a new documentary about the SCV music scene now being produced by Lisa Lane and Lisa Lujano of La Lu Productions, who will shoot the SCV Rock Star Night event for their video.

Contest sponsors
SCV Rock Star contest sponsors include Mission View Public School, the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at College of the Canyons, Robek's Juice of North Park Village and Lowe's Music of Newhall.

See "Related Content" above for links to the contest to vote, and to previous coverage for the contest details and developments.


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