Bill Zupko; guitar, vocals
My musical career dates back to elementary school: the world was in the throes of Beatlemania so I naturally began violin lessons while Mrs. Brown provided ukeleles, and the resulting fun soon led to a life-long interest in guitar. Throughout my childhood I learned to play a variety of woodwind instruments, dabbled in brass, and joined every band and orchestra I could: classical, jazz of all genres spanning dixieland to contemporary big band, marching bands, small ensembles, church guitar mass… After high school I left the band instruments behind and brought only my guitar along for the ride.
In ’95 I ran into college friend Kent Thompson and he and friend Les Perez provided the drive to form Ticket to Ride, my first-ever rock band. Since then I’ve been fortunate to meet many local musicians and singers, and after TTR disbanded in 2004, this led to playing with highly-regarded local bands keeping the music of the 60s alive: an exciting one-year stint with the Termites and occasionally subbing with The Back Pages. Since ’05 I’ve been playing Beatles music with the Sun Kings, with whom I continue to this day. So as a dedicated Beatles guitarist, it’s been a pleasure to bring their stylings to you and to share in all the fun and memories.
Marty Ruiz; drums
It all started with the album “Abbey Road” for me. The music, the way they looked and just the whole aura that surrounded them was a major contributing factor to me playing music. Then I discovered all of the other albums and I was hooked! That and Ringo always looked so cool behind the drum kit. I of course wanted to look cool too and that is something that I’m still working on.
I actually started out playing trumpet in grade school. That didn’t quite work out for me because in I secretly always wanted to play drums. I had always tapped out patterns on the couch cushions along to what ever was on the radio, so I switched to drums at age 13 and haven’t looked back since!
I have played and I’m still playing in numerous Bay Area based bands. Superbooty, Heavy Petty, Fast Times, Dirty Blond are just a few of them. I’ve been lucky enough to play with stellar musicians throughout my drumming career and this band is no exception. Playing in Ticket To Ride and getting to actually play some of the most iconic songs ever written is really a childhood dream come true. I’m gonna keep on rocking those Ringo beats ’till they pry the sticks out of my hand!
Chad Labrosse; lead vocals, rhythm guitar
I started playing soprano ukulele in the 4th grade and moved to the guitar in the 6th grade, yet still do a mean Don Ho version of Tiny Bubbles. First started getting serious about the Beatles in the 8th grade while making my way through the Beatles Guitar Fake Book (still faking it today) and wearing out my Rubber Soul cassette tape in my 1976 Toyota Celica (insert lame joke here).
My first band was called the Pussywillows, later renamed to Freak Parade when we realized that mothers of the bride were not going to send out wedding invitations featuring a band with the word “willow” in its name (see http://www.freakparade.ca). We covered a myriad of musical genres and still maintained the Canadian Radio-Television Telecommunications Commission mandated 20% Canadian content, by playing Bryan Adam’s Cuts Like a Knife twice per set. As a young musician struggling to make ends meet (not really, I was a Database Administrator at the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia) I learned to mimic the accents of my southern neighbours (notice the correct spelling of neighbours) and often dreamed of playing in a completely adequate Beatles cover band in the San Francisco Bay Area, eh!
Then one day my big break came knocking, unfortunately I wasn’t home at the time, so I continued to labour as a professional programmer by day, collecting a handsome 6 figurine salary. When I eventually came to my senses, I fled the oppressive socialist regime that had held me down with its guaranteed access to health care, clean air and water, and friendly polite citizenry. Answering a local newspaper ad looking for a singer for a nascent Beatles band put me in touch with the founding members of Ticket to Ride. Six Grammy awards, two Oscars, one Nobel Peace Prize, and three trips to rehab later, I’m still up there once or twice a month, singing my heart out and butchering the chords to the best music ever written.
Scott Beyer; keyboards, vocals
I have played in jazz, rock and pop bands in the Bay Area for what seems like decades…..even some of my great grandchildren are playing along side me now. But I have always been a closet Beatles freak, so several years ago, when I was approached by members of Ticket to Ride, I jumped at the chance to play hard to get. But after showing me that they could indeed butcher the chords to best music ever, I relented. Now I look forward to each and every Ticket to Ride show because being at our shows means I haven’t died yet. Plus, I love the band and all our friends who come to the shows to prove that all you need is love.
George Becker; bass, backing vocals
I think my first real memory of hearing a Beatles song on the radio was “Eight Days a Week”. It was confusing to me because I had just learned that there were only 7 days in a week. So I’ve been messed up by the Beatles from an early age.
I was given a guitar around age 7 and have been playing with myself ever since. I picked up a bass guitar at the direction of a music teacher in middle school and immediately liked the role. There are less strings to worry about and not too many bar chords.
I must thank my older sister Kate for lighting and carrying the Beatles torch in our family in the early years as well as my bro Jerry for teaching me the simple beauty of the song. And these are the best songs my friends, not only to hear, but also to play.
I am quite honored to be able to play this music with this group of somewhat twisted individuals. Somehow, I happened to be around when this opportunity opened up. I also look forward to every gig. It keeps me from falling asleep on the couch at 9PM.