Killer B Kustoms exec Benjamin Rios will host an hour of conversation and music with artist Laura Mendoza on Saturday, June 29 from Noon to 1 P.M.
Detroit rocker Laura Mendoza is known for her no-holds-barred powerhouse solo performances and as bassist and vocalist in the hard rock band White Shag. The road to rock came early at the age of 4 when she started singing and performing, then learned to play guitar at the age of 12, and later picked up the bass guitar and also added the piano to her instrument skills. She participated in musicals and talent shows and excelled in music and performance throughout high school and won numerous awards.
She took an unexpected detour in her music education by moving to Chile, where she studied Music Composition and Arranging in Popular Music at La Universidad Catolica and La Projazz in Santiago. She participated in the Projazz Big Band as well as the bands Jupiter Jack and Los Gatos Negros.
She returned to Detroit and started performing solo shows and formed the band White Shag as the bassist and lead vocalist. White Shag quickly gained popularity locally and around the Midwest with their powerful sound and live performances. They won two Detroit Music Awards for “Best Hard Rock Band” in 2013 and 2017 and Mendoza also won a “Best Rock Vocalist” award in 2015. Regionally, they garnered an award for “Non – local Rock Band” in Indiana and headlined shows in Ohio. After self – releasing their debut E.P., they released the full album “White Shag” on local indie label Jett Plastic Recordings in 2017.
She has shared the stage with local legends Suzi Quatro at the Meow – Women in Music Conference in Austin, TX, performed at a benefit for veteran rocker Dick Wagner, and played in the Grande Allstars Band at the 50th Reunion Anniversary Concert of the legendary concert venue The Grande Ballroom in Detroit. She also briefly toured with Mark Farner of Grand Funk Railroad. Her solo acoustic sets are a mixture of her own songs with traditional Latin American music and classic covers.
Host and presenter Benjamin Rios is vice president of operations at Killer B Kustoms, LLC. Texas-born but Michigan-bred, he’s a seasoned and well-respected guitarist that has performed all over the Michigan, Ohio and Texas circuits with a long resume of songwriting and recording accomplishments.