In a career spanning over 40 years, keyboardist Jim Pugh has recorded and performed with a star-studded array of musicians including B.B. King, Etta James, John Lee Hooker, Robert Cray and Van Morrison . Currently living in Santa Ynez, California, with his family, Jim spent the past summer touring Japan with R&B legend Syl Johnson.
Aki Kumar left his native home in Mumbai, India for the USA with the intention of working as a software engineer. Then he discovered the sounds of the blues. Kumar worked as code developer for years while honing his music chops on the side and, over time, successfully blended elements of Indian music into his musical and visual presentation of the blues. Kumar has made multiple appearances at The Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival, has been featured on PRI “The World,” and has toured in Russia, Scandinavia and South America. His ground-breaking Little Village Foundation albums have garnered international critical acclaim. In 2019 Kumar signed with Sony Music India to release a blues-inspired, bi-lingual album “Dilruba”.
Founder and Board Chair of Kid Spark Education, an internationally recognized STEM education nonprofit, Paul Eichen is also the founder of Proxima, a data projection and computer peripherals company. Passionate about education and the environment, Paul lends his financial and corporate expertise as an active member of the Little Village Board of Directors.
Mike Ferguson is the founder and CEO of FBHC Advisors, a national behavioral health consultancy. His work has taken him all over the world working with folks from all walks of life. He believes and supports the mission of Little Village Foundation who resides in Los Angeles with his wife and two daughters.
From the time she was 9 years old Vicki Randle has been in love with singing, guitar, percussion and songwriting. Starting out her career as an opening act for the Brother’s Johnson, Vicki has been on a musical journey for the past 40 years. A multi-talented musician, Vicki has toured with George Benson, Laura Nyro and Kenny Loggins. When not on the road Vicki recorded with artists Aretha Franklin, Herbie Hancock and Todd Rundgren. Vicki is distinguished as having had an 18-year long run as the first and only woman on the Tonight Show with the Jay Leno band. She is currently playing with Skip the Needle, a funk rock and soul band formed with Shelley Dot.
Pamela Rose is a San Francisco based jazz and blues vocalist who has been performing and recording music for the past 40 years. Her work celebrating women in jazz and blues has been featured on stages across the country. Rose is on the faculty of the California Jazz Conservatory and has seven recordings under her name. She is also the author of a book about women composers in the early days of jazz.
Singer-songwriter and talented graphic artist Maurice Tani is a contributing musician and Little Village Foundation’s Art Director who has designed the covers of over 30 LVF CD albums to date. Maurice is also an active member of the Artist Committee on Little Village’s Board of Directors. He is one of the principal advocates evangelizing Little Village Foundation’s mission that diverse music builds empathy and, in turn, builds stronger communities and a better world.
Not yet 30 years old Jazmin Morales has made her mark on the music arts world. With a Master’s Degree in Arts Management from Claremont Graduate University, Jazmin grew up around music. Her parents own the Mariachi Studio in Central California where most of the studio’s music students are the children of migrant farmworkers. Jazmin taught violin and helped manage the studio through high school and then went on to college where she interned at the Smithsonian Center for Folk Life and Cultural Heritage and the UCLA Fowler Museum of Cultural History. After college Jazmin worked at the La Jolla Music Society before becoming Manager of The Colburn School Center for Innovation and Community Impact, an academic unit dedicated to providing equitable access for the local community and creating innovative, high-impact programs designed to prepare young artists for sustainable and fulfilling careers. In her “spare” time Jazmin is an adjunct professor teaching master level classes at the University of Southern California’s Thorton School of Music. She also consults in organizational development and strategic programming for NPR and the Smithsonian Latino Center.