PORT ANGELES — Justin Scott Rivet, a singer-guitarist born and raised in Port Angeles, put together a band he calls the Riveters a little over a month ago, and now that band has a spot on the main stage of the Juan de Fuca Festival of the Arts.
Justin Scott and the Riveters, with an original song, “Transcending the Blues,” won the second annual Juan de Fuca Festival Talent Show on Saturday, transcending the 23 other acts in the show at the Senior & Community Center.
“It’s going to be a blast,” Rivet, 27, said of the festival.
The cavalcade of music, dance and visual art takes place across downtown Port Angeles on Memorial Day weekend, May 25-28.
“It brings all the artists together; it’s awesome to be a part of that,” Rivet added.
The talent show drew an array of singers, dancers, pianists and comedians, from preteens to seniors.
Judges Amelia Andaleon, Kayla Oakes and Martha Hastings, all Juan de Fuca Festival board members, named Port Angeles singer-songwriter Doug Parent the top solo act; Dave and Rosalie Secord’s band Luck of the Draw the best group; and the Black Diamond Fiddle Kids the best youth act.
There were also yodelers, family bands and soulful singers, from Lorrie Kuss, with Stevie Nicks’ “Landslide,” to Vicki Helwick doing Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”
Only the Riveters — Rivet, drummer Armando Gonzalez and bassist Tamatha Dannewitz — received a tangible prize: a $100 honorarium and that slot on the festival stage.
“We found them to be professional,” Andaleon said of the band. “Their stage presence was strong . . . and they were just fun to listen to. You could see people tapping their toes, nodding their heads and getting into the groove.”
Come festival time, Rivet said, his band will play a mix of original songs plus covers by late bluesman Stevie Ray Vaughan, legendary Bob Marley and other artists “in between.”
Rivet, also a carpenter and cabinetmaker, said he started playing drums at 11, then learned to sing and play guitar.
He and Gonzalez go back to the Stevens Middle School Jazz Band, which has played the Juan de Fuca Festival for years.
Rivet himself also plays solo at Bar N9ne, 229 W. First St., from 8 p.m. till 10 p.m. Mondays.
These days, the music is a blend of blues, reggae, rock and life experience, so “every song I write has a different feel,” he said.
To learn more about the Juan de Fuca Festival, which will present the internationally known band Playing for Change in its annual benefit March 17, visit www.JFFA.org, phone 360-457-5411 or find the festival page on Facebook.
________Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-417-3550 or at email@example.com.