The Sledge Grits Band
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The Sledge Grits Band

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2008 | INDIE

Los Angeles, California, United States | INDIE
Established on Jan, 2008
Band Pop Rock


This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs



(CBS) The Sledge Grits Band does part rock, part blues -- and the four sisters know all about the blues, even though they're young.

But their talent and effort are winning out -- they're the latest group to be named a finalist in Early Show's "Singing Family Face Off."

Features reporter and weather anchor Dave Price knocked on their door awfully early -- 8 o'clock Eastern Coast time -- it was three hours earlier in their adopted hometown of Salinas, Calif. "America's salad bowl." In fact, Price says police almost arrested him for disturbing the peace!

But the sisters shrieked with delight when they opened the door.

The band is comprised of Keiko, 14, who plays guitar, Kariel, 12, bass, Mimi, 9, who sings, and Bo-pah, 6, the drummer.

The name, The Sledge Grits Band, is a combination of their last name, Sledge, and one of their favorite foods, grits. They say GRITS is also an acronym for "Girls Raised in The South" -- though they now live in Salinas with their parents, they used to live in The South -- Florida, where misfortune struck.

They were uprooted from The Sunshine State when their grandmother got breast cancer.

Not only that -- their dad, Kelly Jo, has Multiple Sclerosis and, says Keiko, "It's very hard for him, and on our family."

"People always ask all the time," she says, " 'Well, why do you guys play the blues?' And I say, 'Well, even though we're kids, we've been through a lot." "

"I am the oldest sister," she notes, "so I kind of have to watch over my baby sisters/"

Their mom, Wendy, admits, "The girls have been through quite a bit. But it's amazing the strength a child can have."

A song they do, written by Kariel, is called "Invincible" is, Keiko says, "just about how if you're sisters, if you're friends, if you stick together, everything will work out."

"I love being in the band with my sisters," Mimi says.

"We love to play music. It's just what our life is," Kariel agrees.

The Early Show searched for months, going through hundreds of videos submitted by family bands, then narrowed the field to six finalists.

Each weekday morning from Feb. 16 through Feb. 23, Price will be surprising the six family finalists with the big news, live on The Early Show.

On Wednesday, Feb. 25, the competition begins with live performances in The Early Show studio. Vote for your favorite online each week! The winning family will be announced April 1.

At stake: a deal with CBS Records! - CBS News

The Monterey County Herald
Updated: 02/15/2009 01:45:48 AM PST

New York City could soon be rocking out to the sounds of Salinas's very own Sisters Sledge.

The Sledge Grits band was chosen as a top-20 finalist in a children's band competition on the CBS Morning Show. They are in line to be one of six bands vying for a slot on the nationally televised show.

Band members, all daughters of Salinas residents Kelly Jo and Wendy Sledge, are Keiko, 14, guitar; Kariel, 12, bass; Millenia "MiMi," 8, lead vocals; and the youngest, Kelly Jo, aka "Bo-Pah," 6.

The band has played seriously for a year now, doing a couple of shows a month. They do a few originals mixed with covers, blending funk, blues and rock with an adorable girl-power punch.

Adorned in tiaras and jamming out on hot-pink instruments, the girls are button-cute on stage until the music kicks in. Keiko and Kariel can bust out blues and funk with a mature measure, while MiMi's vocals carry a spirit that belies her young age.

Most impressive is little Bo-Pah, blasting away on her drum set that's four times her size. Watching the band perform at a talent competition last summer, I couldn't help but smile. These girls mean business on stage.

In December, mom Wendy uploaded a video of their performance to the CBS Web site after catching wind of the competition.

In early February, they were informed of their status in the Top 20, chosen from 280 online entries and several hundred more mailed entries.

On Tuesday, a CBS crew followed the band for the day, taking
trips to the beach and Fisherman's Wharf. The band also performed some of its songs live in their family room. The crew stayed around until 10 p.m.

"It was a long day," said Wendy Sledge.

CBS told the family they'll be in touch by the end of the month, with more news on how they placed in the contest.

It was also a special pre-birthday celebration for Keiko, whose big day was Wednesday. On her birthday wish-list were books and some spending cash.

"That way, if we go to New York on this competition, I can have some money to spend," she said.

For now, the band will have to wait until the final six bands are selected later in the month. The top six will be shipped out to New York for a quick appearance on the show.

An online vote will determine the top three, and from there a final winner will be chosen.

For Keiko, the early attention has been a thrill in itself.

"I was just so excited to hear that we had gotten to the Top 20," she said. "Even if we don't get any farther than this, I am extremely excited."

For all of her birthday cheer, there was one thing that eluded Keiko's birthday wish list.

"I do want to get a cell phone. My mom said maybe I could get one, but that didn't happen," she said.

If they make it to New York, mom may need to come correct on that request.

Marc Cabrera can be reached at 646-4345 or

If you go ·Who: The Sledge Grits band ·When: Friday, March 7, at 8 p.m. ·Where: Giovane's restaurant, 348 San Juan Grade Road, Salinas ·Info: sledgegrits - Monterey Herald

Sledge Grits one of 20 to appear on CBS' 'The Early Show'

BY BRITTANY DURGIN • The Salinas Californian • February 11, 2009

Rock 'n' roll drummer Bo-pah Sledge cringed while wiggling a loose tooth between songs during band practice on Tuesday afternoon.

But the 6-year-old percussionist didn't let the distraction interefere with her performance - the band had important guests at this jam session.

CBS News was filming The Sledge Grits Band at their Salinas home. The all-sisters band will be featured on the network's "The Early Show" in the coming months.

In December, the girls submitted a video of themselves to CBS as an entry to the "CBS Singing Family Face Off" competition. Last week, they received a call from the network saying they were one of 20 finalists who will be featured on the early morning show.

The Sledge sisters - Bo-pah, Mimi, 8; Kariel, 12 and Keiko, 14 - formed the band one year ago, with grits standing for Girls Raised In The South.

"We hope we're warm and inviting like grits, too," said Kariel, the bassist. Mimi sings and Keiko plays the guitar to round out the group.

Americans will vote online for their favorite band once all 20 groups have been featured. The six with the most votes will go to New York City to compete in the "face-off." The Salinas girls are hoping to be on the East Coast for this match, and it would be a big step for them, as they would like to become professional musicians some day.

The Sledge Grits Band may sound familiar: They've played local venues such as the Fox Theatre, Wise Music store, Embassy Suites, as well as at Kids Fest and Blues Fest at the Monterey County Fairgrounds.

Wendy Sledge, the girls' mother, said she is happy with their success. "It's nice to see their hard work pay off," she said. - Salinas Californian

When Mimi Sledge becomes famous — which, judging from the two standing ovations she got Sunday at the Monterey Bay Blues Festival, won't take long — she has huge plans: "I want to buy a mansion and a puppy," she says.
Mimi, who is 8, plans to be a big singing star, like Whitney, Mariah or Aretha, which, despite her monstrous talent, is a fairly new aspiration.
"Up until recently, she wanted to be a lion," explains her father, Kelly Jo Sledge. "And her little sister (6-year-old Kelly Jo II, whom the family calls Bo-pah) is still planning to be a tiger."
Mimi, with guitar in hand, rocked the house Sunday on the President's Stage, where she was backed by some of the best-known musicians on the Central Coast — keyboardist Dale Ockerman (formerly of the Doobie Brothers and Quicksilver Messenger Service), guitarists Mike Lent (who has toured with Barry Manilow and Jeffrey Osbourne) and "Mighty" Mike Schermer (Maria Muldaur, Elvin Bishop), drummer June Core (who played later in the day behind Charlie Musselwhite), and Dennis Murphy, who not only heads the Dennis Murphy Band, but also is director of Monterey County's "Blues In The Schools" program. (Each of the aforementioned players is a clinician in Murphy's program, and Ockerman has his own private school for young musicians in Santa Cruz.)
"It was exciting, but I wasn't nervous," Mimi said after belting out Aretha Franklin's "R-E-S-P-E-C-T" and Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Sweet Home Alabama." "There
were so many people watching me when I went up there — this was pretty big for me — but I don't get nervous very much."
Well, heck, she's been doing it for a long time. She started singing opera with her mom at age 5. She picked up a guitar a short time later and never put it down. By the time she was 6, she was interrupting her singing coach — Mommy — to tell her she was singing off-key.
"And when she did that, I realized she was right. I was off-key. She just has an ear for it," said her mother, Wendy Lynn Sledge.
She's not the only one with some natural chops. Little Bo-pah, the 6-year-old, is the drummer for The Sledge Grits Band.
Mimi sings lead and plays guitar. The bass player is 11-year-old Kariel, and big sister Keiko, 13, handles lead guitar and backup vocals.
The band brought home top honors in its category earlier this year — and Keiko won as an individual performer — at the Seaside Talent Show — award trinkets that were added to an already-full wall next to the staircase in the family home. But Mom and Dad are anything but prototypical stage parents.
"The Sledges are a family, first and foremost," says Murphy, who coaches Kariel in his "Blues In The Schools" honor band. "The girls are musicians second, and that's the foundation by which they're able to get more expanded, more into their expression, as musicians."
And their talent?
"Unbelievable," he marvels. "Mimi is absolutely incredible, and they're all going to be forces to be reckoned with on their own levels."
Where the talent came from is a good question. Kelly Jo says he helps Mimi with her stage choreography, but says he's strictly an amateur. Wendy had vocal training as a child, but her music lessons ended there.
"But most of it ... I'd have to say it comes from up above," Kelly Jo says. "There's no other explanation for some of the things those girls do."
Some of the things they do — garage-band videos of "Wild Thing" and "Mississippi Girl" — can be viewed on YouTube, or via the Sledge GritsBand home page at
The sisters will appear on July 4 in Downtown Salinas (time TBA), and at 1 p.m. July 26 at CSU-Monterey Bay's World Theatre, where they'll perform both individually and as a group at the Marina Youth Arts Summer Talent Showcase.

Dennis Taylor can be reached at or 646-4344.
Video of the Sledge G.R.I.T.S. Band can be viewed at - Monterey Herald

LOS ANGELES, CA – July 8, 2008
Daisy Rock is pleased to announce the latest addition to their talented roster of artists: the talented Sledge Grits Band.

Ranging in age from 6 to 13, sisters Keiko, Kariel, Mimi, and Kelly Jo comprise the Sledge Grits Band, and have been practicing their craft for the past 3 years together. Performing a mix of covers and original material, the girls know what it takes to draw a crowd.

Past performances include the Monterey Bay Blues Festival and various community events throughout the Salinas and Gilroy area. Their blues-infused guitar rhythms, positive energy, and vibrant appearance attract fans everywhere they perform, and Daisy Rock is excited to help the band through their success every step of the way.

Daisy Rock offers a complete line of girl guitars designed to look and sound great, and to fit the female form. To learn more about Daisy Rock endorsed artists, and to view Daisy Rock’s entire line of guitars, visit now!

To learn more about Daisy Rock artist The Sledge Grits Band, visit

Daisy Rock is the original girl-guitar company dedicated to successfully supplying and marketing pro-quality guitars for females. The company is led by its President, Tish Ciravolo, and co-owned and distributed by Alfred Publishing. Daisy Rock’s ongoing mission is to provide females of all ages with whatever it takes to learn to play guitar and enjoy music. Daisy Rock has established and continues to strengthen its reputation as “THE female guitar company.”

Daisy Rock, its talented management team, and its products have been continuously featured in worldwide mainstream media, including People, Time, Newsweek, CNN, ABC, NBC, FOX, VH1, the Premier Radio Network, BBC Radio, the Associated Press, etc. The company was founded solely by Tish Ciravolo in October 2000.


Jessica Murillo

Artist Relations and Marketing Coordinator

P: 818-891-5999 ext. 285

F: 818-895-5301 - Daisy Rock Guitars

Monterey Herald August 21st, 2008

The opening act for the evening is the Monterey Bay Blues in the Schools Band The Sledge Grits band. Ranging in age from 6 to 13, this four-piece family band may just steal the show.

As director for Blues in the Schools, the outreach program for the Monterey Bay Blues Festival, Dennis Murphy usually works just with middle and high schoolers,

(13-year-old Keiko sings in the Blues Festival Honor Band) but he knows exceptions when he sees them.
"Since their dedication level and their talent level is so high we took them on as a special unit," said Murphy.

This year's Blues fest brought two standing ovations for Keiko, 11-year-old Kariel, 8-year-old Mimi and 6-year-old drummer Kelly Jo II.

Through Murphy's band, for one, they've gotten input and stage time from professional musicians who've worked with the likes of the Doobie Brothers, Charlie Musselwhite, Billy Preston and others.

Murphy will back them for their set in Seaside.

"The girls are fully capable of handling that gig by themselves," he said. "They don't necessarily need me on stage with them. I'm there just to be there for them and facilitate what's already going to happen in a bigger way."

The Sledge Sisters belt out the covers, but also write.

"Keiko's songwriting ability is prolific," he said. "In my estimation, she's capable of writing hit songs. And Mimi interprets those songs so beautifully, the combination is amazing. The combination of all four is amazing."

Murphy was on his way to record with them, a song Keiko wrote called "Confidence." "I could easily see someone like Kanye West (doing that song)."

"The old soul thing is in place for all of them. I really think it comes from their thought process. Even as children, they're very deep thinkers," Murphy said.

No one doubts there's room to grow for the homeschooled foursome, but so far audiences have come away inspired.

So with all this music and so much discussion over Seaside's redevelopment plans for West Broadway section of the city, could there be, just maybe, among the Starbucks contracts, any hope of a permanent performance venue?

"Not in my lifetime," a pensive Pacheco offered, though he expects more acts to show up at the Bayonet and Black Horse Golf Course and hopes for a good relationship with the proposed hotel that's part of Reggie Jackson's project just as the city has been known to collaborate with Embassy Suites.

Ah, well. Be careful what you wish for. Big new venues could scratch "free" right off of Free Live Music.

Kathryn Petruccelli can be reached at GO! - Go Magazine

You heard it here first! Debutante artists The Sledge Grits Band (yes, they're raised in the south) have a lot going on, and they're taking their Daisy Rocks wherever they go...
"I love these guitars because they not only show off your personality but show that you can be girly and rock at the same time!"-Keiko
"I feel good when I play one... -Mimi
"They make it easier for girls to rock!" -Kariel
For more information, visit

P.O. BOX 10003
VAN NUYS, CA 91410-0003
PHONE: (877) MY DAISY • FAX: (800) 632-1928 - Daisy Rock Guitars

Sledge Grits Band on KFIAM 640 on iHeart radio station - Mo' On the Radio


Please watch video of live performance to see the energy level of this band!



In today’s overly crowded music climate, it’s rare when an act immediately grabs your attention—and holds it. The Sledge Grits Band is that welcome rarity.


Edgy yet infectious pop-rock paired with insightful, positive lyrics is the calling card of this unique sister act. Siblings Keiko (guitarist/songwriter, 20), Ella (bassist, 18), Mimi (lead vocals, 15) and bo-Pah (drummer, 13) comprise the Los Angeles-based group, whose colorful moniker combines the family’s last name—Sledge—with the acronym for “Girls Raised in the Sun.”