Zonal Music Group

About Us

Arizona natives often hear people bemoan the “lack of community” in Arizona. It’s common lore that in the Valley and elsewhere in Arizona, people come and go so quickly our roots don’t go very deep. You might be under the impression that we lack the cohesive artistic, musical and literary ‘culture’ typical in big cities. Well, that’s a myth.

We’ve grown into a state that attracts the finest in national and international talent. But as newspapers, television and radio have morphed from locally owned entities into conglomerates, the arts get less and less coverage. And Arizona’s own rich cultural offerings in a multitude of genres get lost in the mix.

Music And More Arizona contributors are Arizona writers and artists. We know there’s more going on than meets the eye here. So when you really want to find out what’s going on in Arizona, this is the place. Music and More Arizona is here to uncover what’s at the heart of Arizona arts.

Mariah Fleming - Executive Editor

Mariah Fleming

Mariah Fleming, a third generation Arizona native, grew up appreciating the music, arts and history of Arizona. Her great grandfather traveled from Tennessee to Australia to Flagstaff, where he built the first Flagstaff homestead (McMillan Homestead). After hearing of her pioneer family adventures, reading sheet music, family letters and diaries written in the late 1800's, wanderlust hit.  She crossed the pond twice, wrote and sang in France, worked in a popular French jazz quartet, toured, recorded and wrote for several European music magazines.

A writer, singer and songwriter she appeared on the original KDKB's Love Workshop and had a show on radiofreephoenix.com. Editor in Chief of Arizona Jazz Magazine alongside Patricia Myers in the early 2000's, that's when the concept for MAMAZ evolved. Fleming's work has appeared on various websites, in the Arizona Republic, East Valley Tribune, Java Monthly, Phoenix Downtown Magazine, Acoustic Scene, Back Up (bluegrass) and others. An officer on the AZ Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame Board of Directors (AMEHOF) for three years, she interviewed Linda Ronstadt and researched the rich Ronstadt family history to write, produce and narrate a documentary for Ronstadt's 2007 AMEHOF Induction. Fleming is on the AMEHOF Advisory Board.

Ken Skaggs - Associate Editor/Webmaster

A much younger Ken on the Giza plateau

Ken is a native Arizonan who grew up in South Central; Phoenix that is. Surrounded by music at home it was impossible for him not to be infected with the music bug. Ken attended Phoenix College and Arizona State University until his college career was curtailed by a lottery; draft lottery that is. Ken was stationed in Virginia where he was exposed to bluegrass music and his life was altered forever. After his stint in the U.S. Army Ken returned home and encountered bluegrass musicians at the old Blue Goat Pub in Scottsdale. Thus began his musical pilgrimage encompassing 37 years. Ken was one of the founding members of the Normal Brothers in the early 70s and later played with the Two Week Notice Band. Ken landed a job with Glen Campbell’s touring group and travelled with Glen for 22 years. Ken has performed in many famous venues including; the White House, the Royal Albert Hall in London, the Sydney Opera House, the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville and the South Shore Room at Harrah’s Lake Tahoe. Ken is a multi-instrumentalist and plays guitar, mandolin, dobro and pedal steel.

Always drawn to computers, Ken embraced the internet and all related technology early on thus enabling his addiction initially by logging on to CompuServe with a 1200 baud modem. Ken became webmaster for Glen Campbell in the 1990s where he began writing a recurring column about his time on the road titled “Rhinestone Highway.” Now this activity is called blogging. When he is not sitting in front of a computer Ken can be found playing music, reading, running or cooking for his family.

Patricia Myers - Editor at Large

Patricia Meyers

Patricia Myers is an award-winning writer, nationally and internationally recognized jazz critic and a founder and past president of Jazz in Arizona. Myers was honored at the Jazz in AZ, Inc. 25th Anniversary as “The Most Significant Individual in Jazz in AZ" and awarded a 2009 Lifetime Achievement Award. She has more than 100 local jazz concerts and four jazz albums to her credit. Myers is a jazz historian and activist for live jazz and historic preservation. She led a grassroots campaign in 2008 that resulted in the historic preservation of Scottsdale's Kerr Cultural Center. She is on the Advisory Board of the AZ Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame. Myers was Editor at Large, writer and columnist for Arizona Jazz Magazine and her work has appeared in Jazz Times, World Jazz Network, American Rag, Mississippi Rag, AZ Weekly Entertainment Magazine, and AllAboutJazz.com among others. Myers has been a contributing writer for New Times, a correspondent for TIME Magazine, and a contributing editor for TIME-LIFE Books and several jazz encyclopedias. She was on staff at The Arizona Republic, Phoenix Magazine, East Valley Tribune and Scottsdale Progress. She currently works as a freelance photojournalist who specializes in music, travel and food. Myers is author of a 100-year illustrated history, “Scottsdale, Jewel in the Desert.”

R. A. Bowen - Photography Editor

Ray Bowen

Ray Bowen is a professional photographer and artist originally from Colorado. He attended high school and college in the Valley, learning photography and arts with iconic Arizona figures like photographer Allen Dutton and painter Merrill Mahaffey. He attended California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, studied at Berkeley and returned to Arizona to work on his Masters in Fine Arts at ASU. In the 1990's Bowen began a successful non-profit arts organization, Visual Uplift, where volunteers taught photography to at risk kids in Valley school districts. Their work was shown in Scottsdale's Hal Fogel Gallery and others. Bowen held yearly "Black and White and Blues" benefit concerts at Phoenix's Rhythm Room to raise awareness about Visual Uplift. He was Senior Photography Instructor at Collins College of Design for twelve years. Bowen does concert and promotion photography. He has photographed Richard Thompson, Jerry Riopelle, the Tubes and many others. His work can be viewed on the azmusichalloffame.org and various music and art websites. Bowen currently works in music, commercial and fine art photography and other visual arts.

Contributing Writers

Jimmy Magahern

Jimmy Magahern

Jimmy Magahern is an award winning Phoenix-based freelance writer whose work has a long history in the Valley. Magahern's work has been recognized regionally with nine awards from the Arizona Press Club and nationally by the Penney-Missouri Awards program and the ASCAP-Deems Taylor Awards. Magahern's work has appeared in numerous publications including The New Times, Phoenix Magazine, The Arizona Republic (and Republic Magazines AZ, AZ Society and others), 944, Valley Guide, Scottsdale Times and affilliate Times Publications.

Liz Boyle

Liz Boyle

Liz Boyle, currently midday host at one of the last remaining underground rock stations, Radio Free Phoenix, has been a beloved Arizona radio personality for over 20 years. A living encyclopedia of popular music past and present, she has hosted shows on KSLX, KDKB, KEZ and spent 14 years at the legendary 94.5 KOOL FM. Boyle was voted Phoenix New Times Best of Phoenix "Best Radio Personality 2006". She has voiced hundreds of local and national radio and television commercials. Her busy voiceover career includes being a commercial voice talent at CBS KPHO TV 5. Thousand of commuters recognize her as the 'Voice of Valley Metro" when they ride the Phoenix Metropolitan bus. Boyle's numerous national clients include Harrah's, Con Agra and JC Penney. She is also the training voice for the Federal Aviation Administration. Boyle wrote, produced and voiced the Stevie Nicks documentary video shown at Nick's induction into the 2007 Arizona Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame. Boyle served on the Board of Directors of the Arizona Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame for three years. She left in 2009 and remains on the Advisory Board. Boyle is involved in educating the public about animal rights and runs a dog sanctuary in the East Valley.

Lynne Avril

Lynne Avril

Lynne Avril is a children's book illustrator with over 60 books to her credit. Her latest work appears in the popular new Amelia Bedelia series. She is also a painter and a musician. Avril plays bass in local blues bands and has worked with blues legends like Chico Chism, among others. Avril and her dog Stetson (who appreciates great art) spend their time in a working studio in Phoenix, Arizona.



Dave Cooper

Dave Cooper

Dave Cooper spent his formative years in Chicago and moved to Tempe, Arizona in 1983. He is an alumnus of Arizona State University becoming the first male in his family in four generations to earn a bachelor’s degree. While attending ASU, Dave was an integral character embracing and celebrating the motto of fun and frivolity at Minder Binders Restaurant (15 years).

In other professional endeavors, Dave fulfilled a childhood dream becoming an on-air radio personality in Phoenix with KYOT and KJZZ totaling nine years. Now a fun radio hobby, Dave hosts a daily show on the Internet at www.radiofreephoenix.com. As a writer, Dave contributed a monthly article to his neighborhood newspaper in The Tempe Lakes Community (2003-2008). He has also been an active participant in numerous local philanthropic events since 1991, mostly with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Dave also enjoys live music, playing softball, working out, bicycling, swimming, kayaking, golf, and traveling Arizona.