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Lap steel virtuoso Patti Maxine is one of the hardest working musicians in Santa Cruz, California.
A session player in constant demand, Patti plays most nights of the week. A musical Swiss army knife, Patti handles a wide variety of styles with ease, sliding gracefully from Hawaiian to swing, from R&B and rock, from blues to jazz and back again.
Patti began her lifelong love affair with Hawaiian music and the lap steel guitar as a young girl in Roanoke, Virginia, studying with lap steel master Elmer Ridenhour, and gigging on weekends. (Ridenhour also mentored Wayne and Jerry Newton.) Before embarking on her successful career as a session player, Patti was best known as a driving force behind "Saddle Up and Boogie", the first “Western Swing” band in Santa Cruz.
She has recorded with dozens of musicians, including folk legend Mary McCaslin, singer/songwriter Jayme Kelly Curtis, Rhan Wilson’s "An Altared Christmas", the Tiki Tones, and Asylum’s Way. She appeared with Freddie Roulette at Colin Alder’s noted “Lapstravaganza” show in Santa Cruz in 2007 and has collaborated with such luminaries as Cyril Pahanui, Eddie Kamae, Patrick Landeza, John Cruz and vocalist Pipa Pinon.
As an educator and social activist, Patti has been a committed teacher and fundraiser for Guitars Not Guns, and has recorded with Richard Salazar to raise funds for local elementary schools.
In addition to session work, Patti is a regular member of the Island Breeze band, and has held down a regular gig for years at the historic Roaring Camp Railroad, where she sings and plays for groups and there on the porch of the general store. After more than 45 years of dedication, there’s no doubt Patti Maxine is the real steel.