king louie & sean holmes


BAND BIO--Organist “King Louie” Pain and vocalist Sean Holmes both moved to Portland from the San Francisco Bay Area in 1986, but they didn’t cross paths in either music scene until one afternoon in 2010 at Portland’s Waterfront Blues Festival.  The two got in a casual conversation that day and discovered that they shared a home town.  But it also turned out that Sean’s mother—vocalist/violinist Carol Stallings—had gone to high school with Louis’ singer/songwriter brother Duncan, and that Duncan and Carol had later played with some of the same legendary Bay Area musical artists, including drummer Joe Provost (Maze) and Carol's saxophonist brother Ron "Rev" Stallings!   

Following that conversation at the blues festival, Louis began inviting Sean to be a part of his popular “Portland Soul All-Stars” soul tribute shows at Jimmy Mak’s.  Several years later, Sean returned the favor, including Louis in a Ray Charles tribute set at the Cathedral Park Jazz Festival.  Since then, Louis & Sean have been working together semi-regularly.  This dynamic duo has great fun making music together, and audiences can’t get enough of them—whether they’re playing funky dance music or mellow background sounds!  When the dynamic saxophonist Renato Caranto is added to the mix, the group is dubbed, "The Three Kings."  And when exciting drummer Edwin Coleman III joins the group, they're "The Four Kings!"

SEAN HOLMES—Sean grew up in San Francisco and the Los Angeles area in a family of working musicians – Mom, Dad, uncle, grandfather, cousins.  Sean had some of his first recording sessions with his mom, Carol Stallings, at Hollywood Sound Studio in LA and at the Jackson Family's home studio in Encino, CA.  (Carol recorded and toured with numerous famous artists, including Joe Cocker and Englebert Humperdink.) 

Sean arrived in Portland Fall of 1986 on a basketball scholarship at Concordia College.  He soon traded in his hoop shoes for a choir robe, studied voice, and began working with local musicians.  Sean has worked with many top local and national artists, including Linda Hornbuckle, the Portland Jazz Orchestra, David Byrne & The Oregon Symphony, Bobby Torres, Esperanza Spalding, Obo Addy, Brian Blade, Mel Brown, Thara & Tahira Memory, Liv Warfield, Curtis Salgado, Taj Mahal, Soul Vaccination, 5 Guys Named Moe, Steve Miller, and Jarrod Lawson. 

Sean has appeared at the Mt. Hood Jazz Festival, Cathedral Park Jazz Festival, Rose Festival, The Bite, and the Waterfront Blues Festival. Sean has recorded with Curtis Salgado, Bobby Torres, Gino Vannelli, Randy Porter, and Nu Shooz among others. 

LOUIS "KING LOUIE" PAIN—An Oregon Music Hall of Fame inductee dubbed "Portland's boss of the B-3" by The Oregonian, Louis actually hails from San Francisco, CA. Beginning in the 1970’s, Louis played and recorded with a wide variety of top Bay Area musicians, including members of Tower of Power, the Ray Charles Orchestra, Santana, Steely Dan, the Doobie Bros., the Edwin Hawkins Singers, and B.B. King. 

Since moving north in '86, Louis has continued the trend, working with visiting legends including Martha Reeves, Solomon Burke, Phil Upchurch, and Bernard “Pretty” Purdie, as well as with a “who’s who” of local blues & jazz artists, including Mel Brown, Curtis Salgado, Lloyd Jones, and the late great “Sweet Baby” James Benton, Paul deLay, and Linda Hornbuckle. He’s performed dozens of times at the Safeway Waterfront Blues festival and innumerable times at other NW venues, including approximately 1,500 performances at Portland’s Jimmy Mak’s. 

In the 1990’s, Louis played on and co-produced four Paul deLay Band CDs released on the Evidence Records label. In recent years, he’s produced and performed on a series of critically acclaimed CDs on his own Shoug Records label, including “Rock Me Baby” with vocalist LaRhonda Steele, “Live at Riverhouse Jazz” with a trio of vocalists, and the all-instrumental, all-original release “It’s About Time,” featuring the King Louie Organ Trio. All three CDs received 4-star reviews in Downbeat and were featured in the magazine’s annual “Best Albums of the Year” issues.