Doug Sovern and Stan Bunger on stage with the Eyewitness Blues Band

Photo courtesy Ed Jay

The Eyewitness Blues Band is Back!

KCBS Band Reunites for Charity Gig

KCBS Radio Morning News
October 19, 2018 - 5:00 am

SAN FRANCISCO — When they're not delivering the news on KCBS Radio, reporter Doug Sovern and anchor Stan Bunger have a side hustle as members of the Eyewitness Blues Band, a unit that's shared the stage with true rock legends and a former president. 

The band has been on hiatus for the last few years, but now it’s back, launching the modestly titled "Reunion World Tour."

Granted, the world tour only includes two stops, both in the Bay Area, but reality has never stopped the Eyewitness Blues Band. The AARP-eligible rockers are rehearsing for the Blue Bear School of Music's "Battle of the Brands," an event that raises funds for music education programs at the San Francisco non-profit. Tickets for the October 25 event at The Chapel in San Francisco are $20 for general admission or $75 for a VIP package.

The Eyewitness Blues Band traces its roots to 2006, when then-KCBS Radio and KPIX5 reporter Mike Sugerman recruited several colleagues to form a musical group so they could attend a workshop run by Bandworks in Oakland. Their journey from first rehearsal to a live performance in front of hundreds of people gave Sugerman the material for another of his incomparable feature reports.

From there, the band played countless gigs, blending original lyrics that riffed off the news of the day with covers of popular rock and blues tunes. They somehow found themselves on stage at various times with the Doobie Brothers and former president Bill Clinton. 

But if rock and roll history teaches us anything, it's this: few bands last forever. When Sugerman moved to Brooklyn in 2016, it seemed the Eyewitness Blues Band would be relegated to the rock and roll remainder bin. 

The list of impediments to a reunion seemed long: careers, kids, life itself. But when the call from Blue Bear came, the time seemed right. And when Sugerman agreed to make the cross-country trip, it was a done deal.

As reunion tours go, this is a modest one: the Blue Bear event on October 25 and a set the next night, Friday October 26, at the Octopus Literary Salon in Oakland.  But when asked if more dates might be in the offing, Sovern offers a hint of hope. 

"You never know," he said with an enigmatic smile.​