In the late sixties, Mike Pinera and his group BLUES IMAGE were co-founders and house band at THEE IMAGE, a Miami Beach concert venue they opened and co-headlined on weekends. There Mike performed, met and jammed with such artists as JERRY GARCIA & GRATEFUL DEAD, THE CREAM with ERIC CLAPTON, THE YARDBIRDS with JIMMY PAGE, ERIC BURDON & THE ANIMALS, BLOOD SWEAT & TEARS, FRANK ZAPPA & THE MOTHERS OF INVENTION, JIMI HENDRIX, THE DOORS, JEFFERSON AIRPLANE, TED NUGENT & THE AMBOY DUKES. And many more.
Mike filmed and recorded many of these shows and received clearances to distribute them. He and the BLUES IMAGE later moved to Hollywood California playing local gigs and appeared in the movie PAINT YOUR WAGON with CLINT EASTWOOD.
They soon signed with Atlantic Records where they had a major hit with RIDE CAPTAIN RIDE which Mike co-wrote and sang.
From 1970 – 1972, Mike joined IRON BUTTERFLY. Their hit IN A GADDA DA VIDA stayed on top of the charts for a record-breaking 52 weeks earning them the first Platinum Record Award ever given. Their tours with such bands as LED ZEPPELIN (as the opening band,) THE DOORS, SANTANA, JIMI HENDRIX, THE WHO and others were legendary. Albums which feature Pinera are METAMORPHOSIS, EVOLUTION, BEST OF and LIGHT & HEAVY. Collectively, the IRON BUTTERFLY albums have sold over 50 million. Their song IN A GADDA DA VIDA is in The Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame. It has gone on to sell multi-platinum. They helped to make a new format for music, the contemporary music video. The DVD, IN A GADDA DA VIDA on RHINO RECORDS featuring Pinera singing “BUTTERFLY BLUE” is still a best seller today.
During this time Pinera helped discover and co-produce BLACK OAK ARKANSAS on ATLANTIC RECORDS resulting in a million seller in less than a year, now multi-platinum.
Beginning in 1973, Mike began producing and performing in concert events & tours which he also recorded and filmed for television. Over thirty thousand hours later, he continues to do today.
He and JIMI HENDRIX drummer MITCH MITCHELL formed the band RAMATAM. The group was acclaimed as a cutting edge progressive rock band. The album RAMATAM on Atlantic Records is considered to be a monumental highlight in Progressive Rock history.
Pinera then joined CACTUS. The album NEW CACTUS BAND – SON OF CACTUS, was a mixture of blues and boogie. Tours with TEN YEARS AFTER, EMERSON LAKE & PALMER, ROD STEWART, AEROSMITH and others, sold out stadiums and arenas.
1979 Mike released his first solo album ISLA on Capricorn records and his second, FOREVER on Spector / Capitol. Self-written and produced, he had a hit single with the song GOODNIGHT MY LOVE. Tours with JOURNEY, TED NUGENT, BOB SEGER and others were labeled as “ground-breaking.”
Pinera and and good buddy Nugent turned their nightly jamming at the shows into “THE GUITAR BATTLE OF THE CENTURY.” It was an exciting blend of high energy playing and audience participation. “Kind of like American Idol meets World-Wide Wrestling” jokes Pinera.
In 1980, Mike joined up with long time pal ALICE COOPER. The albums he recorded with Alice were SPECIAL FORCES and ZIPPER CATCHES FLESH. Pinera co-wrote with Alice and helped produce a national TV Special for France called ALICE IN PARIS. He would open some of the sold-out stadium concerts with his own MIKE PINERA BAND then return to play in THE ALICE COOPER BAND.
Throughout the 80s, Pinera began creating and producing his solo concerts for television. Selling CD’s on TV and later DVD’S via infomercials, he helped to create a new way of distributing music to the world via Direct Response TV commercials.
Mike starred and co-produced the first anti-drug Rock Video Documentary, PAINSCAPE, which is still shown in schools today.
He also began producing concert events for non-profit charities including DICK CLARK’S AMERICAN MUSIC FOUNDATION, THE NATURAL HIGH FOUNDATION, HOLLYWOOD & VINE SUBSTANCE ABUSE RECOVERY CENTER and HELP THE CHILDREN.
Mike co-headlined in the THIRTY YEARS OF ROCK AND ROLL tour. This highly successful compilation tour ran for several years playing festivals, fairs, theatres and stadiums. The show included some of the most popular rock acts in history.
Pinera co-produced the show’s Classic Rock Video in 3-D. It also featured for the first time legendary classic artists appearing in film-style music videos with Pinera.
Never before seen videos of Rock & Roll’s all-time biggest selling songs like THE COASTER’S CHARLIE BROWN and YAKETY YAK, THE SURFARIS’ WIPE OUT, HERMAN’S HERMIT’S KIND OF HUSH and MRS. BROWN YOU’VE GOT A LOVELY DAUGHTER, TINY TIM’S TIPTOE THROUGH THE TULIPS, THE MONKEES MICKY DOLENZ doing I’M A BELIEVER along with PINERA performing RIDE CAPTAIN RIDE and IN A GADDA DA VIDA, were captured for the first time with conceptual story lines, all in 3-D VISION.
In 1992, Mike formed the first Classic Rock Supergroup,THE CLASSIC ROCK ALL-STARS. The band included lead singers and stars from RARE EARTH, SUGARLOAF, THE HEADHUNTERS, THE MONKEES, SPENCER DAVIS, and himself.
The first show in Sarasota Florida, produced by Mike and Wally Devlin, also featured THE TEMPTATIONS and was a benefit for Cerebral Palsy. Jamming that night were pals from ALLMAN BROTHERS, MOODY BLUES and AC DC.
THE CLASSIC ROCK ALL-STARS continue to draw the huge crowds today.
The New York Times had this to say:
“Mike Pinera, leading Classic Rock into the 21st Century.”
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