@ Palm Canyon Road House Friday, November 7th 8:30-1:00 am

By Lisa Morgan

Blue is the color of the ribbon that stands for prostate cancer. Blues is the music genre that three of the best rocking blues bands in the valley will be playing for you stubborn guys who might be putting off that doctor visit. Voodoo Hustlers, The Bone Thumpers and The Mighty Delta Tones are all getting together to let you know that prostate cancer is easy to check and even easier to live through, with early detection. Two of the musicians can testify to this, as they are LIVING PROOF that there is life after prostate cancer.

Ernie Orta, well known throughout the valley as one our best local guitar players, is most widely recognized as the lead guitar player for the power blues trio, Voodoo Hustlers. This is something he was not able to enjoy as much prior to his diagnosis and having his prostate removed:

“In 2006, I thought I had a kidney stone. The pain was excruciating and I had to urinate almost every 5 minutes. It interfered with everything, even my job. I was diagnosed by my first doctor with prostatitis. I was put on Flomax for about two years until things started getting worse. In 2012, after changing doctors, and with PSA levels (prostate-specific-antigens) between 12-13, (normal is between .1 and 3, but can vary) my new doctor ordered a biopsy to be done and I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. I had robotic surgery to remove my prostate about two months later. Afterwards, everything was so much better. I didn’t have to go to the bathroom constantly and the excruciating pain was gone. It turns out my prostate was the size of a baseball when it’s supposed to be the size of a walnut. My whole world got better.” Ernie was 49 when he was diagnosed, a bit young statistically speaking.

Ernie and his fellow bandmates, drummer Jeff Boaz and singer/bass player, David Reese, make up the popular local rocking blues band, Voodoo Hustlers. Over the last few years they’ve opened for the great, Terry Reid, played shows throughout the low and high desert and will be sharing the stage with none other than Freddy Fender, Jr., November 15th, at the American Legion. “Guys are just stubborn,” shared Ernie. “They don’t want to face going into the doctor. That’s why I wanted to do this, to raise awareness. Prostate cancer affects men very much to the extreme that breast cancer affects women, and both can kill you. But with early detection, life goes on.”

Glenn Woods, bass player for local blues band, Bone Thumpers, shared a very similar experience: “I went to a gastroenterologist because I was dealing with some pretty severe acid reflux. While checking me out, they took a blood test. My stomach turned out to be fine. The doctor just said to back off the spicy foods. But my PSA levels were between 12 and 13. It was off the chart! The first biopsy didn’t show cancer, but my doctor wanted to keep an eye on it. One year later, the second biopsy showed 2 pre-cancer spots and 1 cancer spot. Due to my age and the aggressiveness of the cancer, the urologist suggested that my prostate be removed. I had seen my mother die of cancer. I knew it was a brutal disease. In February of this year, my prostate was removed robotically. I still have a ways to go in recovery, but there is no trace of the cancer.”

At 53 years old, Glenn and his band, Bone Thumpers, play regularly throughout the valley and has a very loyal, local following. Glenn is also the owner of a successful, local business, Santa Rosa Stone. “My friends tease me all the time; between the band and my business, I guess you could say I’m into “rock” more than the average guy.” Thanks to early prostate cancer detection and treatment, it’s pretty safe to say that Glenn will rock on for many more years to come.

Ernie and Glenn and three great bands will be raising money for the awareness of and the fight against Prostate Cancer. The suggested donation at the door is $10. Raffle drawings will include a his and hers guitar give away. The bands scheduled to rock the Palm Canyon Road House Friday, November 7th are three of the best local bands around and are a guarantee that you will have an incredible night of fun, dancing away the blues and ultimately, the threat of prostate cancer taking the life of someone you love.

Location: Palm Canyon Road House 535 South Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs (760) 327-4080
Time: 8:30 pm – 1 am
Donation: $10

Related links:
Voodoo Hustlers – www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001595855537
The Bone Thumpers – www.facebook.com/pages/Bonethumpers/494373353938119
The Mighty Delta Tones – www.facebook.com/pages/The-Mighty-Delta-Tones/129861778279
Palm Canyon Road House – www.facebook.com/pages/Palm-Canyon-Roadhouse/116396305049240

For more information about prostate cancer: