Heights Music Hop returns, issues call for musicians


Eric Simna
Heights Music Hop Coordinator
216-320-1423 office
216-236-4404 direct

The 2022 Hop is re-expanding to two-nights, as well as making its debut in Noble

What: Heights Music Hop 2022

When: Sept. 9 & 10, 2022

Details: Free

[CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, OHIO, June 1, 2022] – Save the dates for the ninth annual Heights Music Hop festival! The event will take place on the evenings of Friday, Sept. 9, in the Cedar Fairmount Business District and Saturday, Sept. 10, in the Cedar Lee Business District. New this year, the Hop will make its way to the Noble Neighborhood during the Noble Gardener’s Market, 10 a.m. to noon, on Saturday, Sept. 10.

FutureHeights, a nonprofit community development corporation, presents the event to invite visitors to experience new, local music in the vibrant, walkable business districts of Cleveland Heights. Performances will take place both inside area businesses, as well as on outdoor stages throughout the districts.

The 2022 festival will showcase musical talent from around the region.

Musicians and bands interested in performing at the event can access an application at the Heights Music Hop website, www.heightsmusichop.com, and submit it prior to the July 1 deadline. The Heights Music Hop Committee will notify performers that have been selected.

Heights Music Hop 2022 is supported in part by the residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture. Other sponsors and partners include Ohio Arts Council, the city of Cleveland Heights, Cedar Fairmount Special Improvement District, Cedar Lee Special Improvement District, and Heights Observer.


Heights Music Hop Announces New Manager

FutureHeights is proud to announce the selection of a new manager for the 2022 Heights Music Hop festival. Eric Simna, principal of A440 Sound, will lead this year’s planning committee. As the primary sound provider for the festival over the last six years, Eric brings an intimate knowledge of the event to the position. Whether it comes to connecting with business owners, making sure performers are comfortable, or ensuring that the patron experience is top notch, Eric has had a hand in every aspect of the festival. His passion and dedication were evident as he worked to help put together the best festival possible during the Covid-19 pandemic last year. Eric is excited to begin preparations for 2022 and would love feedback from Cleveland Heights business owners. If you have questions, comments or want to get involved, contact him at htsmusichop@gmail.com.

The Buffalo Ryders

The Buffalo Ryders were founded in 2009 in Green Valley, Ohio, by Joe Risdon, a protégé of respected Akron bluesman Mike Lenz. Today, Risdon is joined by drummer Mike Lupica and bassist Kevin McManus, and together the trio recently released the album “Where the Liars Go,” which The Devil Strip described as “A heavy, methodical, lineup of grounded songs that sound best when played loudly,” while The Canton Repository said it “embodies the underground scene ethos – a lean, sonic, unrelenting sonic blast of guitar-heavy, drum-and-bass-anchored alt-rock complimented with moody, purposeful vocals.

Noble Cigar Box Guitar Project

The Noble Cigar Box Guitar Project is a collaboration between Hum & Strum and Noble Neighbors.

We are a group that has come together because of our interest in sharing music. Most of us are members of Hum & Strum (a program with the Cleveland Heights Senior Center) or Noble Neighbors. Some of us are active in both. Though this group is new, as individuals we have been active in community activities with Noble Neighbors and outreach programs to schools and other senior groups.

The project is partially funded by the FutureHeights Neighborhood Mini-Grant program and by The Jennifer Fund.

OPUS 216

Classically trained and unbound by genre, OPUS 216 brings everything from Irish fiddle to Brazilian jazz, to French cafe music, Bach, and more to their performances. In demand across northeast Ohio for performances at public and private events, educational workshops, and recording sessions, OPUS 216 is driven to create performance experiences that are both memorable and evocative.

Kiss Me Deadly

Jen Poland – singer songwriter guitar mandolin
Evan Lieberman – bass and guitar
Matt King – saxophone and keys
Eric Nolletti – drums

We are a female lead local indie rock 4 piece that infuses funk, punk, jazz, and rock with unique stylings of saxophone and mandolin.

Jesse Jukebox

Jesse Friedberg (a.k.a. Jesse Jukebox) is on a mission to inspire children and their parents to be creative, compassionate, free-thinking, and a little bit smarter than he is (which is pretty darn smart). Based out of Cleveland, Ohio, Jesse accomplishes his mission by writing and recording original children’s music. He puts on amusing, thrilling, and interactive live shows that entertain children and grown-ups alike. (Did we mention he is great at talking about himself in third person?)

After graduating from Berklee College of Music, instead of mastering the art of Jazz and shredding guitars, Jesse dedicated his time to writing, recording, and performing fun and catchy children’s music for families.

In 2012, Jesse recorded a children’s album with multi-platinum award-winning producer, Michael Seifert, titled, “Jesse’s Jukebox”. In 2017, he released his follow-up children’s album, “Jesse’s Jukebox: There’s Music Everywhere”. In 2020, he released his third album, “Awesome!”, which he recorded with Grammy award-winning producer, Dean Jones. In 2021, Jesse accepted his invitation to join the Recording Academy. Jesse’s latest album, “Just a Minute”, will be released in early 2022.

Jesse is driven by Rock and Roll, The Blues, Batman, Electric guitars, Silliness, Funky Bass Lines, Pizza, Corny jokes, Loud Drums, The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Banjos, Outer Space, and all things awesome.

Jesse is currently working on getting better at writing about himself. (It’s a slow process.)


C-Level is a high-energy three-piece band with a unique blend of funk, punk, reggae, bluegrass and rock. Their exhilarating sound is driven by the philosophy “Honest Self-Expression is the Path to Good Music” (George F. Hartwig), and that only through music can we surround hate and force it to surrender to the reality of love.

C-level began when Dave (Ziggy) Deitke (guitar, throat) met Coda Crose (bass) at an open mic night in North Olmsted. Upon playing together the two found a sweet sound that could only be produced by their musical union and shared passion for the melding of many diverse musical styles. The two then began to play in various projects around North Ridgeville and Olmsted. One of them being Aberration which featured Dave and Coda both on bass and guitar, periodically during their sets they would switch instruments.

Since 2011 C-Level has been actively playing and recording. C-Level has played everything from house shows, music festivals such as Nelson Ledge’s Winter thaw bash( headlined) Mid-summer samba, Tribal connection, to multiple Cumulus Entertainment raves. Dave Deitke of C-Level leads his mic nights at bars and cafes in cities such as Lakewood, Cleveland, Parma, North Olmsted, Berea, and Olmsted Falls to which he invites C-Level to play at often. C-Level consistently continues to play in all of these types of venues.

Throughout their journey C-Level has gone through a few line change ups as well as gaining a few new members, continually changing and adding a new dynamic. C-Level is Dave Ziggy Deitke guitar and throat, Coda Crose Bass, and Pat Boland Drums.

2020 brought up many challenges for everyone, but despite those difficulties, C-Level found a way to stay busy and help keep their culture and community alive. C-level accomplished this by organizing benefit shows throughout 2020 to support various local venues, galleries, and individuals to ensure the survival of the creative culture that Cleveland has to offer.

The first significant benefit of 2020 that C-Level organized was a week of streamed shows to keep Negative Space (a non-profit art) gallery open. 4-6 artists streamed an hour show from their homes every night of the week. At the end of the week, C-level streamed from Negative Space with Gadi Zamir ( NS founder) as he painted with them during their set. The fundraiser raised over $5000, which was enough to keep the gallery open for the rest of the year.

C-level’s next fundraiser was to support the local venues The Grog Shop and The Beachland Ballroom. To celebrate their 10th anniversary, C-Level hosted a two-night socially distant concert series at The Grog Shop and The Beachland Ballroom. Both nights sold out. C-level donated 100% of the money made from these shows to the venues raising over $4000. Each show featured an array of special guests that significantly impacted the band throughout their musical development.

The last fundraiser C-Level organized during 2020 was the Dog For Diego benefit. Dave Ziggy Deitke is muisc educator at a charter school for kids with autism. One of Dave’s students, Diego, is 11 years old boy battling autism, depression, ADHD, and severe anxiety. Diego and his family were trying to fundraise for a service dog, but were seeing little results. C-level organized a week for streamed shows to promote his Wags-4-Kids campaign. Each night featured four bands live from two venues, the Beachland Ballroom and The Winchester. The shows had socially distant crowds and were streamed on the internet and, together with an art raffle from Negative Space, raised over $9000, getting Diego his service dog and helping other kids with their Wags-4-Kids campaigns.

C-Level is currently in the works on their 4th album, with an estimated release date of 2021.

SpYder Stompers and Sugar Pie

Sheela Das

“Sugar Pie”

Sheela Das is a professional vocalist and instrumentalist of ukulele, penny whistle and washboard who joins the band with her sweet vocals and ukulele finesse.

Raymond DeForest

Ray is an acoustic bass master who performs and teaches jazz, blues, and any style of roots music at Musicologie in Cleveland Heights. He is our SpYder Stomper all star bass vocalist.

Jack DiAlesandro

Jack is a fingerstyle guitar master in the styles of ragtime styles Blind Blake, Rev. Gary Davis and Blind Boy Fuller. He plays the old time banjo, and the country blues style harmonica. Jack works as a professor of Mathematics at Kent State University.

Kevin T. Richards

Kevin plays mandolin, fiddle, and various guitar styles and is the artistic director of a non-profit organization called the Roots of American Music. He has performed at Merlefest and the National Folk Festival. He has been on staff teaching blues guitar at Augusta Heritage Center