Song Contest Judges

Marc “Mookie” Kaczor

mookieMarc “Mookie” Kaczor has been heard on the radio waves in southern California as a champion of new music. Mookie has cut his chops as a jock on 91X, the short lived Radio Sophie and currently with FM 94/9. Mookie is also music director of low-power Laguna Beach indie startup station, KX 93.5, playing an expanded indie playlist and playing artists who normally would not get exposure on terrestrial radio. Look for the Unsigned Sunday radio show to be popping up in various markets as a nationally syndicated program as well.

Craig Goldy

goldySan Diego native and resident Craig Goldy is best known for serving as DIO’s guitarist for several different stints from 1986 through 2010, appearing on several records and touring the world. He currently counts songwriting and performance contributions to four Gold Records and one Platinum Record with DIO, David Lee Roth, and Giuffria. He recently appeared on an album that went to the top 20 on the Billboard charts, with two Grammy nominations and one Grammy award with Jack Black. In addition to continuing to record and perform with the bands Resurrection Kings, Endangered Species, as well as other projects, Craig is active with Destiny Bridge, a program which enables unsigned artists to fast track their material to music industry executives.

Peter Dyson

Peter DysonA native of England, Peter came to San Diego from the musical town of Austin, Texas in October of 2004. The third owner in Studio West’s forty year history, Peter spearheaded the studio expansion and remodeling project in 2005, determined to bring to fruition his vision of a world-class, fully integrated San Diego based recording studio, comparable to the top facilities in Los Angeles. His thirteen years of professional expertise in strategic business planning, leadership training and human resources for Motorola’s Semiconductor Group in Austin and his passion for music have uniquely equipped Peter to assemble a top notch team of engineers and producers at Studio West, and to identify and develop services to better meet the needs of clients. As a drummer, Peter has played and recorded with bands in both England and Austin, and has a musical taste that is as diverse as the artists who have recorded at Studio West over the years.

Tod Howarth

Tod_HowarthPoint Loma native and resident Tod Howarth is best known for having served as the vocalist/keyboardist/guitarist for Kiss spinoff Frehley’s Comet featuring original guitarist Ace Frehley. Tod’s music career began in the early 1980’s with hard rockers 707. He spent nearly 20 years as the touring keyboard player for Cheap Trick, released 5 solo albums, and provided background vocals, keyboards, and guitar on several major recordings. 2016 saw Tod’s new supergroup Four by Fate release their debut album Relentless to critical acclaim. Tod remains extremely active in the San Diego community, performing at charity events such as Stand Down for veterans and their families.

Steven Ybarra

steven ybarraHouston, Texas born country singer and songwriter Steven Ybarra has captivated and energized crowds across North America with his signature country pop sound. Ybarra’s new single, “Why Would I Do That” has put him on the ballot for multiple Grammy considerations in 2017. His latest album, What I Really Want To Say, debuted in the iTunes Top 100 Country Chart. Ybarra won the Durango Songwriter’s Expo (country category) for the song “Sum of Two Hearts,” his song “Stand” reached the Top 10 on Best Country Radio, and he was awarded four San Diego Music Awards. Ybarra is a member of the Country Music Association and is a recent inductee into the Academy of Country Music. Steven Ybarra tours nationally and has been featured with Eric Church, Darius Rucker, Carrie Underwood, Shania Twain, Gavin DeGraw, and many others.