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Rider AND Performer 

David Francisco Platillero is a Knoxville Tennessee native who bears his Spanish grandfather's first name, Francisco, as the artist David Francisco. He earned a degree in electrical engineering. A skilled saxophonist, pianist and guitar player, David is a prolific songwriter, music producer, performer and communicator of ideas that inspire. He is signed with Extreme Music, a division of Sony/ATV Music Publishing, and currently lives in Los Angeles.

David is the inspiration for the David Francisco Ride for Hope because of his battle back from a debilitating spinal injury. While riding his bicycle home from his school, The Blackbird Academy in Nashville he was struck by a distracted driver who ran a red light at a busy intersection. David’s injuries included a broken spine, severe lacerations and bruises. It was April 27, 2016, and his life was forever changed. The following year was intense, full-time rehab, where David focused all of his efforts on regaining any possible mobility. His journey is documented in the short film "Back To Blackbird - A Journey of Hope".



Dancer and performer

Originally from the midwest, Kristi Platillero has lived in Southern California since 2009 where she attended the Young Americans Performing Arts College and traveled the world teaching music and dance as part of the Young American Music Outreach Tours. She eventually became  Company Manager for the group handling all the logistics and responsibilities of scheduling and managing tours as well as taking care of cast members overseas. In 2015, Kristi left the road and auditioned for the Entertainment Department at Disneyland and has been performing there as a cast member ever since.

She met David through a mutual friend in 2016, only a few months before his accident.  She wrote him a letter of encouragement and choreographed a dance to one of his songs, trying to give some hope amidst his tragedy.  Because of David's updates on social media, she was able to follow along during his recovery, like so many in his community.  In the fall, David reached out to Kristi because he was going to be in California for the Pensado Awards.  They had coffee and reconnected after meeting each other so many months before.  She joined him and his dad at the Kaboo Festival a few weeks later, where they bonded through conversation and music.  After that weekend, they talked everyday for months, fell in love, and got engaged. Fast forward to February 2018, and they are MARRIED!

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Kevin is a recording engineer, musician, educator, and audio journalist who has worked as a recording engineer for over 25 years, working with the top names in music including Kenny G., Quincy Jones, Michael Bolton, George Benson, George Lynch, and more. An experienced educator, Kevin is currently the co-director and instructor at The Blackbird Academy in Nashville. He has also taught advanced recording at Belmont University, taught surround recording and lectured at the Danish Rhythmic Music Conservatory in Copenhagen, Denmark, and was director of education and instructor at the Conservatory of Recording Arts for over 10 years. Kevin is a journalist who has worked as editors of Pro Audio Review and Audio Media USA magazines and was technical editor of the industry-leading Mix Magazine for 15 years. In 2018, Kevin joined the team of Pro Tools Expert and Production Expert where he is a content creator and reviewer for the growing and prestigious group of recording industry websites.  Kevin is a member of the Country Music Association (CMA), and the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP.)


David Rideau

Mixer, Engineer

Dave is a Grammy winner and four-time Grammy nominee who has been making records and mixing for film and TV for more than twenty years. The Los Angeles based mixer and engineer has earned dozens of gold and platinum records for artists and film soundtracks. Rideau's work has taken him to Europe, Japan, China and Brazil.

His discography includes: Sting, TLC, Janet Jackson, Brenda Russell, Earth Wind and Fire, George Benson, Juan Gabriel, Al Jarreau, Kirk Franklin and Boney James. His film score mixes include the current release “Marshall” (score by Marcus Miller) and his TV music mixing includes HBO's dramatic theme to the boxing series "24/7"


Jeri Palumbo

Jeri Palumbo, Broadcast Sports and Entertainment Mixer, Audio and RF Tech

Jeri has been a broadcast audio mixer and specialist for the past 25 years in Sports and Entertainment. With a current focus on live remote broadcast events, Jeri's work has included the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, NASCAR, SuperBowls, the World Series, the Oscars and more. Entertainment shows have included The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Conan O'Brien, to name a few. She also won a Telly Award for mixing the live bluegrass show “Songs of the Mountains”. Jeri has worn the hats of broadcast engineer/mixer, field audio, RF tech and communications. With a current emphasis in RF Technology, Jeri served on the RF Coordination committee for the NFL, NBA All-Stars and serves in the same capacity for the Rose Bowl every year. Jeri also served on the NFL's Enhanced Audio team (sounds from the field) on it's debut roll-out. Jeri is a member of the Recording Academy, the American Society of Composers Authors and Publishers (ASCAP), and is a writer for Mix Magazine.

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Erik Zobler

Mixer, Mastering engineer

Erik is a Grammy winning Mixer/Mastering/Recording/FOH Engineer-Producer whose credits include George Duke, Miles Davis, Anita Baker, Kenny Loggins, Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston.  He has worked on TV and Films including “The Bourne Supremacy”, “Robots”, “Happy Feet” and “Gigli”.  Erik has worked internationally with artists from Iceland, Denmark, Spain, Brazil, Romania and more.

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Sarah Jones

Content creator/editor

Sarah Jones is a San Francisco Bay Area-based writer, editor and content producer. Over the past 22 years, she’s served as the Editor in Chief of three leading music magazines: Mix, EQ and Electronic Musician. She's currently the live sound editor at Live Design magazine. Sarah is a lifelong musician who is deeply committed to arts advocacy and learning. She’s an elected governor of the San Francisco chapter of the Recording Academy, where she focuses on developing event programming that cultivates the careers of Bay Area music makers.