IMMUNITY honed its Reggae skills dazzling crowds up and down the West Coast of Michigan in cities like Muskegon, Saugatuck and Kalamazoo. In 1995 they broke onto the Detroit scene by winning the 1995 Detroit Reggae Award categories of Best Stage Presence and Best Guitar.
At the helm of the group is Bill (The Bassist) Koggenhop, Bill is the holder of the 2002, 2000, 1999 and 1998 Detroit Music Awards, Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Instrumentalist award and is also in the Motor City Music Foundation's "Hall of Fame". Bill has been nominated for Outstanding Jazz Instrumentalist in 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2000 and has received nomination for his work with Immunity as Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Songwriter for 1999 and 2000 winning the
award in 2001. Bill has an extensive background in Jazz, Classical, Pop, Rock and Musical Theatre. Bill brings an exciting punch and dazzling style of play to Reggae Bass playing.
The rhythm section of IMMUNITY consists of Detroit's best. Tom (Da Ridim Master) Varga is without a doubt the best Reggae rhythm guitarist in the business today. Tom has won the Detroit Music Awards, Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Songwriter award in 2003 & 2002, Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Vocalist award in 2001 and received nominations for Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Vocalist in 1999 and 2000. He has also been nominated for Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Songwriter for the 1999, 2000, 2001, and 2005 along with Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Instrumentalist in 1999 and 2001. Tom has a powerful singing voice with a background in Rock, Folk and Blues and also plays harmonica and percussion with the band.
Standing in front of the band, and behind the microphone, is Jonathan (The Bald Sponge) Pettus. Jonathan is a native born Detroiter and is totally consumed by the Reggae lifestyle. Jonathan loves hats and you will seldom see him without one (if you are lucky). Jonathan loves long dread locks and military style footware too. Jonathan is often heard to say, "In Smoke and Sensimia". Jonathan is a real clown on stage. (WARNING: Girls, don't believe a thing he tells you!!!)
Drummer Tony (The Pocket) Mitchell, has been nominated for Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Instrumentalist in 1999, 2000, 2003, and 2005 and Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Vocalist in the 1999, 2000 and 2003 Detroit Music Awards and fills out the IMMUNITY rhythm section. Tony is the heartbeat of the rhythm section adding his background of Funk, Rock and Blues to his Reggae interpretations. When you hear him you will swear there are two or three drummers at work on the stage. Tony also adds his outstanding
vocals to the mix.
Lead Guitarist Tom (wah, wah) Wall fills out the band. Tom has the distinction of being the 2001 Detroit Music Awards, Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Instrumentalist and has also been nominated as Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Instrumentalist in 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, and 2005 and Outstanding World/Reggae/Ska Vocalist in the 1998, 1999, 2000 , 2001 and 2002. Tom is truly a Master Entertainer. Tom's Firebrand style of guitar playing and comedic antics will leave you gasping with awe or holding your side from pain of laughter by the end of a performance. Tom brings to the band that word that is synonymous with Reggae: FUN. Tom arranges the harmonies for the band and also plays percussion.
IMMUNITY's hard work and dedication to their craft is obvious. Since 1997 they have received 69 nominations to the Detroit Music Awards. In 2005 they were once again awarded Outstanding Reggae Artist/Group. In 1999, 2000 and 2001 they swept the Awards with wins including Outstanding World Music Recording, for their "Live" CD in 1999 and their "Tu Lively" CD in 2001, along with Outstanding Reggae/Ska Artist/Group in 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2003, Outstanding World Artist/Group and Outstanding World Artist/Group Deserving Wider Recognition in 1999, and in 2000, 2001 and 2002 they were awarded Outstanding Live Performance Group making them Detroit's #1 Live Performance Group three years running.
IMMUNITY's schedule includes concerts, charities, nightclubs, country clubs, universities, private parties, radio and television. IMMUNITY has opened for national acts including The Wailers, Toots and the Maytals, Lonnie Brooks, Mark Farner, The Beach Boys, Paul Revere and the Raiders, Eric Burdon, War, Wilson/Phillips, Dick Wagner, Burning Spear, Koko Taylor, Night Ranger, 10,000 Maniacs, Collective Souls, Billy Mann and has included VIP parties for Jimmy Buffet and Ziggy Marley at Pine Knob and Janet Jackson at Joe Louis. Immunity has also performed for a PBS Special on the band.
IMMUNITY has strong support from a loyal group of fans over a vast area that helps them to promote the group and their appearances.
Let IMMUNITY take you to the heart of the Sun and Fun.
Page Design and Concept by Bill Koggenhop.