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ig game hunting. That’s what I would equate the work of Michael Cavale and Ryan Stillwater with at Rainmaker Productions. Ever drive by the Fox Theatre and see a Grammy-winning name up there? It happens, and it happens more in a town of our size than in most places — which translates to a better quality of life for all of us, on multiple levels. Michael has a passion for music— good-quality, highly entertaining music — and productions. But there was a time in his life when it was forbidden. A strictly religious stepfather and mother would not allow exploration into rock and roll in the ’70s, “when music was going crazy,” he says. The only music that Michael was permitted to partake in was choral opportunities with the family church. The musical oppression came to a head when he was kicked out of his San Jose home at age 17. He came to Visalia to live with his more openminded father. Here, Michael auditioned in 1970 and was picked up on a national touring rock musical production called “The Late Great Planet Earth.” After his return from the tour, he went to work for his father at Cavale Collection Service. Michael’s passion for his faith and music had not been stifled from his experiences growing up. In 42 L I F E S T Y L E | S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 8

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1979, he found himself married to wife Stephanie. Soon after, they moved to Tulsa, Okla., where they enrolled in school and joined a church. While there, Michael witnessed an a cappella group who performed during the service. After the show, he had one question: “How do you get your gigs?” The group didn’t have a clear answer, and Michael began his promotions journey as he created his own booking agency, specializing in contemporary Christian artists, creating one of the first booking agent genres of its kind. He had early and quick success working with names like Dan Peek, from the ’70s super group America, or Paul McCartney and Wings drummer Joe English. These artists chose to work with Michael when they explored outside-the-group projects. His client list began to grow and this made other production companies take note, so much that one, First Artists Management, bought Michael out. Michael continued to work for his company for a couple of years, however, the couple made their way back to Visalia in the early ’80s. Michael continued as a booking agent, as well as picking up a position as an insurance agent, something he just retired from this past year. Along the way, in 1993, he

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decided to take his passion to the next level, beginning work as a promoter. The reason he wanted to do that was about his children and, in a way, it was about us, the residents of Visalia. “There was a lot of bad music out there,” Michael says of what was being offered in Visalia at the time. “I wanted my kids to see good, positive bands – quality music in message and performance.” Michael backed up his desires to share positive music with his family and town. He brought in contemporary Christian acts such as world-known Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith. He brought in Christian pop bands, such as the News Boys and Mercy Me. A popular group by the name DC Talk sold out the Convention Center. Mike contacted the manager and proposed that a matinee be added. The manager agreed to the request and the second show was also sold out. In 2004, something big happened, a shift in Michael’s focus, again based on a move to honor his family. The collections company that Michael’s father, Frank, founded was turning 50; the company president told him that she wanted to do something special to mark the occasion and honor the memory of Frank Cavale. Michael knew what he wanted to do, even though those he proposed his idea

Profile for Lifestyle Magazine

Lifestyle Magazine - September 2018  

Lifestyle Magazine - September 2018

Lifestyle Magazine - September 2018  

Lifestyle Magazine - September 2018