The Salt Martians (whose name is a winking reference to the nearby Carpinteria Salt Marsh) are a Santa Barbara-based, all-acoustic bluegrass band, established in 2005. Their repertoire ranges from Bill Monroe, Ralph Stanley and Jimmy Martin to Buck Owens, Merle Haggard and the Byrds, always delivered in a driving traditional style.
Texas native Ken Gaston (guitar and lead vocals) provides solid rhythm, a huge list of songs and his winning stage presence. He and native Californians Tim Mullins (banjo, dobro and harmony vocals) and Mike Mullins (mandolin and lead and harmony vocals) first performed together in the mid-seventies at Santa Barbara’s legendary Bluebird Cafe. After some time off to raise families they reunited, along with Santa Barbara hometown boy and rockabilly ace Aaron Douglas (string bass and harmony vocals) to form the Martians.
The Martians have performed at scores of venues over the years, from UCSB’s World Music Series to the Old Time Fiddler’s Convention to the Parkfield Bluegrass Festival and too many weddings and private events to list. The band now has a combined total of over 200 Earth years of performing experience.