Roll with the punches

San Antonio jazz star slugs it out with local celebs to benefit musicians

San Antonio jazz star slugs it out with local celebs in boxing benefit

Brent Doc Watkins San Antonio musician
Doc Watkins is pulling no punches when it comes to supporting the local music industry. Photo courtesy of Doc Watkins

COVID-19 is about to take a major blow in San Antonio, thanks to area entertainers, fitness trainers, and restaurateurs duking it out in the boxing ring in support of raising funds for pandemic-stricken musicians.

The Doc Watkins Classic: A Charity Boxing Gala will take place Friday, October 22 at the Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, with the celebrated local pianist and singer himself suiting up for the slugfest, which will include six charity matches to raise funds for local musicians with unpaid medical bills.

Proceeds from the event, which is sponsored by the Tobin Center and Watkins’ own Jazz, TX live jazz club, will benefit the San Antonio Musicians Medical Aid Fund.

“This is an incredible story of local musicians and community leaders coming together to provide much-needed relief for a crucial segment of our community,” says Watkins, noting that San Antonio’s local music community and venues have been hard hit by wide-spread shutdowns during the COVID-19 pandemic. “Our local musicians have faced severe hardships over the past 18 months. This event is a major step towards helping San Antonio’s fantastic local music community.”

Watkins, who says the affair is “going to be nuts” and has been planning the knockout event for nine months alongside a band of local volunteers, will suit up in gloves and gear as part of the three rounds of USA Boxing-sanctioned matches for the event.

Other heavy hitters joining Watkins in the ring include Geronimo Lopez, executive chef and owner of Peruvian-Asian fusion eatery Botika at Pearl; kickboxing trainers Mariah Fulco and Danielle Gary; and Tejano and blues musician Bob Ram of local group Bob Ram and the Rams.  

But the spectacle doesn’t end there, with live music performances also on the bill from Johnny P and the Wiseguys, Vanessa del Fierro, and all-female mariachi group Mariachi Las Coronelas.

Tickets for The Doc Watkins Classic range from $100 to $500 and are available to purchase now at the Tobin Center box office, as well as by calling 210-223-8624 and by emailing