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Saturday, April 30, 2016

Adieu April, Welcome May! News, Weekend Events (and Beyond), and More, within...

Here's a nice, full edition with PLENTY of fun options this weekend and way beyond, and other good stuff.

• Interested in your Saturday & Sunday? Check out features 1, 2, 4, 5, & 8.

• Number 3 is about a Saturday deadline to perform at FAR-West in October.

• And features 2, 5, 6, 7, 8, & 9 are about music topics or future events.

Specifically, this is what awaits you here...

1)  26th Annual "DYLANFEST" IS THIS SUNDAY, MAY 1st


3)  DEADLINE for FAR-West Official Showcase Submissions 2016 is SATURDAY, APRIL 30






9)  30th annual "LONG BEACH BAYOU FESTIVAL" coming June 18 & 19, 2016


Let's get started!


# 1 news feature...


Whether you come from the deeply steeped traditions of Folk-Americana, or anyplace else tangent to the Great American Songbook, there's no argument that Bob Dylan is one of our greatest and most prolific songwriters, whose catalog includes more instantly recognizable classics than anyone else's.

And if there's a better annual tribute festival, to any artist, we haven't found it. This event reliably brings wonderful musicians — including top L.A. studio musicians, some prominent touring types fresh off the road, and award-winning top local bands. Numbering more than 60, they meld into ensembles and deliver plenty of panache, artistry and energy to 60 Bob Dylan originals — without a single repeat, all day.

Personally, we're thrilled that two of our seldom-performed favorites are in the program — "The Hour When the Ship Comes In," and "Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again." Plus literally dozens of songs everybody recognizes.

Dylanfest is held in the spacious outdoor courtyard of the Torrance Cultural Center complex (address below). It's under a peripheral, partial canopy, of trees that doesn't block views of the stage. The sound system is excellent. There's plenty of accessible adjacent indoor space where you can find the photo gallery of all 25 past Dylanfests, and cool surroundings if you want them. It has great facilities, good food and libations are available, and a whole lot of fun awaits singing along with dancers costumed as characters from the songs.

We bring you the full story every year, and our first feature this year was more than two months ago. But if you missed all that, tix ARE still available.

Here's the full schedule, right after these LATE DETAILS.

√ Save $5 off the door price with online tix purchase at

√ You can stay for as much or as little of the festival as you like and can come and go as you please (but why would you want to miss anything?)

√ Because of insurance and permit issues, pets or outside food or drink are not allowed at Dylanfest.

√ Cash or credit cards for tickets and merchandise at the show. Food is CASH ONLY.

√ Want to see what's in store for you? Their website has music videos of last year's 25th anniversary Dylanfest. You can watch:
"Queen Jane Approximately"
"Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues"
"Every Grain Of Sand"

All, plus tix and info, at:

DOORS / GATES open at 11:45 am, MUSIC STARTS at 12:30 pm.


(Print or copy into your phone and take it with you)...

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
1) Love Minus Zero/No Limit
2) The Hour When the Ship Comes In
3) Workingman's Blues #2
4) Girl From The North Country, feat. Evyn Charles
5) Emotionally Yours

Uncle John's Band:
6) Up to Me - John Rosenberg

The Batti Family:
7) It Ain't Me Babe

Daniel Leanse:
8) One More Cup of Coffee

Brax Cutchin:
9) Tonight I'll Be Staying Here With You. Steve w/ bass

Catalina Kings:
10) Thunder on the Mountain
11) Cry Awhile

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain: 
12) For Ramona
13) My Back Pages
14) I Shall Be Released
15) Caribbean Wind
16) The Mighty Quinn, feat. Fuzzy Thurston (Craig Gross)
17) Born in Time - Terry Buck
18) Slow Train Comin' - Paul Zollo
19) Watching the River Flow - John Brown
20) You Ain't Goin' Nowhere

Bob Hawkins:
21) One Too Many Mornings

John Hoke w/ Bob Hawkins:
22) Make You Feel My Love

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain: 
23) True Love Tends to Forget
24) Is Your Love in Vain?
25) Senor - Al Diesan
26) Changing of the Guards
27) It's All Over Now, Baby Blue - Renee

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
28) Things Have Changed
29) Every Grain of Sand
30) Tambourine Man w/ John Hoke, Dave Crossland, Andy

31 Leopardskin Pillbox Hat
32) Man of Peace

Dave Leahy:
33) Florida Key
34) Wagon Wheel

Patti Orbeck:
35) I'll Be Your Baby Tonight
36) I Believe in You

Jack of Hearts:
37) Days of 49
38) Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again

Renee / Marty / Andy:
39) With God on Our Side

Hard Rain / Trish Gomez:
40) Subterranean Homesick Blues

Pillow of Wrongness:
41) Positively 4th Street
42) From A Buick Six

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
43) Rainy Day Women

Davey Allen:
44) Maggie's Farm

Dave Crossland - w/ Bob Hawkins:
45) Sad-Eyed Lady of the Lowlands

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
46) Don't Think Twice - Renee
47) Hurricane w/ Jamie Daniels

Karen Nash:
48) I Want You

Bob Malone:
49) Tangled Up In Blue

50) Forever Young
51) Paths of Victory

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
52) Blowin' in the Wind

Scott Gerber:
53) Ballad of a Thin Man

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
54) Chimes of Freedom
55) Knockin on Heaven's Door
56) Blind Willie McTell - Fuzzy Thurston
57) Silvio

Luis Oliart:
58) All Along The Watchtower

Andy & Renee & Hard Rain:
59) Serve Somebody - Renee
60) Like A Rolling Stone- Andy


The Torino Plaza at the Torrence Cultural Center complex, 3330 Civic Center Dr, Torrance 90503. Ample free parking.

Tix (discounted in advance) and more info:


# 2 news feature...


(Notes: (a) shows at the Coffee Gallery Backstage have full write-ups in a SEPARATE feature, and (b) events with individual feature story write-ups — at various venues — are NOT double-listed here.)

and Sat & Sun

√  Annual "ADAMS AVENUE UNPLUGGED FESTIVAL," Sat & Sun, Apr 30 & May 1, noon-10 pm Sat, noon-7 pm Sun, has stages and various performance locations along Adams Avenue in San Diego 92116. With Nathan & Jessie, Patty Hall & Gregory Martin Campbell, Fanny & the Atta Boys, Yale Strom & Hot Pstromi, Bill Dempsey, Jeff Berkley, Joe Rathburn, G Burns Jug Band, Gregory Page, Sara Petite & The Sugar Daddies, Ross Altman, and more.


√  Annual "STAGECOACH FESTIVAL" runs through Sun, May 1, at Empire Polo Club in Indio. Two stages of the best of roots-Americana. Publicized headliners are all Nashville pop-country acts.


√  Annual "New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival" is happening all weekend through May 1st in "the other LA," Louisiana.


√  Annual "BAY AREA STORYTELLING FESTIVAL" Sat & Sun, Apr 30 & May 1, in Northern Cal at the Orinda Community Center, 28 Orinda Way, Orinda 94563.


√  Annual "Spring Concert" by the SCOTTISH FIDDLERS OF LOS ANGELES, Sat, Apr 30, 3:30 pm at the Pasadena Central Library, in the Donald R. Wright Auditorium, 285 E Walnut St, Pasadena 91101.


√  BURNING HEART BLUEGRASS plus CHRIS CERNA & BLUEGRASS REPUBLIC, Sat, Apr 30, 8 pm, at Boulevard Music, 4316 Sepulveda Bl, Culver City 90230; 310-398-2583.


√  "MAY DAY," Sun, May 1, noon, at 11th & Figueroa (near Staples Center / L.A. Live / Grammy Museum), downtown L.A. Not specifically a music event; centers on social activism and a call for action to "protect our families, jobs, and future." Los Angeles County Federation of Labor Central Labor Council is taking part. Info, 213-353-1784.


√  Latin Grammy nom Sandra Sandia plays the "Matinee Kids' Show" Sun, May 1, 11 am, at McCabe's Guitar Shop, 3101 Pico Bl (at 31st St), Santa Monica 90405; 310-828-4497;
Those with little ones will want to catch this show with Sandra Sandia. Sandia performs original Spanish music with her band. Her debut album, "Sandra Sandia," was released in 2008 and was a nominee for the 2010 Latin Grammys in the Children's Music Category. Sandra recently released her second CD,"Alegria," which provides an explosive fusion of Samba, Axe, Cumbia, Bossa Nova, and Funk,creating a joyous musical experience. She brings an eclectic collection of instruments to the stage for a joyous musical vibration. When not on stage, Sandra facilitates drum circles for children and adults (in Spanish and English) as a means to get happy and empower individuals with music. "Con Alegria se gana La Loteria!" ("With happiness you win the lottery!")


√  Live Music Accompanying Classic Silent Film, Sun, May 1, 3 pm, at the Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa. See feature story in this edition.


√  RODNEY CROWELL plays Sun, May 1, 7:30 pm, for the AMSD Concerts Series, in the Laura R. Charles Theater at Sweetwater High School , 2900 Highland Av, National City (San Diego Co.) 91950.


√  Andy & Renee & Hard Rain, Thu, May 5; fresh from Dylanfest (May 1), they play the "Cinco de Mayo" show at Don the Beachcomber in Long Beach. Check for details.


√  "KEITH URBAN: INSIDE THE SONGS OF RIPCORD" is Tue, May 10,  8 pm, at the GRAMMY Museum, 800 W Olympic Bl, L.A. 90015; 213-765-6800. Tix: AmEx card only, now. General on-sale starts Fri, May 6 at noon.
On May 10th, four-time GRAMMY Award winner Keith Urban celebrates the release of his eighth studio recording "RIPCORD," live in the GRAMMY Museum's Clive Davis Theater. The one night only event includes intimate performances and stories behind the writing, producing and recording of Urban's new album. It has already produced Urban's 19th and 20th No. 1 songs, "John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16," "Break On Me." From Pitbull and Nile Rodgers to Carrie Underwood and Dann Huff to Jeff Bhasker, Greg Wells and Busbee, Urban's nearly 18-month journey creating "RIPCORD" has included influential and celebrated musicians. The evening is moderated by Scott Goldman, Vice President of the GRAMMY Foundation and MusiCares.


√  Annual "LOS ANGELES OLD-TIME SOCIAL" runs Thu, May 12-Sat, May 14. Concerts, workshops, dances, in an immersion in the good time roots music that preceded bluegrass.


√  Hard Rain opens for Iron Butterfly at Saint Rocke, May 12. Check for details.


√  "A Conversation With Claudette Robinson And Warren 'Pete' Moore," in conjunction with the opening of "Legends of Motown: Celebrating The Miracles," is Fri, May 13, 7:30 pm, at the GRAMMY Museum, 800 W Olympic Bl, L.A. 90015; 213-765-6800. Tix avail. now.
The GRAMMY Museum welcomes "First Lady of Motown" Claudette Robinson and fellow founding member of The Miracles, Warren "Pete" Moore, to the Clive Davis Theater for an intimate conversation surrounding the enduring legacy of "Motown and The Miracles," moderated by GRAMMY Museum Curator Nwaka Onwusa.


√  "The Art of Singing," Sat, May 14, 3 pm, in the Recital Hall (Music Building) at L.A. Valley College. Tix, $10, at 818-517-4102;  seating is limited. It's a rare opportunity to see a true international operatic star conduct a Master Class in vocal technique and style with five up-and-coming young singers. Renowned mezzo-soprano Milena Kitic, most recently seen in L.A. Opera's recent production of "Madama Butterfly," is the special guest master teacher. More:


√  Annual "TOPANGA BANJO•FIDDLE CONTEST & FOLK FESTIVAL" Sun, May 15, at Paramount Ranch in Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, near Agoura. The best one-day folk fest anywhere. Full info at:


√  "Confronting Progressive Politics & the Black and Brown Vote" is not music but an L.A. Progressive Forum, Mon, May 16, 7-9 pm, at Ward AME Church, 1177 W 25th St, Los Angeles. FREE with RSVP to:
Topic: "An alliance of progressive voters across racial lines would be a political force to be reckoned with but a vacuum exists between social movements and electoral politics. Why?"
Speakers / panelists: Melina Abdullah, Chair, Pan-African Studies Department at Cal State L.A.; Black Lives Matter; Erin Aubry Kaplan, Journalist, Author of "I Heart Obama;" Mark-Anthony Johnson, Dignity & Power Now; Unai Montes-Irueste, SEIU and ACLU SoCal; Sharon Kyle, Moderator, Professor of Law, People’s College of Law, and Publisher, LA Progressive. Sponsors - Beautiful Trouble, LA Progressive, Ward AME Church.
Info: Dick & Sharon at
or phone, 213-434-4643; or Chelsea Lee Byers at


√  12th annual "MusiCares MAP Fund® Tribute Concert Honoring GRAMMY® winner Smokey Robinson" at The Novo (formally Club Nokia) in Los Angeles, is May 19. Proceeds benefit the MusiCares MAP Fund, which provides members of the music community access to addiction recovery treatment regardless of their financial situation. Performers include Tamar Braxton, Backstreet Boys, El DeBarge, Kem, Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds, and Cee Lo Green. Robinson will give a closing performance. Cedric the Entertainer hosts the event. Tix now available at 213-765-6800.


√  "The Delight of Light Opera" on Sat, May 21, two performances, 2 & 7 pm, at L.A. Valley College's Main Stage Theatre, 5800 Fulton Av, Valley Glen. Tix at 818-517-4102; $25 gen'l, $15 for students and seniors (open seating).  Center Stage Opera and The Valley Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Dr. Michael Arshagouni, team-up to present highlights from FOUR all-time favorites of operetta: Gilbert & Sullivan's "The Mikado" and "The Pirates Of Penzance," Strauss' "Die Fledermaus," and Lehar's "The Merry Widow."


√  Annual "CLAREMONT FOLK FESTIVAL" Sun, May 22, is already SOLD-OUT.


√  "An Evening of Sacred Music with Annmarie Soul" is May 22, 7 pm, at Yoga Desa, 120 N Topanga Canyon Bl, Topanga. Tix, $15 adv., $20 at door. Adv. tix: It's a warm spring evening of music in beautiful Topanga Canyon, and she is joined by David Bergeaud, Steve Postell, Nacho Arimany, Idan Meyer, Marla Leigh Goldstein and addt'l musicians.  More:


# 3 news feature...

DEADLINE for FAR-West Official Showcase Submissions 2016 is SATURDAY, APRIL 30

Saturday, April 30, at 11:59 pm (PDT), applications close to perform at an "Official Showcase" at the Folk Alliance Region-West FAR-West 2016 conference held this coming October in Bellevue, Washington. 

The application e-form, tips for applying successfully, and all the guidelines are on the FAR-West site, at:

Questions? Contact:


# 4 news feature...


An afternoon of action, mystery and romance awaits when organist Dennis James performs the thrilling soundtrack to the 1920 silent movie classic, “The Mark of Zorro” on Sunday, May 1, at 3 pm, in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall in Costa Mesa.

Swashbuckling musical adventures and exciting swordfights explode on screen when this acclaimed organist returns to the home of the Pacific Symphony to re-create the soundtrack to the 1920 silent-film masterpiece.

The groundbreaking film stars the legendary Douglas Fairbanks, Sr., in the double role of Don Diego Vega / Señor Zorro, while the Symphony’s concert organ sets imaginations ablaze and sensations reverberating.

The 4,322 pipes of the mighty “King of Instruments” thunders forth for this special movie matinee. In the skilled hands of James, indescribable sounds emanate from the commanding William J. Gillespie Concert Organ to provide the film’s original score, as the classic movie plays overhead.

Fairbanks biographer Jeffrey Vance writes, “ ‘The Mark of Zorro’ is a landmark, not only in the career of Douglas Fairbanks, but also in the development of the action adventure film.”

“Silent films were never meant to be presented silently,” says the organist, James, currently the living embodiment of the silent-film/music tradition.

“From the beginning of the motion picture era at the turn of the 20th century, music was an expected element of the presentation, whether supplied by pianist, organist or band," he adds.

“The Mark of Zorro,” a nearly century-old film starring Fairbanks as the bumbling Vega, son of wealthy ranchero Don Alejandro, is set in 19th-century Spanish California (present-day San Juan Capistrano!). Don Diego despises the oppressive colonial government and takes on the masked identity of Señor Zorro to act as a champion of the people. With surprising humor and athleticism, Zorro slashes his trademark “Z” into the faces of his enemies and leads the way for justice for all.

This promises to be a memorable revival.

Tix, $10-$50, at 714-755-5799. More at


# 5 news feature...


McCabe's, that Santa Monica sanctuary for music, has just added some amazing shows. Tix are available now, until sold-out. Which won't take long.

Newly announced first:

√ Two shows with amazing gee-tar slinger Junior Brown on June 3.

√ It's "a night with one-man Brill Building" Dan Bern on June 12.

√ There's virtuosity with the California Guitar Trio on June 24.

√ Rock 'n roll legend Mitch Ryder plays two nights,  July 1 & 2.

√ The great Slaid Cleaves returns on July 9.

√ Americana all-star Jim Lauderdale has been added on July 24.

Previously announced McCabe's schedule:

• Sun, 5/1: Matinee Kids' Show with SANDRA SANDIA, 11 am. $10. Kids under age 2 get in free.

• Fri, 5/6: CRYSTAL BOWERSOX, 8 pm. $25.

• Sat & Sun, 5/7 & 8: ALBERT LEE with special guest Jerry Donahue, 8 pm both nights. $26.50.

• Fri, 5/13: DIRK HAMILTON, 8 pm. $20.

• Sat, 5/14: JANIVA MAGNESS, 8 pm. $25.

• Sun, 5/15: DARRYL PURPOSE plus Paul Zollo, 8 pm. $16.

• Fri, 5/20: THE DUSTBOWL REVIVAL, 8 pm. $20.

• Sat, 5/21: JOSH ROUSE, 8 pm. $25.

• Sun, 5/22: TIM O'BRIEN, 8 pm. $25.

• Sat, 5/28: PHRANC, 8 pm. $20.

• Sun, 5/29: Matinee Kids' Show with PEANUT, 11 am. $10. Kids under age 2 get in free.

• Fri, 6/3: JUNIOR BROWN, 8 & 10 pm. $28.50.

• Sat, 6/4: HAPPY TRAUM presents "Coming Of Age in the Folk Revival," a multimedia event featuring live performance, rare visuals, and personal anecdotes. 8 pm. $20.

• Sun, 6/5: Matinee Kids' Show with PETER ALSOP, 11 am. $10. Kids under age 2 get in free.

• Sat, 6/11: CHARLIE HUNTER TRIO featuring Scott Amendola and Kirk Knuffke, 8 pm. $24.50.

• Sun, 6/12: DAN BERN, 8 pm. $20.

• Fri, 6/17: SARAH JAROSZ, 8 pm. $22.50. SOLD OUT.

• Sat, 6/18: DAN NAVARRO, 8 pm. $20.

• Sun, 6/19: PETER CASE, 8 pm. $22.50.

• Fri, 6/24: CALIFORNIA GUITAR TRIO, 8 pm. $20.

• Sun, 6/26: Matinee Kids' Show with THE HOLLOW TREES, 11 am. $10. Kids under age 2 get in free.

• Fri, 7/1 & Sat, 7/2: MITCH RYDER, 8 pm, both nights. $25.

• Sat, 7/9: SLAID CLEAVES, 8 pm. $25.

• Sun, 7/10: Matinee Kids' Show with MISTA COOKIE JAR, 11 am. $10. Kids under age 2 get in free.

• Sun, 7/24: JIM LAUDERDALE, 8 pm. $20.

It's all at McCabe's Guitar Shop, 3101 Pico Bl (at 31st St), Santa Monica 90405; tix,  310-828-4497 or


# 6 news feature...


In the run-up to the annual "Topanga Banjo•Fiddle Contest & Folk Festival," the Guide is running features on those instruments and people who play them.

Elle King played banjo for a recent "Woodroom Session" — aptly named, since these special musical experiences are held in the Deering Woodroom, where the wood is prepared for use in crafting instruments.

Did you know that the incredibly talented Elle King plays banjo? She performed, armed only with a Sierra model banjo. The Ohio born songstress is emerging as a rising star and has seen great success in the last year, receiving a Grammy nod for her platinum selling track, "Ex's & Oh's." She's created buzz with several prominent performances including "The Tonight Show" with Jimmy Fallon, and on the big festival circuit at Bonaroo and SXSW.

Of course, Deering makes world-class banjos at their Southern California factory in the North San Diego County of Spring Valley. They provided the video in their latest e-newsletter.

Jamie Latty, Deering's Vice President for administration, writes, "Elle is often seen on the road playing her Eagle II Woody (a standard Eagle II without a tone ring) but dropped by the factory to place her order for a very special banjo while in San Diego. While she was here, of course we had to ask if she would like to record a Woodroom Session."

Jamie adds, "Luckily for us, Ms. King is a true pro, and couldn’t have been more gracious with her time," adding that she "picked out a custom Sierra with a pop-on resonator and Kavanjo pick up to play."

You can watch the interview to accompany a song on their site, where they also give you Elle King and a solo rendition of her song, “Good to Be a Man,” all at the same link.

Watch and enjoy at:


# 7 news feature...


It's billed as "Two Epic Journeys in One Night: Vivaldi’s 'The Four Seasons' with Violinist Philippe Quint and Strauss’ 'An Alpine Symphony.'" Two all-time favorite pieces will provide a feast for the ears, while stimulating imaginations with their vivid, arresting beauty.

Pacific Symphony performs one of the most beloved works of the Baroque repertoire, then takes a stunning excursion through the Alps.

First, Vivaldi’s lyrical masterpiece “The Four Seasons,” which paints tantalizing pictures of the changing seasons, is performed and led by award-winning Russian-American violinist Philippe Quint. It's a revel in the celebration of the autumn harvest, the warmth of the winter fire, and the languor of the summer sun, as Vivaldi’s Venetian tour de force unleashes all of the drama and splendor of the Baroque period and the lyrical beauty of the strings.

Then, led by Music Director Carl St. Clair, the Symphony retraces the majestic, musical depiction of a dawn-to-dusk hike up and down the Bavarian Alps, as brought to life by Richard Strauss’ lush, splendid musical descriptions in his fine work, “An Alpine Symphony.”

To illustrate Strauss’ grand masterpiece, each movement is introduced by breathtaking images from acclaimed filmmaker Gregory MacGillivray’s “National Parks Adventure,” marking the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.

Also on the big screen, live image magnification (IMAG) of the musicians performing onstage brings an up-close-and-personal experience of both symphonic pieces.
“Overall, this program celebrates Earth’s nature and its deep influence on composers and their music throughout the ages,” says Maestro St. Clair. He continues, “Vivaldi’s ‘Four Seasons’ is as permanent and important a part of our orchestral repertoire as the seasons themselves are to our daily lives. This far-reaching concerto has become such a rich staple on concert stages.”

The concert runs for three performances, Thursday through Saturday, May 19-21, at 8 pm in the Renée and Henry Segerstrom Concert Hall. A preview talk with Assistant Conductor Roger Kalia begins at 7 pm.

Tix range from $25-$110, at 714-755-5799. More info at:


# 8 news feature...


Show biz veteran Bob Stane is irrepressible, and that's a very good thing. His club, The Coffee Gallery Backstage, is the best intimate acoustic music venue in L.A. Even though it's actually in the highlands above Pasadena, at 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena. Always make reservations or you risk a "sold-out" sign. That's by phone only, 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.

Here's this weekend through next.

• JANET KLEIN & HER PARLOR BOYS, Sat, Apr 30, 7 pm. Tix, $20. 
"Obscure, Naughty and Lovely tunes of the 1910s, 20s & 30s" is a rollicking feast for the ears, eyes and heart. Janet and her distinctive musician pals deliver a bundle of spirited and inspired renditions of cleverly fun but forgotten Tin Pan Alley, early hot jazz, saucy bits and late ragtime gems. Adding to the band's already extensive repertoire these merrymakers zestfully branch into obscure vaudeville and Vitaphone numbers, Hawaiian, Yiddish novelty tunes, French and Italian knock-out ballads.
Bob Stane calls it, "So much fun it should be illegal. And maybe it was once, but now you can enjoy them on a Saturday night. Big Time Merriment."
Check out for tunes and info on their latest CD, "It's The Girl."


• 2 GUYS NAMED BEN, Sun, May 1, 3 pm matinee. Tix, $15.
In the fall of 2014, Ben Townsend, a renowned storyteller and traditional musician from the Appalachian mountain region, and Ben Guzman, a native Angeleno, known for his involvement in the Los Angeles Old Time Social, The Bicycle Kitchen, and Triple Chicken Foot, rode their bicycles across the country, playing music, and filming regional musicians and artists along the way.
2 Guys Named Ben performances blend storytelling, live music, film to take the audience on a multimedia bicycle tour starting in Hampshire County, West Virginia through the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Louisiana Bayou, along the Mexican border, through the southwestern desert, finally landing in Los Angeles. At the end of their journey, they recorded an album of music, "Deep End Sessions Volume 3: Ben Townsend and Friends."
Check 'em out:


• JASON HAWK HARRIS and NATALIE NICOLES, Sun, May 1, 7 pm. Tix, $12.
Young virtuosos, one from THE SHOW PONIES, one from THE WILD REEDS.
Jason Hawk Harris, born and raised in the swampy forests of southeast Texas, is the current guitarist of that outstanding roots outfit, The Show Ponies. His appearance at the Coffee Gallery marks his debut performance as a solo artist. While many modern guitarists regard themselves as emancipated from the “strictures” of classical music, Harris credits Queen for kindling his interest in Bach and Mozart. He couldn’t have predicted what came next: “I went to school for music composition and had planned on going the academic route until I heard a bluegrass guitar solo a week after I graduated and decided I didn't want to do anything else.” When he heard Co-Lead vocalists Andi Carder and Clayton Chaney perform together, he became enamored of their duet Americana sound and traded his electric guitars and Brian May solos for a Martin acoustic and flatpicking lessons with Michael Daves.
NATALIE NICOLES says, "My musical journey began as early as I can remember; feeling, experiencing, and processing through music. I grew up singing, but started experimenting with songwriting in high school. I wasn't quite finding a musical endeavor that was satisfying, and continued my growth into college. In fall of 2010, while at college in Southern California, in a living room full of people singing with us, Branches formed. I am currently part of this amazing musical project and have five wonderful brothers in music to share the journey with. We are SO privileged to travel all over the country to sing with our friends on the road, and thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We can't wait to see where we end up next!"
"Also close to Branches forming, The Wild Reeds began to take shape in December of 2009. Knowing Kinsey since first grade, and singing with her since fifth, it came as no surprise when we found Sharon and happened to form what looked like a band.
"With three-part harmonies that we could feel all the way down to our toes, we set out to be strong women in music, and to bring joy and light into a dark industry. In January of 2013, after three years with The Reeds, I played my final show and decided to step down from The Wild Reeds. I recorded two full length albums, 'Songs for the Morning, Afternoon, and Evening,' and 'Even When The Strong Winds Blow,' with these ladies, as well as a Christmas E.P.
"Lastly, I continue writing songs under my own name, and perform my own material in my free time from touring with Branches. I am excited to say after many attempts at releasing my own recorded solo material, my full length project 'Lucent' has finally been released. It's available on all of the musical internet platforms! I create to make people feel in hopes that these projects fester in the deepest parts of your soul and to warm the smallest cockles of your heart. Thank you for reading, and being part of my story!" —


He is the only guitarist ever to win First Prize in the world's top competitions in both the Classical and Fingerstyle genres; the Guitar Foundation of America International Classical Guitar Competition and the National Fingerstyle Championships at the Walnut Valley Bluegrass Festival in Winfiled, Kansas.
His performances, played on both steel string and classical guitars, include musical styles ranging from blues to Bach to country and beyond.
In the '80s and '90s, Michael proved himself to be one of the world's finest classical guitarists, twice winning the coveted National Endowment for the Arts Solo Recitalist Grant,and taking First Prize in both the Guitar Foundation of America's and the Music Teachers National Association's Guitar Competitions. He also won the Silver Medal in Venezuela's VIII Concurso International de Guitarra "Alirio Diaz".
Check him out: You tube:
This is about the fifth encore for Michael at The Coffee Gallery Backstage. He first came as a college instructor in guitar and well-known prize winner in all the contests that make a difference (see above). He of the shock of hair and foot of bare entertains with the best of string plucking and sly wit.
Recently, he completed a tour of Asia (amongst many world wide). Youthful and fun, he has a delightful style and fills the room.
Again and impossibly, The Coffee Gallery Backstage ensnares the best in the world for you to watch and listen from 6 feet away.
Check out the Web Page and the youtubes. A treasure trove of musical gems.


• WITCHER - RECUPIDO - LEVITT & WITCHER, Sat, May 7, 7 pm. Tix, $18.
That's right, a band name with eleven syllables, two dashes and an ampersand, and those two Witchers are WITCHER BROTHERS. This is Bluegrass at its best, great harmonies, exciting instrumentals and some of the finest original material around. Dennis Witcher, founder of the legendary Los Angeles based bluegrass band The Witcher Brothers, and long time Witcher Brothers band mate and songwriting collaborator Tony Recupido, team up with Banjo stylist extraordinaire Dan Levitt to form this must see, exciting new Los Angeles bluegrass band.
For more that twenty years, Dennis Witcher and Tony Recupido have been mainstays on the West Coast bluegrass circuit. Their amazing songs have touched audiences across the country for years with soul grabbing melodies, lyrics that touch the heart and harmonies that are as close to sibling harmonies as you can get without having the same last name. When you add Tony's amazing work on the guitar and Dennis' distinctive mandolin style, that's a pretty complete act in itself.
BUT WAIT! THERE'S MORE! Dennis and Tony have teamed up with the amazing and innovative banjo stylist Dan Levitt. Having developed and mastered a banjo style he calls “Contemporary Clawhammer” with a melodic frailing style that incorporates elements of bluegrass, ragtime, folk, classical and blues, Dan makes an enormous contribution to the unique sound of the band. And if that's not enough, of course Loren Witcher will be holding everything together on bass and wowing you with an occasional song of his choice. A MUST SEE.


• FORTUNATE SON, with special new star act, THE LICATA BROTHERS doing a 30 minute opening stint, Sun, May 8, 2 pm matinee show. Tix, $20.
Since 1994, Brad Ford has starred as John Fogerty, pioneering the ultimate Creedence Clearwater Revival Tribute, FORTUNATE SON. This show quickly became known as "THE PREMIER" act celebrating the music of CCR & John Fogerty and was recently singled out by AXS-TV’s hit show “World’s Greatest Tribute Bands” for which the band performed their show, live from Hollywood and broadcast to millions of viewers.
The longest-running tribute to CCR, FORTUNATE SON continues to perform across America, Canada, Europe, and Asia rocking rocking fans around the globe with timeless hits like BORN ON THE BAYOU, GREEN RIVER, BAD MOON RISING, LODI, LOOKIN’ OUT MY BACKDOOR, PROUD MARY, CENTERFIELD, HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE RAIN and so many more. Check 'em out: v=1WUtS7e_P84
Bob Stane says: "This is an encore appearance for FORTUNATE SON. A big hit here with the fab Licata Brothers. A great afternoon."


• JIM "KIMO" WEST and KEN EMERSON......A HAWAIIAN FANDANGO, Sun, May 8, 7 pm, tix $20.
Jim Kimo West and Ken Emerson are both living legends in the world of Hawaiian slack key and acoustic steel guitar. They strive for freshness and spontaneity in there duet shows, often performing without a set list or any idea of what comes next. Their diverse musical influences venture beyond the islands toward the land of blues, ragtime and even jazz and both have played on Grammy-winning records. Ken played on the first-ever winner in the Hawaiian category as well as Donald Fagen’s Grammy-winning “Morph The Cat.” His many other touring / recording credits include Jackson Brown, Boz Scaggs, Todd Lundgren, Taj Mahal, Charlie Musselwhite and Elvin Bishop as well as Hawaiian slack key legends Gabby Pahinui, Moe Keale and Raymond Kane.
JIM "KIMO" WEST: Besides his solo slack key career, Kimo is long-time guitarist on CDs and tours for the world’s most famous musical satirist, “Weird Al” Yankovic whose recent CD, “Mandatory Fun” debuted at #1 on the Billboard charts and won the Grammy for Best Comedy Recording.
  Kenton Robert Lopaka Emerson is a San Francisco bay area born/Hawaiian island bred guitarist who covers many musical genres. He has played his special blend of Blues/Jazz Hawaiian guitar for 40 years and running..His original compositions and performances on 'Slack Key Guitar Vol 2' (Palm Records) helped bring in the first ever 2005 GRAMMY award for Hawaiian music. 'KE' most recently played on Donald Fagen's 2007 GRAMMY winning "Morph the Cat" album. Born into a musical family, Ken grew up with his fathers' extensive record collection of jazz, swing, Hawaiian and world music styles. In early 1968 Ken's family moved to Hawaii. Absorbing the Hawaiian culture, Ken and his brother Phil began studying Hawaiian language and music. They learned to emulate the players of the 1920's and ‘30s era by listening to vintage Hawaiian 78 rpm records, zeroing in on the jazz and blues styles of Sol Ho'opi'i and Sol K. Bright. By the mid'70's Ken and Phil were playing alongside such legendary performers as Gabby Pahinui, Genoa Keawe, Raymond Kane, Auntie Alice Namakelua, Sol K. Bright and George Ka'ainapau, and recorded and toured with Moe Keale. In between his love of traditional Hawaiian music, Ken has played and/or toured with many luminaries in the musical world beyond Hawaii including Todd Rundgren, Taj Mahal, Boz Scaggs, Jackson Browne, Donald Fagen, Dave Mason, Charlie Musselwhite, Elvin Bishop, Graham Nash, San Francisco's Grateful Dead members Bob Weir and Bill Kreutzmann, Pablo Cruise Band and The Rowan Brothers. Dividing his time between Kaua'i and San Francisco, Ken plays many local venues and festivals and is a frequent visitor to the east coast of the United States as well as Europe and Asia.
"Emerson writes pieces that update the classic sounds of Hawaiian Slack Key guitar. His unaccompanied songs have an open, relaxing quality to them, moving forward in a gentle rhythm.." ( )  — Jessy Terry, Rolling Stone Magazine.


You owe it to yourself to stay informed about who's playing this venue. Shows can be seven nights a week, plus multiple matinees on weekends.


# 9 news feature...

30th annual "LONG BEACH BAYOU FESTIVAL" coming June 18 & 19

The Long Beach Bayou Festival is a Zydeco,Blues, Creole & Cajun festival chockful of music, food, and fun. Befitting a milestone anniversary, this year's always excellent festival has a strong lineup, featuring Guitar Shorty, Big Jay McNeely, Leroy Thomas & the Zydeco Roadrunners, Leon Hughes' World Famous Coasters, Terry & the Zydeco Bad Boys, The Sai Whatt Band, Mark St Mary Louisiana Blues & Zydeco Band, and more.

There's Cajun & Creole cuisine, dance instruction & continuous dancing, a "Mardi Gras Parade," Watermelon Eating & Crawfish Eating Contests, activities for kids and teens, and more. There's a popular Mardi Gras atmosphere and music everywhere.

It all happens at Rainbow Lagoon Park, (Linden Av & Shoreline Dr), Long Beach, on Saturday, June 18th and Sunday, June 19, 2016. 

Headlining an incredible Blues Stage lineup  Saturday night is legendary guitarist-vocalist Guitar Shorty. Shorty is credited with being an influence to Jimi Hendrix and Buddy Guy.

Setting the stage for Shorty on Saturday are Leon Hughes' World Famous Coasters starring Leon Hughes from the original Coasters - known for classic hits such as "Poison Ivy," "Charlie Brown," and "Yakety Yak."

Headlining the Blues Stage on Sunday is "King of the honkin’, squealin’, bar walkin’, flat-on-his-back Blowin’ (saxophone) tenor men" Big Jay McNeely.

Before McNeely's finale are the popular smooth jazz / R&B outfit, The Sai Whatt Band. Formerly known as "Prime Time," they scored a massive hit with their single "I Owe it to Myself," which went to no. 19 in the US and no. 1 in Europe. Their TV appearances include "American Bandstand" and "Soul Train."

Andy Hill and Renee Safier's Hard Rain brings a roots flavor to the Blues Stage. Their ensemble won "Americana Group of the Year" at the Los Angeles Music Awards in 2007, and they host theday 26th annual "Dylanfest," happening this year on May 1st.

Rounding out the Blues talent is Kenny Sara & the Sounds of New Orleans, with bristling New Orleans Jazz, R&B, and '70s and '80s funk, and William "Soul" Porter & the Porterhouse BJS with their Tribute to B.B King, who bring their blues, jazz and soulful inspiration to celebrate the sound of the "King of the Blues."

The Zydeco Stage features the most popular artists in the Cajun and Zydeco genre.

International Zydeco stars Leroy Thomas & the Zydeco Roadrunners add their own flavor to "old school Zydeco" and have eight CDs to their credit.

Terry & the Zydeco Bad Boys add highly innovative contemporary Zydeco while still respecting tradition.

"The Delta King", Mark St. Mary and His Louisiana Blues & Zydeco Band, bring their infectious, award-winning (Bay Area Blues Society's "Best Zydeco Band" 2007) traditional Louisiana blues and Zydeco sounds.

The stellar lineup includes La Recolte Cajun Band, whose decidedly danceable Cajun styling made them winners for “Best New CD of the Year” at the Annual “Le Cajun Awards 2014." 

The Revelers, the Louisiana supergroup whose tonic of swamp-pop, Cajun, country, blues, and Zydeco was called “Groove bound and dance compelling …” by Offbeat Magazine.

There's J.J. Caillier & the Zydeco Knockouts, whose combination of the Blues styles of Clifton Chenier and the funky Beau Jocque moves everyone.

West Coast favorite Bonne Musique Zydeco draws upon the influences of the blues and New Orleans artists of the '50s, '60s and '70s to create a blend of music designed for dancing.

As always, the large shaded wooden dance floor will be filled all weekend long. The easy dance instruction for all ages is always a popular feature, so even the most inexperienced dancers can join in the fun.

Popular festival traditions continue with a colorful costumed Mardi Gras parade led each day by the New Orleans Traditional Jazz Band,and a delectable French Quarter marketplace with gumbo, crawfish etouffee, jambalaya, hush puppies and other Cajun and Creole delights, plus coffees and desserts such as sweet potato pie, beignets and an array of cobblers. The popular crawfish and watermelon eating contests also return this year.

Children of all ages appreciate the Kids Corner featuring storytelling, sing-a-longs,arts and crafts,magic, and costume and mask making for the Mardi Gras Parade. The Kids Corner also features kids shows and games and activities for older kids are also featured.

Rainbow Lagoon Park is located on the North side of Shoreline Drive, between Shoreline Village Drive and Linden Avenue. Parking is available on the Marina Green Lot across from Rainbow Lagoon Park.

The event is presented by Benoit Entertainment Group. A portion of the profits benefit LALA (Louisiana to Los Angeles), a non-profit organization which raises educational funds for local youth to attend college.

Here's who you'll enjoy each day...


• Leroy Thomas & the Zydeco Roadrunners (Sat,Sun)
• Terry & the Zydeco Bad Boys (Sat,Sun)
• La Recolte Cajun Band (Sat)
• Mark St. Mary's Louisiana Blues & Zydeco Band (Sat)
• Bonne Musique Zydeco (Sat)
• The Revelers (Sun)
• J.J. Caillier & the Zydeco Knockouts (Sun)


• Big Jay McNeely (Sun)
• Guitar Shorty (Sat)
• Leon Hughes' World Famous Coasters (Sat)
• The Sai Whatt Band (Sun)
• Jimmy Hewitt & the Soul Dogg Band featuring Lyrica Garrett (Sat)
• Hard Rain (Sun)
• Kenny Sara & the Sounds of New Orleans (Sat,Sun)
• William "Soul" Porter BJS Band Tribute to B.B. King (Sat)

Plus, there's a "Mardi Gras Parade" each day with New Orleans Traditional Jazz Band, and Dance Instruction throughout the day.

Festival is Sat & Sun, June 18 & 19, 11 am-9:30 pm Sat, 11 am-8 pm Sun. Tix are available now at 562-912-4451, or at Tix: Adults, $25/day-advance, $30/day-gate; Seniors (age 60+) and Students (age 18+) are $20/advance, $30 at the gate; Children age 12 & under are free. Active Duty, Retired and Reservists of the Military are free with current,valid Military ID.


Music news, FESTIVALS, and events are in the UPDATED edition originally published April 16 and available at a separate click.

Much more, soon, on other topics.


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♪ The ACOUSTIC AMERICANA MUSIC GUIDE endeavors to bring you NEWS and views of interest to artists everywhere, more specifically to musicians and the creative community and music makers and fans of acoustic and Folk-Americana music, both traditional and innovative forms. From the deepest roots to today’s acoustic renaissance, that’s our beat. We provide a wealth of resources, including a HUGE catalog of acoustic-friendly venues, and schedules and inside info on FESTIVALS and select performances in Southern California in venues monumentally large and intimately small and cozy. We cover workshops and other events for artists and folks in the music industry, and all kinds o’ things in the world of acoustic and Americana and accessible classical music. From washtub bass to musical spoons to oboe to viola to banjo to squeezebox, from Djangostyle to new-fangled-old-time string band music, from sweet Cajun fiddle to bluegrass and pre-bluegrass Appalachian mountain music to all the roots of the blues and where the music is headed now.
The Acoustic Americana Music Guide. Thanks for sittin' a spell.

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