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Thursday, February 14, 2019

Valentine's day! Doin's, Tunality and "Space-aficity"! Feb 14 2019 edition

NOTE: More EVENTS are STILL BEING ADDED, following previous additions for things to do throughout the post-Valentine's weekend... as a certain astronaut toy says, "To infinity -AND BEYOND!"

Yes, we have things you can do, places you can go, with that special someone -- or that date you want to become your special someone. We'll get to all that.

But first we set the mood and offer thoughts that we hope everyone can relate to.

Even the Lonely Hearts Club folks who are tempted to call the zoo, have a cockroach named after their ex, and have it fed to a meerkat... (Yes, you can really do that. But, geez.)

The whole "Anti-Valentine's" catharsis thing? Not thinkin' it's partic'ly healthy. Certainly not the kind of energy to attract a really great person to share your space, anyway.

So let's talk about your space. And our space. And final frontiers. For VALENTINE'S DAY!


Have a heart. The photo montage at left will make sense shortly.

It’s easy to take things for granted in the pace of life in the fast lane (which is more often life in the crawling slow crush hour lane).

Today is the one day a year when It's simply not permissible to take things for granted. Not your sweetie. Not what you can call yours, including your talents and creativity, all the way to the consciousness that makes everything about the uniqueness of YOU possible. Because what you have to offer and to give starts with who you are.

Whatever you have, whatever you give, whatever power is within you to make the world better -- or dream of giving your gift to the world with your song and your art -- it all becomes profound when you have that little epiphany, that moment of "wow!" when you stop taking any of it for granted.

You may not hear anybody else say that. But really now, isn't that the essence of VALENTINE'S DAY? Not Forrest Trump's box of chocolates in a heart-shaped box -- but what it all represents. You may "never know what you're gonna get," but you are here to get it and to give it -- by the box, by the hot-dipped special, or one mystery piece at a time -- and that's pretty daggone special.

Along with not taking each other for granted -- from that special someone, to your circles of friends, your creative associates, and that matrix of new "communities" where we all find solace or outlet -- let's remind ourselves of the big picture.

VALENTINE'S DAY encourages spending money in a claustrophobic context: intimate sexy underwear, lockets and bracelets and rings and blings and gew-gaws and doodads, overpriced cards, and of course, chocolates. Lots of chocolates. Lots of things we can't afford. 

Instead of the things we can't afford to take for granted. 

Did that bring a rush of personal inventory? Good, but we're not there yet. Among the things none of us can afford to take for granted is what ultimately lets us do everything else: the opportunity to just BE HERE. There's the "be" part and there's the "here." We'll go for the "here" in the big picture, the macro -- the nurturing environment of our curiosly unique home planet. No matter how much money that you do or don't have, ya jes' can't afford to take our shared home world -- and the brief time we all have on it -- for granted.

And it's time to have fun with that! 

So sit back and enjoy this sequence of heart-shaped, heart-themed and quite stunning images from space -- and fall in love all over again on Valentine’s Day. (Now you get that heart-art montage, eh?)

One to melt Hank William's cold, cold heart. (The music video is at )
The pic is a frozen heart-shaped lake in high, wild, Patagonia, in an ESA image from space.

ESA -- the European Space Agency -- has been gifting (and GIFF-ing) us with amazing Valentine's images all week. Today they write:

"These few images show Earth’s splendor, reminding us that, from space, there are no borders – just one planet that is home to us all. The images are all like pieces of art and any one would happily grace a wall as a thing of beauty. But, while beautiful, they also show how fragile our natural world is and how vulnerable it is to climate change. Satellites orbiting high above our heads not only deliver amazing views of Earth, but are vital for understanding and monitoring environmental change.

"For Valentine’s Day we hope these images fill you with love for our world and serve as a little reminder that like the others we love in life, our world needs to be cherished and cared for in order for it to thrive."

The video is produced by ESA, where there are some surprisingly artistic dwellers amidst the denizen of scientific inquisitors. The imagery, with its added animated attributes, contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data, and data from ESA and JAXA missions.

Take a moment to watch, enjoy the accompaniment of the nicely chosen piano riff, and -- oh, yeah -- to share with your sweetheart, at:

Or at:



where men aren't from Mars and women aren't from Venus, but all of us want things to go somewhere meaningful...

by Lawrence Wines

Today there's plenty of love for opportunity. That is, following the news that arrived Wednesday that NASA and JPL had officially declared little robotic explorer OPPORTUNITY had "completed its mission."

It was time. No cards. No letters. No emails or tweets or texts. Nothing on Instagram. And dammit, no Valentine. It's been eight months. It was memorable, chiquita, you'll always have a place in our heart. But it's time to move on. We're devoting it all now to satisfying our Curiosity.

After all, you were last responsive to us eight months ago, before you went out with that guy with the brush on his hat and his big ray gun. Even Bugs and Daffy and Tweetie Bird told you he wasn't good for you. But you went. So you two were last seen in that big dust storm. And he coated your solar panels and pulled the wool over your eyes, and like James Taylor's Suzanne, "Just yesterday morning, they let me know you were gone." (Music video at: )

Seriously, there will be unemployment for members of the rover team at JPL. But the mood there is satisfied smiles. There's certainly no cringing, no sense of "the loss of 'opportunity.'" Because the little rover's mission lasted through FIVE-THOUSAND CHARGE CYCLES, and went FOURTEEN YEARS LONGER than expected or than the vehicle's design specs required.

The science returned by the mission enabled researchers, theorists, engineers, cosmologists, exobiologists -- and really, all of us, as the human species -- to frame the first set of informed questions about the nature of life in the universe. And that comes with no small implications about -- let's go ahead and say it -- the meaning of life.

The golf-cart sized OPPORTUNITY and it's twin, SPIRIT, landed on Mars in 2004. SPIRIT lost its cyber life in a sand trap in 2010, like the kid in the Western who rides into the quicksand. OPPORTUNITY persevered another eight years, and shoulda had a banner that said "Planetary Science or Bust," finally going dark in a place named "Perseverance Valley."

You can't just close the lid and call it history.

To the skeptics of revitalizing a REAL space program, we throw-down this challenge: Tell us of anything else that produces such an overwhelmingly lopsided return on the investment of our tax dollars. Huh? Huh? We're waiting. Ya can't, can ya?

There's been soufle-like rhetoric about humans going to Mars since Bush 41, as President, made his famously infamous 1989 "commitment" to going to Mars "sometime next century." That empty challenge followed President Nixon's pulling the plug, in 1971, on NASA's plans, then in place, to put humans on Mars by 1987. Nixon's administration cancelled the final three Apollo lunar missions -- the ones that would have done the most science -- and it scrapped the mighty Saturn V, which made possible any launch of anything big (until years later, when anything heavy and formidable that you wanted to launch had to fit inside the Space Shuttle).

The only thing that survived Tricky Dick's budgetary axe in 1971 was the pair of VIKING landers. On July 4th 1976, in time for America's bicentennial, VIKING 1 became the first to touch-down and return color photographic images, dig trenches, put Martian soil in a little lab designed to detect life, and send a myriad of scientific data from the surface of the Red Planet.

It was decades before a cheap nation with a cheap Congress would fund anything else, and then, little SOJOURNER -- the size of a kid's radio-controlled model car -- landed on Mars. That success-- and a dazzled public opinion -- brought a shoestring of funding. It allowed more robotic missions -- some landed, some crashed or disappeared into the blackness of space.

And some, like little OPPORTUNITY, and the current, Volkswagen-Beetle-sized "Mars Science Laboratory," aka CURIOSITY -- roaming Mars since 2012 -- have exceeded all reasonable expectations, answering questions we didn't previously know enough to ask. CURIOSITY is still exploring and slowly climbing the Martian Mt. Sharp, telling us more about each new place it finds.


The "Mars Science Laboratory," aka CURIOSITY, took a 2018 selfie that required Earthlings to piece-together hundreds of images from a carefully-planned photo shoot.

It's always about money. And who has the clout to put it where. The current administration wants to de-fund Mars exploration yet again, instead putting always-meager NASA resources into returning to the Moon. There are definite commercial connotations, since lunar resources could be economically mined. 


Curiosity has driven so many miles that its wheels are wearing-through. But with no human explorers, there's no pit crew to change the tires. There are plenty of songs about runnin' the wheels off steam locomotives and eighteen-wheelers, so where's the ballad of the Red Planet Rover?

Robert Morgan Fisher has a song about the kid with astronaut dreams, "Don't You Want to Go to Mars." (Music video: ).

The kids who survived the massacre that killed 17 people -- a year ago today -- at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, do not take their survival for granted. As a remarkably unified group, they have invested the past 365 days in making the rest of see something essential and profound in its simplicity. They want, deserve, and are eminently worthy of a future that looks like the future we all once dreamed we would have.

We're at a crossroads. We're pissing away time -- as the planet overheats -- to give tax cuts and free rides for the enrichment of a few who will ultimately share the same fate as the rest of us. It's not just fighting for funding for academically excellent, safe schools and safe streets and a society where all can achieve their dreams without fear. And it's not just fighting for funding for discoveries and exploration and science -- or trying to get the purposefully closed-minded to acknowledge that there is science.

Now there's this whole sudden, new thing about militarization of space. It may bring salivating from purveyors of the warconomy, who see evermore of our tax dollars going to enrich their interests -- with "Space Force" weapons on the Moon, able to zap Earth-orbiting satellites (and leave orbiting debris that takes-out everything else up there). It should scare the hell out of everyone else.

We need a hero.


“History shows us that nations that fail to explore succeed in becoming stagnant. America must explore.” -- Mark Kelly.

Former NASA astronaut MARK KELLY, the gun control advocate married to GABBY GIFFORDS, has announced his candidacy for the US Senate seat held by the late JOHN McCAIN.

You'll recall that Congresswoman Gabby Giffords (D, AZ) suffered brain injuries and nearly died as one of several targets in a mass shooting at a "Congress on Your Corner" event in an Arizona shopping center.

Her astronaut husband has become more politically oriented ever since she had to resign her seat because of her injuries.

What would a SENATOR Mark Kelly mean for the future of NASA, the direction of space exploration, and whether or not there is a military "Space Force"-? A good short read covers that. It will give hope to many:

The very first images of Earth taken by NASA astronauts in the 1960s showed all humanity how seemingly undivided, unwalled, and inescapably fragile our Earth really is. Images continue to be sent back down to us daily, showing the wonders of the cosmos and the ominous and alarming things happening on our own planet that we cannot ignore.

Images taken by astronauts today are necessarily more focused on mining scars, polluted waterways, drought-ridden landscapes, areas that were once dense forests and are now stripped bare by logging or slash-and-burn agriculture or massive wildfire. There's so much more of it than there was to image for those '60s space pioneers. Obscuring palls of smoke choke residents of cities in China and India, and can be seen from space as filthy plumes and fuzzy masses. Astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) add their own personal observations of alarm to the empirical ones from their scientific instruments.

We hear the very human words of concern from astronauts and cosmonauts. They're seeing too many natural systems in trouble. Their reports about environmental degradation frequently post to social media in their own words with the pictures of what they see. In so doing, they drive home an important message, like this one that accompanied a recent image from space:

"Love our planet, because it is the only home we have."


(and a 1st look at your weekend)

Valentine's Concert pick:

Thu, Feb 14:
8 pm -  JAMES LEE STANLEY AND JOHN BATDORF stage a Valentine’s Night return from the "ALL WOOD AND STONES" era, at the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA; Phone for reservations, 10 am-10 pm, 7 days: 626-798-6236.
*  It's all-acoustic reinventions of classic Rolling Stones songs done by two of the dudes that pioneered the reemergence of acoustic music.
*  Sirius XM's Mike Marrone named "All Wood and Stones" the "Recording of the Year." 
*  In addition to this series, James Lee Stanley and John Batdorf have released over 44 solo cds between them.
*  Venue impresario Bob Stane says, "Two fine guitarists giving their all. And they sing and have great wit and humor used without shame.
These guys are the real thing. Really."
*  Tix: $20


ONGOING, Feb 5-Apr 12, FREE:
10 am-5 pm - 27th annual "ART OF MOTION PICTURE COSTUME DESIGN EXHIBITION" (runs Tue-Sat weekly) at the Fashion Institute's FIDM Museum, 919 S Grand Av, Los Angeles, CA 90015
*  FIDM Museum’s annual costume design exhibition is a tradition for L.A. locals and movie lovers alike. It features a variety of film genres that represent outstanding achievement in costume design.
*  There are fan favorites, along with Academy Award® nominees on display in celebration of the dedication and creativity of costume designers and their teams.
*  Modern technology has been applied to creating period costumes, with 3-D printed and laser-cut costumes, and all are explained and interpreted.
*  Admission is FREE.

Thu, Feb 14:
"VALENTINE'S DAY / WEEKEND AT SANTA MONICA PIER," 200 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, CA 90401.
*  If you want to take your sweetie out for an expensive time on the town, you have options to ride light rail or the Big Blue Bus and avoid expensive parking.
*  When you get there, catch the live music from viola player DANIEL MORRIS. You'll want to dip and out of that listening experience; he's near the Ferris wheel.
*  Then, indulge your honey in kinetic adventures: ride the classic 100-year-old MERRY-GO-ROUND; hit Pacific Park for an azimuth spin on the FERRIS WHEEL (there's a funnel cake offer for couples who ride the wheel together); spring for a 50-minute semi-private TRAPEZE LESSON (Feb 14 only!), and work the abs by digesting a Hot Dog on a Stick (just off the pier) and finding the substance behind all the other enticing aromas about that are whispering "grab some eats." There's Bubba Gump Shrimp, old-fashioned seafood at the Albright, and some indoor venues have food and live music. Our readers with certain proclivities can invade the Playland Arcade, too.
*  A full evening here will probably set you back the same amount as two tix to one movie and two big sodas and popcorn.

Feb 14th, and ongoing:
" WESTERN FRONTIERS: STORIES OF FACT AND FICTION," exhibition, plus, "MASTERS OF THE AMERICAN WEST" annual art exhibition and sale, at the Autry Museum of the American West, 4700 Western Heritage Way, Griffith Park, Los Angeles, CA  90027; 323-667-2000;
* We've told you about the annual Western art exhibition, now running, and let you know about the big event when it first opened.
* The new "Western Frontiers" exhibition has just opened. It, says the museum's website,  "illuminates the sweep of American Western history through its definitive artifact: the firearm."
* The museum's regular galleries make for an immersive day all by themselves.
* IF YOU GO ON SUNDAY, FEB 17, you can also catch the monthly "WESTERN MUSIC SHOWCASE," cosponsored by the Western Music Association's California Chapter. It always draws whatever stars of the genre are in town, plus some cowboy poets and a storyteller or two. It's FREE with museum admission, so go when the doors open and spend the day (the museum's cafe rustles-up tasty vittles, so you're set for the day, without or without your cowboy hat.)
*  IF YOU GO ON SAT, FEB 16, there's the "What is a Western? Film Series," screening "The Tall T" (1957), at 1:30 pm in the museum's Wells Fargo Theater.
*  IF YOU HAVEN'T BEEN IN AWHILE... in the most significant renovation since its founding, the Autry Museum opened nearly 20,000 square feet of redesigned indoor and outdoor spaces in Oct, 2016. That brought new temporary and core galleries, an ethnobotanical teaching garden, and an immersive media projection room. The new "California Continued" space explores the ongoing and interdependent relationships between people and the California environment. Drawing on a combination of Native cultural materials, firsthand perspectives, and contemporary artwork, this project connects Native Californian history, traditional ecological knowledge, and cultural practice to address environmental issues facing Californians today.

Runs through April 21:
10 am-5 pm - "POMPEII: THE EXHIBITION" at the Reagan Library, 40 Presidential Dr, Simi Valley, CA, 93065
* Go back in time with this spectacular exhibit to relive the lost world of Ancient Rome. Pompeii was a playground, the Las Vegas of its time. Until the catastrophic eruption of Mount Vesuvius encased all of it -- including its people -- in a deep layer of volcanic ash that fell from the sky like a deadly blizzard.
* When rediscovery of Pompeii came accidentally in the digging of a well, a period ensued of raiding the buried city for treasure. Then, in large measure because of the greedy raiding, much of what became modern archaeology developed to document, understand, and protect the integrity of the lost civilization.
*  This awe-inspiring exhibition features nearly 200 artifacts hidden from view and forgotten for centuries until rediscovered over 250 years ago. "Pompeii: The Exhibition" includes frescoes, mosaics, gladiator helmets, armor, weapons, plates, furniture, jewelry, statues, and more.
*  Plaster casts of people who were buried alive in the ash are included -- the ash encased them, and their presence literally left a void that could be reclaimed by wet plaster.
* A 4-D eruption theater is key interpretive element, allowing visitors to experience the deathly impact Mount Vesuvius had on this ancient city.
*  Make plans to see this while it's here.
* The Reagan library offers over 125,000 square feet of exhibits, so allow a minimum of three to four hours to enjoy all of the galleries and grounds; yes, they do have food.
* TIX to the library through Apr 21 INCLUDE "Pompeii." Save the box office waiting line by buying online -- but you must select the date and time you would like to visit.
General Admission$29; Seniors (age 62+) $26; Youth (age 11-17) $22; Child (age 3-10) $19; Children under age 2 are free; add-on audio tour rental $7; Active US Military service member free with valid Military ID, walk-ups get in without timed ticket.
* Adv Ticket purchase at:
* Free parking; NOTE: GPS / smartphone map users: entrance is off Madera Road, NOT off Tierra Rejada, which does not go through.

Runs through May 12:
"40 YEARS OF ALIEN: 40th ANNIVERSARY EXHIBIT AND FILM SCREENINGS" in the George Lucas Building Lobby, on the University Park Campus of USC, Los Angeles, CA
*  Multiple evenets in a series; Admission to each is free, but require free reservations. Check for schedule of events and reservation information (not yet posted at our press time), at:
In celebration of the 40th anniversary of 20th Century Fox’s Alien (1979), directed by Ridley Scott, the USC School of Cinematic Arts will host an exhibit of props, costumes, models, artwork, designs, merchandise, comics, and ephemera from the Alien franchise. In conjunction with the exhibition, Alien films will be screened throughout the Spring 2019 semester. MORE INFO

Runs Feb 14 through Mar 31 :
Annual "WINTER MUSIC SERIES" at BOSTON COURT THEATRE, 70 N Mentor Av, Pasadena, CA 91106.
* The venue's Winter Music Series features 17 eclectic concerts, including two semi-staged operas in concert, a tribute to Scottish composer THEA MUSGRAVE, son jarocho band LOS CAMBALACHE, and jazz with LAO TIZER.
* Whether you enjoy being the first to experience brand-new music or appreciate the classics, this 2019 music season has fine offerings.
* Series info & tix: BOX OFFICE, 626-683-6801, 11 am-5 pm, Tue-Fri, or online at:

Runs through Sat, Apr 20:
"CHEECH & CHONG: STILL ROLLIN' — CELEBRATING 40 YEARS OF UP IN SMOKE" is a special exhibition at the GRAMMY Museum, 800 W Olympic Bl, Ste. A245 (entrance on Figueroa), L.A., CA; 213-765-6800.
* The exhibit looks at "what made the world fall in love with East L.A. native Richard "Cheech" Marin and Canadian Tommy Chong, while chronicling the development and success of their first feature-length film, 'Up In Smoke.' Items on display will include the original marked-up script from 'Up In Smoke,' the master tape for the soundtrack album, comedy sketches, and selections from Marin's 'Blazing Chicano Guitars' collection, among other items. The selections from Marin's guiar-art collection include Chaz Bojorquez' 'Lester William Polsfus'; Jaime 'GERMS' Zacarias' 'Germtar' and John Valadez' 'Sombrero Hormigas.'" - Do LA.
* Special exhibit included with regular museum admission ticket.

Ongoing, in San Pedro:
"LOST AT SEA: THE EXPLORATIONS OF DR. ROBERT BALLARD" is an exhibition aboard the BATTLESHIP IOWA, docked as a museum in San Pedro, at 250 S Harbor Bl, Los Angeles, CA 90731
*  “Everyone is an explorer. How could you possibly live your life looking at a door and not open it?” – Dr. Robert Ballard, discoverer of the wreck of RMS TITANIC.
*  The exhibit opened Oct 31, 2018 after previews during "Fleet Week."
*  It includes the "Lost at Sea" gallery, "Alpha Romeo Tango (ART)" art gallery, and ship tour expansion that now includes the USS Iowa's capability as a floating city, with a look at the ship's on-board laundry, barbershop, and brig.
*  Battleship IOWA Museum was chosen to launch “Lost at Sea: The Explorations of Dr. Robert Ballard” before it goes elsewhere. Ballard is known the world over for his discovery of the final resting place of the Titanic; yet, he has quested for and found many more vessels whose origins date over the past 2,000 years. Their common fate was that they have been claimed by our oceans and seas. Many lie undisturbed as what Ballard calls “undersea museums,” and these are revealed to visitors aboard the historic USS IOWA.
*  This retrospective is a showcase for the Iowa to highlight many of the world’s most historically noted underwater wrecks, found by the explorer.
* “Lost at Sea: The Explorations of Dr. Robert Ballard” was made possible by a generous grant from the Confidence Foundation and is jointly sponsored by Dr. Robert Ballard, the Port of Los Angeles, Ocean Exploration Trust, and AltaSea.
*  The "Lost at Sea" exhibit is included with General Admission to the Battleship IOWA. Museum ticket office opens daily at 10 am and the last tour ticket is sold at 4 pm. Ticket prices at the box office are $19.95 for ages 12–61. Youth tickets, age 5 – 11, are $11.95. Senior admission (age 62 and over) are $9.95. Children under age 5 are free. General admission for the military (active, retired and U.S. armed forces) on all days other than Nov. 11 are $14.95.
*  Tix and more info:


Fri, Feb 15:
8 pm - "SYD STRAW'S HAPPY HEARTWRECK SHOW" in the famous concert hall in back of McCabe's Guitar Shop, 3101 Pico Bl, Santa Monica CA 90405; 310-828-4497;
*  Vocalist, singer-songwriter, and guitarist SYD STRAW is an enormously gifted musician and unique blend of folk-rock and blues-rock, interlaced with an incredibly dry sense of humor.
*  McCabe's booker tells us, "We are extremely excited to present for the first time ever in L.A., Syd's 'Happy Heartwreck Show.' Whether you're coming to celebrate an anti-Valentine's Day, or because you want a deep sip of heartache, or for the great music, it's going to be a great show. And one that L.A. has never seen before!"
*  Not familiar with Syd? She has a lengthy list of credentials. Syd's first job was singing harmonies for Pat Benatar, but it was when she fronted The Golden Palominos, a band led by Anton Fier, that she truly made a name for herself. Syd has collaborated with Michael Stipe (R.E.M.), John Doe (X), Ry Cooder, Daniel Lanois, Richard Thompson, Marshall Crenshaw, Van Dyke Parks, Dave Alvin, and more.
*  Tix, $20 (only 11 left!) at:


10 am-4 pm - 37th annual "PASADENA BLACK HISTORY PARADE AND FESTIVAL," in Altadena and Pasadena, CA.
*  Begins with the PARADE at 10 am at Metropolitan Baptist Church on Fair Oaks Av & Figueroa St in Altadena; heads south on Fair Oaks Av; terminates at FESTIVAL.
*   FESTIVAL at Pasadena’s Robinson Park, 1081 N Fair Oaks Av, runs noon to 4 pm on the north side of the park. The newly renovated, state-of-the-art Robinson Park Recreation Center will be open during the festival as well.
*  KAJ GOLDBERG, this year’s Celebrity Grand Marshal, is a KTLA Ch5 weatherman, and he predicts "perfect parade weather."
*  Celebrate black history, culture and achievements at one of the biggest and longest-running black history parades in California. More than 80 entries are featured in the parade, with participants from as far as Bakersfield and San Diego. Event features the Wilson Middle School Drum Corps, Miss Black Pasadena, the Wells Fargo Stage Coach, Buffalo Soldiers, the Pasadena City College Band and Herald Trumpeters, musicians, dancers, equestrians, local youth groups, dignitaries, community leaders, and vintage and custom cars. Festival brings "plenty of free post-parade fun and entertainment." This year’s theme is “For the Culture – Celebrating Our Excellence.”

Sat & Sun, Feb 16 & 17, FESTIVAL:
9 am-6 pm - "SCOTSFESTIVAL & INTERNATIONAL HIGHLAND GAMES XXVI" at the Queen Mary Events Park, 1126 Queens Hwy, Long Beach, CA 90802; info & aboard-ship hotel reservations: 877-342-0742
*  Along with the CELTIC MUSIC and dancing, experience the rich culture and history of Scotland through an array of authentic "heavy athletic" competitions, cuisine, and more.
*  The venue uniquely pays homage to the RMS Queen Mary’s Scottish legacy.
*  Whisky tasting sessions with aged malt experts are available for adult festivalgoers.
*  The wee laddies & lassies can take part in the "Wee Highland Games."
*  All can bear witness to "Queen Mary’s Coronation" and take part in knighting ceremonies.
*  A new addition to 2019’s festivities is the "All-American Professional Highland Games," welcoming internationally decorated athletes to compete for titles in competitions.
*  "HEAVY ATHLETICS" you can watch include "Caber Toss" (literally one person throwing a telephone pole end-over-end), "Throwing the Weight" (which is ridiculously heavy), the "Hammer Throw" (weighing as much as a big sledge hammer), "Putting the Shot" (like in the Olympics, but heavier), and the "Sheaf Toss" that's unique to Scottish games.
*  There's all the usual fan-favorite activities -- falconry, sheepherding, axe-throwing, and reenactments, offering guests a happy confrontation with culture at every turn.
*  One important notice: anyone with PTSD, there IS live cannon and musket fire.
*  TIX:

Sat & Sun, Feb 16 & 17; Feb 23; FILM EVENT:
6:30 pm - "OSCAR-NOMINATED SHORTS" presented by the "SAN PEDRO INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL" (SPIFFest) at the Warner Grand, 478 W 6th St, San Pedro, CA 90731.
*  Seeing all of this is a three-evening affair, during which ALL the OSCAR-nominated SHORT FILMS will be screened.
*  "Documentary Short Films" are Feb 16.
*  "Live-Action Short Films" are Feb 17.
*  "Animated Short Films" are Feb 23 (at 7 pm).
*  All are vying for the 2019 Academy Award (OSCAR) to be announced on the TV broadcast on Sun, Mar 24.
*  It's often difficult to find a program with all the contenders in ANY category, and this offering lets you see them in the grand style -- a restored movie palace.
*  A GUIDE "PICK" is the "DOCUMENTARY" night, Feb 16. That very full night presents "Black Sheep," UK, 27 mins; "End Game," USA, 40 mins; "Lifeboat," USA, 40 mins; "A Night at the Garden," USA, a very powerfully ominous 7 mins; "PERIOD. END OF SENTENCE." India, 26 mins.
*  TIX for these three nights only (not for other events at the venue):

7:30 pm - JOHN BATDORF & JAMES LEE STANLEY perform a benefit for "FolkWorks" as this month's "Living Tradition series concert at the Anaheim Downtown Community Center,  250 E. Center St., in Anaheim (in the heart of Orange County). 
*  These two seasoned singer-songwriters each possess decades of musical accomplishments. In 2003, the duo joined forces and produced a CD called “All Wood and Stones.” CD Baby describes it “as if the rolling stones grew up in Southern California and were friends with Crosby, Stills and Nash, this is what their songs would sound like; or if the 'Rubber Soul' Beatles did these Rolling Stones songs, this is what they might sound like.”
*  JOHN BATDORF is a successful film and TV composer, session vocalist, and inspirational musician in the substance recovery community.  His breakthrough moment came as a part of the folk-rock duo, BATDORF & RODNEY. John continues to be a most prolific singer, songwriter, and entertainer and is much sought-after by concert venues throughout the US.
*  JAMES LEE STANLEY has worked as a recording and performing artist since he was fourteen. He has toured consistently returning from the USAF (as a Chinese linguist). He has performed up to 300 dates a year since then, with such diverse acts as Bonnie Raitt, Robin Williams, and Nicolette Larson. James’ remarkable ability as a vocalist and composer allow him to create songs, each recorded with a finely crafted with guitar orchestrations that enhance the lyric.
*  TIX: $18 adv, $20 day of show, cash or check only at the door. Free parking (a very big deal anywhere in Anaheim).

Sat, Feb 16:
7:30 pm - "THE PINK FLOYD CONCERT EXPERIENCE" starring tribute band PINK FLOYD SOUND, at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza, 2100 E Thousand Oaks Bl, Thousand Oaks, CA 91362; Box Office, 805-449-2787.
*  The venue's 2019 season includes the "West Coast Performing Arts Presents" rock tribute series that includes this show; full range of the venue's offerings is on their site:

Sat, Feb 16:
8 pm - TWANGUERO, aka guitarist DIEGO GARCIA, plays the Grand Annex, 434 W 6th St, San Pedro, CA 90731; 310-833-4813;
*  Acoustic guitar master Twanguero "is a journey into the heart of the music," says Rolling Stone Magazine.
*  "Latin Grammy" and Spanish "Goya Award" winner, guitarist Diego Garcia is one of Spain's most active recording artists.
*  He mixes Spanish and American roots music for a driving Latin rock-a-billy twang, reminiscent of Chet Atkins and Les Paul.
*  TIX at phone and website above.
*** COMING UP at the venue:
⊙ ROSE'S PAWN SHOP, plus opener JOSELYN WILKINSON, Fri, Feb 22, 8 pm.
⊙ U2 LAvation, Sat, Feb 23, 8 pm.
⊙ LAS CHIKAS, Fri, Mar 1, 8 pm.
⊙ CHRIS STILLS in a "Special Engagement," Sat, Mar 9, 8 pm.
⊙ CALE FLAMENCO, Fri, Mar 15, 8 pm.
⊙ ADAM LEVY & RICH HINMAN, Fri, Apr 5, 8 pm.
⊙ I SEE HAWKS IN LA,  plus opener PRETTY POLLY,  Sat, Apr 6, 8 pm.
⊙ HOT OCTOBER (Bluegrass / Newgrass), plus opener SHE SINGS, SHE SWINGS, Fri, May 10, 8 pm.
⊙ KIMBERLY FORD: "Music of JONI MITCHELL," Sat, May 11, 8 pm.

Sat, Feb 16:
8 pm - PHRANC plays the famous concert hall in back of McCabe's Guitar Shop, 3101 Pico Bl, Santa Monica CA 90405; 310-828-4497;
*  Phranc introduces herself as “the All-American Jewish Lesbian Folksinger.” Also a visual artist, she has adopted the moniker “The Cardboard Cobbler.”
*  As a teenager, Phranc attended The Feminist Studio Workshop at the Woman’s Building in Los Angeles, where she focused on songwriting and silk-screening.
*  A member of the bands Nervous Gender and Catholic Discipline in the late '70s L.A. punk rock scene, she has gone on to release five albums of original music on Rhino Records, Island Records, Kill Rock Stars, and on her own label Phancy Records.
*  She's toured internationally with acclaimed and notorious artists including The Smiths, Violent Femmes, The Pogues, and Morrissey.
*  Both Phranc’s music and visual work employ humor to raise consciousness, trigger response, and provoke discussion.
*  You can check-out her visual art at the Craig Krull Gallery in Santa Monica.
*  Phranc is currently writing new music and gathering photos from throughout her career to be compiled in a forthcoming book. No doubt you'll comefically hear about that if you attend.
*  Tix:


(Be sure to check above for ongoing events and this weekend's doin's that happen on both Saturday AND Sunday.)

Sun, Feb 17:
10 am - CLINTON DAVIS plays Bird Rock Coffee Roasters, 5627 La Jolla Bl, San Diego, CA 92037

Sun, Feb 17:
3 pm - BROOKS ROBERTSON plays the Third of three dates for the "Lord of the Strings" Concert Series, this one at LCA Wine at SOCO Center, 3303 Hyland Av, Costa Mesa, CA 92626

Sun, Feb 17, on BROADCAST & WEB RADIO:
5 pm - "JACK & THE VOX" being the duo of guitarist JACK MAHER and ukulele star VICTORIA VOX, perform live on KX 93.5 FM from Laguna Beach, CA.
*  Listen ON THE WEB at:

Sun, Feb 17:
7 pm - "JOHN YORK SINGS DYLAN" at the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  Legendary producer and lyricist Kim Fowley says, “John York is the last pure voice of the Silver Sixties to make it intact into the 21st Century”.
*  As a former member of "The Byrds", John is actively mining the deeply resonant connection to the music of Bob Dylan that the Byrds have maintained throughout their career.
*  This show will be a rare solo evening concert of Bob Dylan songs sung by an artist with personal and deep historical connections to the music and muse of our recent and favorite Nobel Prize winner.

Sun, Feb 17:
7 pm - ROSANNE CASH AND BAND play the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (formerly the Valley Performing Arts Center) at CSUN, 18111 Nordhoff St, Northridge, CA 91330; 818-677-3000.

Sun, Feb 17:
7 pm - MURPHY'S CELTIC LEGACY plays the Poway Center for Performing Arts, 15498 Espola Rd, Poway, CA 92064; 858-668-4797.

Sun, Feb 17:
7 pm - CLINTON DAVIS plays Sycamore Den, 3391 Adams Av, San Diego, CA 92116; 619-563-9019;

Sun, Feb 17:
7:30 pm - DAVID BENOIT, Grammy-nominated jazz, classical, and soundtrack composer, performs solo and with a trio, in the “Joanna and Friends” Torrance Pops concert series at James Armstrong Theatre, 3330 Civic Center Dr, Torrance, CA.
*  Benoit has charted over 25 albums since 1980.
*  TIX: $25 general; $15 students and children, at 310-781-7171, or

Sun, Feb 17:
8 pm - JACKSH*T plus HAPPY TRAUM & ADAM TRAUM play the "Sings Like Hell" series at the Lobero Theatre, 33 E Canon Perdido St, Santa Barbara, CA 93101; 805-963-0761.

Sun, Feb 17:
9 pm - OTTMAR LIEBERT & LUNA NEGRA play the Canyon Theatre at Westfield Valencia Town Center, 24201 Valencia Bl, Suite 1351, Santa Clarita, CA 91355

*  The respected non-partisan nonprofit organization "PUBLIC CITIZEN" is teaming-up with dozens of allies to sponsor protests on "PRESIDENTS DAY" Monday.
*  Rallies will take place in more than 200 cities across the country from Homer, Alaska, to Naples, Florida.
*  You can join a demonstration near you, Mon, Feb 18, to protest the Trumpertantrum power grab.
*  Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, says, "Trump's power grab is a full-fledged attack on our democracy. If his actions go unchallenged, it will open the door to almost limitless abuses of presidential and military power, including far-reaching clampdowns on civil liberties and civil rights."
*  Public Citizen has filed a lawsuit to stop the illegal wall.
*  Weissman continues, "...if enough people show their outrage, no matter what the courts and Congress do, Trump will know that he can't simply get away with crying 'emergency' to grab power."
*  Well, Mr. Weissman, here at the Guide, we doubt that much of anything could impart the idea to the individual in question that there's anything he can't get away with. But this isn't about him. It's about the CONSTITUTION.


Mon night-Tue morning, Feb 18 & 19, "LOOK! Up in the sky!"
1 am-7:53 am - "SUPER SNOW MOON" as the full Moon makes its closest approach to Earth and looks 'uge. It peaks at 7:53 am Pacific time, well after sunrise, but it'll look better while It's still dark. It's called the "Snow Moon" when it happens in mid-winter...
* IT'S GOOD ANYTIME AFTER 1 AM MONDAY NIGHT; actual full moon is at 7:53 am.

Tue, Feb 19:
7 pm-9:30 pm - "THE SONGWRITER SERENADE" at Matt Danny's Ale House, 145 E Huntington Dr, Arcadia, CA 91006
* Each week brings different acts. Performers tonight are: CYNTHIA BRANDO, CHARLIE B. ROBERTS, T. DAN HOFSTEDT, NATALIE GELMAN, and performing host J.C. HYKE.
* No cover; venue has full bar and full dinner menu.

Tue, Feb 19, FREE:
 Time tba - "CENTER CIRCLE SPEAKER SERIES" presents bestselling author FARRELL HIRSCH, CEO of the MUCKENTHALER CULTURAL CENTER for the first in an ongoing series of different speakers each time at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center, 1201 West Malvern Av, Fullerton, CA 92833;
*  Farrell says, "I know, that sounds self-serving. But the event is free and there's champagne and snacks."
* Go early and see the "Fullerton Joint Union High School District Student Exhibition" in its limited engagement, Feb 7-Feb 24; (there is stunningly good art in it!)
(All events are 7:30 pm-9:30 pm unless otherwise indicated):
• Mar 7 - "SILENT MOVIE NIGHT" with live music accompaniment.
• Thu, Mar 14 - SLIGO RAGS concert; tix at:
• May 9 - DOC SEVERINSEN SHOW; some new news (just in Sun, Feb 17) -- not only will some of the original "Tonight Show Orchestra" members make a surprise appearance, but there will be a video tribute to Doc created especially for this event.
• Apr 4 - "SPEAKEASY: VOLSTEAD ACT 100th ANNIVERSARY," 7:30-9:30 pm.
• Apr 11 - "AN EVENING ABOARD THE TITANIC," 7:30-9:30 pm.
• Oct 17 - "LACY J. DALTON BENEFIT CONCERT feat. DALE POUNET," 7:30-9:30 pm.
*  Box Office Tue-Fri, noon-4 pm, at 714-738-6595.

Wed, Feb 20:
7 pm - ERNEST TROOST & LISA SANDERS headline, plus special guests RAGS & BONES, at the "Wine & Song" concert series hosted by BRAD COLERICK in the clubhouse at the Arroyo Seco Golf Course, 1055 Lohman Lane, South Pasadena 91030.
*  ERNEST TROOST is an Emmy Award-winning composer for film and television.
*  He is a recipient of the prestigious "Kerrville New Folk" award. His songs linger in your mind like a loving memory or a terrifying nightmare. They are pensive, sometimes snarling, but are always lyrically-driven tunes rooted in character, situation, and narrative. He delivers them with masterful guitar work that perfectly supports the thematic material — perhaps due in part to his background.
*  LISA SANDERS was twice named "San Diego’s Best Acoustic Artist." The Philadelphia native is an electrifying presence whose soulful songs are heart-felt and well-crafted. Her talent has garnered tremendous accolades and earned her opening slots with such artists as Bonnie Raitt, Lucinda Williams, and BB King.
*  The Arroyo Seco Grill (a short step next door) has food and full bar. Or BYOB to the show for a $10 corkage fee.
*  TIX, $12 & $17, at

Wed, Feb 20:
8 pm - "SHANTYMAN FIDDLER:" SIMON SPALDING plays the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  Simon Spalding is a shantyman and fiddler, with a wide repertoire of nautical, historical, and original music. Simon is at home on fiddle, banjo, Chinese erhu, and other instruments.
*  Since the 1970’s, Simon has performed at festivals, museums, and concerts throughout North America and twelve European countries. For years, Simon was a fixture at the Renaissance Pleasure Faires, as a musician and show director. Simon has served as a crew member aboard the sailing vessels Zawisza Czarny, Elissa, Niagara, Pioneer, and others, including trips across the Atlantic and Baltic. A native Californian, Simon now resides in North Carolina.
*   This is a rare Southern California appearance for Simon.
*  TIX $18.

Thu, Feb 21:
There are TWO on Thursday, both LIVE online:
*   1st, at 8:47 am PST, it's "EgyptSat-A," an Earth remote sensing satellite, launching aboard a Soyuz 2.1b launch vehicle into a sun-synchronous orbit from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.  Watch it live at:
*   2nd, at 5:45 pm PST, it's a SpaceX Falcon 9 Block 5 launch with THREE missions: (1) launching the "Nusantaru Satu" communications satellite for an Indonesian company; (2) launching the "Beresheet" robotic Moon lander for Israel (it will launch into orbit, and later use its own engine to go to the Moon, make a soft landing and then a rocket-powered 50-meter hop); (3) launching the "AFRL S5," a small technology demonstration payload, for the US Air Force. It will deploy from the Nusantaru Satu. In addition to the actual mission and scheduled recovery of the first stage, SpaceX will attempt to catch the upper stage's payload fairing in a big net aboard the ship "Mr. Steven." Watch live at:

Thu, Feb 21, FREE:
6:30 pm-8:30 pm - "THE HEART OF BIDDY MASON" is a City of Los Angeles "BLACK HISTORY MONTH" celebration event, with Celebrity Stage Reading and Live Performance at L.A.'s historical monument, The Pico House (across the plaza from Olvera Street), 424 N Main St, Los Angeles, CA 90012.
*  Red Carpet and Reception at 6:30 pm.
*  "Celebrity Reading and Live Performance" at 7:30 pm.
*  Blues singer BARBARA MORRISON and TED LANGE are co-hosts. Sponsors tell us, "Celebrities expected. Space Limited."
*  Bridget "Biddy" Mason (1818-1891) was an African-American Angeleno, a nurse, real estate entrepreneur, philanthropist, and founder of the first African Methodist Episcopal Church in Los Angeles.
*  Did you know that more than half the founding families of Los Angeles were black? Those early Angelenos of African descent had Spanish surnames and were called "Pobladores." All of us share a rich history anchored in the second largest city in our nation.

Thu, Feb 21:
8 pm - BROOKS ROBERTSON: "FINGERPICKING PRO" plays the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  Brooks Robertson doesn't need much more than two thumbs, eight fingers and six strings on a wooden box to carry his listeners away.
*  Brooks utilizes his superb technical abilities to play bass, rhythm and melody simultaneously and surpass the borders of conventional genres.
*  He merges hauntingly beautiful compositions, country rhythms and jazzy harmonies with funky licks into his very own art form – sometimes delivered with a punch, sometimes with a smile.
*  Guitar royalty salutes Brooks Robertson:
• "All guitar players are like Frankensteins. Their music is made out of bits and pieces of other players. In Brooks' case, he's a son of a Frankenchops, the well known monster picker Buster B. Jones. Buster and Brooks are both so scary ... the legend continues.” -- Mason Williams.
• "The solo guitar's future is in good hands with players like Brooks out there!". John Jorgenson.
• "Brooks Robertson has one of the very best techniques in fingerstyle guitar. You can hear the influences of Buster B. Jones, Jerry Reed, and all the great fingerpickers past ... and he's writing some fabulous new material. An amazing guitar player who's showing the rest of us how it's done! Nobody whops Brooks Robertson!” -- Richard Smith.
• "He is slicker than a cat on a greased pole.” -- Nokie Edwards.
• "Brooks Robertson plays like the house is on fire.” -- Thom Bresh.
*  TIX $18.

Fri, Feb 22:
8 pm - ORLEANS plays LPAC, the Lancaster Performing Arts Center, 750 West Lancaster Bl, Lancaster, CA 93534; 661-723-5950.
*  Now entering their 41st year of live performances, Orleans’ numerous hits include “Still the One”, “Dance With Me” and “Love Takes Time.”
* This '70s pop-rock band has produced an impressive body of work, spanning 16 albums and nearly as many DVDs.
*  Co-founder Lance Hoppen, along with long-standing members Lane Hoppen, Fly Amero and Charlie Morgan were recently re-joined by co-founder John Hall, back from his time as a US Congressman. Now, together, they carry on the legacy they began 40 years ago.
*  TIX at

Fri, Feb 22:
8 pm - MICHAEL McGINNIS & FRIENDS play his "Annual Birthday Concert" to celebrate 77 -- at the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  McGINNIS is a member of the Original New Christy Minstrels, and Captain Kangaroo even recorded two of his songs.
*  The "friends" are DAVID P. JACKSON, legendary player of most instruments, hilariously funny, and longtime member of New West; and, elite guitarist STEPHEN GEYER, who has penned a number of chart-breaking songs.
*  Folksinger McGinnis says, "This could be the last one of these for a while, so don’t miss it. Come and share in a joyous evening of music and frivolity."
*  TIX $20.

Sat, Feb 23:
2 pm - GREEN ASHES: "REVOLUTIONARY IRISH-CELTIC TUNES" at the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
* This MATINEE promises depth, range, and brazen musicianship, from a the band whose music is steeped in raw emotion and runs the gamut from fierce rebel songs to soulful ballads.
*  TIX $15.

Sat, Feb 23:
7 pm - INCENDIO: "LATIN GUITAR WORLD FUSION" at the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  Incendio is Jim Stubblefield (guitar), Liza Carbe (bass and guitar), and Jean-Pierre Durand (guitar). For this evening, the group is joined by drummer Tim Curle.
*  TIX $20.

Sat, Feb 23, MARDI GRAS event:
7 pm-11 pm - Annual MARDI GRAS at St. Jerome's with DAVE SOUSA & ZYDECO MUDBUGS with special guest CHAKA KHAN, at St. Jerome Parish Hall, 5560 Thornburg St, Los Angeles CA 90045
*  Tix:
• Early bird before Mon, Feb 11: $35 or two for $60.
• After Feb 11: $45 or two for $80.
• Available at 424-262-6015 or

Sat, Feb 23:
8 pm - Ireland's great LUNASA plays the "PASADENA FOLK MUSIC SOCIETY" concert series in Beckman Institute Auditorium, aka "Little Beckman," at Caltech in Pasadena.
*  A chance to see Lúnasa in a small hall is rare. Here, in this lecture-hall-turned-concert-hall, the seats stairstep up to the back, so all views are good.
*  Tix: $20 adults, $5 for children and Caltech students.  Buy by phone, 10 am-4:30 pm Mon-Fri, at 626-395-4652.  O4 buy any that remain at the door for cash or check (no credit cards at door).
*  TIX are available now for some of the upcoming shows; mark your calendars for:
• There's a FREE show at Pasadena Central Library on Mar 23.
• The series is back at Caltech with CAMBALACHE for Son Jarocho music from Veracruz.
• On Apr 6, it's JAYME STONE'S FOLKLIFE, including MOIRA SMILEY.
• Then the series brings a Friday show on Apr 26 with ROBIN & LINDA WILLIAMS.
*  TIX at Caltech ticket office; details to come.

Sat, Feb 23:
8 pm-10:30 pm - "An Evening With ACOUSTIC ASYLUM" at Four Friends Gallery, 1414 E Thousand Oaks Bl, Thousand Oaks, CA 91301
*  Acoustic Asylum is some of L.A.’s best recording and touring musicians "in an organic setting. No electronic tricks, no stylistic limits… just having fun and making incredible music.   From Swamp Funk, to Jazz, to Klezmer and Tango, to Pastoral Heartfelt Moods and quirky original and covered songs, nothing is off limits!"
*  Led by award winning composer and producer Dan Radlauer on accordion; joined by acclaimed guitarist and band leader, Carl Verheyen (Supertramp); Mark Hollingsworth (one of L.A.'s top woodwinds players) on clarinet and baritone sax; Dave Marotta on bass; John Mader on drums (career spanning from Pat Benatar to the L.A. run of "Hamilton"); the multifaceted Luis Alberto bringing his internatinal sensibilities on violin.
*  TIX:  $30 pre-paid, at:
* $35 at door, if any tix remain.

Sun, Feb 24:
2 pm - FORTUNATE SON: TRIBUTE TO CREEDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL plays the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  Venue impresario, in bringing this MATINEE, Calls this CCR tribute "The Best In The Nation. Returning by popular demand, their own desire, and a thirst for a good cup o’ joe."
*  TIX $20.

Sun, Feb 24:
7 pm - MARC BERGER PERFORMS HIS CRITICALLY-ACCLAIMED ALBUM, “RIDE,” WITH STEVE POSTELL at the Coffee Gallery Backstage, 2029 N Lake Av, Altadena, CA 91001; reservations 10 am-10 pm, 7 days, at 626-798-6236.
*  Marc Berger has performed at Austin’s "SXSW" (South by Southwest) Music Festival, and at the "Kerrville" and "Falcon Ridge" Folk Festivals.
*  He has opened for Bob Dylan and other national acts.
*  TIX $20.

Tue, Feb 26, FILM EVENT:
7 pm - "THE ENGLISH PATIENT," presented by "USC VISIONS AND VOICES: The Arts and Humanities Initiative," in Ray Stark Family Theatre (SCA), on the USC main campus in University Park, 900 W 34th St, Los Angeles, CA 90089
*  In conjunction with the inaugural reading of the Subir and Malini Chowdhury Foundation Distinguished Speaker Series featuring MICHAEL ONDAATJE, the series screens the 1996 adaptation of his novel, "The English Patient."
*  This critically-acclaimed film stars Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche, Willem Dafoe, and Kristin Scott Thomas.
*  It was nominated for twelve OSCARS and won nine, including "Best Picture" and "Best Director."
*  ADMISSION is FREE,  but reservations are required, at:
*  Related Event: "AN EVENING WITH MICHAEL ONDAATJE," in the Subir and Malini Chowdhury Foundation Distinguished Speaker Series, Tue, Mar 5, at 7 pm, in USC's Bovard Auditorium; FREE with a reservation; info / RSVP for that event:

Wed, Feb 27:
7 pm - JODI SIEGEL & NATALIE GELMAN headline, plus special guest MICHAEL McNEVIN, at the "Wine & Song" concert series hosted by BRAD COLERICK in the clubhouse at the Arroyo Seco Golf Course, 1055 Lohman Lane, South Pasadena 91030.
*  The blues are deeply rooted in Chicago native JODI SIEGEL. In the late '80s she relocated to California and eventually landed in the art community of Laguna Beach. She is a wicked slide guitar player with a bluesy, soulful, and mellow vocal style. She has shared the stage with many venerable artists including Albert King, Robben Ford, Kris Kristofferson, and David Lindley.
*  NATALIE GELMAN was raised in a songwriter mecca  — New York’s West Village — where she grew-up amidst artists and true bohemians. At 16, she started writing songs and soon after began busking on subway platforms. Captivating tourists and straphangers alike, Natalie stopped even the most hurried commuters in their tracks with her powerful voice. Often compared to Sheryl Crow, Jewel and Joni Mitchell, Natalie’s music is contemporary and timeless.
*  The Arroyo Seco Grill (a short step next door) has food and full bar. Or BYOB to the show for a $10 corkage fee.
*  TIX, $12 & $17, at

Sat, Mar 2, live on WEB RADIO:
6 pm (PST) - "FOLKSTAGE" from WFMT Chicago, hosts a live performance by STEPHANIE BETTMAN & LUKE HALPIN.
*   WHAT IS "FOLKSTAGE"-? It's one of America's best. About 26 concerts per year are broadcast live from the WFMT studio in front of an audience. The remainder of their concerts are from the show's archives that stretch back 55 years. These include recent recordings made in the Chicago area, live broadcasts from the "Old Town School of Folk Music," or recorded portions of live studio concerts that were not previously broadcast. Note that they NEVER repeat a recorded live show, believing the audience "is entitled to a fresh show every week." Also note, the long-running and very famous Chicago radio show "THE MIDNIGHT SPECIAL" immediately follows "FOLKSTAGE" every Saturday. (What a way to run a radio station... we're envious, Chicago.)
*  BETTMAN & HALPIN... with music that creates a fully acoustic, delightfully eclectic sound far greater than the sum of its parts, Bettman & Halpin play original Folk-Americana. They got their start as resident Southern California musicians. Since their move to Denver and their increasing tours, we don't see much of 'em here. So, live radio is a welcome treat.
*  Their concerts combine high-energy upbeat bluegrass / acoustic roots-inspired compositions, beautiful ballads with soaring vocals and heartfelt lyrics, and groovy feel-good songs. Interspersed between songs and instrumentals, they tell stories.
*  They're known for storytelling and playful banter as well as hooky songwriting, vocal harmonies, and instrumental wizardry. Touring as a duo since 2008, they've incorporated a trio and quartet since 2013. They perform at lots of arts centers in the US and abroad.
*  You'll hear up-tempo down home fiddlin', Stephanie's trademark. They'll deliver soulful sorrowful ballads and hook-laden folk/pop with catchy melodies.
*  Bettman & Halpin have been recognized in various regional and national competitions.

Wed, Mar 6:
7 pm - GREGORY PAGE plus the KAREN TOBIN BAND play this week's "WINE & SONG" concert series hosted by BRAD COLERICK in the clubhouse at the Arroyo Seco Golf Course, 1055 Lohman Lane, South Pasadena 91030.
*  Musician, poet, and filmmaker GREGORY PAGE has a fascinating background. Born in London, his Armenian and Irish parents met while they were on tour with their bands en route to the Middle East. His Irish mother was the lead singer in the all-girl group called the Beat-Chics, who opened multiple concerts for the Beatles in 1965. Gregory’s first concert in London was at the O2 Arena playing an opening set for his pal, Jason Mraz. He has also opened for Bob Dylan and John Prine.
*  Singer-songwriter KAREN TOBIN is a veteran of the Los Angeles country music scene. She was signed to a couple of major record labels and has been compared to such luminaries as Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt. Karen writes from the heart about her life journey. She was recently recognized by "Music Connection" Magazine as one of the their "Top 20 Prospects For 2018." She’ll be joined by multi-instrumentalists GREG KREUGER  and TIM FLEMING.
*  The Arroyo Seco Grill (a short step next door) has food and full bar. Or BYOB to the show for a $10 corkage fee.
*  TIX, $12 & $17, at

Thu, Mar 7:
7:30 pm–9:30 pm - "SILENT MOVIE NIGHT" at the Muckenthaler presents live musical accompaniment by award-winning composer MICHAEL MORTILLA for a screening of the 1926 movie, "MAN TRAP" starring “the It Girl,” CLARA BOW, at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center, 1201 West Malvern Av, Fullerton, CA 92833;
(All events are 7:30 pm-9:30 pm unless otherwise indicated):
• Thu, Mar 14 - SLIGO RAGS concert; tix at:
• May 9 - DOC SEVERINSEN SHOW; some new news (just in Sun, Feb 17) -- not only will some of the original "Tonight Show Orchestra" members make a surprise appearance, but there will be a video tribute to Doc created especially for this event.
• Apr 4 - "SPEAKEASY: VOLSTEAD ACT 100th ANNIVERSARY," 7:30-9:30 pm.
• Apr 11 - "AN EVENING ABOARD THE TITANIC," 7:30-9:30 pm.
• Oct 17 - "LACY J. DALTON BENEFIT CONCERT feat. DALE POUNET," 7:30-9:30 pm.
*  Box Office Tue-Fri, noon-4 pm, at 714-738-6595.

Wed, Mar 13:
7 pm - BLUEGRASS comes to this week's "Wine & Song" concert series with ROSE VALLEY THORNS, plus KYLIE ROTHFIELD, hosted by BRAD COLERICK in the clubhouse at the Arroyo Seco Golf Course, 1055 Lohman Lane, South Pasadena 91030.
*  The ROSE VALLEY THORNS are Joshua Bergmann on mandolin, Jared Bergmann on guitar, and Corey Highberg on upright bass. They are a bluegrass and progressive folk band out of Ventura County. They combine their youthful energy and eclectic musical backgrounds into a modern take on the traditional bluegrass genre.
*  KYLIE ROTHFIELD was on NBC’s "The Voice" in 2016 where she was chosen by Alicia Keys, who coached her throughout the season. Kylie makes a long overdue return to Wine & Song. When one hears her voice, there is no denying the timeless, raw sense of emotion in her delivery. Crafting songs that combine elements of soul, blues and pop, Kylie’s music is honest and expressive. Although her vocal ability is undeniable, she is also an accomplished guitarist.
*  The Arroyo Seco Grill (a short step next door) has food and full bar. Or BYOB to the show for a $10 corkage fee.
*  TIX, $12 & $17, at

Thu, Mar 14
7:30 pm - SLIGO RAGS in concert at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center, 1201 West Malvern Av, Fullerton, CA 92833;
* Tix at:
* Or Box Office Tue-Fri, noon-4 pm, at 714-738-6595.
(All events are 7:30 pm-9:30 pm unless otherwise indicated):
• May 9 - DOC SEVERINSEN SHOW; some new news (just in Sun, Feb 17) -- not only will some of the original "Tonight Show Orchestra" members make a surprise appearance, but there will be a video tribute to Doc created especially for this event.
• Apr 4 - "SPEAKEASY: VOLSTEAD ACT 100th ANNIVERSARY," 7:30-9:30 pm.
• Apr 11 - "AN EVENING ABOARD THE TITANIC," 7:30-9:30 pm.
• Oct 17 - "LACY J. DALTON BENEFIT CONCERT feat. DALE POUNET," 7:30-9:30 pm.
*  Box Office Tue-Fri, noon-4 pm, at 714-738-6595.

Sat, Mar 16:
7:30 pm - PHIL SALAZAR & THE KINFOLK play the "CAMARILLO CAFE CONCERT SERIES" at the Camarillo Community Center, 1605 E Burnley St, Camarillo, CA 93010.
*  NEW MANAGEMENT: inland Ventura County, through Camarillo and across the pass to Thousand Oaks, has faced a lot of challenges and heartbreak with massive wildfires that followed yet another gun massacre in a nightclub. That isn't why Peter Krantz & Becky Glenn retired at the end of last year, but it's part of why, in handing the series to Bob Schetter and Marilyn Owen, things went a couple months without performances. Bob & Marilyn tell us, "We have been working hard ever since to learn the ropes and keep things going at the level you have become accustomed to. One of the changes is a brand new website, with a new URL."
*  Although never an actual dining establishment, the "Camarillo Café" is a long-running, delightful, intimate, smoke-free and alcohol-free coffeehouse-style concert series, monthly except July & Dec, sponsored by the Pleasant Valley Rec & Park District.
*  You'll find their ongoing info at:
With schedules at:
*  There's also their Facebook page (if your devices are infested with the FB spyware that comes with an FB account); that's at:
*   The series' first act of 2019 is Camarillo Café favorite and Southern Cal roots music institution, PHIL SALAZAR and the KINFOLK, in time for St. Patrick's Day.
*  In April, the monthly series presents award-winning San Diego folk duo BERKLEY HART, and in May, it's TOM BALL & KENNY SULTAN. Ahead are SLIGO RAGS, GARY STOCKDALE, SUZIE GLAZE & THE NEW FOLK ENSEMBLE, and a night with DAN CRARY with the CACHE VALLEY DRIFTERS. Finishing up the year, they have LISA RICHARDS, a brilliant new talent visiting the US from Australia.
*  TONIGHT'S SHOW: as the bookers say, "We hardly need to introduce them to this audience, but in case you are new to the community, Phil and his band have been performing and recording for over 30 years. Their signature style blends bluegrass, country, pop, rock, jazz, and blues in a way no one else can. Last year's show was sold out, with latecomers banging on the doors to get in! Yep, they are local superstars. You can't help but tap your toes, dance in your seat, and have a good time when Phil and the band are on stage." The Guide heartily concurs.
*  Doors at 7 pm for the best seats.
*  TIX $25 at the door, no advance sales. Be early to get in; it'll sell-out!

Yes, Virginia, there's much more ahead, and we have more coming for you about all those things. But this'll get you through hearts-and-flowers (and chocolates) day and your post Valentine's weekend.

Of course, getting through Valentine's Day (or your late celebration of it on the weekend) is something of a big deal. Hearts-and-flowers (and chocolates) time being when we can't afford to take anyone (or anything) for granted. Not if we want to share meaningful space and a meaningful future.


That's all for this edition.
Stay tuneful!


We'll be back again soon with music news and more "News of the Non-Trumpcentric Universe." (c)



Boilerplate? Where's the main pressure gauge? And the firebox?

What "boilerplate"? Who came up with that goofy term for the basic essential informational stuff...


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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. That includes 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 (now undergoing a major update), and inside info on FESTIVALS and select performances in Southern California in venues from the monumentally large to the intimately small and cozy. We cover workshops, conferences, 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 swamp water roots of the blues and the bright lights of where the music is headed now.
The Acoustic Americana Music Guide. Thanks for sittin' a spell. The cyber porch'll be here anytime you come back from the road.