Music happenings in and around Sonoma County – 11/23 – 11/25

Plenty of local music action this weekend to help you shake off those turkey blues and pumpkin pie calories. We’ve got legends from the ‘60s, a multi-talented reggae act, some excellent blues and even some bluegrass.


Friday, Nov. 23- Midnight Sun Massive

Midnight Sun Massive

Midnight Sun Massive is an all-original reggae-calypso act that combines potent Caribbean rhythms with conscious lyrics to move your body and your mind. The collection of multi-instrumentalists and song-writers, each drawing from diverse backgrounds creates a genre-hopping, booty-shaking experience. The act has been appearing in and around Sonoma County in one form or another since the early ‘80s, and most recently, has enjoyed a large upsurge in popularity, filling dance floors wherever then play.
Venue: Flamingo Hotel,
Santa Rosa, 707-545-8530


Friday, Nov. 23 – the Pulsators

The Pulsators

Rooted in the fertile musical soil of the Sonoma County wine country, the Pulsators are a five-piece band that plays its own brand of music. With a get-up-and-dance kind of orchestration, their music has been defined as a spicy blend of driving blues, New Orleans funk, R&B, rock steady reggae and rock-and-roll. Their music supports an ever-growing legion of faithful fans that have followed the act for many years. The Pulsators have been voted a Sonoma County fan-favorite four times in reader’s choice polls given by the Press Democrat.
Venue: Last Day Saloon,
Santa Rosa, 707-545-5876


Friday, Nov. 23 – New Riders of the Purple Sage

New Riders of the Purple Sage

The New Riders of the Purple Sage (NRPS) were initially formed as a vehicle for Jerry Garcia, Phil Lesh, and Mickey Hart from the Grateful Dead to indulge their tastes for country music beyond the albums Workingman’s Dead and American Beauty. Their original lineup at early performances consisted of Garcia on pedal steel, Lesh on bass and other Bay Area musicians. The New Riders essentially disbanded in 1982, although the name was later picked up by a new lineup built around Gary Vogenson on guitar and Rusty Gautier on bass, carrying on the songs that gave the act it’s strong regional following.
Venue: Mystic Theatre,
Petaluma, 707-765-2121


Saturday, Nov. 24 – Steve Pile Band

Steve Pile Band

With a guitar on his back Bay Area native Steve Pile has traveled the world from Alaska to Austin to Africa, “…distilling his own hybrid of blues, rock and melodic African music, all topped off with a little cowboy swagger” John Beck, Press Democrat. After landing back in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2007, Pile went about assembling the finest musicians he could find. In 2008 the Steve Pile Band was born. Morphing from the acoustic Americana he nurtured while living in Austin, TX to a more electric, cross-cultural stew of styles, the Steve Pile Band represents the full drop of roots music.
Venue: HopMonk Tavern,
Sebastopol, 707- 829-7300




Saturday, Nov. 24 – Jason Bodlovich

Jason Bodlovich

Jason Bodlovich is a North Bay guitarist, composer and band leader. Originally from Huntington Beach CA, he now resides in Sonoma County where he performs with a mix of original projects. Eclectic is a good word to use for J’s sound as he blends rock, funk, blues, swing, jazz, Brazilian and more. This cross-over appeal has led to opening slots for various artists including instrumental rock guitarist Joe Satriani; jazz artists including Diana Krall and Rites of Strings featuring Al Di Meola Stanley Clarke and Jean Luc Ponty; blues groups including The Ford Brothers featuring Robben Ford and Volker Strifler Group. Bodlovich will be performing as a trio at this show, with one of his protégé students, Owen Barrett on drums and Steve Froberg, from the local act Frobeck on bass.
Venue: Lagunitas Tap Room and Beer Sanctuary,
Petaluma, 707- 778-8776


Sunday, Nov. 25 – the David Thom Band

David Thom Band

The David Thom Band is fast becoming one of the hottest regional bluegrass acts in the North Bay. Playing in the style of Flatt and Scruggs, the band covers many from the days of Bill Monroe and the “golden years” of bluegrass and even their original songs share a similar take on the genre. The band recently played the legendary Freight and Salvage in Berkeley to rave reviews and is continuing their trek around the North Bay. This is an afternoon show.
Venue: Lagunitas Tap Room and Beer Sanctuary,
Petaluma, 707- 778-8776

Music happenings in and around Sonoma County – 11/15 – 11/18

Musicians turned winemaker. It happens a lot more than you think, and we have one of the most eclectic in the business this weekend, and of course he’s a Sonoma County resident. A classic bay Area rock act that never made it as big as they should have does a 2-night stint, and there’s big dance, small acoustic and classical music as well. A little something for everyone this weekend.

Friday, Nov. 16 – Tonewoods

The Tonewoods

The Tonewoods are a Sonoma county acoustic trio, playing and singing a mix of Americana, British, and classic folk, ragtime and more. The band loves songs that tell stories and their music has been described as vibrant, fun, rhythmic, soulful, with rich harmonies, and touches of humor here and there. The band has been entertaining Sonoma County for over six years and are always well received. If you like the sounds of Richard Thompson, Tom Waits, Tom Russell, Townes van Zandt, Robert Earl Keen, Steve Earle and that ilk, then you’ll love this act.
Venue – A’Roma Roasters – Santa Rosa707- 576-7765


Friday, Nov. 16 – Unauthorized Rolling Stones

Unauthorized Rolling Stones

Yep, you’ll know all the words and the act is a pretty good representation of the real band. Frontman and founder, Rudy Colombini, is regarded as one of the most visually accurate “Micks” in the business and is also an accomplished original artist, having two of his recordings reach top 40 status in the Adult Contemporary category.
Venue – Mavericks  –
Santa Rosa707- 544-1562







Friday – Saturday, Nov. 16 – 17 – Y & T

Y & T

Y & T is a legendary Bay Area band that arguably never managed to translate its electric on-stage intensity into its studio albums. Originally formed as Yesterday & Today in San Francisco, around 1973, Y&T stood within reach of the Grail of rock and roll stardom many times in their long career, but through a series of mistakes, bad timing, and sheer bad luck, the ultimate prize always seemed to elude them in the end. Years and many musical genres came and went, but 2004 saw founding members Dave Meniketti and old sparring partner Phil Kennemore resuming touring across America as Y&T, with the help of guitarist John Nymann and drummer Mike Vanderhule. (Portions contributed by Eduardo Rivadavia, All Music Guide)
Venue – Mystic Theatre –


Saturday, Nov. 17, – 4th Annual Claypool Cellars Purple Pachyderm Pre-Bird Bonanza

Les Claypool

You may remember Les Claypool from the local eclectic prog-metal act Primus, or his re-creation of Pink Floyd’s classic album Animals from a live show at the Great American Music Hall, which later turned into a live album, or the bizarre appearance at Woodstock ’94, where the band was pelted with mud. Claypool claims to still have mud in some of his speakers. Like many rock icons, Claypool has turned into a winemaker, first for himself, then into commercial production, and this show is a combination of a gig and an extreme wine tasting. Frankly, you never know what to expect from a Claypool show, but it’s never boring.
Venue – HopMonk Tavern –
Sebastopol707- 829-7300





Saturday, Nov. 17 – Pride & Joy

Pride and Joy

During its 25 years of playing the Bay Area, Pride & Joy has remained one of the most popular bands on the local music scene. The act plays the timeless pop and soul music hits from the ’60s to the ‘90s in a show that pulls the audience directly into the heart of their performance.” It’s always been natural for us to reach out and draw in the audience. We make the people feel they’re part of the performance because they are,” says Pride & Joy founder and bandleader Coleman Burke. Be prepared to dance all night.
Venue – Last Day Saloon –
Santa Rosa707-545-5876


Sunday, Nov. 18 – Navarro Chamber Players
Led by two icons of the North Bay chamber scene, Marilyn Thompson and Carol Menke, the players lay down dynamic juxtaposition of vocal and instrumental chamber pieces including “Three Tangos” by Brian S. Wilson and “the Piano Quintet” by Robert Schumann, “a fiendish pianistic challenge as well as a masterpiece of the genre” claims The Observer.
Venue – The Donald and Maureen Green Music CenterRohnert Park – 866-955-6040

Music happenings in and around Sonoma County – 11/9 – 11/11

Dance bands, local acts on the verge of breaking out to the big time and a blues player that if you haven’t heard of, you will soon, all take the stage in Sonoma County this weekend, in venues from coffee houses to the big stage. A Grammy awarded Cuban musician is also at one of the newest and most beautiful venues in Sonoma County. Get on out and support some live music!

Coco Montoya

Friday, Nov. 9, – Coco Montoya
GuitarOne Magazine
calls guitarist-vocalist Coco Montoya “the hottest southpaw in the blues” and raves about his “master touch and killer tone.” The Boston Globe succinctly states that Montoya’s music is “hot, blistering soul.” From his early days as a drummer to his current status as one of the top-drawing guitarists and vocalists on the blues-rock scene, Montoya earned his status through years of hard work and constant touring. British blues icon John Mayall happened to catch Montoya at a jam session in the mid-‘80s and was blown away by Montoyas playing. Mayall recruited him as guitarist in the legendary Bluesbreakers, and Montoya spent the next 10 years touring non-stop. If you’re a blues fan and have not caught Montoya’s act, now is the time.
Venue – HopMonk Tavern – Sebastopol707- 829-7300


Friday, Nov. 9 – Second Cut

Second Cut

If you’re looking to dance to rock and pop songs from the ‘70s – the ‘90s, then this is the show for you. All seasoned veterans of various music scenes and genres over the last 30 plus years, and from places all over the country, the act has converged in Sonoma County and has become one of the hottest dance bands in the genre. Vocalist Jodi Stevens delivers and guitarist Dave Moran, with his tenure in the Bay Area rock scene, has the tone and licks down.
Venue – Mavericks  –
Santa Rosa707- 544-1562


Saturday, Nov. 10 – Burrows – Dilbeck

Burrows – Dilbeck

Spencer Burrows and Kris Dilbeck, the powerhouse songwriters behind the funk rock band Frobeck, create a funky, fresh exploration of feel good vibes. Expect amazing vocals, rich quality music and tasty guitar riffs. Frobeck is easily one of the top prospects to break out of the local music scene, and if you see this duo in action, you’ll hear why.
Venue – Cloverdale Performing
Arts Center – Cloverdale – 707- 894-3222



Saturday, Nov. 10 – Whiskey Thieves

The Whiskey Thieves

Formed in 2006 from the remnants of the Rock Bottom Blues Band, this local act could also be on the verge or breaking out. The rock and blues based act is anchored by the powerful vocals of Codi Binkley and the guitar tone of Gabe Brueske, backed by a solid rhythm section. Playing mostly originals, the latest release, “Almost Time” created a nice local buzz along with the subsequent video, which debuted at the Sonoma International Film Festival.
Venue – Lagunitas Tap Room and Beer Sanctuary –
Petaluma707- 778-8776


Saturday, Nov. 10 – Solid Air

Solid Air

This is probably the most unassuming act in Sonoma County. They duo has played and recorded with, and even had on their own albums, the likes of Jackson Browne, Elvin Bishop, Barry Melton and more. Their 2007 release, “Solid Air,” was nominated for a Grammy. But you’d never know it. Chris Garcia of the Press Democrat had this to say about them. “Soulfully incandescent vocals; an enormously gifted band.”
Venue – A’Roma Roasters –
Santa Rosa707- 576-7765



Sunday, Nov. 11 – Chucho Valdés
Hailed by The New York Times as “the dean of Latin jazz” and “one of the world’s great virtuosic pianists,” Afro-Cuban musician Chucho Valdés has garnered two Grammy Awards and five Grammy nominations. His unique blend of African, South American, Cuban, and Spanish music traditions has made him a jazz legend around the world.
Venue – The Donald and Maureen Green Music CenterRohnert Park – 866-955-6040

Music happenings in and around Sonoma County – 11/2 – 11/5

It’s a little something for everyone this weekend in Sonoma County, from a blues legend, to rock and blues in a classic roadhouse. Bluegrass, biker rock and even the symphony round it all up. Typically the last non-rainy weekend of the year, so get on out and have some fun, Sonoma-style.


Friday Nov. 2 – B. B. King

B. B. King

Seriously, what can you say about B. B. King that hasn’t been said. His reign as King of the Blues has been as long as that of any monarch on earth. And, King continues to wear his crown well. At age 86, B.B. King is still singing and playing the blues with relentless passion, thrilling audiences and influencing generations of guitarists to come. Anyone who gets his guitar, Lucille, its own seat on the plane when he travels is OK by us.
Venue –
Wells Fargo CenterSanta Rosa707-546-3600


Friday, Nov. 2 – Poor Man’s Whiskey
These guys are actually the opening act for this show, so get there on time. As one of Northern California’s premiere bluegrass acts, the band has a reputation for high-energy live shows and an incomparable fusion of old-school bluegrass, southern rock, and jam band to the stage. Billing the shows as a “High-Octane Hootenanny,” the act promises a foot-stompin good time. The act has released six albums, including a bluegrass interpretation of the Pink Floyd classic “Dark Side of the Moon”
Venue – Mystic Theatre –


Friday, Nov. 2 – Moonshine Bandits

Moonshine Bandits

We’ve yet to see this act, but just from the description, this sounds like a heck of a show. From the bands website: “When you add the ingredients of women, whiskey, 4 wheel drives, a twist of Johnny Cash meets the Beastie Boys, shake well and pour over ice , you get the Moonshine Bandits. California’s favorite blue collar outlaws, known as the Moonshine Bandits, have taken their outlaw brand of country hip-hop to the next level” The California-based act tours the country playing over a dozen shows this month alone, that will take the act from North Carolina to California.
Venue – Mavericks  –
Santa Rosa707- 544-1562



Saturday, Nov. 3- Crossfire


Crossfire is a big dance band in the classic format, and plays rhythm and blues, classic soul, Motown, classic rock, ‘70s Disco and more. The band can lay down a range of grooves from smooth jazz for the cocktail-dinner set to the full blown house rockin’ show band with choreography and special effect lighting. Expect to be dancing long before the show ends.
Venue – Flamingo Hotel –
Santa Rosa707-545-8530


Saturday, Nov. 3 – Brothers of Siren
Even though there is a “sister” in the act, the Brothers of Siren will lay down rock and blues with a passion. According to the band, “Finding the right combination of musicians, great original music, and heart, is not always an easy find. This band seems to have it all. Hailing from Sonoma County, all the members have mad music running through their veins and would love nothing more then to share it with you.”
Venue – Tradewinds – Cotati –


Saturday – Sunday, Nov. 3 – 4 – Santa Rosa Symphony Ensemble

Jean-Philippe Collard

This will be the American premiere of De Tiempo y de Metal, a work composed for solely brass instruments by living French composer Martin Matalon. Pianist Jean-Philippe Collard takes on the concerto that even challenged Saint-Saëns himself, with technical bravura as dazzling as the compositional craftsmanship. Berlioz’s fanatically colorful Symphonie fantastique uses the concert hall’s acoustics to maximum effect as the crowning touch to this thrilling, energetic program from France.
Venue – The Donald and Maureen Green Music CenterRohnert Park – 866-955-6040

Music happenings in and around Sonoma County – 10/25 – 10/28

Harvest is winding down and the rain has settled onto Sonoma County a little early this year, but that shouldn’t stop you from getting out and enjoying some live music. We’ve got everything from classic blues, rock and roll covers all the way to symphony music.

Friday, Oct. 26 – Zeparella


These girls put on a show worthy of a Zeppelin tribute act, and have gained followers all over the country with their act. Singer Noelle Doughty has found her way back to where she started, with a passion for Led Zeppelins music that was developed from as far back as she can remember, as the little sister in the room with the rocking older brothers. She was the kid who knew every word to every song. You will be truly impressed by this act.
Venue – Last Day Saloon –
Santa Rosa707-545-5876




Saturday, Oct. 27 – Wonderbread 5

This band is just flat-out fun. Starting out as a Jackson 5 tribute and eventually becoming a ‘70s – ‘80s tribute act and for over a decade, Wonderbread 5 have been thrilling audiences. Michael, Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon and Action Jackson round out this unstoppable, international rock and roll party machine. Wonderbread 5 covers everything from Motown to Bean-town and back again.
Venue – Mystic Theatre –


Saturday, Oct. 27 – The Pulsators

The Pulsators

Rooted in the fertile musical soil of the Sonoma County Wine Country the Pulsators are a five-piece band that plays its own brand of music. With a “get-up-and-dance” kind of orchestration, their music has been defined as a spicy blend of driving blues, New Orleans funky R&B, rock steady reggae and rock and roll. Their music supports an ever-growing legion of faithful fans that keep coming back for more. The Pulsators have been voted a Sonoma County fan-favorite four times in reader’s choice polls given by The Press Democrat. – This is an afternoon show
Venue – Lagunitas Tap Room and Beer Sanctuary – Petaluma707- 778-8776

Saturday, Oct. 27 – Levi Lloyd and the 501 Blues Band

Levi Lloyd has played with B. B. King, John Lee Hooker and toured worldwide as the longtime guitarist for the legendary Joe Louis Walker, and brings more of a straight-forward blues sound to the stage, with a little rock and soul. The Tradewinds is about as close as you’ll get to a roadhouse without crossing the line to a dive bar, with a nice room and space for dancing.
Venue – Tradewinds – Cotati –


Saturday, Oct. 27 – John Adams with Jeffrey Kahane and the International Contemporary Ensemble

John Adams

In this one night only event, renowned composer John Adams conducts New York’s fiery and innovative International Contemporary Ensemble in works by Stravinsky, Philip Glass, and John Adams, along with the jazz band arrangement of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue featuring Jeffrey Kahane as piano soloist.
Venue – The Donald and
Maureen Green Music CenterRohnert Park – 866-955-6040