After being on “Double-Secret Probation” for three years, Dean Biersch and the crew at HopMonk Sonoma have proven to the City of Sonoma that they can be good musical neighbors, and have created a unique space within the tavern where the current stage is now. Called the “Listening Room,” heavy theatrical curtains have been installed to separate the room from the rest of the Tavern. A brand new state of the art sound system has been installed and the venue is now seated, with VIP and general admission options. “We’re looking to add another cultural layer to town with a music series that is kind of different from other venues” said Biersch. “We’re really going for an intimate singer-songwriter setting.” The first performance of the series is tonight, Jan. 16, with songwriters Freedy Johnston and Tom Freund, along with Willy Ingram on brush percussion. Freedy Johnston is a gifted songwriter whose lyrics paint sometimes witty, often poignant portraits of characters often unaware of how their lives have gone wrong. Johnston seemingly appeared out of nowhere in the early ’90s and quickly established himself as one of the most acclaimed new singer-songwriters of the day. Tom Freund is an American singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Freund’s music consists of elements of blues, folk, and rock music. He released his debut solo album in 1998 and has released albums on his own Surf Road Records since 2000. He has contributed to albums by artists including Graham Parker, Mandy Moore and Josh Kelley. Upcoming shows in the series will feature Chuck Prophet on March 1. Doors open at 8:30 p.m. and the show begins at 9 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door or in advance at the tavern.
The Sonoma Classical Music Society is kicking off their 2015 season on Sunday, Jan. 18, at the Vintage House senior center with the debut Sonoma performance from the Farallon Quintet. The quintet was founded in 2012 and is the only professional chamber music group in the Bay Area focused exclusively on the clarinet quintet; string quartet plus clarinet repertoire. The quintet is composed of Bay Area musicians Natalie Parker on clarinet, Dan Flanagan and Matthew Oshida on violins, Elizabeth Prior on viola and Jonah Kim on cello. All are principal players in orchestras such as the San Francisco Ballet, Santa Rosa, Marin, Berkeley and Fremont Symphonies and the Sacramento Philharmonic. Among the works they act will perform will be “Clarinet Quintet in B flat major,” by Carl Maria Von Weber. Showtime is 3 p.m. and tickets and more info can be found at sonomaclassical.org.
Muscardini Cellars in Kenwood is continuing the ‘Wine Down Friday” events in the tasting room with a slight twist. The winter series is called “Uncorked and Unplugged” and all indoor shows will be strictly acoustic with no PA, mics or amplifiers. Tonight the winery has Tommy Thomsen along with “Catfish” Jack and “Fiddlin’” Gus Garelic. Showtime is 5 p.m. and admission includes a glass of wine.
Adobe Road Winery is beginning to have an open acoustic jam in the tasting room on Sundays, beginning this Sunday, Jan. 18, kicking off at 4:30 p.m. Musicians are welcome to bring their own acoustic instruments; guitars, kazoos, dulcimers, banjos, bongos etc. The venue will also have wines by the glass and cheese plates available.
Tickets may still be available at the door for the Crushers of Comedy show, which will be at the Valley of the Moon Boys and Girls Club on Saturday, Jan. 17. The evening features comics Jenny Yang and Aiko Tanaka and an opening appearance from BackTrax playing a set of classic rock. Showtime is 7 p.m. and more info can be found at crushersofcomedy.com
Burgers and Vine presents Ten Foot Tone tonight, Jan. 16 for a night original rock music. The show also marks the return of Gerard Serafini to the stage after a medical procedure that had him down for a couple months. Welcome back G-Man! Showtime is 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, it’s a dance party with DJ Isak, also kicking off at 9:30 p.m. There is no cover either night.
The Annex Wine Bar presents Dawn Angelosante and Tony Gibson tonight, Jan. 16, playing acoustic classics along with some originals, kicking off at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, it’s Nancy Briggs and Mad Duran playing jazz standards. That night also kicks off at 7:30 p.m. There is no cover but the venue is 21 and over only.
Rossi’s 1906 in El Verano welcomes the BluesBox Bayou tonight, Jan. 16. The act plays a unique sound of American roots music that unites influences from Louisiana swamp boogie, cajun, zydeco, blues and reggae. Showtime is 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, it’s a reggae dance party that features a number of reggae acts and DJ Saucy1 spinning reggae in-between sets all night. Showtime is also at 9 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 18, it’s the Tri-Tip Trio for an afternoon show, kicking off at 4 p.m.
The Erik James Tasting Room has music tonight, Jan. 16, with Charlie Hickox, Tim Eschliman and Luis Rodriguez kicking off at 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, it’s Ron Dubin’s Rosetown Ramblers also for a 7 p.m. show. There is no cover either night, but there is a $10 minimum.
The Plaza Bistro welcomes the Mike Zilber and Mimi Fox Duo tonight, Jan. 16, for a 7 p.m. start. Jazz legend Dave Liebman calls Mike Zilber “one of the best composers and players around anywhere, period!” There is no cover.
The Epicurean Connection presents the Rusty Strings Express tonight, Jan. 16, kicking off at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 17, it’s Adam Traum, also for a 7:30 p.m. show. Sunday, Jan. 18, it’s an early start for Sally Haggard, kicking off at 1 p.m.
HopMonk Tavern Sonoma has Jon Williams on Saturday, Jan. 17, kicking off at 9 p.m. There is no cover and the shows are family-friendly.
The Barking Dog Roasters in Boyes Hot Springs welcomes Joe Chaplain on Sunday, Jan. 18, for a 2:30 p.m. show.
Murphy’s Irish Pub has the Perfect Crime on Saturday, Jan. 17, for an 8 p.m. show.
The Blue Moon Salon has Karaoke on Saturday, Jan. 17, starting at 9 p.m. It’s the continuation of the blues jam on Sunday, Jan. 18, starting at 9:30 p.m. There is no cover.
Hot 45’s – Good shows less than a 45 minute drive from the island.
The Mother Hips – Saturday, Jan. 17
HopMonk Tavern – Sebastopol
The Wood Brothers – Friday, Jan. 16
The Fillmore – San Francisco
Big Head Todd and the Monsters – Saturday, Jan. 17
The Fillmore – San Francisco
Patti Smith – Wednesday, Jan. 21
The Fillmore – San Francisco
Roy Orbison Returns – Roy Orbison tribute – Saturday, Jan. 17
Uptown Theater – Napa
Tom Rigney and Flambeau – Friday, Jan. 16
142 Throckmorton – Mill Valley
AZ/DZ – AC/DC Tribute – Saturday, Jan. 17
HopMonk Tavern – Novato
Miles Schon Band – Friday, Jan. 16
The Fenix – San Rafael
Unauthorized Rolling Stones – Sunday, Jan. 18.
Sweetwater Music Hall – Mill Valley
Soul Section – Friday, Jan. 16
Twin Oaks Tavern – Penngrove
Glen David Andrews with T-Luke & The Tight Suits – Saturday, Jan. 17
Zodiacs – Petaluma