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

Vintage Festival Weekend features an abundance of live music

For the 115th consecutive year, the Valley of the Moon Vintage Festival, the second longest running festival in the state, with the longest being the Festival of Roses in Pasadena, CA, will take over the Historic Sonoma Plaza which will be full of music, family fun, festivities and wine. The festival has to be one of the most misunderstood events in the Valley, at least since we’ve been here. Long time residents remember the days of the potato toss, face painting and childrens activities, all of which are still there. Newcomers enjoy the art, wine and song and don’t know much about the history of the festival. That story is a whole column on its own. The fact remains that the festival is a place where dozens of non-profits are encouraged, for minimal cost, to set up booths and raise money for their causes, some raising enough to keep them funded all year. All this is paid for by the proceeds of the festival, which is entirely non-profit. No money is kept as profit. All city and county fees for services are also paid for by the festival. Lately, live music has been a big part of the festival, with this year being no exception, with a nice mixture of local and out-of-town talent. Tonight,

Wonderbread 5

Sept. 28, it’s patrons night at the historic barracks on the Plaza, featuring Wonderbread 5. This event is the only cover event for music of the weekend, and tickets, if available, can be purchased at the door. The rest of the weekend is all about the Sonoma Plaza. Saturday, Sept. 29, there are two stages for live music. The wine stage will have Mary Jenson, Jason Bodlovich followed by Cynthia Tarr and the Guys. The main stage features the David Thom Band, Terrie Odabi and Pure Soul followed by Mitch Woods and his Rocket 88’s. Sunday, Sept. 30, the wine stage welcomes Mad and Eddie Duran, the Dick Conte Trio and the Carlos Herrera Latin Trio. The main stage has White Wall, Freddy Lopez followed by Carlos Reyes. All of the entertainment in the plaza is free and open to the public.

Sebastiani Winery and Vineyards is having the last Friday night music event of the season tonight, Sept. 28, featuring the Rolling Blackouts, and it’s also the last food truck Friday event for the year. The food trucks roll in about 5:30 p.m. and the music in the tasting room kicks off at 6 p.m. There is no cover and the event is family and dog friendly.

Glen Ellen is hoping with live music this weekend, starting Saturday, Sept. 29, at the newly re-opened Grist Mill Bar and Grill with local favorites the WildKats, starting at 9 p.m.

John Burdick

Olive and Vine in the Jack London Village is starting the Sunday Songwriter Series back up, kicking off with John Burdick and friends, and the doors open at 6 p.m. There will be small plates and a special menu available during the music.

The El Verano Inn is keeping up with weekly shows, and tonight Sept. 28, is a special one, featuring Talk That Talk. You may have been lucky enough to get a ticket to see them at the Sonoma Community Center about a month back, but if you missed the act that contains the legendary Roy Blumenfeld from the Blues Project, former members of John Lee Hookers band along with locals Bob Mc Bain and Dave Aguilar, then tonight is your second chance. That night, the act will have Stefanie Keys, from Big Brother and the Holding Company on vocals. In addition to it being a retirement party for Dave Aguilar, it will also be a warm-up for the bands appearance the next day at the Monterey Pop Festival. There is no cover for the show that kicks off at 9 p.m.


Chris Hanlin

The Annex Wine Bar, located next to the Community Cafe on West Napa Street is beginning to have live music as often as four nights a week, and tonight, Sept. 28, they are presenting Chris Hanlin, kicking off at 5 p.m. There is no cover and small plates will be available.

If you miss Chris Hanlin tonight, you can catch him on Saturday, Sept. 29, in Kenwood at the tasting room of Michael Muscardini and Ty Caton, celebrating their fifth anniversary of being open, kicking off at 5 p.m. There is a cover at the door.

The Swiss Hotel has the classic country sounds of Train Wreck Junction in the back patio on Saturday, Sept. 29, starting at 3 p.m. Drink and food specials will be available.

Murphy’s Irish Pub welcomes the Tonewoods tonight, Sept. 28, for an 8 p.m. show. There will be variety night at the pub on Saturday, Sept. 29, a comedy show, featuring Nate Follen, Danny Minch and Torio Van Grol and following the show, there will be a live music from Sean Carscadden and Marty O’Reilly. Seats are limited and tickets can be had by calling 548-1225. Sunday, Sept. 30, it’s traditional Celtic music from Kith and Kin, kicking off at 6:30 p.m.

Showcase the Band

The Moose Logdge has a fish fry tonight, Sept. 28, which will feature live music from Showcase the Band as part of “No Cover Fridays.” The show gets underway at 6:30 p.m.

It’s a movie and a show in the Jack London State Historical Park on Saturday, Sept. 29.  The movie is the classic Jack London thriller “Klondike Fever” and the music will be provided by the thrilling Jeff Falconer. The night kicks off at 5:30 p.m. and picnic baskets are welcome. Tickets are available by pointing your browser to or at the door the night of the event.

The Plaza Bistro has Jason Bodlovich tonight, Sept. 28, for a 7 p.m. show that will feature local 15 year-old drummer Owen Barrett. Saturday, Sept. 29, it’s the Freddy Lopez Quintet, also for a 7 p.m. show. There is no cover either night.

The Blue Moon Saloon has the reggae grooves of Dan Martin and the Noma Rocksteady Band on Saturday, Sept. 29, kicking off at 10 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 30, brings the weekly Sunday blues jam, also starting at 10 p.m. There is no cover either night.

Chateau St. Jean Winery in Kenwood, has a wine release party that will feature live music from Solid Air and the Highway Robbers on Saturday, Sept. 29, starting at 11 a.m. For tickets and more info, call 877-478-5326.

Traffic Jam will be at the Phoenix Theater in Petaluma tonight, Sept. 28, for an 8 p.m. show.

Brewnel will be at Papas Taverna in Petaluma tonight, Sept. 28, for a 7 p.m. show.

Hot 45s – Shows within a 45 minute drive from the Island

Aimee Mann – Saturday, Sept. 29
The Fillmore – San Francisco

Aimee Mann – Sunday, Sept. 30
Uptown Theater – Napa

The Outlaws – Wednesday, Oct. 3
Uptown Theater – Napa

Tom Rigney and Flambeau – Saturday, Sept. 29
142 Throckmorton – Mill Valley

Blackhawk – Saturday, Sept. 29
Sweetwater Music Hall – Mill Valley

The Outlaws – Monday, Oct. 1
Sweetwater Music Hall – Mill Valley

Jimmy Vaughan – Sunday, Sept. 30
Mystic Theatre – Petaluma

Music happenings in and around Sonoma Country – 8/31 – 9/2

Even though it’s Wine Country Weekend here in Sonoma Country, there’s still plenty of music to pair it with, some even at a winery.

This week, we’ve got legends from many genres all over. The legendary Lester Chambers will be sitting in with his son, Dylan, in Santa Rosa. Huey Lewis is in town with some news and one of the jazz legends of the Bay Area is in Healdsburg. Have a peek below and pair up some local music with that wine this weekend.


Friday, Aug. 31 – E Minor and the Dirty Diamonds
After more than a decade of playing in various Sonoma County bands, the six members of Dirty Diamonds have hit their stride blasting out country rock and hillbilly blues originals that conjure up images of the Allman Brothers, CCR and Hank Williams Sr. along with a taste of Howlin’ Wolf, Ralph Stanley and Tom Waits.
HopMonk Tavern –

Jason Bodlovich

Monday, Sept. 3 – Jason Bodlovich
Jason Bodlovich is an absolute musical monster. Originally from Huntington Beach, Calif, Bodlovich now resides in Sonoma County where he performs with a mix of original projects. Eclectic is a good word to use for his 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 & Jean Luc Ponty and more. Mostly a guitar player these days, Bodlovich played drums on a tribute album for the jazz legend Ray Brown, where he assembled many of Brown’s original band members.
Lagunitas Brewing Company –


Midnight Sun Massive

Saturday, Sept. 1 – Midnight Sun Massive
This would be my hot pick of the weekend. Midnight Sun Massive is a step back to when reggae music was Bob Marley and Peter Tosh, blended with a little calypso and some blues. The band has been together in some configuration since 1984 in and around the Bay Area. If dancing to a reggae groove hits you this weekend, these are the guys to check out.
Flamingo Hotel – Santa



Huey Lewis and the News


Saturday, Sept. 1 – Huey Lewis and the News
What can we say about this act that hasn’t been said? From their humble beginnings in Marin County in the ‘70s to superstardom in the ‘80s and beyond, the band has had entire albums of songs that almost went to #1 on the Billboard charts, won Grammys, had numerous #1 hits, but s great a recording career as the band has had, it’s their live performances that remain the stuff of legend. They have toured worldwide continuously for more than 30 years. Huey Lewis & The News incorporate a variety of musical influences, including R&B and soul, to create their own unique sound.
Rodney Strong Winery – Healdsburg


Dick Conte

Friday, Aug. 31 – Dick Conte
Dick Conte is a regional jazz legend, from his work on numerous jazz radio stations for almost 50 years, to his performances around the Bay Area at such events as the San Francisco Jazz Festival, the Russian River Jazz Festival, the San Jose Jazz Festival, the Sonoma Valley Jazz Festival, the Calistoga Jazz and Blues Festival, Jazz on the Hill and the Cotati Jazz Festival. Tonight, the pianist will have with him Steve Webber on bass.
Hotel Healdsburg – Healdsburg



Saturday, Sept. 1 – Dylan Chambers
Dylan Chambers grew up around rock and blues and it’s clear the apple didn’t fall from the tree. His father, Lester Chambers from the Chambers Brothers, famous for the hit “Time has come today,” will be joining Dylan’s group Mass Transit on stage
Last Day Saloon –
Santa Rosa

Owen Barrett appearing with Jason Bodlovich at the Plaza Bistro

Is this your stereo system?

It’s said by people smarter than us that the media will outlast the medium on which to play it, and that tends to be true. We have all of our vinyl albums and 45s, and even a turntable, but no needle. We have every cassette tape we’ve ever owned, except those that the pencil rewind trick couldn’t fix. We’re pretty sure there’s a player around here somewhere. We even have 8-track tapes, well, a couple, but no player. We imagine there are wax cylinders of music out there in places, just waiting to be played, with nothing to play them on. The latest victim is the Compact Disc, remember those? Indestructible; will last for 100 years, and we’re sure they will, but the media is rapidly being replaced by digital downloads.

Once again, will the devices to play them be around in say 20 years? We think so. Not a day goes by that we don’t hear about some catastrophic failure of some computer or device starting with a lower case letter, and there goes the entire music library. We still find comfort in having that disc you can hold in your hand, much like this publication, that is if you’re holding it. Even with the songs we download, it’s comforting to put them on something that makes it seem like you actually own them. Of course, we would never share, illegally anyways.

So what is all this about? CDs of course; local music CDs. Sonoma Valley Music has always been a huge supporter of the local music scene and local artists by allowing them to sell their music in the store. Now there is another option, Cuban Jacks Smoke Shop in Boyes Hot Springs. Tony, the proprietor, is offering space to any local musician to sell their wares. The Whiskey Thieves and the David Thom Band have already taken advantage of the opportunity and you can find their music there, and any musician or band interested in shopping their latest wares are welcome to call Tony at 478-9505.

The Plaza Bistro has the Jason Bodlovich Trio tonight, Jan. 27, featuring 15 year old Sonoma drummer Owen Barrett.  Barrett has studied privately with Bodlovich, who is also an accomplished drummer, for several years. Bodlovich says “Owen is a natural talent behind the drum set and I look forward to his imprint on the music scene.”  The trio will also feature Petaluma bassist Steve Froberg, of the band Frobeck. The show starts at 7 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28, the local music continues, with Glen Ellen resident Stephanie Ozer tickling the ivories. Joining Ozer that night will be Mary Fettig on a variety of wind instruments. That show also starts at 7 p.m. There is no cover either night.

Sarah Summers

Sarah Summers is back at the Kathmandu Corner in the back of the Taste of the Himalayas restaurant tonight, Jan. 27. Summers is also a local Sonoma teen who has been making a big impression as an original singer-songwriter. Showtime is 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 28, the Corner has Bluehouse, also for a 7:30 p.m. show. There is no cover either night.


BackTrax is back in action at the annual Surf and Turf dinner presented by the Native Sons of the Golden Wes, Parlor #111, as a fundraiser for the Sonoma Valley High School Scholarship foundation at the Sonoma Valley Veterans Memorial Building. The night includes a steak and prawn dinner with all the trimmings. Tickets are $40 and are available at the door. The night kicks off at 6 p.m.

Right across the alley, Murphy’s Irish Pub welcomes Thick Soup to the snug tonight, Jan. 28, for an 8 p.m. show. Saturday, Jan. 28, the pub has a special show. Benyaro, an acoustic duo with roots in New York City and Jackson Hole Wyoming, will be passing through for one night only. According to Relix Magazine, the duo has drawn comparisons to the Band, the Avett Brothers, acoustic David Bowie and Cat Stevens. This month has the duo touring Northern California before heading to Oregon, Washington and then through the Great Plains. The show starts at 8 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 29, it’s local favorites JoyRide for an early show kicking off at 6:30 p.m. There is no cover for any of the shows at the pub.

Sonoma Springs Brewery has an all original singer-songwriter for an acoustic show on Saturday, Jan. 28, at 7 p.m. Calvin Ross will be appearing for one night only. There is no cover.

The Olde Sonoma Public House will have karaoke with Cat on Sunday, Jan. 29, kicking off at 8 p.m.

The Blue Mon Saloon has karaoke on Saturday, Jan. 28, starting at 9 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 29, the blues jam continues at 10 p.m.

Jason Bodlovich will be with the Jason Bodlovich Group in Petaluma at Brixx on Saturday, Jan. 28, at 8:30 p.m.

Adam Traum will be at the Bamboo Hut in San Francisco tonight, Jan. 27, for a 10 p.m. show.

Hot 45s – Shows within a 45 minute drive from the Island

Melvin Seals and JGB – Friday, Jan. 27.
Mystic Theatre – Petaluma

Pride and Joy – Friday, Jan. 27.
Last Day Saloon – Santa Rosa

Petty Theft – Friday, Jan. 27.
HopMonk Tavern – Sebastopol

Mark Hummels Harmonica Blowout – Friday – Sunday, Jan. 27 – 29.
Yoshi’s – Oakland

Ronnie Montrose – Friday, Jan. 27.
Uptown Theater – Napa

Bryan Stow Benefit – Bob Weir and more – Saturday, Jan. 28.
Uptown Theater – Napa

Geoff Tate – Unplugged – Thursday, Feb. 2.
Uptown Theater – Napa

Eric Martin – Friday, Jan. 27.
George’s Nightclub – San Rafael

Sarah Summers plays Kathmandu Corner

The Blue Moon Saloon has DJ Saucy 1with special guests on Wednesday Jan.25, at 9 p.m.

The Olde Sonoma Public House welcomes the Dark Lord Byron on Thursday, Jan. 26, at 7:30 p.m.

Murphy’s Irish Pub presents Jaydub and Dino in the Snug at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 26.

The Plaza Bistro welcomes the Jason Bodlovich Trio on Friday, Jan. 27, at 7 p.m.

Murphy’s Irish Pub presents Thick Soup in the Snug at 8 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 27.

The Kathmandu Corner welcomes Sarah Summers on Friday, Jan. 27, for a 7:30 p.m. show.