Ventura Music Scene 11/29/23 – 12/12/23

Ventura Music Scene
by Pam Baumgardner
There are a number of events lined up to get you into the holiday swing of things if Thanksgiving didn’t already do that. Let’s start with the Ventura Winter Wine Walk and Holiday Street Fair where at the corner of California and Main live music will abound with dancing in the street along with a “snowfall” which delights all attendees young and old. Live music runs 2-8 pm with Upstream, The Bomb and Adelaide. The street fair runs all day and is free to the public, but in order to participate in the wine walk, tickets should be purchased in advance as this one could sell out. Keep in mind all venues are open to the public at all times.

Then there is the 25th annual 4Kids 2Kids Toy Drive which will be held on Sunday afternoon, December 3, at Cantara Cellars in Camarillo with a stellar lineup including appearances from Nick St. Nicholas (Steppenwolf), Shawn Jones, Milo Sledge, RJ Mischo, Debbie Davies, Ray Jaurique Big Band, the Vonettes, Debbie Davies Steve and Sally Williams and more. The cost of admission is $10 and one unwrapped toy.

Doc the Halls, Holiday Blues at Namba is Saturday December 9 with electrifying blues tunes and soulful melodies which will include performances from Mint Dolphin, the Sea Hunters, Brasscals, Tom Collins, and the All-Star Blues Band featuring Fito De la Parra (Canned Heat), RJ Mischo, Rick Holstrum, and Hank Van Sykle…oh! And of course, the man himself, Doc Ventura!

The Majestic Ventura Theater’s 10th annual Holiday Sing-a-Long featuring Disney and holiday songs will be held on Sunday, December 10 from 3:30 – 6:30 pm with the price of admission as one new unwrapped toy per group.

And you may want to continue your celebration of Hanukkah this year on Sunday, December 10, with your family and friends downtown at California and Main from 4 – 6:30 pm where a night full of unity, light and community awaits along with live music from Cedars of Lebanon. This free event also includes dreidel fun and games, face painting and other activities for the kids along with a candle lighting ceremony.

Non-holiday type events include a night with Willie Porter who will perform at Namba on Sunday, December 3 (He will have performed the night before at the legendary McCabe’s Guitar Shop in Santa Monica). Porter is an American rock musician singer/songwriter who was inducted into the Wisconsin Area Music Industry Hall of Fame earlier this year. He’s currently touring in support of his 13th release, The Ravine.

On the same night, an amazing singer/songwriter, Sara Lee Guthrie performs at the new space at the Ojai Underground. If Guthrie sounds familiar, well it should! She is daughter to Arlo Guthrie and granddaughter of Woody Guthrie and she’s been out on tour wrapping up the year with this date in Ojai.

Quick Notes: there’s a West Coast Jazz Jam at Copa Cubana on Thursday, November 30; the rescheduled Brit Floyd, 50 Years of Dark Side of the Moon is Friday, December 1 at the Ventura Theater; Birdbrain, Bonnie Boy and Duncan and the Dragonslayers play early evening sets at Bombay’s on Saturday, December 2; The Struts play Ventura Music Hall on Tuesday, December 5; after recently opening for Yachtley Crew at the Ventura Theater, Casual Business will play Topa Topa Brewing (Downtown, Thompson Blvd. location) on Saturday, December 9; and Margarita Villa will be taking a winter hiatus from live music after the Sunday, December 3 performance from Déjà vu Three.

Do you have any music-related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Please send all information short or long to, and for updated music listings daily, go to

Ventura Music Scene 11/15/23 – 11/28/23

Ventura Music Scene
by Pam Baumgardner

Thanksgiving is just around the corner and the tradition of getting out the evening before and hanging with friends taking in live music continues with several venues offering up live music. Many are calling it “Friendsgiving” though that is typically reserved for Thanksgiving-themed feasts eaten with friends (as opposed to family). I look at it as a way for people to decompress preemptively before hanging with the fam.

Now if you were to go to calendar of events and sorted by the date 11/22/23, at press time, you would find 14 venues in Ventura County with live music. Here now, just the Ventura venues I’ve found with live music on Wednesday the 22nd:
Bombay Bar and Grill with Blues Night feat. Milo Sledge
Vaquero y Mar with Tribal Me
The Cave with Bobby Apostol
Winchesters with The Van Allen Twins
Boatyard Pub with Frank Barajas
Leashless Brewing with Mark Masson
Aqua Beachfront Bar with Déjà vu Too
The Twist on Main with a “battle of the bands”
Tony’s Pizzeria with The Stoneflys and Johnny Knows No One

On to other music related matters starting with the River Bottom Sessions Inaugural Bluegrass Music Festival. This one will be held on Saturday, November 18 from noon to 7 pm at Las Palmas de Ojai. Artists schedule to perform include Tarantula Banjo, Ellie Rollins Band, The Van Allen Twins and Chris Murphy followed up with headliners Mark Masson’s Jam Grass and Moonsville. This event is part of raising funds and awareness for local nonprofit, Ojai Valley Land Conservancy (OVLC). This promises to be a family-friendly event, children 12 and under are free. Tickets available on
This event is being rescheduled due to pending rain.

On sale recently: Ventura Theater added Nekromantix for Saturday, December 2 and tickets for The Third Mind featuring Dave Alvin on February 3 have gone on sale for the Ventura Music Hall.

Quick Notes: 4th Impact at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center has been postponed; Neon Blonde featuring covers from the 80s plays an early show (3-6) at Bombay’s on Saturday November 18; Tony Bennett’s Pianist for the last five years, Tom Rainier, will play an intimate show at the Beatrice Wood Centers for the Arts on Sunday, November 19; Barrelhouse Wailers is the guest band for the next House of Dance Sunday afternoon show hosted by Channel Cities Jazz Club on November 19; Fear with Lower Class Brats play the Ventura Music Hall on Saturday, November 25; Tommy Quayle returns to Namba for a show on Saturday, November 25.

If you’ve ever thought about hosting your own radio show on CAPS Media’s KPPQ here in Ventura, the station is back to hosting open houses and training sessions making it easier than ever for you to do so. Please contact Elizabeth Rodeno at

Do you have any music-related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Please send all information short or long to, and for updated music listings daily, go to

Ventura Music Scene 11/1/23 – 11/14/2023

Ventura Music Scene
by Pam Baumgardner

We’re at the time of year where we don’t know what the heck to wear when heading out to take in live music. Is it going to be cold? Hot? Windy? What’s going on? It changes not only day to day, but hour to hour. Your best bet is to wear layers. You’re welcome.

It turns out there may be tickets available after all for the acoustic Soul Asylum show in Ojai for Saturday, November 11. This is a rare opportunity to see Dave Pirner and Ryan Smith perform in such an intimate setting. I was surprised to no longer see “sold out” on the Deer Lodge website (; my advice is to snag ‘em before they’re really gone!

The next free Ojai Pops Orchestra show will be on Sunday November 5 at Libbey Bowl starting at 1:30 in the afternoon with classical woodwind quintet, Ventvm Qvintet followed up with Tuxedo Junction Jazz Band featuring vocalist Freda Ramey.

Poncho Sanchez returns to the Grape with his brand of hot Latin jazz with two shows on Sunday November 5. At press time, the 6 pm show was sold out with tickets still available for the 8 pm show.

Tickets are on sale now for the next Chick Singer Night returning to the Sound Palace in Oxnard for a show on Saturday, November 4. This time they’ll feature Krystal Park, Jess Bush, Rachael Lynda, Lois Mahalva and Eliya Frantz. Chick Singer Night started over 30 years ago in Chicago and has grown nationally with a local chapter here in Ventura County headed up by Jodi Farrell.

I am totally intrigued with the “Beatles vs Stones, a Musical Showdown” event at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center on Saturday, November 11. Taking the part of “Beatles” is the tribute band Abbey Road, and on behalf of “Stones” is the tribute band, Satisfaction. This is a national touring show having performed on stages coast to coast and having done residencies at Harrah’s in Reno and Laughlin for five months. Tickets available through

Concerts just announced include Ozomatli for the Ventura Music Hall on December 14 and you know it’s going be a tongue-in-cheek night of punk fun when The 28th Annual Christmas Formal will feature The Vandals this year at the Majestic Ventura Theater on Friday, December 22.

Quick Notes: Lowered Expectations will celebrate Dia de los Muertos on Wednesday, November 1, at Vaquero y Mar; Rose Valley Thorns play the Ojai Underground on Thursday, November 2; Bombay’s first Saturday live music show features Blurry Stars, Dielectric and Duncan & the Dragonslayers on November 4, 6-9 pm; D.on Darox and the Melody Joy Bakers take over Sans Souci on Saturday, November 4; and Luna Shade out of Colorado will bring reggae fusion to the Garage on Saturday, November 11.

Do you have any music-related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Please send all information short or long to, and for updated music listings daily, go to