Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze – 11/9 – 11/22

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing!
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com
Swing Dancers artwork
You won’t want to miss Fortunate Youth when they open for Slightly Stoopid at the Ventura Theater, Friday, November 11.  They’re the creators of one of the biggest and most successful reggae compilations in the world, with all proceeds donated to different charities that the band tries to support from Cancer Awareness to helping Children who have lost music programs due to under funding.  Also at the theater will be the local favorites Dirty Rice opening for Tribal Theory on Saturday, November 12 and then the following week it’s Pennywise with Strung Out and Unwritten Law on Friday, November 18, and of course Suicidal Tendencies with Good Riddance on Saturday, November 19.

Congratulations to Rachel Flowers who was interviewed for the November issue of Keyboard Magazine (the one with Norah Jones on the cover).  Her film “Hearing is Believing” by Lorenzo DeStefano was just featured at the 17th Annual Ojai Film Festival.

I’m all about good causes especially when good causes are in conjunction with great music, and so it goes with the fundraiser on Saturday, November 12, at the Ventura Beach Club for The Canine Adoption and Rescue League (C.A.R.L.) in Ventura.  The event will run 6-10 pm and will feature Deb Ryder, Ray Jaurique & The Uptown Brothers and Kelly’s Lot. You can always count on Kelly Zirbes for going above and beyond the call of duty when it comes to taking care of abandoned cats and dogs. Admission is only $10 and all proceeds will go to C.A.R.L.  As a side note, Kelly and husband Perry just opened for the iconic Don Mclean at the Rose in Pasadena.

I’ll be honest, I’m really looking forward to “The Pretty Things,” a David Bowie tribute band at O’Leary’s November 12. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, “My teenage years would not have been the same without Bowie.”

The Barrelhouse Wailers will be hosting another Speakeasy swing dance night on November 19 at the Ventura Beach Club.  The evening will start with lessons at 8 pm with Kim Clever and David Frutos, then live music from 9 to midnight.  Of course, costumes are encouraged but not required.

Goodnight Kiss are currently in the studio recording their first EP; Medicine Hat will be going back into the studio soon; Hard Six just finished a video soundtrack recorded at Megasound Studios; the Rubberneck Lions just released new music via social media with their first single, “Head Case by Case”; Ashford Gordon’s CD release party has been postponed until after the New Year; Smitty and Julia’s new CD, “Made in Ojai” is now available on CD Baby; and congratulations to all of the Mayor’s Arts Awards recipients with a big shout out to local musician/teacher, Jodi Farrell.  It’s well deserved my friend!

Do you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Send all information short or long to Pam@VenturaRocks.com, and for updated music listings daily, go to www.VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze 10/12-10/25

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
Ebbs and Flows of our Music Scene
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

161012

Nobody likes change, especially when it involves the closing of another venue which offered live music. I’ll admit to my disappointment; especially when walking by Saturday night and not hearing upbeat live music from W20 at the Watermark. I wanted to berate Hartley for letting us down, but you know, he and Kathy sort of deserve less stress in their lives. It would have made the blow easier knowing the new tenants would carry on with live music, but alas, it doesn’t appear they will. I’m trusting the other venues in town to pick up the slack and help out the bands scrambling to find places to play. I always say there are ebbs and flows with Ventura’s music scene. Guess which one we’re in.

Doing his best to pick up the slack of course is Mike Toler just around the corner from W20 at Amigos. He’s got a nice line up of music scheduled including Mi6 on Sunday October 23d. He told me that he’s looking forward to the return of his friend Wes Nile and Mi6. He said, “The last time we had them at Amigos they really brought it with something I had not seen before. Imagine listening to a DJ but the DJ was being replaced by a band, and unless you were in front of the band, you wouldn’t know the difference!”

I’m glad I was able to witness the return of Cirith Ungol at the Ventura Theater during the Frost and Fire II fest. The City of Ventura was scheduled to recognize their reuniting after 25 years at the City Council meeting on Monday the 10th. I’ve heard European dates will be coming up for them in 2017.

SteampunkFest will be held at the Heritage Square in Oxnard on October 15th and 16th. The event is being touted as kid friendly with wacky events all day. Some of the bands scheduled include 50 Sticks of Dynamite, Abby and the Myth, Cirque Des Betes, and of course the Velveteen Band. For more information and ticket prices, check out www.OxnardSteamPunkFest.com.

I’m hearing good things about the band, Big Jesus, an alt-rock band out of Atlanta, GA, who will be coming to town this month. They’ve been getting a lot of good coverage for their latest release; Rolling Stone Magazine praised them for “reviving 90’s alternative” which happens to my favorite era of music. Actually the entire week at the Ventura Theater will be rockin’ with Yellowcard on the 19th, Garbage on the 20th, Ben Folds on the 21st, Common Kings on the 22nd and wrapping up the week will be Big Jesus opening for Good Charlotte on Sunday the 23rd.

And finally, happy anniversary to Sheldon and the staff of the Ventura Breeze. I would like to personally thank Sheldon for supporting Ventura’s music scene by devoting a full page to its coverage.

Do you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Send all information short or long to Pam@VenturaRocks.com, and for updated music listings daily, go to www.VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze – 8/31-9/13

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
Help for Budding Artists
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

©highwaystarz

©highwaystarz

Big help from Big Bad Voodoo Daddy for our local schools! That’s $42,500 in funding to Ventura Unified School District earmarked to enhance existing visual and performing arts programs. The funds were made possible through the BBVD concert last April celebrating the City of Ventura’s 150th anniversary.  I’m looking forward to seeing new upcoming artist having the chance to flourish as a result of the band’s generosity.

Local singer, Eric Harrington, recently played at Squashed Grapes to a packed house. Few knew there was a chance that drummer Vinnie Colaiuta might show up, and show up he did for the final songs of the night. Harrington told me, “What an amazing night it was, and to end it with Vinnie sitting in was just incredible, he’s just a delightful man!”  Trey O’Toole from Pulse Drumming told me that Colaiuta had been working in a session all day and was afraid he might not make it, but luckily for the house, he did.

Speaking of Pulse Drumming and Squashed Grapes, watch for the Alvino Bennett (currently working with Dave Mason) drum clinic on September 10; he’ll be joined afterwards at the Grape for an awesome jam including musicians George Hawkins, Jr. on bass and vocals (Kenny Loggins & Jim Messina), Jonathan McEuen on guitar and vocals (Dwight Yoakum, NGDB, Dave Mason), Geo Evans on guitar (Cheryl Lynn, Euge Groove) and TJ, Teddy Jack Russell on guitar and vocals (Leon Russell).

Bombay’s 32nd End of Summer Party hits Ventura over the first weekend of September with three stages (including one outdoors with sand and a mechanical bull).  Look for musical acts all weekend long including performances from Mandex, Highway Starr, Dirty Rice, Uproots, Shakey Feelin’ and A.D.D to name but a few.

The first ever Oxnard Jazz Festival lands at Oxnard Beach on Saturday, September 10, offering a diverse mix of Jazz, Latin, Soul, Blues and R&B with Tom Brown, Nick Colionne, Howard Hewett, O’Bryan, Quatrosound and Poncho Sanchez. You can get ticket information and more on this special event at OxnardJazzFestival.com.

Alternative/Country rockers, Porter & the Bluebonnet will be swinging through town from Austin, TX, with a showcase at Sans Souci on Friday, September 9. They’ll be on the same bill as The Jelly.

The Ventura Theater has been packing in the shows for the rest of the year. You’ll want to review their line up so you don’t miss any acts such as Jackson Browne, Pennywise, Echo & the Bunnymen, Steve Vai, Good Charlotte, Yellowcard, Ben Folds, Garbage, The Common Kings, Dwight Yoakum and more! Plus, you have the Nardcore show on September 10, and Frost and Fire with the return of Cirith Ungol on October 8.  Details at VenturaTheater.net.

Do you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Send all information short or long to Pam@VenturaRocks.com, and for updated music listings daily, go to www.VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze 5/25 – 6/7

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
“Who to Watch”
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

160427_VR-Guitar

Ones to Watch Productions will be hosting a number of showcases at Grapes and Hops on Main Street. Mimi Gilbert will be there on Saturday, May 28, and The Brambles on Saturday, June 4th. Steve and Polly Hoganson (formerly of Zoey’s) most certainly have their fingers on the pulse of up and coming artists to watch for, so be sure to support their showcases here in town!

Radio Skies CD release party will be held indoors and out at the Ventura Beach Club On Saturday, May 28 with several bands and artists on the bill in what they’re calling a “One Night Micro Fest”. If you’re not familiar with them, the band, Radio Skies is out of Ojai, and find their inspiration from the songwriting of Paul Simon, the electronic landscapes of Brian Eno and the spirit of the Grateful Dead with their sound described as folk roots, electronic, psychedelia. Other bands on the line up include Pacific Haze, The Brambles, 9Lives and Brion Shearer.

The Libbey Bowl 2016 season has a number of events lined up for the next several months including several dates for the 70th Ojai Music Festival in June; concerts with Rick Springfield, Ozomatli, Michael McDonald, The Zombies and a special intimate concert with Don Felder of the Eagles benefiting Community Memorial Healthcare Foundation and the Ojai Community Foundation in October; and coming up immediately is an Ojai VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars) free Memorial Day concert featuring Veteran speakers, and music from Nordhoff High School, US Air Force Band and the Ventura British Brass. For more information on Libbey shows, check out www.LibbeyBowl.org.

Hi Hat Entertainment has landed at the Hong Kong Inn for their Friday night Blues concerts. Shows on their roster include the boss of boogie Woogie, Rob Rio, who will be in the house on Friday, May 27; Keke Dickerson and the Eccofonics, famous for their Western Rockabilly sound on Friday, June 3rd; and The Bruce Katz Band will be there on Friday, June 10. Katz was inducted into the Blues hall of Fame in 2013. Hi Hat has a solid up line through August; you can check out their line up at www.HiHatEntertainment.com.

By the way, if you’re planning on catching Bad Religion at the Ventura Theater on Thursday, June 2, then you’ll want to extend the fun afterwards at Sans Souci with Mother of Dissension and The Hymen Blasters.

And of course the summer fun officially starts with Roadshow Revival, (now being called) A Celebration of American Roots Music, at Mission Park on June 25th and 26th. I’m looking forward to catching John Doe, The Paladins, The Blasters, Robert Gordon, and tons of other acts performing over the weekend. Information and tickets can be found at www.RoadshowRevival.com.

Do you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Send all information short or long to Pam@VenturaRocks.com, and for updated music listings daily, go to www.VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Music Photos: February 2015

Squashed Grapes – February 18, 2015
Bruce Foreman with Marvin Smitty Smith on drums.
Bruce Forman


Peirano’s – February 18, 2015
Warren Takahashi – Representing!
Warren


Grapes & Hops – February 17, 2015 – Fat Tuesday
Hot Roux
Hot Roux


Peirano’s – February 17, 2015 – Fat Tuesday
Gil Valencia & Friends
Gil Valencia & Friends


Ventura Beach Club – February 17, 2015 – Fat Tuesday
Swing Cheese
Swing Cheese


Prime – February 17, 2015 – Fat Tuesday
Danny D (Sinatra impersonator)
Danny D


Squashed Grapes – February 13, 2015
Doug Webb Group featuring Danny Carey of TOOL
Danny Carey, Doug Webb


Bombay’s – February 13, 2015
The Velveteen Band
The Velveteen Band


Bombay’s – February 13, 2015
50 Sticks of Dynamite
50 Sticks of Dynamite


Discovery – February 7, 2015
Pinback
Pinback


Padrino’s – February 7, 2015
Lola Haag
Lola Haag


Grapes and Hops – February 6, 2015
Shawn Jones, Sam Bolle, Suzie Candell (Switzerland) and Grammy Winner Jeff Silbar (“Wind Beneath Your Wings”)
Shawn - Suzie - Sam - Jeff


Saloon BBQ – February 6, 2015
Big Tweed
Big Tweed

 


Bombay Bar and Grill – February 5, 2015
Robin Bacior (Portland, OR)
Robin Bacior

 

Erik Emanuelson of Grand Lake Islands (Portland, OR)
Erik Emanuelson
The Brave Kind (Ventura)
The Brave Kind


Majestic Ventura Theater – February 4, 2015
Willie Nelson and Family (Many thanks to Gary Best for photo!)
Willie Nelson


Amigos – February 3, 2015
Nathan McEuen (joined by brother Jonathan)

Nathan and Jonathan

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze 10/1 – 10/14

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
It’s a Colorful Fall Music Season!
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

Lee KochCongratulations to Plan B Wine Cellars as they celebrate their 2-year anniversary with good food, wine and of course live music! You can “Toast the train” while listening to Cuppa Joe; dancing shoes and lounge chairs are encouraged.

Speaking of local wineries and music, Squashed Grapes welcomes back The Doug Web Group with Danny Carey of TOOL on drums. This one is guaranteed to sell out once again; it’s highly recommended you get your tickets sooner than later.

Bombay Bar and Grill has a number of events to look out for this month. Ones to Watch Productions present the Lee Koch Band, Derek Jennings & Zeke Berkley on Friday, October 3. There will be a fundraiser to benefit Notes for Notes and the Boys and Girls Clubs of greater Ventura featuring a performance by Sgt. Pepper on Sunday, October 12, 4-7 pm. And if you are a fan of reggae, you won’t want to miss Junior Marvin & Nappy Ridden on Friday, October 10. Marvin joined Bob Marley & the Wailers in ’77 and over the past few decades has played with Soja and O.A.R. His latest collaboration with Nappy Ridden joins the two forces for Foundation to Creation supporting the creation of a new American reggae sound, steeped in funk, soul and rock.

One of my favorite annual fundraisers is Pier Under the Stars where local restaurants, breweries and wineries offer very nice samplings. The event is down next to the pier on Saturday, October 4 with music from Caliente. This one always sells out so get your tickets while they last at www.PierIntoTheFuture.org.

I’m pleased as punch that Monday, September 29, Ventura’s City Council unanimously approved the pilot concert series license agreement with Fitzgerald-Hartley Company and Nederlander Concerts for 2015.  As Councilman Tracy put it, “The proof will be in the pudding”, which is true, but the potential is so exciting!

The Majestic Ventura Theater has been busy booking shows for October: Jimmy Eat World on 10/2; The Aquabats on 10/4; The Dirty Heads on 10/10; Belanova on 10/11; Joey Bada$$ on 10/16; Matisyahu on 10/21; Ab-Soul, Simply Ty & Geezus on 10/24 and Erasure on 10/26.

If you’re a fan of Buffalo Springfield, Poco and Loggins & Messina, you won’t want to miss out on a special performance called, “An Evening with Jim Messina with Rusty Young ‘Sittin’ In’” on Saturday, October 11 at Ojai’s Libbey Bowl. A former resident of Ojai, Messina will be back treating fans with their hit songs while fundraising for Community Memorial Health System construction projects in Ojai.

And finally, Ventura Rocks will be amongst the vendors 4-6 pm on Sunday, October 4, hoping to raise funds for Strides Against Cancer at Amigos. Local artists, Karen Eden and Joe Hamilton, will be donating their time and The Tossers will perform afterwards at 6 with British cover tunes.

If you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Send all information short or long to Pam@VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze 9/17 – 9/30

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
Suds, Music and Rockin’ History
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

Calire's Hammand B3I seriously can’t remember a year with more music bursting at the seams than this past year, and we’re only about two thirds done! Coming events, and starting on the water, the Ventura Harbor is capitalizing on all this great weather by bringing back the popular Rock on the Dock series every Saturday in September. Still to come on the 20th is Smokey and Friends and the 27th The Hard Times Band.

The 2014 California Beer Festival is finally upon us. I’m looking forward to learning all about craft beer on Saturday the 20 while chillin’ to Petty Theft, Dr. M and Rey Fresco; and then on Sunday, the 21, it’s the Blues & BBQ Festival with Tab Benoit, Trampled Under Foot, Sister Sparrow & the Dirty Birds, Michael John & the Bottom Line as well as Jonathon Boogie Long. I’ll be out selling Ventura Rocks t-shirts on Sunday, so be sure to swing by and hang a spell.

A free family-friendly night of music featuring music from popular radio and Broadway will be held at the Ventura Theater on September 19 and 21 featuring Loanne Wullaert with vocal support from some of the county’s best vocalists including Aaron Orbit and Marcella Tambouris. Look for numbers from Les Miserables, A Star is Born, Frozen, Dreamgirls and more. In between the two nights being called “September Song” will be The White Buffalo on the 20th. See VenturaTheater.net for times.

The good folks from Zoey’s have officially kicked off their new music venture in the form of Ones to Watch Productions. Steve and Polly Hoganson continue their support of up and coming artists as they produce local showcases. The next one will be Friday, October 3, at Bombay Bar and Grill with The Lee Koch Band, Derek Jennings and Zeke Berkley. For more information see OnesToWatchProductions.com.

One of my favorite blues singers with some serious spunk is Kelly Zirbes who has this never ending contagious energy about her. She’s always there when a helping hand is needed and it’s always a treat to see Kelly along with her husband Perry Robertson and their band Kelly’s Lot perform. She’s sure to make you laugh, but more than that, the band will get you up off your tush jamming to their special brand of rockin’ blues. Kelly’s Lot CD release party for their latest CD, “Don’t Give My Blues Away” will be held on Friday, September 19, at Yolies with a $10 cover. If you’re not able to make it, you’ll want to add this one to your collection for sure. Visit KellysLot.com to pick one up today.

And finally, just a quick little anecdote: While hanging out with Jimmy Calire the other night at Squashed Grapes, I knew the Hammond B3 organ he had brought in for the show that evening with Karl Hunter had some stories behind it, but none could be cooler than the one he share with me that evening where he would be jamming on it with his band, Raven at The Session in the Theater District in New York City and Jimi Hendrix would jump up on stage and join in the action. Seriously, how cool is that? This town has such an abundance of talent and history reinforcing what I’ve always said, Ventura Rocks!

If you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing? Send all information short or long to Pam@VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze – 7/23 – 8/5

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
Summer Music is Really Heating Up!
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

Jerry's BirthdayWe had two days of the best summer weather for Surf Rodeo.  There was so much to see and do with Pato Baton doing a superb performance at sunset on Sunday to wrap it all up.  Congratulations JD Drury on another successful Surf Rodeo!

Hi-Hat Entertainment’s Jerry McWorter’s 50th Birthday Bash was a blast at Yolies July 18.  It was so cool to see so many top-notch artists in the room and up on the stage performing.  When we swung by it was Jerry on drums, Brent Harding on bass, Jimmy Calire on keyboards and Albert Lee on guitar.  Legendary!

It was great seeing so many ArtWalk 2014 venues supplementing this city-wide art event with live music this year!  Bell Arts Factory, the WAV, Mission Park, Stoneworks Studios and many more featured such artists as Jonathan McEuen, Mitchell Blake, The Deer Leg Band, Rey Fresco, and SoulVang.

The fair kicks off July 30 with the ever popular fair parade on Main Street on Saturday, August 2.  Ventura Rocks will be hitching a ride on the Squashed Grapes float with some of our favorite jazz performers playing the parade route:  Fausto Cuevas, Jacob Scesney, Trey O’Toole, Andrew Hill, RJ Root and perhaps a surprise or two.  Speaking of music and the Ventura County Fair, their entertainment lineup is amongst the best of recent history with the Beach Boys, Little Big Town, The Spinners, Barenaked Ladies, Deep Purple, Seether, Jake Owen and Creedence Clearwater Revisited.  All shows are included in the price of admission.

The Music Under the Stars series continues with Spencer the Gardener taking over Olivas Adobe on Saturday, July 26.  Joining his beloved cast of characters, um, I mean musicians, will be former members Cougar Estrada and Nate Birkey who will kick it up just a notch or two.  The following week will be a Carlos Santana tribute band.  Call (805) 658-4726 for ticket information.

Bombay Bar and Grill has nailed down the date for their 30th annual Indoor/Outdoor Beach Party; and though Diego wasn’t quite ready to share their music line-up, you’ll want to mark down the dates which cover the last three days of the month, August 29 – August 31. This is sure to be off-the-hook!!

Chiodos, along with Bless the Fall, will take over the Ventura Theater on Friday, August 1.  They’ve been out on tour in support of their new CD, “Devil” which was produced by David Botrill (Tool, Muse, Stone Sour).

And finally, just added to the VenturaRocks.com Listening Station at Very Ventura store on California Street are Ashford Gordon, the new one from Mother of Dissension, and “Struggle Makes You Stronger” from Shawn Jones.   You have no idea what it means to our local musicians when someone purchases their music.  It really does make a difference.

Do you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing?  Send all information short or long to  Pam@VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in the Ventura Breeze – 4/30/14 – 5/13/14

Ventura Breeze logoVentura Music Scene
Music is Never a Burdon
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

I cannot wait to check out Eric Burdon when he comes out this way; the last time I ran into him was at a concert KXBS oldies radio station put on at State Beach back around 1992.  Burdon (yes, THE Eric Burdon from The Animals and War fame) will be headlining a show at the Libbey Bowl in Ojai on May 17th and I’m hearing it’s Eric’s 73rd birthday so we’re expecting quite the celebration.   Opening the show will be the Rubberneck Lions and Dishwalla.
Eric Burdon and Pam BaumgardnerThe Ventura Music Festival is in full swing during the month of May, and the powers that be have really outdone themselves this year with a stellar line up:  May 2 it’s Igudesman & Joo, a Little Nightmare Music at Community Presbyterian Church; Ventura High plays host for several shows including Lynn Harrell, Dean of American cellists on May 3; an evening with Judy Collins on May 4; and Stanislav Khristenko, 2013 Cleveland International Piano Competition Gold Medalist, on May 9.  Check out www.VenturaMusicFestival.org for even more shows, ticket pricing and availability.

Depending on your mood, the Ventura Theater has some cool shows in May.  If you’re looking to burn off steam, punk rockers, Against Me! will be in the house on May 27, but if you’re looking to dance off some energy, you won’t want to miss the ever popular Reverend Horton Heat and their brand of psychobilly on the 23rd; and finally if you’re feeling a little more mellow and ready for some reggae, then it’s The Green for you on May 26.

Ventura Music Week is coming up!  Don’t even think about scheduling your vacation between June 6 and June 15th.   Just some of the events to look forward to include the annual SRO benefit with the Stoneflys, Highway Starr and other bands; there’s the Roadshow Revival’s:  a Tribute to the Music of Johnny Cash; Louden Guitars will have a special showcase at the W Gallery with some amazing guitarists including our very own Shawn Jones;  there will be a special screening of the Oscar winning documentary, “20 Feet from Stardom”;  an evening of visual arts up at City Hall’s Atrium, and more music than you can shake a stick at.  Do check in at www.VenturaMusicWeek.com for more details as they come in.

Do you have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help publicizing?  Send all information short or long to  Pam@VenturaRocks.com.

Ventura Rocks in Ventura Breeze – 1/8/14 – 1/21/14

breezeVentura Music Scene
All Hans on deck
by Pam Baumgardner
VenturaRocks.com
Pam@VenturaRocks.com

I woke up pleasantly surprised on New Year’s Day to find that Hans Ottsen had just released a brand new EP called Music for Mind Movies. While getting to know Hans and his live jazz performances at one of my favorite venues, Squashed Grapes, I learned that he also teaches guitar lessons, and is a well-sought after session musician.  He co-produced and engineered at Filzar Studios for the past year or so, and recently worked on Phil Salazar’s new release, Life on the Edge, in exchange he earned some prime studio time.

So how did Hans use that time?  He told me, “I got the band Tico Trio in there a couple months ago and we’re planning to release that one in early 2014. These tracks were really just me experimenting in the studio. I never really planned to release them as I was creating them.  Then I thought it’d be fun to release an EP without any jazz on it.”

Han’s EP titled Music for Mind Movies is seven eclectic beautifully written and performed songs that if you allow, will take you to another place. Hans explained, “As for the name, the tunes don’t adhere to any one genre. There’s some ambient electronic, instrumental pop, demented circus music, but I can’t really describe it all easily. I’ve been told that it all kinda sounds like ‘music from a movie.’ Those movies have yet to be made. They exist in the mind.  Music For Mind Movies.”   You can buy the new EP at www.HansOttsen.Bandcamp.com

The Ventura County Concert Band (VCCB) is celebrating their 50th season with their next performance scheduled for Sunday, January 26, at the Ventura High School auditorium at 3:00 pm. VCCB is a non-profit Community Concert Band, under the direction of Ms. Julie Judd based here in Ventura.  They perform for the community free of charge 4 times a year. Take the whole family for an incredible show.

And two shows to watch for at the Majestic Ventura Theater this month.  If you like grooving to what they call “Sunshine Reggae,” you won’t want to miss Iration on Friday, January 24 and then Grammy award winning Country artist Dwight Yoakum will be kicking it up on Friday, January 31, as he continues to tour in support of his latest release, “3 Pears.”  Contact Ventura Theater for ticket availability.

And don’t forget we’re helping to get Tommy Marsh to Nashville to compete in the International Blues Challenge in Memphis.  Fundraiser is Sunday, January 12 at Bombay’s with Guy Martin, Kelly’s Lot, 50 Sticks of Dynamite, Mikey Mo, Donna Greene and the Roadhouse Daddies, 4 on the Floor, Ray Jaurique and the Uptown Brothers, and Tommy Marsh and Bad Dog. All this amazing music for only $10 plus it helps get Crooked Eye Tommy to the competition.  See you there!!!

Have any music related news or upcoming shows you want help on publicizing?  Send all information short or long:  Pam@VenturaRocks.com.