Ventura Music Scene 5/18/23 – 5/30/23

Ventura Music Scene
by Pam Baumgardner

Congratulations to Brandon, aka Anderson .Paak and his sell out annual fundraiser for the Brandon Anderson Foundation. The concert on Friday, May 12 at the fairgrounds didn’t disappoint fans with performances from local artists and headliners the Isley Brothers and none other than the legendary, Smokey Robinson. At 83, the man is still bringing it, releasing new music, Gasms, and kicking off a tour of his own. .Paak House 23 was his first date on his Summer tour.

The California Strawberry Festival will be held for the first time at the Ventura County Fairgrounds over the weekend of May 20 and May 21. Along with all the vendors, and strawberry related food items, music will fill both days on a few different stages. Among the entertainment will be performances from Arise Roots, Jayden Secor Band, Music Freqs Band, Caliente 805 and more.

And if you’re willing to travel a bit, the Happy Face Music Festival will take place on Saturday, May 27, at the Rancho Santa Susana Community Park in Simi Valley. Headlining this one will be The Spazmatics (always a hoot), along with performances from The Fabba Show, Kelly’s Lot, The Yacht Groove, and Barry Keenan. This one is hosted by the Rotary Club of Simi Runrise.

Props going out to Spencer Barnitz of Spencer the Gardener on the documentary, “More Than Just a Party” which chronicles Spencer’s musical journey from the 70s to today. The sold-out premiere of the documentary will be held at the New Vic Theater in Santa Barbara. You won’t want to miss the band performing at Tony’s Pizzeria on Thursday, May 27.

Keep this one on your radar, a fundraiser for the Local Love Project will be held on Sunday, June 4th with performances from Kelly’s Lot, Shawn Jones, and the Bobby Hart Band. Along with all the music, a BBQ, local wine and beers will be available for sale. The primary goal of Totally Local VC’s- the Local Love Project is to activate and organize members of our community in the aftermath of a disaster within our 805 communities and to provide relief and support to those affected by disaster. This one will be held at the Portside Club House (1196 Portside Drive).

Congratulations to Winchesters Grill & Saloon on their 26th anniversary. Join in on the celebrations, Sunday, May 21, with the 805’s dance party band favorite, The Bomb (3-6 pm).

Quick Notes: Tickets are on sale now for Yngwie Malmsteen & Glenn Hughes at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center for September 9; Creatures of Content (Pennsylvania) play The Six on Friday May 19; Big Bad Voodoo plays the Libbey Bowl on Saturday, May 20; and The Winery Dogs (Mike Portnoy, Billy Sheehan and Richie Kotzen) play the Ventura Theater on Saturday, May 20.

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 Rocks in the Ventura Breeze 5/4 – 5/17

Ventura MusVentura Breeze logoic Scene
by Pam Baumgardner

There are a number of special events lined up as the weather gets warmer and most of these events will be held outdoors including KHAY Fest on Sunday, May 22, at Surfer’s Point Live (Ventura Fairgrounds) with Josh Turner, Dylan Scott and Tenille Arts. You can find all the ticket information at on the website.

Winchesters Grill on Main Street in downtown Ventura is celebrating their 25th anniversary with an outdoor party featuring live music from CRV, Brandon Ragan Project and Ray Jaurique & the Uptown Brothers. The fun starts at 1 pm and goes all day Saturday, May 21.

Ozomatli has been added to the Surf Rodeo music lineup along with Bob Log III, the Aquadolls, Sitting on Stacy, Hirie, Sik Sik Sicks, Death Lens, Badfish, Yachtley Crew, and more. It will be great to hit the sand once again for a weekend of great music, surf competitions, the cornhole tournament, and some serious people watching. Tickets are on sale for July 15 – 17 at

The Simi Valley Cajun & Blues Festival has been rebranded as the Happy Face Music Festival and it still falls over the Memorial Day weekend on May 28. Headlining will be Mike Campbell the Dirty Knobs along with performances from Sam Morrow, Hardcastle and Kelly’s Lot. Get ticket information at

Tickets went on sale May 1st for the 27th season of the Ventura Music Festival which will run July 29 – 31 and August 5 -7. All the performances will be held at the Ventura College Performing Arts Center except for the popular free concert at Mission Park on Wednesday, July 27. This year it will feature Adaawe, an all -female acoustic, vocal and drumming band performing a contemporary world-fusion mix which will be fun for the whole family. Be sure to bring blanket or low-chair for comfortable seating. You can find more information on all performances at

Quick Notes: A Bar Called Country has cancelled all live bands and opting once again for DJs; the Ventura Harbor Comedy Club’s 1st annual Harmonica Festival for May 15 has already sold out; Tony’s Pizzaria is firing up their Sunday Funday Beach Parties live music 3-6 and their reggae Thursdays start on Cinco de Mayo with Forbidden Fruit; Don Randi and Quest (Wrecking Crew) is back for repeat performance at the Grape, Saturday, May 7; Caffrodite monthly dinner & music features Déjà vu Too on Friday, May 13; X plays the Ventura Music Hall on May 11; and 311 plays the Majestic Ventura Theater on Thursday, May 12.

Finally, it is with a heavy heart that I send out my sincerest condolences to the Ventura jazz community as we mourn the passing of local artist, Hans Ottsen. His grace, talent, and sweet soul will be forever missed.

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