Sonoma Valley Chorale performs Irving Berlin
James Marshall Berry
The Sonoma Valley Chorale, directed by David Irvine, will be back in action this weekend, presenting a performance of "Puttin' on the Ritz" that will also feature the award-winning Sonoma Valley High School Choir, directed by Barbara McElroy. Concert-goers can look forward to hearing an Irving Berlin songfest including "Alexander's Ragtime Band," "Steppin' Out with My Baby," "Blue Skies," "God Bless America" and many more. Show times are Saturday, May 14, at 2 and 7 p.m. and Sunday, May 15, at 2 p.m. Tickets are available at Pharmaca or at the door, if still available. For reserved seating call 935-1576.
Local violin prodigy Nigel Armstrong is back in town with the Peresson Quartet tonight, May 13, at Jacuzzi Family Winery. Comprised of Armstrong on violin, Luanne Homzy on violin, Min-Kyung Sung on viola and Julian Schwarz playing cello, the quartet, which takes its name from an American maker of string instruments, has played to great acclaim throughout the western United States and Canada. Immediately following the night, the quartet will be traveling to Japan to participate in the Japan International String Quartet Competition, and then Armstrong will travel to St. Petersburg, Russia, to compete in the Tchaikovsky International Violin Competition, the most prestigious violin competition in the world. The show kicks off at 7 p.m., and there will be a reception beginning at 6 p.m. There are also special seating options that include a bottle of wine. For tickets and more info, point your browser to www.sonomaclassical.org.
Steve T. Ney is announcing a new music venue in town, the Katmandu Corner, which is in the back room of the Taste of the Himalayas Restaurant, across the alley from Murphy's Irish Pub. The debut will be tonight, May 13, and will feature Sean Carscadden and local belly dancing legend Nathalie Tedrick. The show kicks off at 7 p.m. and it's expected to be a weekly event with different artists.
Just across the alley, at Murphy's Irish Pub, you can check out local bluesmen the Hellhounds tonight, May 13, for an 8 p.m. show. Saturday, May 14, brings in Dr. Elmo and Wild Blue, also for an 8 p.m. show. The act claims to play bluegrass songs most other acts don't dare to play. Sunday, May 15, the pub has E. Z. Kewl for an early show, kicking off at 6:30 p.m. There is no cover for any of the shows at the pub.
Static People have just wrapped post-production on their first music video in collaboration with Ex'pression College for Digital Arts in the East Bay. The tune, "The Late Projectionist," is homage to a late friend of singer Dmitra Smith and guitarist Pascal Faivre, and shares its title with a novel written by Daedalus Howell, who also played bass on the track. The tune was produced by multi-platinum producer Jason Carmer and the video can be seen here:
HopMonk Tavern Sonoma will have the debut performance of Michael L. Castle at the venue tonight, May 13, at 6 p.m. Sunday, May 15, the tavern welcomes the Adam Traum Duo to the outside beer garden for a 2 p.m. show.
Little Switzerland will be busy on Saturday, May 14, with an afternoon performance by the San Francisco Starlight Orchestra. The San Francisco Starlight Orchestra is a 14-piece, 1920s novelty orchestra and this week will introduce their new vocalist, Julianna. Reservations are suggested by calling 938-9990. Later that night, Gator Beat will take the stage and fill the dance floor with the Cajun sounds that the band is famous for over the last 20-plus years in Sonoma Valley and all along the West Coast. Showtime that evening is 8 p.m.
Natasha James' latest single, "My Country has the Blues" has been number one on the Roots Americana charts for more than five weeks so far. Look for the completed album soon and to check out the tune, point your browser to www.natashajames.com.
Lokal, European soul food restaurant, will have Sue Albano and Mark Dennis performing as a duo tonight, May 13, for a show from 8 to 10 p.m.
The Plaza Bistro presents jazz legend Larry Vuckovich and the Beyond Category Trio tonight, May 13, for one night only at the Plaza Bistro. Tonight, Vuckovich will have with him Al Obidinski on bass and Chuck McPherson on drums. The show kicks off at 7 p.m. and there is no cover.
The Official Story will be releasing their self-titled debut album Saturday, May 14. The album will be available for sale that day at Sonoma Valley Music. The new album features all original songs by Diego Emir Garcia, Alex Garcia and Kyle St. John. The album also showcases local reggae artist Joshua James Hale on a song.
Sonoma Jazz Plus tickets are going fast, but there remains some available for all shows. If you're thinking about seeing John Fogerty, Sheryl Crow or the Gipsy Kings over the weekend of May 20 to 22, then now is the time to grab your tickets by pointing your browser to www.sonomajazz.org. You can also purchase tickets to the popular "Wine and Song" series, held around the Sonoma Plaza that same weekend.
The Sonoma Alliance Church will be hosting the Gathering on Saturday, May 14, as a benefit for Faith Presbyterian Church's short-term missions trip to Honduras. The night is the brainchild of Bryan Martinez, who is also a member of the band Burning Broadway, winner of this year's "Battle of the Bands" in the Sonoma Plaza. The event, called "Go Be Love," will be taking donations of any type at the door, and admission includes food and music. There will also be a silent auction with many items donated by local businesses. The Sonoma Alliance Church is at 125 E. Watmaugh in Sonoma, and the night kicks off at 6 p.m.
Steiners Tavern will be celebrating the birthday of its proprietor, Paul Spadaro tonight, May 13, with a special appearance by the Santana and Latin rock tribute act Cross Fire, from San Francisco. The show kicks off at 9 p.m. and there is no cover.
Sonoma Springs Brewery will have the Maldonado Brothers for a show tonight, May 13, for a 6 p.m. show.
The Barking Dog in Boyes Hot Springs has an open-mic improv session from 2 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 14. Potential participants will be able to jam with Keith Ridenhour, who plays saxophone for the Jami Jamison Band and many other acts, and play with him and his iPod or bring whatever songs they want to play. "Bring it on," says Ridenhour.
Landmark Winery and Vineyards in Kenwood will have Eric Cabalo playing solo-acoustic guitar on Saturday, May 14, starting at 1 p.m.
The Jami Jamison Band will be at Papa's Taverna tonight, May 13, in Petaluma on Lakeville Highway, for a 7 p.m. show.
The Hellhounds will be on the road to Santa Rosa at the Flamingo Hotel on Saturday, May 14, for a 2 p.m. show.
If your gig isn't in my column, you didn't tell me about it. Hit me up at the address up by the picture.
J. M. Berry knows the local music scene. Listen to his weekly radio show at www.sonomamusic.com. He also knows website services and social media marketing. Check out his other skills at www.jmberry.com.
Editor's Note: While there is no shortage of great concerts in Sonoma, sometimes it is fun to get out of the Valley. Here's what you can hear within 45 minutes of fair Sonoma.
Roy Rogers and the Delta Rhythm Kings - Saturday, May 14; Rancho Nicasio - Nicasio; 415-662-2219
Foreverland - Michaeal Jackson Tribute - Friday, May 13; Last Day Saloon - Santa Rosa; 545-2343
Eric Gales - Thursday, May 19; Last Day Saloon - Santa Rosa; 545-2343
Petty Theft - Friday, May 13; HopMonk Tavern – Sebastopol; 829-7300
Roy Rogers w/Carlos Reyes - Friday, May 13; Yoshi's - San Francisco; 415-655-5600
Take 6 - Friday, May 13; Napa Valley Opera House; 226-7372
Charlie Musselwhite - Friday, May 13; Biscuits & Blues - San Francisco; 415-292-2583
John Lee Hooker Jr. - Saturday, May 14; Biscuits & Blues - San Francisco; 415-292-2583