The Sonoma Community Center kicks off the holiday season on Saturday, Dec. 7, with the third annual “Holiday Follies Naughty and Nice All-Star Spectacular!” Sonoma Community Center music program director Cynthia Tarr will preside over the evening as mistress of ceremonies, and will also perform with the Follies house band, that features Sean Carscadden on guitar, Cliff Hugo on bass and Mikey Cannon on drums. The Follies lineup also includes, Ilene Briggin, Defying Gravity, Free Spirits Gospel Choir, the Hot Flashes, Hula Mai, Kim Hughes, Meagan James and Hannah Porter, Karin Neihoff, Jennie Norse, Steve Quintana, Micaelia Randolph, Paula Szoka, Mary Sue Ulven-Rank, Vox Populi and Jennifer Wood. “This event is part Ziegfeld follies, part vaudeville, part night club entertainment harkening back to a time when people came together for live entertainment. Sonoma has so many talented people this is a perfect opportunity to hear something lighthearted and fun …” Doors are at 7 p.m. and the show starts at 8. Advance tickets can be found at svbo.org or, if available, at the door the night of the show.
The Sonoma Community Center will be busy this weekend, with another show on Sunday, Dec. 8, that will feature the Valley of the Moon Chamber Ensemble when the ensemble will present its annual holiday benefit concert. All monies raised by the concert will be donated to the Community Center, and will go toward arts education programming. “We’re so excited about sharing our music with the community and supporting the community center, an integral part of the fabric of Sonoma Valley life,” said Brian Sebastian, music director for the ensemble. Showtime is at 3 p.m. and tickets can be purchased before the show at svbo.org, or at the door if available.
MusicWorks!/Sonoma is back in action this weekend with two shows that will celebrate the Christmas season called “Deck the Hall” with music from Celtic tradition to the contemporary. Enjoy the songs of Amy Grant, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Greg Gilpin, Natalie Sleeth and even some fun with the Andrews Sisters. Saturday, Dec. 7, the show is in Santa Rosa, at the First United Methodist church, and kicks off at 7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, the show is here in the Valley at St. Francis Solano Church, also for a 7 p.m. show. There is no admission to the shows but donations are greatly appreciated. Seats are first-come, first-served.
Showcase the Band will be performing at the Flowery School holiday fundraiser on Saturday, Dec. 7, at the Sonoma Valley Veterans Memorial Building. The evening will feature dinner, dancing and a silent auction. The night gets under way at 6 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door.
The Sunflower Caffe presents its monthly artist showcase tonight, Dec. 6, that will also feature live music from 2 Friends and a Benz, kicking off at 5 p.m.
he Erik James Tasting Room has music tonight, Dec. 6, with Stevie Gurr, Tim Eschliman and Kevin Zuffi, kicking off at 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, it’s Macy Blackman’s Praline Trio, also for a 7 p.m. show. There is no cover either night.
The Annex Wine Bar has Sean Carscadden and Cliff Hugo tonight, Dec. 6, kicking off at 7:30 p.m. Rumor has it they will be recording the audio from the evening. Saturday, Dec. 7, it’s 2 Friends and a Benz, also for a 7:30 p.m. show. There is no cover either night.
The El Verano Inn presents Latin night tonight, Dec. 6, with Los Traviezos De Jolibud and El Nuevo Sabor Latino.
Murphy’s Irish Pub has John Arntz and Friends tonight, Dec. 6, for an 8 p.m. show. Saturday, Dec. 7, it’s Andrew Freeman, also at 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, it’s Kith and Kim for a 6:30 p.m. show.
HopMonk Tavern Sonoma has Wendy DeWitt tonight, Dec. 6, for an 8:30 p.m. show. Saturday, Dec. 7, the tavern welcomes the Hellhounds, also for an 8:30 p.m. show. There is no cover and the shows are all-ages.
The Plaza Bistro has Mad and Eddie Duran tonight, Dec. 6, for a 7 p.m. show. San Francisco guitarist Eddie Duran describes his playing as “piano style” guitar. Like a pianist, Duran combines voicing with single-note phrasing. His extensive credits include work with Stan Getz, Cal Tjader, Charlie Parker, Nat King Cole, Vince Guaraldi, Benny Goodman and many more.
Mad Duran prides herself primarily on tenor as a hard core bop player, with an eclectic taste for contemporary Latin and Brazilian styles. There is no cover.
The Epicurean Connection presents the Hellhounds tonight, Dec. 6, for a 7:30 p.m. show Saturday, Dec. 7, it’s Nancy Briggs, also for a 7:30 p.m. start.
The Blue Moon Saloon presents DJ Hi-C tonight, Dec. 6, kicking off at 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, it’s time for karaoke, starting at 9 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 8, it’s the continuation of the blues jam. Showtime is 10 p.m. and there is no cover either night.
If your gig isn’t in my column, you didn’t tell me about it. Hit me up at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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J. M. Berry knows the local music scene. He also knows website services and social media marketing. Check out his other skills at 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.
Dragon Smoke – Saturday, Dec. 6; HopMonk Tavern – Sebastopol; 829-7300
Merle Haggard – Saturday, Dec. 7; Uptown Theater – Napa; 259-0123
Wailin’ Jennys –Sunday, Dec. 8; Uptown Theater – Napa; 259-0123
Dwight Yoakam – Saturday, Dec. 7; The Warfield – San Francisco; thewarfieldtheater.com
Rita Coolidge – Saturday, Dec. 7; 142 Throckmorton – Mill Valley; 415-383-9600
Poor Mans Whiskey – Friday, Dec. 6; Mystic Theatre – Petaluma; 765-2121
Zepparella – Female Led Zeppelin tribute – Saturday, Dec. 7; Mystic Theatre – Petaluma; 765-2121