Second hand blues and more…
by Pam Baumgardner
I’ve known Ashford Gordon and his music since back in the day when I was a DJ at KXBS radio here in Ventura in the 90’s, so I’ve been looking forward to his latest project the Second Hand Blues Band to make their debut and to release their self-titled CD this month. I received an advance copy, and trust me, you won’t be disappointed. They’ll be holding a CD release party at Grapes and Hops on Saturday, January 28 where the band will perform with Jade Hendrix on hand to warm up the room.
The Santa Barbara-based reggae-influenced alternative rock band, Iration, returns to the Ventura Theater on January 19 in support of their all acoustic album, Double Up. They’re calling it their “Lost & Found Winter Tour.”
50 Sticks of Dynamite are super jazzed to once again open for The Young Dubliners, this time at Discovery Ventura, on Friday, January 20.
After an earlier Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar workshop, there will be a special intimate evening performance with guitar masters Ken Emerson and Jim Kimo West at the Beatrice Wood Center for the Arts in Ojai on January 21. If you’re not familiar with slack key guitars, the instrument is one where you can play bass, chords and melody all at once. “It’s the most interesting acoustic guitar music in the world,” according to West.
The 11th annual Ventura Music Festival Student Jazz Competition will be held on Sunday, January 22 from 2-3:30 pm at the Pierpont Inn and it’s free to the public. The Students selected to perform for the judges and audience will be backed up by Bevan Manson on Piano, Tom Etchart on bass and Charles Levin on drums. Besides cash prizes, the winners will receive numerous opportunities to perform for the public throughout the year, including February 21st when the Ventura Music Festival announces the 2017 July Festival program at Ventura City Hall. Student Jazz winners will also perform during the Rising Stars Concert in May.
Watch for the return of Bullet Made Statues with all original members at Bombay’s on Sunday afternoon, January 29 featuring Wes Pagano (acoustic guitar and lead vocals), Paul FitzGerald (bass), Mike Georgia (lead guitar), Tristan Hendy (keyboards), Rich Agren (drums), and Rene Ponce (percussion and backup vocals). Fitzgerald will be visiting from Spain, and Georgia will be coming down from San Francisco to make this happen. I understand other acts will be on the bill as well.
And finally, after winning the Southern California Blues Society Battle of the Blues Bands in November, The Shawn Jones Trio (Jones, Sam Bolle and Mario Calire) will head to the International Blues Challenge in Memphis which runs January 31 through February 4th. Our hearts are with you boys; good luck!
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