“It is not every day that three artists from different worlds, but who speak a common language, come together for a tour. This used to happen a lot in the 60′s and 70′s but not as much today. It should be real fun and you can bet filled with many surprises.” Iconic folk-blues legend Taj Mahal, performing with The Taj Mahal Trio, will headline an evening celebrating the global influence of American blues music as seen from three very diverse points of view and three international points of origin. Taj will be joined by legendary South African guitarist/vocalist Vusi Mahlasela and Fredericks Brown, a soul/R&B band that features Taj’s daughter, Deva Mahal, who hails from New Zealand. This tour,will be the first time these artists have performed all together on one stage. Taj Mahal’s “World Blues Tour” comes to the Rio Theatre in Santa Cruz Saturday, October 5th. Showtime is 8 pm.
Bua, a band from Chicago playing Irish traditional music, will be appearing at Don Quixote’s in Felton, CA on Tues, Oct 1, 2013 at 7:30pm. Presented by the Celtic Society of the Monterey Bay, Bua consists of four musicians playing uilleann (elbow) pipes, fiddle, flute, whistle, concertina, bouzouki and guitar blended with fine harmony singing in Gaelic as well as English. They also sing unaccompanied ballads in the spine-tingling stark sean-nos style (“old style”) and can do a bit of traditional dancing as well, closely matching steps with the rhythms of the tunes. They’ve performed at many of the top Irish and folk festivals in North America and received an Irish Music Award in 2009 as the “Top Traditional Group.” Their latest album is highly recommended by the Backroads folk show here at KZSC (Sundays, 12-2pm).
From Scotland, Mànran will be performing at Don Quixote’s in Felton, CA on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 at 7:30pm. Mànran is a six-member high-energy band playing a mix of Scottish traditional and contemporary music, singing in both Gaelic and English. They’ve headlined in major festivals throughout the United Kingdom and Europe, including a special performance at the 2012 London Olympics. They’re known for titanic sets of tunes and songs driven by Gary Innes on accordion, Ewen Henderson on fiddle, Norrie MacIver on lead vocals, Ryan Murphy on uillean pipes, flute, and saxophone, Scott Mackey on drums, and Ross Saunders on bass. They received a Creative Scotland Award for helping to raise over two million pounds for the benefit of under privileged children in Scotland from sales from their song “Take You There.” Presented by the Celtic Society of the Monterey Bay, Mànran will be celebrating the release of their second CD “The Test.”
Over their long strange strip the Grateful Dead frequented Berkeley’s Greek Theatre. Even past the band’s tenure original members have made their way back to the charming ampitheatre often. Phil Lesh and Bob Weir continue this tradition on September 27-29 when they will return to the Greek with their most recent Dead related project Furthur. In addition toe Lesh and Weir Furthur features top rate musicians with Jeff Chimenti on keyboards, Joe Russo on drums, and Jerry sound alike John Kadlecik playing guitar. Be sure to check out one two or all of these and I’ll see ya in the lot!
Flamenco is Spanish folk music and dance from the region of Andalusia in southern Spain. With its colorful costumes, high energy and rhythmic combination of singing, playing, dancing and hand clapping, it’s an amazing experience to witness in person. The 8th annual Bay Area Flamenco Festival comes to Santa Cruz for three weekends of exciting shows featuring world-class performers including icon of Gypsy flamenco dance (and student of the legendary Pepe Rios) Concha Vargas September 22nd and the internationally renowned guitarist known as “The Godfather of Bay Area Flamenco Guitar” David Serva September 27th. All performances will take place at The Kuumbwa Jazz Center at 8 pm.
Collectively they call themselves Bleu. Individually it’s Virgil Thrasher and Gil Cadilli and they’ll be performing live at the KZSC/Verve Coffee Summer Music Sale. Check out the blues with Bleu at Verve Coffee’s Seabright Avenue area location (104 Bronson Street) while you’re checking out the blues, soul, rock, jazz, and all kinds of LPs and CDs for sale. Bleu will be playing Saturday, August 31st from 11 AM until 1 PM. Admission to the Music Sale and their live performance is free. You can find out more about Bleu on Facebook.