News Column

Weekend Top 10: Great blues in the Bay Area

July 24, 2014

By Randy McMullen, Contra Costa Times

July 24--1 GOLDEN STATE-LONE STAR REVUE: This talented Bay Area band is led by master harp player Mark Hummel and the terrific guitarist Little Charlie Baty, best known for his band Little Charlie and the Nightcats. The lads will be busy on July 26, as they perform at 2 p.m. at Redwood City's PAL Blues, Arts & BBQ Festival then at 8 p.m. at Antioch'sEl Campanil Theatre.

Details: PAL Blues fest is free and runs 11 a.m.-8 p.m.; www.redwoodcitypal.com/blues. El Campanil concert costs $15-$27; 925-757-9500, www.elcampaniltheatre.com.

2 FAMILY THEATER: Choices abound if you're looking for kid-friendly fare on stage. San Jose'sChildren's Musical Theater is presenting "Side Show," the musical about two conjoined kids who became a showbiz sensation in the 1930s; Berkeley Playhouse offers the Disney smash-turned-musical "Shrek the Musical," and Bay Area Children's Theatre is serving up the adaptation of Eileen Christelow's popular picture book "Five Little Monkeys."

Details: "Side Show" plays July 25 through Aug. 3 at San Jose'sMontgomery Theater; $18-$24; 408-288-5437, www.cmtsj.org; "Shrek" plays through Aug. 3 at Julia Morgan Theatre in Berkeley; $17-$60; 510-845-8542, http://berkeleyplayhouse.org; "Five Little Monkeys" plays through Sept. 7 in Oakland, San Francisco and Mill Valley; $12-$22; www.bactheatre.org.

3 JOHN MAYALL: The singer, musician and bandleader was as much an architect of the 1960s British blues explosion as the more famous musicians (Eric Clapton, Mick Taylor, Jack Bruce) with whom he collaborated. The 80-year-old legend remains a formidable talent and comes to the Lesher Center on July 25.

Details: 8 p.m.; $45-$55; 925-943-7469, www.lesherartscenter.org.

4 "SOUTH PACIFIC": Foothill College Music Theatre company presents the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic musical set on a tropical island during World War II. It's a classic not just because of its incredible lineup of songs -- "Some Enchanted Evening," "Bali Ha'i," "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair" -- but also because of its heartbreaking depiction of the price to be paid for racial intolerance.

Details: July 24 through Aug. 10; Smithwick Theatre on the Foothill College campus, Los Altos Hills; $12-$32; www.foothill.edu/theater.

5 TRIBUTE SHOWS: Bands paying homage to two of the most enigmatic and groundbreaking artists in pop music history have Bay Area shows coming up. Foreverland, a 14-piece band devoted to Michael Jackson, plays at Todos Santos Plaza in Concord at 6:30 p.m.July 24, and Courthouse Square in Redwood City at 6 p.m.Aug. 8; and The Purple Ones, a Prince tribute act, plays the Courthouse Square in Redwood City at 6 p.m. on Aug. 1.

Details: All shows are free; www.concordfirst.org; www.redwoodcity.org/events.

6 LAVAY SMITH: Bring your dancing shoes when Smith, the Bay Area's talented and charismatic jazz/blues singer, brings her top-notch band the Skillet Lickers to the lobby of Stanford University's Bing Concert Hall on July 26.

Details: 7:30 p.m. (come at 6:30 if you want to take a swing dancing lesson offered free with the price of admission); $25; 650-724-2464, http://live.stanford.edu.

7 THE VOICE TOUR: The charismatic coaches like Blake Shelton and Adam Levine won't be there, but this tour drawn from the hit NBC singing competition show will feature the top contestants from Seasons 5 and 6, including Season 6 winner Josh Kaufman and runners-up Jake Worthington and Christina Grimmie, and Season 5's champ Tessanne Chin and runners-up Jacquie Lee and Will Champlin. The tour lands at the National Civic in San Jose on Wednesday.

Details: 7:30 p.m.; $35-$65; www.ticketmaster.com.

8 MOON-LANDING CELEBRATION: It's the 45th anniversary of the first landing on the moon (at least by Earthlings, on July 20, 1969), and the USS Hornet, the ship that recovered the Apollo 11 spacecraft after splashdown, is commemorating the event on July 26. Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin (the second man to walk on the moon) will be a guest, and the event features a daylong exhibit of moon-landing artifacts, including an Apollo command module, a moon rock and a mobile quarantine unit used to isolate the astronauts upon their landing. There will also be a dinner and reception.

Details: The main exhibit runs 10 a.m.-5 p.m., followed by the dinner and reception from 6-10 p.m.; USS Hornet, docked at Pier 3, Alameda; daytime event admission is $10-$30; dinner/reception packages run $100-$200; www.hornetsplashdown.com.

9 ROSIE FLORES: There probably isn't a facet of Americana music that this famed, 63-year-old singer/guitarist hasn't tackled with flair: Tex-Mex, country, swing, honky-tonk, jazz -- she has done it all. Flores is back on tour and stops at several Bay Area venues in the next week.

Details: 7:30 p.m.July 24 at Don Quixote's, Felton; $10; www.donquixotesmusic.info; 8 p.m.July 25 at HopMonk Tavern, Sebastopol (with singer Kim Lenz); $20; www.hopmonk.com; 9 p.m.July 26 at Audie's Olympic, Fresno; $10; www.facebook.com/pages/Audies-Olympic-Club-Fred; 7:30 p.m.July 27 at The Riptide, San Francisco; free; www.riptidesf.com; 8 p.m.July 28 at Armando's nightclub, Martinez; $15; www.armandosmartinez.com;

10 NEW CHRISTY MINSTRELS: The iconic folk band formed in 1961 helped launch the careers of such singers as Kenny Rogers, Gene Clark, Kim Carnes and Barry McGuire. Those famous voices are no longer in the group, but founder Randy Sparks periodically puts together a touring lineup (the band has reportedly had more than 300 members over the decades), and he's bringing the Minstrels to Livermore'sBankhead Theater on July 24.

Details: 7:30 p.m.; $15-$59; 925-373-6800, www.mylvpac.com.

Contact Randy McMullen at rmcmullen@bayareanewsgroup.com. Follow him on Twitter.com/randymac57.

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(c)2014 the Contra Costa Times (Walnut Creek, Calif.)

Visit the Contra Costa Times (Walnut Creek, Calif.) at www.contracostatimes.com

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Source: Contra Costa Times (Walnut Creek, CA)


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