Monday, June 23, 2008
This one you might want to note and refer back to when you want to find outdoor music in Portland this summer. I am amazed that there are so many opportunities to hear great music almost every day at multiple locations . . . it really is all around us. So here's my attempt to give you a small set of links to help you find on any given day, incredible, wonderful music - outdoors and mostly free. We should feel very lucky, as there are few places in this country were there's this many choices.
Portland Parks & Rec Summer Music Series
Fourteen parks around the city will host music through July and August! Washington Park has two solid weeks of shows at the beginning of August. With a few exceptions, most of the artists at all of these shows are local. This amazing summer series would not happen without the local business sponsors, neighborhood committees, and the two part-time coordinators at Parks & Rec who juggle all the pieces. There are few better ways to spend an evening in Portland every summer.
Lake Oswego Summer Concerts
Lake O has four different free music series that you should check out.
Music on Main Street
The Portland Center for the Performing Arts presents eight weeks of free music on Wednesdays at 5 PM beginning on July 9th. If you work downtown (or even if not) this is a great way to get over the midweek hump.
Noon Tunes Summer Concert Series
This series in Pioneer Courthouse Square begins on Tuesday, July 8th. Music from noon to 1 PM, every Tuesday and Thursday until August 28th. Lunch al fresco with music!
The Doug Fir Lounge's Pickin' on Sundays returns for a 2nd year beginning on July 13 ... from 3-7 PM on the patio. Free music, intimate setting, great songwriters.
Cathedral Park Jazz Festival
In the shadow of the St. John's Bridge, this festival is in its 28th year. One more fine free event for the weekend of July 18-20.
Here's a few good choices for spending $$ for tickets:
Waterfront Blues Festival
Biggest music festival in Portland every summer - July 3rd through 6th . . . and the biggest fundraiser for the Oregon Food Bank. Bring a couple of cans of food and buy an amazingly reasonable ticket ($10 per day or $30 for a 4-day pass). One of the best run large music festivals you'll find anywhere - top notch talent and it just feels great to be there.
The Bite of Oregon
The schedule isn't posted yet, but always great music for only $7 per day. This year it will be held August 8th - 10th at Waterfront Park.
Farm Tunes at Kruger's Farm Market on Sauvie Island
Beginning on July 3rd, Thursday evening concerts with great local bands will "rock the crop" out at the farm. $10 per car or $50 pass for all nine shows. And I think you can bike in for free.
Tuesdays By Twilight Concert Series at the Portland Classical Chinese Garden
Music in one of Portland's most beautiful settings. Six shows beginning on July 8th. Tickets are $18 for garden members, $22 for everyone else.
Great shows all summer at the zoo including a Wednesday series that's just $10 per show.
And I haven't even attempted to list all of the street fairs (like Mississippi Ave on July 12) and other festivals in the area that will have music too. I'll try to keep you posted on those opportunities as I see them.
A last note is a great go-to site for finding out events for any particular day or period - it's the events finder on the TravelPortland site. Plug in a date or date range and the type of event and you'll get a comprehensive list. And, you can actually search 16 other events calendars right from the page too. How cool is that?
So, your job now is to not get overwhelmed with choices and just stay late at work, in the garden, or cleaning out your garage. Get that summer sense of adventure, mark your calendars, and get out to the parks, festivals, farms . . . wherever . . . . really, it's so good for you.
One more thing . . . add your comments or email me if you have more to share . . . I really can't notice everything!
Friday, June 20, 2008
Finally at the solstice (4:59 PDT) and soooo glad it's not just summer in name only. Outdoor music is beginning to bloom around us, more bikes than you can count are plying the Rose City's streets, people have a bounce in their step and are smiling a lot more (maybe that's just the teachers I know) . . . anyway . . . 'tis summer in Portland - the time that makes us thankfully forget drippy, cold and gray.
Okay, enough of that . . . .
Reina Collins is a busy women this weekend with a CD release on Saturday (see below) and a free 7 PM show out at Edgefield tonight (and after a Music Millennium performance yesterday).
Duff's Garage hosts The Troublemakers. They may be a "weekend band", but with Texas native Rich Layton on vocals and harmonica, this band can kick it into overdrive. Should be a fun night at Duff's. 9:30 pm, cover
And it must be the night of the jazz trio (quartets, quintets - take the night off!) . . .
The Devin Phillips Trio is at the Pine Street Bistro. Since New Orlean's Phillips relocated to Portland after Katrina, his soulful sax playing has resulted in Devin becoming a force in the Portland music community. It even led to Jazz at Lincoln Center and the U.S. State Department choosing Devin and his band, New Orleans Straight Ahead, to participate in the Rhythm Road: American Music Abroad program. 8 PM, $8
And, the Pete Krebs Jazz Trio is at the Press Club. The talented Mr Krebs will be performing sets of Django-infused jazz in this very cool little cafe/bar in the SE Clinton neighborhood. 8:30, Free
Reina Collins is doing a CD release show to support her latest, Austin to Boston. She is one of Portlands most versatile singers - folk, blues, country, rock - solo or with a band, Reina delivers a great show. She'll be performing with her band, The Saloonatics, at Jax Rooftop (on SW 2nd between Taylor & Yamhill). Pilar French & The Intention will open, and Ruby Red will follow. This is an early show - 6 PM, $5
James Low and band will be playing to a packed Laurelthirst crowd at 9:30. Here's the lowdown from James . . .
I'll be playing with the new line up (Aram Arslanian, Tim Huggins, and Rob Stroup) at the Laurelthirst Pub this Saturday night. We've got new songs and instruments! The amazing Mike Coykendall will be joining us with his band. They are one of my favorite bands anywhere. The show starts at 9:30 and the cover is only a couple of bucks. I still have a few of the old t-shirts left and I want them gone before I get the new ones printed so I am giving them away. I need to make space for the new cd and super cool new tees. Hope I see you there.
Hope I do too . . . come on out and join us for a great night of music.
For you chamber rock fans, Buoy Larue will be doing a CD release show at the Mission Theater. Jim Brunberg & Scott Weddle (of Amelia), and Little Sue are also on the bill. 8:30 PM, $12
For you blues lovers, two shows of note . . .
Keb' 'Mo and Taj Mahal will be at the Oregon Zoo. Zoo is rolling with their fine summer concert schedule. Check it out! 7 PM, $24
. . . and the long running, weekly Sunday blues jam at the Trail's End Saloon in Oregon City will be doing something a little different - they've invited hosts from years past to do a "Jammer Legends" evening. Should be a shred-fest. 8:30 PM
All for now . . . . enjoy the weekend!
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
HOME for Duane Jarvis
(Help Offset Medical Expenses)
WHAT: HOME, a benefit for Duane Jarvis
WHY: Recently diagnosed with cancer, Duane is in need of financial assistance.
WHEN: June 12th, 2008 - Doors at 7 PM, show at 8 PM- midnight
WHERE: Wonder Ballroom, 128 NE Russell St. Portland, OR 97212
PERFORMERS : Black Francis/Frank Black, The Odds, Billy Rancher's Unreal Gods, Nvr Say Nvr (featuring Deborah Iyall), Jon Koonce and One More Mile, Willy Vlautin
EVENT WEBSITE: http://www.homeforduanejarvis
COST: $15 plus service charges or $30 plus service charges (this gets you access to after party, autographed photo, and souvenir laminate pass). All proceeds from this event will go to help with Duane's medical expenses.
This is a 21 and over show with full bar and with food available at Wonder Cafe.
Friday, June 6, 2008
But some great indoor musical distractions until the sun comes out.
The major jazz event of the weekend is the performance tonight of Return to Forever at the Schnitz. Though originally only together for five or six years, RTF had a huge influence of what became known as jazz fusion music . . . and it's individual players - Chick Corea, Al DiMeola, Stanley Clark and Lenny White have all gone on to solid careers in jazz and a variety of genres. Good interview with Corea over at Oregonian music editor Luciana Lopez's blog. 8 pm, $50-$75
There's a rave up rockabilly revival show at Duff's Garage with Dale Hawkins, Lisa and Her Kin and the Cold Hearted Trio. Hawkins is a rock and roll original, best know for nurturing great guitar players and as writer of the swamp rock classic Susie Q. 9:30 pm, cover
Also, the Lloyd Jones Struggle is at the Candlelight Cafe. 9:30 pm, cover
And . . . a First Friday Free show at Mississippi Studios, with Jim Brunberg and a host of others doing a Kinks tribute. Should be a lot of fun! 10 pm, free
Marv and Rindy Ross will be doing a Quarterflash CD release show at Mississippi Studios. They will be debuting material from their new Quarterflash CD, Goodbye Uncle Buzz. The concert will feature thirteen new songs written by Marv and will feature guest appearances by several musicians that appear on the CD. 7 pm, $22
Busy night at the studio, as the Banjo Killers - Tony Furtado and Scott Law are doing a live CD recording right after the Quarterflash show. These guys rip it up - kill every string instrument in sight! 10 pm, $15
Kolvane (formerly Rose City Kings) is at the Candlelight, 9:30 pm, free
The Gary Ewing Memorial Show will be going on all day at the Crystal Ballroom. See my previous post for all the details.
The Bill Frisell Trio featuring Eyvind Kang and Rudy Royston will be at the Aladdin. 8 pm, $25
And check the Around the Sun blog for a host of free things to do this weekend around town.
Celebration of Gary Ewing's Life
Join us as we celebrate of the life of legendary light show artist Gary Ewing, in an event originally organized by Gary himself prior to his untimely passing: the 40th-year reunion of the Portland Zoo Electric Band, with a full day of music in tribute to Gary’s outstanding life.
GARY EWING MEMORIAL
Also: 40th Anniversary Reunion of the
PORTLAND ZOO ELECTRIC BAND
All-star collection of local and national artists
Gary Ewing Light Show
Sunday, June 08, 2008
Crystal Ballroom, 1332 W. Burnside St., Portland OR
11 a.m. to 11 p.m. || Free (donations accepted) || All ages
June 2, 1942 to April 30, 2008
Husband, Father, Brother, Friend and Local Artist of Lightshows and Many Media
Saddened by the recent death of Gary Ewing, who was living a miraculous recovery after surviving an aneurism last year in September, his family invites you to a Celebration of His Life!
On June 8 the Crystal Ballroom will host the celebration. This event, originally organized by Gary prior to his death, is the 40th-year reunion of the Portland Zoo Electric Band, with a full day of music in tribute to Gary’s outstanding life.
Acts include: The Gary Ewing Light Show (performed by people who actually did the liquid light show under Gary’s artistic supervision); the 40-Year Reunion of The Portland Zoo Electric Band; Jacob’s Ladder; ZTAB; Brown Sugar; Memorial Jug Band; Moz Wright, Fire & Sword; Brothers of the Baladi; Freak Mountain Ramblers; The New Iberians; The Dennis Mitchell Band; Mind at Large; Omega 3 and the Fatty Acids; Billy Kennedy & Friends; “Just Cuz”; Bill McConaughy & Larry Brown Duo; Gil Reynolds; KingniK; Metropolitan Learning Center Marimba Band; Neal Granstaff; Chris Wetteland; Walter Cryderman & Chuck White; DonnaLynn; and some surprise guests.
Donations are gladly accepted, either at the event or to the U.S. Bank Gary Ewing Recovery Fund.
The Ewing Family thanks one and all for your love at this time.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Big round of applause to Thomas Lauderdale and the band for stepping up for Portland's non-profit community! Great music for some great organizations . . .