By December 9, 2014 Read More →

AcousticView- Ghosts of Acoustic Past


Acoustic View
By Aaron Rowan

The Ghosts of Acoustic Christmas Past

The coolest acoustic lineup I ever saw in Modesto was on the night of December 3, 2009. It was the annual B92.9 ‘Acoustic Christmas’ concert held at the Center Plaza. One of my absolute favorite rock bands – Third Eye Blind. A Fine Frenzy. Matt Nathanson. Green River Ordinance. Ingrid Michaelson. All delivering awesome stripped-down sets. Oh, what a spectacular evening that was.

This reminds me of a story that I like to tell about Ingrid Michaelson. I saw her perform in Dallas about six months later. She had just reached the end of a song when someone in the crowd must have decided that she was looking a wee bit malnourished, and tried to help her out. He tossed a bag of Chick-Fil-A food up at the stage, and it hit her right in the head! Ingrid was a good sport, though, and proceeded to make up a song about it right there on the spot. She is such a cool character.

So I was glad to see that Acoustic Christmas has returned after taking a year off. Tuesday 12/2 at the State Theater. American Authors, Matt Nathanson, Echosmith and Andy Grammer are on the menu this time around. But I’m sad now because I failed to act quickly enough before tickets sold out.

Fortunately, Modesto Unplugged are hosting our own holiday concert, very much like the Acoustic Christmas format. Wednesday December 10 at 7 PM, we present an intimate evening with pop/rock artist Meiko, appearing at the Prospect Theater, 1214 K St. This is her only appearance in the Central Valley on this tour, and we are most honored to have been asked to host her. Two of our area’s brightest young songwriters, Alida McKeon and Francesca Bavaro, will perform a joint opening set. Both of these supremely gifted ladies are grand prize winners of the annual ‘Valley’s Got Talent’ competition; and Francesca also won top prize at the first MUMfest Songwriting Contest earlier this year. Tickets for this evening will be $12 advance and $15 at the door. Don’t make the same mistake I did – get your tickets before they are gone. Email modestounplugged@yahoo.com<mailto:modestounplugged@yahoo.com> or call 209-543-5306 to order.

Friday 12/12, this year’s MAMA Award winner for Best Singer/Songwriter, Patty Castillo Davis, shares the stage with up-and-coming country stars Will Hoge, Haley & Michaels and Seth Alley at a benefit concert presented by Feed Modesto and KAT Country 103. Doors at 7 & music at 8 at the State Theater. Tickets $75 (VIP)/$45/$25.

Sunday 12/14, Focus On will present an evening of Brazilian music with As Tres Meninas (The Three Girls) performing jazz infused with bossa nova, baiao, samba and more. The showcase will also feature dining and a full bar, with the Brazilian national drink, the Caipirinha, as the featured cocktail. Jacob’s Fine Dining, 2501 McHenry Ave. Doors at 4 PM, music at 5. Tickets $35/45, reserved tables of 8 $235/315. For reservations call John at 209-543-4261.

Saturday 12/27, the MUMF present our second annual Elegy showcase. This is essentially the musical equivalent of the slideshow at the Academy Awards highlighting the actors/directors who have departed in the past year. A group of local songwriters including The Heartbeats (featuring Patty Castillo Davis & Brenda Francis), Anthony Edwards, Chris Farris, Randy Mandy Band, and the Valley Forged supergroup will perform the songs of Pete Seeger, Phil Everly and other artists who left this life in 2014. We’ll get going at 7 PM at Peer Recovery Art Project, 1222 J St. Admission is $7. Last year’s tribute night was a fantastic evening, so don’t miss out this year. Happy holidays!

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