UnpluggedView – V For Virtuoso Pt 2

Unplugged View
By Aaron Rowan

V For Virtuoso, Part Two

Picking up right where last month left off (take a moment to read back through the March edition of Unplugged View if you have it lying about somewhere), the Modesto Unplugged Music Festival’s fifth anniversary celebration continues through the second half of April. Saturday 4/16, we’ll have an intimate evening with our local country-rock ambassador Patty Castillo Davis, winner of the Modesto Area Music Award for best singer-songwriter. Her thoughtful, definitive songwriting has given this award winner credibility and acceptance by the Los Angeles and Nashville music publishing communities. This sweet vocalist even sang for the Pope once. Look for some special guests at this showcase, at the Gottschalk Music Center, 133 Burney St. (in their recital room – entrance at 1502 E St.) starting at 6:30. $10 admission at the door.

The next day, Sunday afternoon 4/17, we have another MUMF partner event, presented by the Modesto Community Concert Association. Two-time Juno-winning banjoist Jayme Stone and his band the Lomax Project make music inspired by folk traditions from around the world. His latest album, Room of Wonders, explores music from Norway, Sweden, Bulgaria, Brazil, Italy and North America. They will be performing at the Gallo Center at 3 PM. Tickets range from $15-$30. Visit www.modestocca.org for more info on this concert.

Sunday evening 4/24, we have the privilege of hosting a wonderful keyboardist/singer named Victoria Theodore, also happening at the Gottschalk Music Center’s recital room. Victoria was a member of Stevie Wonder’s touring band for 6 years, and a regular performer on the Arsenio Hall Show. On her debut solo album ‘Grateful’, she delivers a beautiful blend of jazz, pop and R&B, reflecting her training as a classical pianist. Also performing is the Jimmy Grant Ensemble, with a repertoire of acoustic gypsy jazz, laced with influences of Russian folk, bluegrass, Celtic and classical music. Doors at 5:30, music at 6. $15 admission.

Thursday 4/28, it’s blues and banjo with Doug Adamz and Donna Lynn Caskey. Doug is a masterful guitar player, a soulful singer, and an outrageous harmonica player. He’s got a great insightful poetry in his lyrics and a terrific sense of humor. Donna is an innovative clawhammer “Banjo Gal” with a timeless quality that hearkens back to traditional old-time mountain music and bluegrass while artfully exploring contemporary subject matter. Showcase is at 7 PM at the Peer Recovery Art Project, 1222 J St. $10 at the door.

Friday 4/29, the last of our partner events, this one brought to you by Uncle Lonny Presents. Livingston Taylor, a noted singer-songwriter and the brother of James Taylor, will perform at the State Theater in a benefit concert for Hope Haven West, which collects and distributes wheelchairs to those in need in developing countries. Livingston has enthralled audiences for forty years with a diverse original repertoire of country, folk, bluegrass, and blues. 1307 J St. Concert at 8 PM. Tickets are $22, $28 and $32.

And then on Saturday evening 4/30, we go out with a bang with a lineup of ensemble acts: Steelin’ The Beat, a lively steelpan drum ensemble made up of Oakdale High School students who were among the band finalists of Valley’s Got Talent in 2014; the Funstrummers, our beloved local ukulele band; the World Harmony Chorus, performing acapella renditions of African hymns, Appalachian shape-note songs, Eastern European Kolos, Venezuelan choral works and much more; and for our grand finale, a full 45-piece symphony orchestra conducted by our dear friend Marie Maxfield, which will perform a pops-style set. Marie is a veteran orchestral performer who plays just about every symphony instrument there is. She and her players are certain to deliver the most dynamic ending our festival has ever had. This closing night celebration will take place in the sanctuary at First United Methodist Church, 850 16th St., from 7-10 PM. Admission is just $15 for this unforgettable evening.

With so many diverse sounds to enjoy this month, don’t let the chance pass you by to experience something new in the local music scene. We hope to see you out and about at MUMfest 2016!



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