By August 6, 2017 Read More →

JazzView – Cycle of Summer

by Eric Benson

If you luv music you’re gonna love this

Years roll by with the cycle of the summer being on vacations, farmer’s markets, being too long at the fair and one day you wake up and realize oh my god I’m going to turn the big 60! It kind of crept on me slowly, there were warnings; the pain in the back, being sent that AARP card, being asked if I wanted that senior discount? And the sudden weekend afternoon nap. Well, I might as well face it as it beats the alternatives which are much less desirable. It is nice getting older realizing there is less in care about and worry about. The list becomes truncated to family and friends and taking life as it comes and adjusting. As my mother who passed recently at 93 said “we just get up and want to see what happens until we fall off the perch.” On with the business at hand, plenty to do in the downtown and beyond!

Blue Monday Invitational Jam returns to the Barkin’ Dog Grill this August 14th some special guest Latin artists; virtuosos Cuban percussionist Carlos Caro, and pianist Odaly’s Caro. Odaly, only 18th years old is already a seasoned pianist and this will be her last gig with us before she goes to Boston school of music to study. Also on the gig with House band Ultra Lounge, Johnny Valdes guitar, Tim Allen bass, vocals, Dave Hawks on drums, Eric Benson & Dave Dow on keys, and horn section: Andrew Rosenblum Sax, trumpet, Kevin Marin Trumpet. Show from 7 to 10 PM with food and drink available in an all age venue. Call the Dog for reservations: 572-2341. If you play, come on down and sit in with the best musicians in the area, it’s gonna’ be smoking!

The Barkin’ Dog Grill’s lineup for August; features Johnny Pistole Band Aug 4th, Gary Gervase Blues Band, Chicago style!Aug 5th, Linda Rodriguess Aug 11th, Gordon Kennedy Synhophant Aug 12th , Eric Benson’s Blue Monday Party Aug 14th, Son House Blues Aug 18th, Cover 5 Band aug 19th, Valley Jazz Collective Aug 25th, and the marvelous Patty Catillo & willie Hines Aug 26th. And Dave Dow host’s the every Thursday night Jazz jam session.

Also in the downtown; Peer Recovery’s Mr. John Black brings in Blues singer and harmonica showman John Clifton on Friday August 11th for a large serving of down home cooked Blues!

I bought my seasons tickets for the Gallo and some nice things coming down the pike. For August, The Stylistics will be crooning on Aug 4th, Valley Talent Project Aug 25 & 26th, and Australian Pink Floyd Show the 30th.

And slightly off the beaten path the West side Theatre in Newman features in August: Rob Ely; the Elvis year’s tribute Aug 5th, Kevin Russell’s Cream of Clapton Aug 12 , and Modesto’s own Hot Club Faux Gitane; Gypsy Jazz music on August 19th. The restored theatre small intimate venue is a great play for live music, well worth the drive.

Give it up for John Griswold’s last sold out show Michael Jackson tribute with an amazing show at great attendance, we would like to do this again! John Griswold this time around is bringing in Lavey Smith and the Red Hot Skillet Lickers Saturday August 5th to Ripon’s Luca Winery. Lavay Smith vocalist and bandleader fronts one of the top swinginist jazzy Blues band in the world. Internationally recognized Diva she sings in a style influenced by Billie Holiday, Dina Washington, and Bessie Smith. She will be joined by her all=-star 7-piece band which will have you listening and dancing the night away under the stars. The Show takes place is in a beautiful outdoor venue with dining, art show, preshow music, wine tasting, emergency chocolate tent and a whole lot of nice folks. There are three levels of seating: Lawn, General, Prime and VIP. Ticketing is online through website at

Come back out for Third Thursday Art Walk 5 to 9:00 PM for some great art and music in the downtown with a special Pirates Booty Treasure Hunt theme! Lowdown on the jam session in the downtown: Queen Bean Sundays open mike night also in an all age environment. So take some time out to hear some live music and the arts of our own town as well this month, think globally and act locally. All the best, peace out! Eric Benson, cell 209- 918-7033.



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