Lake County Music Guide – 9.1.21

Hey, it’s Labor Day Weekend – holy Toledo, Andy! Big things are in store this coming weekend! So I’m gonna do things a little different this time in order to emphasize the really, really, really big events, (not that anything else pales by comparison…). And it looks like, for a change, the weather is going to cooperate! How ‘bout that?! So, to paraphrase Ed Sullivan, “We’re in for a really big shew this weekend”… Okay, enough seriousness, let’s get back to silly, (as if). Here’s the live music guide for the week of 8/31 through 9/7 starting with…

This week marks the start of the Lake County Fair in Lakeport. I remember back in 1997, right after I moved to Lake County, the fair was a roughly 10 minute fair – just enough time to buy and devour a corndog and a beer, then walk towards the exit. But in recent years, (excluding Covid 20/20 – you know? Hindsight?), the fair has really pushed the envelope in ways to keep us all engaged. Live music plays a big part. So, here’s the live music schedule for the 2021 Lake County Fair:

On Thursday, Michael Barrish will sing some of the most delightful and personal original songs you’re likely to hear anywhere. He’ll be performing at the Gazebo starting at 6:30 – one corndog and a beer…

The Time Travelers will turn back the clocks starting at 7:00 at the Main Stage. There will be two shows, 7 and 8:30. ROCK ON! 2 corndogs and 2 beers…The Clear Lake Clickers will commandeer the gazebo at 8:00 with a clogging demonstration that might put some drum circles to shame. Gonna get loud!… At least a corndog and a beer…

On Friday at 6:00, 7:45 and 9:00, The Fargo Bros will show you at the Main Stage why they’re the most entertaining band in The LC. Show support by wearing funny hats and long beards.In a double billing, Stevie and the Shufflenutz will play half-hour in-betweeners at 6:30 and 8:30. Grab at least 2 corndogs and 3 beers and then stay put until it’s all over.

On Saturday Beatz Werkin takes the Main Stage starting at noon, 2:00 and 4:00. In between sets come enjoy the Irish Folk Music of Uncorked, 2:30 and 3:45. Again, at least 2 dogs, 2 beers…

From 7 to 10:30 come rock out to the Hip Replacements at the Main Stage. Another 2 corndogs and 2 beers…Piano Maestro David Neft will play at the gazebo at 5:15, 7:00 and 8:30. A couple corndogs and beers – and while you’re at it, buy Dave one…

On Sunday things start to heat up with Fiesta Latina Day where it’ll be Mariachi Music and Bandas etc. throughout. Tacos and beer are a requirement… At 3:00 enjoy the music of Irma Lopez. She’s hot – al menos dos cervesas… no estoy seguro… From 7 to 9:00 disfrutar la musica de Los Nuevos Imparables. Dos, quizas tres cervesas, quien sabe… At 12:00 and 1:15 catch Rural Jazz Project, (Artistry of Song and Improvisation), on the Main Stage – a glass of wine and maybe an arugula salad, no corndog unless it’s soy… At 12:15 and 1:30, The Majide Trio will play “Standard Jazz Classics from the Great American Songbook”. Another glass of wine, maybe 2 organic corndogs… At 5:00, 7:00 and 9:00 Neo-Flamenco gurus Austin and Owens will make you want to stay at the fairgrounds until next year when they hope A&O will be coming back to the fair. These acoustic guitar Brobdingnagians will keep you enthralled throughout their sets and beyond! Corndogs and Alcohol not necessary – you’ll get high off the music…Masks for protection from Covid 19 are strongly suggested for entry and at each event at this year’s County Fair. Please comply – the life you save could be your own…

The Blue Wing Saloon in Upper Lake will host its yearly, (excluding 20/20), Blues Festival this weekend starting off with Saturday evening, featuring Australian Blues guitar phenom Kara Grainger, with the opening band, The Ben Rice Band.

On Sunday the Bay Area’s favorite show, Rick Estrin and the Nightcats will knock your socks off. Opening for them will be Red’s Blues Band, pretty good band in their own rights…On Monday the fest wraps the event up with Big Mo and the Full Moon Band, featuring Blues guitar monster Volker Strifler. Opening for Big Mo will be the Queen of Boogie Woogie, Wendy DeWitt and Kirk Harwood. All shows are from 5:30 to 9:00, tix, (best to order in advance), are $60 each – which includes great music, an excellent BBQ meal plus gratis wines from local wineries. Masks and social distancing are strongly recommended.

Now to the other schedules…On Tuesday, another Buskin’ for Brewskis featuring Mike Guarniero and Danny Prather will occur at the Kelsey Creek Brewing in K’ville from 3 to 6:00. With an everchanging brew menu, you never know what 6-8 beers, ales and seltzers are available for your discerning tastes. And music on a Tuesday afternoon would be unheard of until now. Spread the word. There’s nothing good on TV, I mean it, Peanut!

The Smiling Dogs Ranch on Wednesday will host the final Humpday Howler of 2021 that will go out with an explosion of Boogie Woogie Music when Wendy DeWitt and Kirk Harwood take the…er… porch, from 5:30 to 8:30. Every year this successful semi-weekly event draws local music lovers to hear some of the best music Lake County’s gonna experience. Always very casual in a setting that includes a swimming pool, really big dogs and a vineyard where pot lucks and dancing are the real event of the evening. Bring a chair, a hat, a picnic and then be prepared to dance! SDR wines will be sold by the bottle or glass – cover charge is $10.00. On Kelsey Creek Rd outside of K’ville.

The Saw Shop Public House in Kelseyville will feature excellent food, a full bar, and the vocal amazement of Tony Neves – Thursday from 6 to 9:00. Tony, who fronted the Funky Dozen and also enthralled the masses who participated in the BIG JAMS that happened up in Cobb for a few years back. This guy can shame wannabee singers into becoming accountants, not that that’s a bad thing…

The Middletown Arts Center will host a Friday Farmer’s Market and Open Mic from 5 to 8:00. Stock up on locally grown fruit and vegetables starting at 5:00, then Open Mic afterwards. I always enjoyed this open mic – you might, also.

The Spot in Clearlake will present my band, Dr Groove on Friday from 6 to 9, Dudes. We love this joint because we all live in C-Lake – easy to get home, if you know what I mean, guys… Good food, excellent views, remember to bring your dancin’ shoes. (WOW – sounds like song lyrics – a big hit with a bullet!…).

Saturday morning the Farmer’s Finest Farmers Market will feature locally grown fruit and vegetables, plus locally handcrafted items for sale along with the music of the Andy Rossoff Trio from 10AM to 2:00. Ya gotta check out the handcrafted items for yourself. Might be a b”day or Xmas present in the lot. Who knows…

Friday, Saturday and Sunday it’s T.Rox time at Richmond Park. Tommy Rox always rocks the park Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Friday from 5 to 9:00, Saturday and Sunday from 2 to 5:00. There’s plenty of boat slips, (water level no issue), good food, and a full bar with beautiful and smiling barkeeps attending to your libation needs…

The Blue Wing Saloon, along with their Blues Festival also have entertainment this weekend, Friday and Sunday. Friday it’s always the Majide Trio playing Torch Songs, Blues Classics and other popular from an era when most of us, (not me, of course…) didn’t exist. You’ll love it, 6 to 8:00…

Sunday, Barney McClure will play during the Sunday Brunch, 11:30 to 2:00. On Saturday at The Riviera Hills Lounge, the Fargo Bros will end their ROCKIN’ Fast from 5 to 9:00 with the best views of the lake and the cool evening breezes getting y’all folks on the floor and doing your dancin’ thang! Just cuz they’ve been on Vacay, don’t mean they can’t still ROCK!

O’Meara Bros don’t just have excellent handcrafted beers and ales, but the music they present is always in the top tier. This Saturday from 6 to 9:00, the Kings of “Acoustic Excellence”, Austin and Owens, will keep you at the edge of your seats with their acoustic renditions of both popular and obscure tunes, (I’m still waiting for a cover of “Alone again or”). Alone Again Or (2015 Remaster) – YouTube or better yet – Calexico – Alone Again Or (Live From Austin TX) – YouTube

Saturday evening at Adams Springs Golf Clubhouse come check out the music of Indie Groove. These guys are excellent – you’ll like ‘em! Music is from 7 to 10:30.On Sunday Brunch enjoy the music of From The Heart 11:00 to 2:00. Good food, good music, mountain air – can’t get any better…

Brunch at Running Creek Casino in Upper Lake will feature pianist and raconteur Andy Rossoff regaling you with stories and songs of Pre and post-Ida New Orleans, a city with an extensive musical past. Get your gris gris going with Andy Ro from 10 until 2:00.

Sunday is the best time for some Fiddler’s Jams at the Ely Stage Stop. This first Sunday gig has drawn folks from all over the Bay Area for the best Bluegrass Lake County has to offer – which is some pretty good dang stuff! Music is Sunday from noon until 2:00. Bring your clogs, kick up some dust!…

The Boathouse in that nice little town of Nice will feature the excellent dancin’ music of Howard Reggie Dockins, (please, don’t call him HoDo anymore…) from 3 to 7:00. If dancin’ is what you wanna do, this is the place! Good food and a full bar make it the perfect wrap-up to the weekend.

The Lake County Diamonds are at Running Creek Casino Sunday from 5 to 9:00.

At the Greenview Restaurant in HVL on Sunday expect the high-energy music of Carlos Garay from 4 to 7:00. We could probably power the energy needed by the entire county off what this guy delivers.

Open Mics and Karaoke – Karaoke at The Spot in Clearlake Wednesday from 6 to 9. Karaoke at the American Legion Hall in Clearlake Friday from 6 to 9. Open Mic Friday at the Middletown Art Center usually starting around 8:00.

I’m so glad August is finally over! There have been these skinny, hairy flies – “Rice Flies”, ( I call them Tsetse Top Flies…) that have been invading The LC coastal areas throughout the month. As a performer I’m very annoyed by them – they fly into your nose, ears, eyes and especially your mouth and throat. They’re attracted by the stage lights and open orifices – and show absolutely no mercy when they attack! But thankfully they have a short life span, so they should be gone within the first coupla weeks of September. AT LEAST I HOPE!

I know I make mistakes with this live music guide, but I hope I’ve covered most of which you’ll want to experience. It’s gonna be a fun weekend in store for the entire county – I guarantee. Bear in mind, Covid rules are still in place, so remember the importance of wearing masks and keeping a safe distance from others.

So if and when you go out this weekend, have a fun time, but please be safe…And now for a corndog and beer…

Mike Guarniero

Mike has been playing professionally, both acoustic and electric, for 40+ years. He paid his dues in a robust Sonoma County music scene during the '80s and '90s, then DJ'd for 10 years after moving to Lake County in 1996. After retiring from his job of 26 years, because he recognized a growing local music scene, he decided to devote his time to playing live music again. He's never looked back. Along with his regular band, Dr. Groove, he has filled in on lead guitar for local bands, (Fargo Bros, Blues Farm, C.A.M. Band, Borrowed Time, Time Travelers). He's played acoustic guitar at a some of our local wineries, restaurants, farmers Markets and art galleries. He's also a semi-regular supporting various local Open Mics around Lake County. He writes and records original songs and has recorded original demos for other performers as well. For the last three years, he has posted on Facebook a local music guide called the Lake County Music Guide.


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