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The Palms Playhouse (530) 756-9901
 

Saturday, April 1
8pm 
$15
Sure Fire Soul Ensemble
 
thesurefiresoulensemble.bandcamp.com
The Sure Fire Soul Ensemble is a heavy, cinematic, eight-piece instrumental soul band based in San Diego. They draw influence from the masters of the style from the past and modern day, including: The Meters, Isaac Hayes, Mulatu Astatke, Budos Band, Quincy Jones, Fela Kuti, and The Poets of Rhythm.

In June of 2015, they released their debut self-titled album on Colemine Records. The album was very well received and made many "Best of 2015" lists including Reddit, Staf Magazine, and KMHD, Portland’s jazz radio station. The album also won a San Diego Music Award. In October 2016, they released their 2nd full length album, "Out On The Coast" via Colemine Records. SFSE has shared the stage with Lee Fields and the Expressions, New Mastersounds, Orgone, Quantic, Monophonics, Kamasi Washington, and many other touring bands. They regularly perform all over the West Coast.

The band is: Tim Felten (Organ and Electric Piano), Jesse Audelo (Bari Sax and Flute), Peter "D" Williams (Drums), Matthew LaBarber (Bass), Diego Velasquez (Percussion), Nicholas Costa (Guitar), Sheryll Felten (Shekere), and Robert Dove (Tenor Sax).

This is going to be one heck of a dance show! Bring your funky flair and be ready to use it on the dance floor!
 

Thursday, April 6
 8pm
$22
Bill Evans, John Reischman, Kenny Smith & Friends www.billevansbanjo.com/
www.johnreischman.com

www.kennysmithguitar.com
thenatelee.com

www.maxschwartzmusic.com
This special performance will feature original music as well as bluegrass and old-time favorites spotlighting the talents of five world-renowned acoustic masters, who represent the best in 21st century acoustic/bluegrass music.

Bill Evans (banjo) is well known to Northern California audiences from hosting his annual California Banjo Extravaganza at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley, as well as from collaborations with David Grisman, Jody Stecher, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Claire Lynch and many others. For this performance, Bill will spotlight the original compositions included on his chart-topping CDs Bill Evans Plays Banjo and In Good Company.

John Reischman (mandolin) is one of the premier mandolinists of his generation. A Juno-nominated and Grammy-award winning artist, John is known today for his work with his band the Jaybirds and his acclaimed solo albums. He is well-remembered for his work with the Tony Rice Unit and the Bay Area’s Good Ol’ Persons.

Kenny Smith (guitar) is widely considered one of the most important and influential flatpicking-style guitarists of his generation. A two-time IMBA Guitarist of the Year award winner, he played with the popular Lonesome River Band for six years, and now tours internationally with the Kenny and Amanda Smith Band, winners of the IMBA’s prestigious Emerging Artist of the Year award.

Nate Lee (fiddle and mandolin) is an IBMA award-winning instrumentalist. He toured with Alan Munde Gazette for six years and played fiddle on their second release “Made To Last”. Nate currently tours with the Becky Buller Band, playing mandolin and twin fiddle.

Max Schwartz (bass and banjo) grew up in the Bay Area playing in his family band. He has performed twice at the Grammy Awards, with the 2015 and 2016 Grammy Combos, and he regularly performs with Laurie Lewis and the Right Hands.
 

Friday, April 7
8pm
$17
Front Country
CD release show
 
www.frontcountryband.com
Front Country has a sound with the body of a bluegrass ensemble, the soul of a rock band and the mind of a classical chamber group. Their dynamic instrumental textures take flight with grace and gravitas while rooted in the relentlessly soulful vocals of lead singer Melody Walker and trio harmonies that soar with organic precision. Along with mandolinist Adam Roszkiewicz, guitarist Jacob Groopman, violinist Leif Karlstrom and bassist Jeremy Darrow, this San Francisco quintet has been called "passionately intoxicating" and "orchestral". In 2013 Front Country became the third band in history to win both the RockyGrass and Telluride band contests and they have been in-demand ever since. Their debut album, Sake of the Sound, is available worldwide.

Front Country’s newest album, “Other Love Songs,” will be released on April 7th, the night of this show!
 

Saturday, April 8 
8pm
$20
Rick Estrin & The Nightcats
 
rickestrin.com

Blues favorites Rick Estrin & the Nightcats are back at The Palms for an evening of infectious, captivating, powerful blues. Singer/harmonica player and songwriter Estrin ranks among the very best harp players in the blues world. His work on the reeds is at once deep in the tradition of harmonica masters Sonny Boy Williamson II and Little Walter Jacobs while pushing that tradition forward. The Associated Press called his harp playing, “endlessly impressive.” For more than 30 years and nine albums, Rick fronted the jumping, swinging Little Charlie & The Nightcats, and now Estrin – along with the Nightcats longtime rhythm section of J. Hansen (drums) and Lorenzo Farrell (bass) and fiery guitarist Kid Andersen – takes the lead on his own. Rick Estrin & The Nightcats’ sound is a harmonica-driven, rocking, guitar-fueled celebration. The band performs the well-known, well-loved songs from Estrin’s massive catalog, and will introduce plenty of new material along the way.

Rick won the 2013 Blues Music Award for Best Instrumentalist – Harmonica and the 1994 Song of the Year BMA for "My Next Ex-Wife." Kid Anderson is currently nominated for BMA for Best Instrumentalist – Guitar Player.

Rick Estrin & The Nightcats' newest CD is the Alligator Records release "You Asked For It – Live!" which has the immediacy, feel and fun of a true Rick Estrin & The Nightcats performance. “No matter how much fun we have and how relaxed we can be in the studio, there’s still nothing like being in front of, and interacting with, our live audience,” Estrin says.

“These are serious musicians out to have a hotter than hot good time. It’s tough to stay in your seat when Estrin and his musical cohorts get cooking.” –Chicago Sun-Times
 

Saturday, April 15
8pm
$20
Dirk Hamilton
 
www.dirkhamilton.com
Singer-songwriter Dirk Hamilton is an exciting solo performer whose style ranges from powerful rock to country blues to classic acoustic folk. He always delivers a show that is viscerally exciting, often funny, and many times poignant and introspective. He is known for his uniquely intelligent lyrics and passionate performance style, creating music that can't be pigeon-holed into one genre.

After growing up in Indiana, Hamilton moved to L.A., where he caught the attention of Steely Dan producer Gary Katz. Katz helped him sign a deal with ABC records, and produced his first album, “You Can Sing on the Left or Bark on the Right.” Hamilton has since released 17 more albums under various labels, including his own, Acoustic Rock Records. The latest is Touch and Go, released in 2016. Hamilton has a strong international following, and tours the US and Europe regularly.

"Dirk Hamilton possesses a distinctive, raspy tenor, along with a rock & roll passion, stinging wit, and keen eye for the peculiarities of life." -Brett Hartenbach, Rovi Music
 

Saturday, April 22
8pm
$20
Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands
 
laurielewis.com
Grammy-nominated bluegrass at its finest!

The Sacramento News called Laurie Lewis "as fine a singer as anyone on the acoustic music circuit, anywhere in the world." Billboard praised her ability to "successfully walk the high wire above esoteric country, combining elements of bluegrass and pure country to form her own seamless mix." And American folk music icon Utah Phillips boiled it down even further, asserting: "Whatever country music is supposed to be, she's at the center of it."

With Tom Rozum (mandolin), Patrick Sauber (banjo), Max Schwartz (bass) and Brandon Godman (fiddle), The Right Hands are one talented band! Their latest album, “The Hazel and Alice Sessions,” was nominated for a Grammy for Best Bluegrass Album of 2016. The album pays tribute to Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerard, two trailblazing women of bluegrass music.
 

Friday, April 28
7pm
$10
Mariachi Puente
 
Video
Mariachi PuenteJoin us to start off Winters' annual Youth Day celebration in style with a concert featuring Mariachi Puente, a band composed of 11-17 year old students.

Mariachi Puente of Davis is a DJUSD districtwide after-school mariachi group featuring junior high and high school students. Directed by Hiram and Ximena Jackson, the group performs mostly traditional Mexican mariachi and Spanish language songs to promote appreciation of Mexican and Latin American culture, and to develop students' musical and performance abilities. Drawing their name from the Spanish word for "bridge," Mariachi Puente strives to bridge the gaps between a younger generation of musicians and the legacy of their parents and families, and between the music of one culture and the larger local community. This musical activity highlights a cultural component for students that is not normally embraced or celebrated by mainstream school culture.

Mariachi Puente's recent performances include the 2016 State Capitol Tree Lighting Ceremony sponsored by Governor Jerry Brown, Mexican Independence Day at the State Capitol, the California Association of Bilingual Educators Sacramento Conference, the California School Board Association Annual Conference, the 2015 Mariachi Nationals Festival in Los Angeles, and (along with the professional mariachi group Mariachi Sol de Mexico) a student matinee at the Mondavi Center

 
Saturday, April 29
8pm 
$17
Boca do Rio
 
www.bocadorio.com
Join us on Youth Day for a fun evening with Boca do Rio!  Boca do Rio is one of the Bay Area's longest-playing and hardest-hitting Brazilian-American funk bands. Boca do Rio has created musica organica - music that developed through the rhythm of living and working between the Americas. Kevin Welch and Alex Calatayud have a deep respect for past traditions, steeped in the sambas and choros that echoed through the Brazilian favelas, while always evolving forward to create an organic sound that is decidedly modern and funky.
Friday, May 5
8pm 
$17
Nell Robinson & Jim Nunally Band
 
www.nellandjim.com

The Nell Robinson & Jim Nunally Band brings five genre-busting artists together to bring joyful music infused with folk, bluegrass, Americana, roots, swing, jazz, and the blues. Alt-Roots, Folkbilly - whatever you call it, it's original, well done, and a pleasure to hear. The band plays originals co-written by Nell and Jim, as well as familiar country music classics by the likes of George Jones and Tammy Wynette, and Johnny Cash. Their latest album, “Baby Let's Take the Long Way Home,” was just released.

Nell Robinson is described as "a modern-day Patsy Cline" and one of the "freshest voices in roots music". Local audiences may have seen Nell Robinson and her band on KVIE TV as part of their "Music Gone Public" live music series. Jim Nunally is no stranger to the area as he has played regionally many times in various groups including The David Grisman Bluegrass Experience, his duo show with Keith Little, John Reischman and the JayBirds, and many more. Jim is an outstanding acoustic guitarist, an impeccable singer in the country and bluegrass tradition, as well as a solid songwriter.

Featuring Pete Grant on pedal steel, Jim Kerwin on bass fiddle and Jon Arkin on percussion, this is truly an all-star band.
 

Thursday, May 11
7pm 
$20
Little Charlie and Organ Grinder Swing
 
WEBSITE
Little Charlie and Organ Grinder Swing is a trio consisting of Little Charlie Baty on guitar, Lorenzo Farrell on organ, and Jason Hansen on drums. The three played together in the iconic group Little Charlie and the Nightcats along with vocalist/harp player Rick Estrin. After Baty left the Nightcats in 2008, Lorenzo Farrell began exploring the Hammond organ, and the trio formed to pay tribute to 1950s-era organ trios led by such stars as Jimmy Smith, Brother Jack McDuff and Groove Holmes. Their 2016 release “Skronky Tonk” on the Eller Soul label received much critical acclaim, including a 4-star review in the prestigious jazz magazine Downbeat. This special project enables the trio to explore a wide variety of music in an instrumental setting: swing, bop, blues, Latin, and gypsy jazz are all components of their repertoire. Improvisation, humor, dexterity, and the jazz spirit decorate their performances. All with a heavy dash of blues.
 
Saturday, May 13
8pm
$20
Shana Morrison and Caledonia www.shanamorrison.com
Her musical style has been called pop with a side of blues and a side of rock. She has also been known to include other ingredients, like country, R&B, and jazz into the mix. Her material seems to be ever-changing and hard to pin down categorically. What always remains the same is Shana Morrison's unique and wide-ranging voice.

Shana began performing with her group Caledonia in the San Francisco Bay area in 1996. Her debut CD, Caledonia, was released on her own label, Belfast Violet Records, in 1998 and picked up by the Monster Music label in 1999. Caledonia received favorable reviews from the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and the San Francisco Examiner, as well as airplay on KPFA, KPIG, KPIX, KDVS, KHUM, and KFOG. Tours across the country soon followed.

Since 2010 Shana has added touring with Van Morrison to her regular US schedule, opening shows with songs that range from traditional blues and jazz, to Irish folk songs, to her original songs which meld these influences. She also joins the Van Morrison band as a backup vocalist, and featured guest artist. Some highlights have been shows at L'Olympia in Paris, Hampton Court Palace, The Larimer Tree Festival, The East Belfast Festival, Castle Ward, and The Heb Celt Festival in the UK. Shana is a featured artist on the recent Van Morrison CD "Duets" recording "Rough God Goes Riding".