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A Press Democrat Blog

Arts

Dan Taylor on the fine arts scene.

A new sidestreet art gallery in Santa Rosa

You’re not likely to notice one of Santa Rosa’s newest galleries as you drive down the main drag on Mendocino Avenue, but it’s worth a look. The Corner Store Collective Contemporary Art Gallery opened last summer on Ross Street, the one-way, one-block byway between B Street and Mendocino Avenue. In a plain reddish brown building at 575 Ross St.., the gallery is showing contemporary work by a variety of artists. Even the signage for the newest exhibit, “Deluxe: Deconstructing Luxury,”… Read More »

Santa Rosa composer up for an award

A lot of fuss is made over composers who write the musical scores for movies and stage musicals, and rightly so. But there’s a lesser-known category of compositions for theater, known as “incidental music,” primarily used in plays in the background and/or between scenes. Trained musicians write that, too. One of them is Santa Rosa native Jonathan Beard (at left in photo), now living in Los Angeles and working as a composer, mostly for movies and television. The Sierra Madre… Read More »

Art Trails open studio tour continues Oct. 18-19

If you love the visual arts, there’s nothing better than a chance to meet local artists and see how they work. Continuing through next weekend, art aficionados can visit the work spaces of some 160 artists during Sonoma County Art Trails. That’s a slightly different name for the county’s oldest annual open studio tour, formerly known as ARTrails and founded in 1986. With the new name comes a new sponsor, the Sebastopol Center for the Arts, taking over from the… Read More »

Author speaks on Dylan in Sonoma

The title of San Francisco writer Dennis McNally’s new book sounds scholarly and serious — “On Highway 61: Race, Music and the Evolution of Cultural Freedom.” But the subject matter is lively. As the author of “Desolate Angel,” about Beat era icon Jack Kerouac, and “A Long Strange Trip,” about The Grateful Dead, McNally has made a specialty of American music and pop culture, stemming from his 25 years as publicist for the Grateful Dead. For his latest book, McNally,… Read More »

Diana Krall concert at Wells Fargo Center canceled

Jazz singer and pianist Diana Krall’s previously announced Nov. 13 concert at Wells Fargo Center for the Arts has been canceled, along with the rest of her fall U.S. tour. Suffering from ongoing complications caused by a severe case of pneumonia, the five-time Grammy Award-winner has postponed release of her new album, “Wallflower,” until 2015. “Wallflower” was slated for North American release Oct. 21 by Verve Records,  and the U.S. leg of her “Wallflower World Tour” had been scheduled to… Read More »

Healdsburg holds memorial for jazz great Charlie Haden

Healdsburg Jazz, sponsor of the town’s annual jazz festival, will present a special tribute Oct. 12 in memory of famed bassist Charlie Haden at the SHED Cafe in Healdsburg. Haden, who was honored with a two-day celebration at the 2013 Healdsburg Jazz Festival, died July 11 this year in Los Angeles at age 76. Haden had played the festival in Healdsburg five times since it started 16 years ago. “My relationship with Charlie was really long, and I was a… Read More »

Montgomery Village in Santa Rosa plans two free concert series

The Montgomery Village shopping center in Santa Rosa will open two free, live outdoor concert series this month, both running until early October in the center’s Village Court area. And before the two series start, the center opens the season May 18 with a “Veterans Appreciation Day,” 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. with live music by the Poyntlyss Sistars. Both music series feature bands that have built a following at nightclubs and concerts throughout Northern California. The Bay Area pop… Read More »

Dan Earl conducts his last four Santa Rosa Symphonic Chorus concerts

Popular local choral director Dan Earl might not be considered shy, but he certainly is retiring. Earl, now 71, retired in 2005 after 39 years of full-time teaching, 28 of them spent as a music teacher at Santa Rosa High School. And early next month, Earl will retire again, after 14 years as conductor of the Santa Rosa Symphonic Chorus, ending his tenure with his final four concerts with the ensemble. “Retire again? It’s not like this is something new… Read More »

Healdsburg Water Carnival canceled due to drought, other events still scheduled

Drought conditions in Northern California have had an impact on some popular annual river celebrations, including one cancellation, but others remain scheduled as planned. A quick update: The Healdsburg Water Carnival, popular in the early 1900s and resurrected from 2011 to 2013, will not be held this year because of the drought, according to Sonoma County Regional Parks. Last year’s event was held July 27. “The low flow due to the drought makes it unrealistic for us to create the… Read More »

Santa Rosa actor stars in new film ‘The Mendoza Line’

“The Mendoza Line,” a new independent film starring Santa Rosa comedian and actor Juan Carlos Arenas, will screen at 8 p.m. April 25 at the Roxy Stadium 14 in Santa Rosa. The screening will be followed by a question-and-answer session with Arenas and the film’s writer and director, Nathan Kaufman of Sacramento. In the film, Arenas plays Ricardo Perez, a hopeful minor-league baseball player who is in the United States without legal documentation. “This opens up the immigration issue in… Read More »