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Sonoma County Gazette

Real Music by Robert Feuer - Reviews and Concerts

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2019-03-27Mar 27, 2019

If telling you Joe Louis Walker is a member of the Blues Hall of Fame, a two-time Grammy winner, and a four-time Blues Music Award winner, isn’t enough to get you out to see him headline the Apple Blossom Festival, I may as well stop typing. Born in San Francisco, a 1949 Christmas Day present for a family originally from Cleveland, Mississippi, Walker learned the blues from his father’s 45s and 78s. “Blues was a natural to me,” Walker says during our early March phone interview. He describes the blues scene during his teenage years as “very healthy,” allowing him to  perform with classic East Bay artists such as Lowell Fulson and Jimmy McCracklin. 

2019-01-24Jan 24, 2019

Stella Heath, a Petaluma native and co-founder of the French Oak Gypsy Band, will be performing the music of Eleanora Fagan Gough, better known as Billie Holiday, on Feb. 9th at the Occidental Center for the Arts. Heath started singing jazz and classical, and acting, at age eight around the Bay Area.  Her principal jazz influences were Holiday, Louis Armstrong (her “ultimate musical influence”),  Edith Piaf, and Ella Fitzgerald. Starting at age 15, Heath attended an Arts school in Michigan, followed by Syracuse University, where, on a scholarship, she earned a classical acting degree. Then, five years in New York City studying acting, auditioning, “pounding the pavement,” Heath says. She sang in various venues  (sometimes with Harlem’s Marjorie Eliot, once a regular on the Greenwich Village jazz scene). Returning to Petaluma in 2014 to be near family, she co-founded the jazz-oriented French Oak Gypsy Band, with Gabriel Pirard.

2018-12-30Dec 30, 2018

Imagine this. You’re a drummer in a band, attending San Rafael High School in 1968, getting much of your musical education at Winterland and the Fillmore “It was the height of hippiedom which I was totally part of,” saysGary Silva. As the years go passing by, you clock ten years withElvin Bishop, six with Charlie Musselwhite, and 15 withNorton Buffalo, including touring Europe, Japan, and Canada with them,Hooker, Collins, and Buddy Guy. “I’ve met a lot of my heroes,” Silva says.

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