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Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

Win tickets to Leftover Cuties

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The Painted Table is best known for its catering. You’ve no doubt seen the chefs (or their cuisine) out at events, including the Fresno Food Expo. They did cooking demonstrations all day.

The business also hosts events out of a space in the Tower Theatre complex. Those with long enough memories will remember it as the old Daily Planet space.

While the space is mostly reserved for special private parties, The Painted Table will open it up as a live music venue for pair of performers over the next two weekend. You can get all the needed info on The Painted Table’s Facebook page.

First up is the Los Angeles retro-jazz pop band Leftover Cuties, which plays The Painted Table on Sunday. If you are unfamiliar with Leftover Cuties by name, you may have heard its music. The band wrote and performed the theme song for the Showtime series “The Big C” and has songs featured in commercials for Hyundai and Samsung. The Samsung ad aired during the 2012 Olympics. Proceeds from the show will benefit Fresno’s NOCO dance collective.

We have tickets to give away to a Beehive reader. To enter to win, leave a comment in this post. Tell us what is the cutest thing you have ever seen. The contest runs until noon Thursday. Winners will be chosen at random, notified by email and be able to pick up tickets at The Fresno Bee office (1626 E. Street) during normal business hours.

Check out a video of Leftover Cuties and get the complete concert rules on the jump.

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Win tickets to Beatriz Herrera at Arte Americas Nights in the Plaza

nightsFresno’s summer days can be brutal. But our nights … our nights are so very lovely.

Which is why Arte Americas hosts a series of Friday-night concerts in it outdoor pavilion each summer. The Nights in the Plaza series features local and regional bands playing Latin lazz and mariachi, Brazilian, Son Jarocho and rockabilly.

We’ll be giving away passes each week (except Sept. 26) for the rest of the series’ run. This week’s concert features local singer Beatriz Herrera. To enter to win, leave a comment in this post. Tell us your favorite way to spend a warm summer’s night in the Valley. The contest runs through noon Thursday. Winners will be chosen at random, notified by email and be able to pick up the passes at The Fresno Bee office (1626 E. Street) during normal business hours. Passes are good for any concert night, but do not guarantee entry, so early arrival is suggested.

We’ll have a new contest up every Monday so keep checking back. Complete performer schedule and contest rules on the jump.

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Mid-week concerts to get you through to Friday

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To anyone who thinks there is nothing to do in Fresno, I give this quick list of super-ridiculous concerts — one or more every day through Thursday (and then the weekend kicks in).

Feel free to pass it along. You can add this message: “Quit complaining.”

TONIGHT:

  • Lynryd Skynyrd
    It’s a Saturday night special … on Monday … See what I did there.
  • Beach Day.
    Free girl-pop garage rock at Peeve’s.
  • TUESDAY:

  • Future Islands
    Best frontman in entertainment today? You be the judge.
  • Balance and Composure
    Post hard-core emo band from Pennsylvania. For fans of Sunny Day Real Estate.
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    Five Things You Should Do This Weekend

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    Go find someone you love and hug them. It’s been a long week. Then …

    1. Big Brother presents Strangelove
    All I ever needed is here in my arms.

    2. Logger’s Jamboree
    Chopping, sawing and general wood play. You’ve got to love the smell of fresh wood chips in the morning.

    3. NOCO Summer Soiree
    Aerial dance + classical music inside a museum. It’s a triple shot of culture.

    4. Rock N’ Shop
    Music and collectibles. Special appearance by a jaw-less zombie pet (or the dude who played one on TV anyway).

    5. Ani-Jam
    One word: Cosplay.

    RIP jazz guitarist and instructor Andre Bush

    For those who missed my story in today’s Fresno Bee, the local music scene is mourning the death of jazz guitarist and instructor Andre Bush.

    Bush was a graduate of the Roosevelt School of the Arts and a fixture in the local jazz scene as both a player and a teacher. He was also an accomplished touring musician and session guitarist, who played several years on the Lilith Fair and was nominated for a Grammy is 2005. He had his own guitar technique book (published by Mel Bay, no less) and was named as one of the 342 most significant guitarists in jazz history by critic Scott Yanow.

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    Five Things You Should Do This Weekend

    nightsWhile you’re figuring out which of the neighbors to snitch on first …

    1. Zappa Plays Zappa
    For fans of off-the-wall quirky, but thoughtfully composed, rock-and-roll-as art.

    2. Wayans Brothers Live
    Put the four Wayans brothers together and you have a comedy empire. Here, they do stand-up comedy together for the first time.

    3. Audie’s Olympic Tavern
    Great rock shows scheduled for tonight AND tomorrow. Take your pick, or go to both.
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    4. “Life Itself
    Thank Fresno Filmworks for bringing this to town.

    5. Fig Fest
    Fresno owes everything to its figs, which we honor by eating.

    For a full list of weekend music options, check out this week’s BANDGEEEEEK!

    Bandgeek: Lou Shields, Les Wolves and Zappa Plays Zappa

    nights
    Today is National IPA Day. You will want to celebrate. But not too much, because there are dozens of local music happenings you might want to make. Here they are in list form in this week’s BANDGEEEEEK!

    TONIGHT:

  • Queensryche Starring Geoff Tate.
    At Strummer’s. 7 p.m. $32.

  • Lou Shields.
    W/Jimmie O. AT Audie’s Olympic. 9 p.m. No price listed. (Flier link)

  • From The Messenger.
    W/The Rest Will Fall, Bred To Survive, City of Skies and Farooq. At CYC. 6:30 p.m. $4. All ages. (Flier link)

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    Five Things You Should Do This Weekend

    nights

    You could copycat Neel Kashkari and act homeless for the weekend. Instead, how about …

    1. Guardians of the Galaxy
    People who I trust tell me this movie lives up to the hype.

    2. TNMT night at the Grizzlies
    Nostalgia is a power thing.

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    3. Mrs. Park’s Regency Rout
    For fans of Jane Austen. Party like it’s 1799 — or 1809, or whenever the England’s Regency era was.

    4. Restaurant Week
    Buy local (food).

    5. Rudy Parris at Old Town Saloon
    Rudy Parris is one of three local artists poised to become a bonafide star. See him now, at a bar, for free. You’ll thank yourself later.

    For music-specific events, don’t forget our weekly BANDGEEK! concert roundup.

    Bandgeek: Mr. Rude, Rudy Parris and Ballyhoo!

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    As you’re out and about this weekend, seeing one of the dozens of local, live music performances (presented here in our weekly BANDGEEK post), remember Fresno cabbies want your business (for their own, it seems). It’s nice to feel wanted, right?

    TONIGHT:

  • Campfire Cassettes.
    W/Todd N Todd, Bededonia and Santa Mira. At Full Circle Brewing Co. 8 p.m. $4. (Flier link)

  • Rudy Parris.
    At Old Town Saloon. 7:30 p.m. Free. (Flier link)

  • White Glove Service.
    W/Wordsauce. At Cellar Door Visalia. 9:30 p.m. $7. (Flier link)

  • Shockwave.
    At ApCal. 7 p.m. Free.

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    Win tickets to Trios Los Romance at Arte Americas Nights in the Plaza

    nightsFresno’s summer days can be brutal. But our nights … our nights are so very lovely.

    Which is why Arte Americas hosts a series of Friday-night concerts in it outdoor pavilion each summer. The Nights in the Plaza series features local and regional bands playing Latin lazz and mariachi, Brazilian, Son Jarocho and rockabilly.

    We’ll be giving away passes each week (except Sept. 26) for the rest of the series’ run. This week’s concert features local trio (and longtime Nights in the Plaza performers) Trio Los Romance. To enter to win, leave a comment in this post. Tell us your favorite way to spend a warm summer’s night in the Valley. The contest runs through noon Thursday. Winners will be chosen at random, notified by email and be able to pick up the passes at The Fresno Bee office (1626 E. Street) during normal business hours. Passes are good for any concert night, but do not guarantee entry, so early arrival is suggested.

    We’ll have a new contest up every Monday so keep checking back. Complete performer schedule and contest rules on the jump.

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    Five Things You Should Do This Weekend

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    Peel yourself away from the news for an hour or so …

    1. Jose Canseco Home Run Challenge tryouts
    I know next to nothing about baseball. What I do know is this: Jose Canseco swung HARD! Like, breaking-bat hard.

    2. Opera Ambulante
    Spanish Opera at River Park. The juxtaposition of cultures is just too much!
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    3. The theater
    Take your pick..

    4. Rock & Roll: Behind the Scenes
    A panel discussion on the nuts and bolts of rock and roll. Hint: It’s not as glamorous as you might think.

    5. Meatball Magic
    My favorite DJs return to my favorite bar. It’s been awhile.

    And five for the music fans …

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    BANDGEEK: Shwaye, Sweat and the Summerland tour

    6-13-14

    Planes are being shot out of the sky! We won’t fault you for not thinking about getting out to see some live music this weekend. Still, it’s my job to keep you informed. So here it is, your weekly music roundup (back from a short hiatus) … BANDGEEEEK!

    TONIGHT:

  • Ghost Key.
    W/Castaway, Outlier, Rampage and Chip Spacey. At CYC. 6:30 p.m. $4. ALl ages. (Flier link)

  • Electronic Ladyland Tour.
    W/Je4sika Von Rabbit, Maria Del Pilar and Okapi Sun. At Audie’s Olympic. 9 p.m. No ticket price listed. (Flier link)

  • A beach party and potluck.
    W/Math, Suzy’s Dead, The P.I.T.S., Egg Slut and Sci-Fi Caper. At C.A.F.E. Infoshop. 6 p.m. $3-5. All ages. (Flier link)

  • Pinche Culture Night.
    5th Anniversary. W/Marcus Hernandez, Pa’Chango, Resident Alien and Conjunto Califas. At Cellar Door, Visalia. 7 p.m. Free. (Flier link)

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    Win tickets to Queen, It’s a Kinda Magic

    Queen has written more classic rock anthems than you’d even realize. Like, they have so many hits there are some you just forget about, unless you’re looking at the band’s greatest hits album, which there are two volumes of.

    That’s how many anthems the band has.

    That’s the wheelhouse for “Queen, It’s a Kinda Magic,” the touring Queen tribute that plays the Saroyan Theatre on Saturday. The show recreates the band at its iconic best — live and on stage.

    We have tickets to Saturday night’s performance that we will give away to a few lucky readers. To enter to win, just leave a comment on this post. We want to know your favorite Queen songs (and why). Winners will be chosen at random and notified via email (so check your if you enter). These are physical tickets and must be picked up at the Fresno Bee office (1626 E St.) during business hours. The contest deadline is NOON, THURSDAY July 17.

    Full contest rules on the jump.

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    Win tickets to The Experience at Arte Americas Nights in The Plaza

    nightsFresno’s summer days can be brutal. But our nights … our nights are so very lovely.

    Which is why Arte Americas hosts a series of Friday-night concerts in it outdoor pavilion each summer. The Nights in the Plaza series features local and regional bands playing Latin lazz and mariachi, Brazilian, Son Jarocho and rockabilly.

    We’ll be giving away passes each week (except July 25 and Sept. 26) for the rest of the series’ run. This week’s concert features Fresno all-star jazz group The Experience. To enter to win, leave a comment in this post. Tell us your favorite way to spend a warm summer’s night in the Valley. The contest runs through noon Thursday. Winners will be chosen at random, notified by email and be able to pick up the passes at The Fresno Bee office (1626 E. Street) during normal business hours. Passes are good for any concert night, but do not guarantee entry, so early arrival is suggested.

    We’ll have a new contest up every Monday so keep checking back. Complete performer schedule and contest rules on the jump.

    Read more

    Live Nation kicks off its Yahoo Screen concert series

    File this under: It was just a matter of time.

    Today, Live Nation kicks off a year-long concert series with live, streaming performances (one each day for the next 365 days) via Yahoo’s video service (Yahoo Screen). How much you’ll enjoy the series depends on how whether you like the types of acts that Live Nation promotes (and let’s face it you do, because Live Nation works with big-name popular bands).

    The first concert, which streams 7:20 p.m. tonight (eastern time), is Dave Matthews Band at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena. The group will do two sets, performing together in numerous electric and acoustic configurations in a reinvention of the band’s traditional summer concert set.

    Other confirmed artists include KISS (from their 40th Anniversary Tour); John Legend, who will perform Marvin Gaye’s classic album, “What’s Going On” in its entirety and Justin Timberlake and the Tennessee Kids performing their first ever concert in Reykjavik, Iceland.

    The full list of acts (so far) can be seen on the jump. Of special note (to local music fans) is The Airborne Toxic Event, which features Ex-Fresnan Daren Taylor on drums.

    I like the idea of this kind of concert series, with acts doing a special one-off performance that will never be replicated (not that any live show can truly be replicated).

    I like the idea of actually being at the venue more.

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    The (un)official 4th of July playlist

    In advance of Friday’s celebrations, I’ve put together a quick list of my favorite seasonal songs (as I am wont to do. See: Halloween, Christmas). Feel free to tell me what songs I missed, or add your playlist in the comments section.

    Spirt of ’76 — The Dickie’s
    An obscure tune from the soundtrack to “Spirit of ’76,” an obscure time-travel comedy starring David Cassidy.

    America F**k Yeah — Trey Parker
    It’s a song and a meme. The song is meant to be tongue-in-cheek. Still, it does captures the spirit of American exceptionalism. It’s also a great sing-along.

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    Gazebo Gardens food truck nights expands to Thursdays

    foodtruck2Got plans tomorrow night? The food truck nights at Gazebo Gardens have expanded to Thursdays. It started with Saturdays last year, expanded to Fridays and the nursery tried out its first Thursday last week. It worked, so it’s now a regular thing. If you haven’t been to a food truck night there yet, here’s what to expect: Several food trucks, a walk through some blooming roses to get to them, lots of craft beer in the beer garden (get it? beer garden, at a nursery, heh), lovely local music and a general sense of friendliness and community. (And the occasional Amtrak train speeds by, which somehow adds a bit of unique charm.)

    The event runs from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. all three days. The only thing different about Thursdays is that instead of a live band, it will be open mic night. (As the Gazebo Gardens Facebook page says: “So far, no Grammy contenders- just people smiling and cheering each other on.”)

    Food trucks vary each time, but it’s not unusual to see everyone from Dusty Buns to frozen yogurt truck Gorilla Gurt. Keep tabs on each truck’s Facebook or Twitter page to see if they’ll be there. Gazebo owner Scott Miller said that not only are lots of people turning out for the events, but food truck owners were asking for another night. He even hinted that Gazebo might be the site of a more permanent evolution of the food truck movement.

    TONIGHT: Jimbo Mathus

    Jimbo Mathus is an archive of southern musical styles. The Mississippi-born songwriter/guitarist was raised in a musical family and grew up playing those old folk, country and blues tunes.

    “I’ve been studying on this since I was 8 years old,” says Mathus, whose band, the Tri-State Coalition, plays tonight at Fulton 55 with Southern Culture on the Skids.

    “I’m just immersed in it.”

    Mathus’ current album, “Dark Night of the Soul,” serves as a record of both that innate knowledge and of his career in music.

    “It’s the natural progression of the stuff I’ve been doing my whole life. And I’ve been in the game for a minute,” he says.

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    Five Things You Should Do This Weekend

    london promo shot final cropAfter getting your morning (or afternoon, or nightly) cup of joe

    1. Music for London Library Project
    Blake Jones put together two days of music to raise money to build a library in London (California, not England).

    2. Songs of Kris Kristofferson
    Kris Kristofferson may be the coolest dude ever. This is a tribute to him (and his music).

    3. “Jersey Boys”
    The Frank Valli story done by the guy who made “Unforgiven.”
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    4. “Macbeth”
    Yes, the play (part of the Woodward Shakespeare Festival) actually opens this week.

    5. Devin’s Guided Bike Tour Ride No. 3
    This is the last in a three-part series of bike tours around downtown. You’ll see: Chris Sorensen art studio and the Fresno Arch.

    And five for the music fans:

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    Tonight: Folk singer Joseph Eid at Full Circle Brewing Co.

    At 22 years old, Joseph Eid had a revelatory moment. He was sitting in a med-school library, readying himself for a microbiology exam and thinking more-than fondly about the night before.

    He had been sitting outside the dorms, singing with his friends.

    “We were singing old songs and it felt so freeing an amazing,” says the Liberian-born folk singer, who plays tonight at Full Circle Brewing Company.

    In that moment, Eid honestly assessed his life. Questions followed.

    “How did I end up here? Why am I really doing this?”

    And finally: “What if? What if I could do whatever I wanted to in my life?,” Eid says.

    Two days later he’d dropped out of med school to pursue a career as a musician, which he’s done with abandon. He was named one the Hottest 100 Unsigned Artists in both 2012 and 2013 by Music Connection and had a single released on a Cleopatra Records folk compilation. His latest album “Human” was released last year.

    Here, I find out more about Eid.

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    Win tickets to: Trio Ellas at the Arte Americas summer concert series

    nightsFresno’s summer days can be brutal. But our nights … our nights are so very lovely.

    Which is why Arte Americas hosts a series of Friday-night concerts in it outdoor pavilion each summer. The Nights in the Plaza series features local and regional bands playing Latin lazz and mariachi, Brazilian, Son Jarocho and rockabilly.

    We’ll be giving away passes each week (except July 4, 25 and Sept. 26) for the rest of the series’ run. This week’s concert features the Fresno return of the Latin Grammy-nominated group Trio Ellas. To enter to win, leave a comment in this post. Tell us your favorite way to spend a warm summer’s night in the Valley. The contest runs through noon Thursday. Winners will be chosen at random, notified by email and be able to pick up the passes at The Fresno Bee office (1626 E. Street) during normal business hours. Passes are good for any concert night, but do not guarantee entry, so early arrival is suggested.

    We’ll have a new contest up every Monday so keep checking back. Complete performer schedule and contest rules on the jump.

    Read more

    Singer Marina V returns to Fresno tonight

    MarinaV-Erik-Fischer-Photogarphy2Marina V has built a career out of fan funding. Everything, from her albums to many of her performances, has been paid for, money up front, by her fans. Any time someone asks if she’s planning a trip to their neck of the woods, she explains, very honestly, the situation. “We need to make money to pay the bills,” says Marina, who plays tonight at Frank’s Place with singer (and good friend) Astrid Plane of the ’80s band Animotion.

    Most often things kind of work themselves out from there, she says.

    Marina has traveled to France and Portugal, even the Czech Republic for these fan-funded shows. The Russian-born singer even found a way to subsidize her current tour — it’s being sponsored by Toyota Santa Monica. She’ll be travelling with her partner/husband in their Toyota Prius (its what they’ve always done), so the sponsorship just seemed logical.

    “They sell the most Priuses in the United States,” Marina says. They pair installed a Toyota of Santa Monica license plate holder on their car, just so people know.

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    TONIGHT: Michale Graves

    michaelMichale Graves carved a place for himself in the late ’90s punk and metal scenes as the skeleton-faced singer in the second incarnation of the Misfits. He recorded two albums with the band before departing on a solo career.

    He’s since released more than a dozen albums of his own punkish, metal and acoustic rock, including the just-released “Wanderer.” Graves plays tonight at The Crossroads. We found out more from the singer.

    The new album just came out last week. Where does it fit with your previous work?

    “Wanderer” has been in my head for years. It is only now that I could create this body of work. It has taken 20 years of performing, touring and composing to build such a diverse body of work. This album is like a fine aged whiskey. It blends rock, R&B, rockabilly, folk and a dash of country to create something I have never done before. We are incredibly proud of this work.

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    BANDGEEK: Sara Evans, Kings Buzzo and Murs

    6-13-14Between watching the World Cup and getting your head around the dude who was mistakenly released from jail (and then killed), your weekend is spent. Unless you’re up for the dozens of live music events happening around the city, which we (once again) cull together and collate in the weekly feature we call BANDGEEEEEK!

    TONIGHT:

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    CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENT: A Day To Remember

    adtrI lived next to the Rainbow Ballroom and saw first hand the massive lines of kids who came out when A Day to Remember stopped through town last year. So, yeah, the Flordia rock band is popular with the teenage Warped Tour crowd, especially in Fresno where the band has played just about everywhere, from the old Starline club, to the Crest Theatre, Selland Arena and the Woodward Park Amphitheater.

    The band will return to the amphitheater Sept. 23 with its Parks and Devastation tour. The tour features British metalcore band Bring Me The Horizon and the post-hardcore band Chiodos.

    Tickets for the show are $37.50 and on sale 10 a.m. Friday.