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October 19, 2006

Heading: Harvest, The Hum, by Bob Doran, photo of Anthony B

Sure, it's the time of year when the kids are taking class field trips to the pumpkin patch and the Farmers' Market is flush with the local bounty, but that's probably not the kind of harvest referenced in the Southern Humboldt Harvest Ball this Thursday, Oct. 19, at the Mateel. Same goes with the Humboldt Harvest Festival running Friday and Saturday at Portuguese Hall in Arcata.

The Harvest Ball at the Mateel offers a pair of performers on the conscious side: Jamaican star Keith Anthony Blair aka Anthony B, whose headwrap shows that he's a bobo dread Rastaman, and Tevya Jones aka Wisdom, who provides a mix of reggae and hip hop with a positive message.

Anthony is equally concerned with delivering a message. As he explained in an interview last time he came to town, "From the beginning I've always tried to be someone who tries to address the world on topics, economically, religiously, politically, socially. I try to address all of the topics in my music from the grassroots level to the educational level to the universal level. That's the type of music Anthony B do. Being a Rastafarian, I'm trying to make people aware of what I know."

You're sure to hear Anthony's harvest time song, "Raid the Barn," with the Grasshopper and the Ant complaint, "Nobody wanna plant the corn, everybody wanna raid the barn."

The Humboldt Harvest Festival at the Portuguese Hall mixes local and imported reggae acts with St. Croix stars Ras Attitude and Army headlining Friday's show. Arcata's Massagana serves as a festival anchor playing both nights, backing Jay Sun and Medic on Friday, then Ishi Dube and special guest Hurricane Gilbert on Saturday. (Massagana also plays on the Arcata Plaza Saturday during the Farmers' Market.) Filling out the bill Friday they have Lafa Taylor and DJ Jahtta. Saturday's all-day lineup also includes local reggae band Juce, Sol Horizon and Green Machine. There's also ital raw food from Green Life, crafts by assorted vendors, art by Roman Villagrana, who apparently works on hemp cloth, and martial arts demonstrations by Capoeira Humboldt. This is an all-ages event, so you can bring the whole family if you choose (kids under 12 get in free). If the event ends up making any money, it goes to Shashamane Settlement Foundation, supporting services for hungry kids in Ethiopia.

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Wait, there's another: The Halloween Harvest Festival is more of a crafty event running all day Saturday at Redwood Acres, with music more on the folky side, including the Celtic duo Moonstone, Wild Iris and 2-Car Garage, among others.

Also in festive mode, and coming from yet another direction, there's the 8th Annual Rocktoberfest Saturday, Oct. 21, at the Red Fox, a BBQ/headbanger ball hosted by Candyman of Hell on Earth. This one's a massive dose of metal and loudness with six bands, including out-of-towners A Love Ends Suicide (from Metalblade Records), Burn in Silence and Year of Desolation (both from Prosthetic Records) along with locals Entheogen, The Crooks and Force Fed Trauma.

Campus radio station KRFH celebrates its 16th year in existence Friday, Oct. 20, with a Sweet 16 Concert in HSU's Kate Buchanan Room featuring a broad array of music: emo-ish alt. rock by Sleight of Mind (formerly known as Laden Swallow), an assault by Mega Total Violence, hip hop by 2th and Nail and ska hop by Two Time Good Fighter aka Tsu Tain Guu Faitaa (a spin-off from Laden Swallow). This is another all-ages thing, so even 16-year-olds are welcome. Admission is dirt-cheap, and if you come dressed for the prom it's just a dollar.

The seemingly endless flow of Japanoise continues Thursday, Oct. 19, with the return of Green Milk From The Planet Orange, a wild-ass psyche rock band from Tokyo who declare, "Progressive rock is not dead!" Local prog/psyche/country band Yer Dog opens the show.

A note from Yer Dog guitarist/Nucleus drummer Pete C. claims that Nuke played a five-hour set at last weekend's Fire Fall, jamming straight through from 2:30 in the morning until dawn. Don't expect a set that long when they play at Humboldt Brews Saturday night. Pete also leads The PC Trio playing at Big Pete's this Thursday.

One more Thursday show worth mentioning: Moo-Got-2 is back in town after a successful West Coast tour, playing their jam/funk at the Jambalaya.

Also along jammy lines, the Pnuma Trio is here from Tennessee for a show at Humboldt Brews this coming Wednesday. Bassist Alex Botwin and drummer/percussionist Lane Shaw lay down the beat while Ben Hazlegrove's assorted keyboards provide the electro-noodley melody. This is one of a slew of jammish shows coming from Passion Presents, including a really big one: Former Phish leader Trey Anastasio plays at the Eureka Muni Dec. 12. Tickets are on sale now.

Also on the jammy side, but more toward country/folk/something-grass, Great American Taxi returns to the Red Fox on Friday, Oct. 20. That would be the new Boulder-based band led by Vince Herman of Leftover Salmon fame.

For the ukulele fans out there we have another appearance by UKEsperience, formerly known as UKExperience. Not sure why they changed the name (personally I prefer the old spelling).

"Cows With Guns" song slinger Dana Lyons is in Humboldt this week, playing Friday, Oct, 20, at the Beginnings Octagon as part of a tour raising awareness about rainforests -- a tour that hits the Bayside Grange next Wednesday, Oct. 25.

Lyons is also part of the earthy folky summit coming up Nov. 3 at the Mateel. That one's a benefit to help pay medical bills for Joules Graves that also includes Jim Page (who was just at Muddy's Hot Cup), Casey Neill, Diane Patterson, Darryl Cherney, Al Torre, Francine Allen, Tina Malia, Lila Nelson and Joanne Rand. More on this later. In the meantime you can catch Joanne Rand and the Open Hearts this Saturday, Oct. 21, at the Red Radish. The same Wednesday night Lyons is at the Grange, Lila Nelson plays for a candidate meet and greet at Old Town Coffee and Chocolates for Nancy Abrams, who's running for Eureka City Council.

Also on the campaign trail: Absynth Quintet, who play a benefit for Mayor Peter LaVallee's re-election bid at The Indigo Saturday, Oct. 21.

SoHum's home of the blues, the Riverwood Inn, has guitar wiz Albert Cummings on Saturday. Cummings, who hails from the Northeast, is hitting the blues circuit up and down the West Coast behind his new Blind Pig release, Working Man. And no, the title is not some pose -- when Albert is not busy playing the blues, he's pounding nails on custom homes.

Local bluesman Clint Warner celebrates his birthday at the Steelhead Lounge in the Blue Lake Casino Saturday night. "Of course, everyone is invited," says Clint, adding, "Also, I'm coming out with an all acoustic CD featuring some blues and other music next month." Watch for it.

Author/poet Dick Stull presents an evening of something he calls "Spoken Word/Jazz Noir" on Wednesday, Oct. 25, at Six Rivers Brewery in which the celebrated kinesiologist Stull reads his original short stories in the hard-boiled detective "noir" tradition backed by a jazz trio consisting of Tim Randles on keys, Geoff Daugherty on bass and Mike LaBolle on drums. Your admission is a donation to the St. Jude Research Hospital for Children, presumably in honor of Dick's daughter Camilla.

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