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Big White Cloud 

click to enlarge Sara Milonovich performs with Greg Anderson at the Arcata Playhouse on Friday, April 12, at 8 p.m.

Photo by Arius Photography

Sara Milonovich performs with Greg Anderson at the Arcata Playhouse on Friday, April 12, at 8 p.m.

No, we didn't get a proper eclipse last Monday, but I still found a momentary pulse beat of Satori from a gliding collision of outside sources, and that's good enough for me. I had been driving around listening to the sublime John Cale song I titled this week's column after, so perhaps a moment like this was inevitable. When it hit, I was looking at a field of cows and really missing a recently departed furry little friend, when the following lines rose out of the gorgeous sonic mix and spiked me through my ears with a taste of bliss:

 "After all is said and done
 Everything is just like it began
 Days that came, years again
 Came and went again
 Oh I love it, yes I love it, oh I love it so."

Grief ain't always the same and the things that cover the sunshine can be beautiful, too.

Have a lovely week.


The Basement continues its hit parade of steady weekly shows featuring killer local acts. Tonight's feature is the jazz fusion group RLAD, which, when I saw them last in 2023 was composed of Tim Randles on keyboard, Ken Lawrence on bass, Mike LaBolle on drums and Doug Marcum on drums. Skilled players, all of them, and creators of a heady brew when assembled as such. It's at 8 p.m., no cover.


I really don't want to write about the pandemic, so I'll just say that 2021 was a heavy time for this beat, and the only real moment of grace came when the fever broke a bit in November and I was able to slink out of hiding to catch and review my first live show in ages. What luck it was that the one I landed at was the work of fiddler, singer and songwriter Sara Milonovich and her guitar accompanist Greg Anderson, a duo whose music I was completely unfamiliar with prior to that gig. What followed was a night of folk and bluegrass rapture with the beauty of a Hudson River Valley sunset, all tethered to the earth by Milonovich's fun stage banter about casual things like gentrification, murder ballads, and the perils of river log riding. Every so often you walk into one of these mystery shows and get treated to the business end of a great time. This was one of those shows. The duo is returning to the scene of the action at the Arcata Playhouse tonight at 8 p.m., where I guarantee that if you have even a sprout of affection for this kind of thing, it will grow into a big and mighty memory under tonight's stage lights ($20).


Two free shows tonight at great local venues with some of the best and offbeat bands around. Rooster McClintock brings the fine country jams alongside Heaven's Taint (lol), which I am told has a surf rock vibe, to the Logger Bar at 8 p.m. An hour later over at the Shanty, you can enjoy a more jangly and pulsing psychedelic deal with Widdershins, who have united for the evening with the excellent odd-rockers Silver & Nails for what I'll call a perfect lineup for the joint.


Minnesota bluesman, picker, and singer-songwriter Charlie Parr is the real deal, by which I mean an artist who has sublimated the nerve-ending feedback signals of his life and the lives of those around him into a sound that captures the true essence of storytelling, that elusive place where fiction creates truth. I'm not the only one to recognize this, either. The guy has a career traveling the world with his guitar, no easy feat in the year of Our Lord 2024. He's parked over at Humbrews tonight at 8 p.m., where he will be joined by banjo-playing singers Kendl Winter and Palmer T. Lee, also known as The Lowest Pair, an indie-grass duo minted in Olympia, Washington, a decade ago, and rolling on down the road ever since ($25, $20 advance).


The Logger Bar hits us with a rare Monday night show at 7:30 p.m. and this one looks like a rip-snortin', garage-rockin' deal with our local lovelies Clean Girl and the Dirty Dishes cranking the amp alongside SUX from Seattle, featuring a lady named Lolli from the infamous mean-ass punk band Mommy Long Legs. The $5 is pocket change for a chance to jam out on this one with some high-nitro tunes.


It's kinda slow tonight, so unless you want to check out the stand-up gauntlet called Heckler's Paradise at Savage Henry Comedy Club (9 p.m., $5), then you will probably be staying in. But don't fret, I won't leave you hanging in my recommendations list of the works of late artists who gave up the ghost in 2023. I want to keep the energy high tonight, so I'm going with the solo work of Frances Monkman, British composer and prog music player — in the bands Sky and Curved Air — and wildly talented film scorer. It is in the latter discipline where I most fondly encounter Monkman's work, specifically the score to the excellent London crime film The Long Good Friday, the main theme of which is a certified, stone-cold banger. I'm serious, put it on and try not to get pumped. Giorgio Moroder, eat your ARP out.


Let's hear it for the Logger Bar again, which has positively crushed it with booking this week, finishing strong with the return of Jenny Don't and the Spurs, Portland's favorite stardust country and lost highway soul seekers fronted by one of the best voices in the biz. The very talented Turtle Goodwater of Barn Fire and too many good gigs to name adds his shine to the night, which starts at 8 p.m. and costs a mere $5 to help keep our brave players on the road. Folks, live music is back and hot tonight.

Collin Yeo (he/him) thinks it's funny when people compare American presidents to Roman emperors because most of those guys sucked, too. He lives in Arcata.

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Collin Yeo

Collin Yeo

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