What Bands are Playing Saturday at the Novato Festival?

Here is the full lineup and schedule.

Much of the buzz around the Novato Festival of Art, Wine & Music has been about the appearance of Chuck Prophet. For most of his life, San Francisco has been the musician’s muse.

"It can suck you under,” said Prophet, scheduled to play the main stage at the corner of Redwood Boulevard and Grant Avenue at 4 p.m. Saturday. “That first hit, it really does a whammy to you. And if you're like me you can find yourself chasing the San Francisco dragon for the rest of your life.”

His popular record Temple Beautiful is about his love affair with San Francisco and captures the city in all of its various forms.

According to Prophet, Temple Beautiful is the name of a long-closed rock and roll club located between Bill Graham's iconic Fillmore Ballroom and the tragic storefront church founded by the Rev. Jim Jones. “It's where I saw my first gigs,” he said.

Inspired by current San Francisco artists, Prophet paid tribute to the history and weirdness that brought him to the city 30 years ago. Prophet also released two albums Soap & Water and ¡Let Freedom Ring! His music has been heard on many hit television series including: True Blood (HBO), Californication (Showtime) and Sons of Anarchy (FX).

Check out Prophet on the Main Stage from 4 to 5:15 p.m. Saturday. 

Here is the rest of Saturday's festival music lineup.

Main Stage Acts

Novato Songbirds (10 a.m. to 11:50 p.m.) The Novato Songbirds include Lilian Kane, Natalie Smith, Keeley Valentino and Liv Gibson.

Chris Towzey (12:10 to 1 p.m.) Singer songwriter Chris Towzey is a musician who actually went to school to make music his profession. He first took up orchestral instruments, guitar and voice while living in Italy while his father was stationed there in the service. When the young man returned to California, he studied arranging under Walt Oster at Sonoma State University. He developed an interest in recording and production and built an analog-based commercial recording studio tying it into an innovative class he taught in recording engineering. His debut release Rockin at the Stoplight was released in 2007 with an EP entitled Same Dirt following in 2009.

Victoria George (1:20 to 2:15 p.m.) Victoria George returns to the Novato festival, last appearing in 2007. She recently released her third album, Lately I, a collection of songs written from three years in Nashville. Her country-flavored vocals combine the sounds of the Dixie Chicks with the tone of Alison Krauss. George embraces her Bay Area roots and has a loyal following of local fans.

Danny Click (2:35 to 3:40 p.m.) Danny Click's sound is a refreshing return to smart, sassy blues-inflected rock and roll. Think Tom Petty crossed with John Mellencamp, spiced with the southern tradition of Lucinda Williams and John Hiatt. Add to that Click's searing guitar (he’s been called an “unsung guitar hero” by the press, reminiscent of Stevie Ray Vaughan and David Lindley.) Yet Click doesn't just pay tribute to his musical heroes, he offers up his own emotionally compelling vision, one that puts him comfortably in their company. 

Click grew up in a small town outside Indianapolis. One of his earliest memories is of listening to his mother play slide guitar using a butter knife while she held the guitar flat on her lap. Click picked up his older brother's guitar when he was 6 and by the time he was in high school he was gigging. He travelled to Austin, Texas, performing with Danny and the Hurricanes before moving to the Bay Area. 
At one recent appearance Carlos Santana jammed with Danny’s group. Click’s latest release, Life Is A Good Place continues in the tradition of the Texas greats; wide open songs with a dose of hope for all the people who hear them.

Lydia Pense & Cold Blood (5:45-7 p.m.) Bill Graham was so impressed when he heard Pense’s voice and the sound of her band he immediately signed them to his new record label. They recorded six original albums in the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, with their own brand of funk and rock melded with blues and jazz, which used to be known as “East Bay Grease.” The current group of musicians have played together for nearly 20 years with Steve Dunne on guitar; Steve Salinas on keyboards; Rich Armstrong and Rob Zuckerman on horns; Evan Palmerston on bass; and Donny Baldwin on drums. The band is still going strong with their record The River City Sessions reaching new audiences.

Seventh Street Stage Acts

Carl Oser (10:30 to 11:25 a.m.) Carl Oser is a jazz vocalist and educator from Novato. His passion for music was cultivated while attending Sinaloa Middle School and San Marin High School where he was actively involved in the music programs. After graduating, he studied at the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music.  He also lived in Quito, Ecuador where he worked as a visiting professor at the Instituto de Músicsa Contemporánea within la Universidad San Francisco de Quito. Back home in Novato, he teaches private voice and piano lessons and performs. He is joined on stage at the festival by fellow Novatans Mark Davis, Glenn Rivera and Stuart Masslehbrown.

Pocket Change (11:45 to 12:40 a.m.) Pocket Change is a Marin County based high-energy funk and rock six-member party band that plays songs from Steely Dan to Journey. Organized in 1997, the band covers classic rock as well as “old school funk.”

Johnny B and the Speedshifters (1:10 to 2:05 p.m.) These guys just look cool. The ‘50s dance band is well known in Novato, playing regularly at Nostalgia Days, but has also been performing their blend of classic rock ’n’ roll and Motown for more than 35 years. High school classmates in San Francisco, the musicians got together in the 1970s when ‘50’s music was enjoying resurgence through films such as American Graffiti and Grease. They have been entertaining ever since, veterans in the outdoor festival arena, and are well known in the car show cruise circuit. Band members include: John Bacchini, lead vocals; Julio Bandoni, vocals; Jim Lawrie, guitar; Peter Radsliff, guitar; Norm Dutton, saxophone; Dan Lawrie, bass; Victor Flaviani, drums and percussion; Tom Atkins, keyboards; and Tom Stone, drums and percussion.

Amy Wigton (2:30 to 3:30 p.m.) Independent recording artist Amy Wigton of Novato has recorded three albums. The Oberlin, Ohio, native moved to the Bay Area and signed with a local production company and has been performing ever since. Her third album Landing was released when she became pregnant and she began transitioning into the world of children’s music. Her recording Amy Liz Kid Hits was released in January. “I like the creativity of both worlds — it keeps me inspired, balanced and reminds me not to take myself to seriously,” she said. But she continues to appear with her five-piece band in the evenings and is awaiting the release of her new single “There’s A Ghost” on the subject of bullying.

The Muddy Roses (4 to 5 p.m.) From classic country to gritty folk and electric blues, The Muddy Roses is a trio of female vocalists performing a melody of original songs as well as some Americana heirlooms. Their sound is reminiscent of Loretta Lynn, Wanda Jackson and Memphis Minnie. The band carries on the messages of women through song, many that were expressed long before the women’s lib movement by their predecessors.

Gator Beat (5:30 to 6:45 p.m.) Gator Beat hails from Novato’s neighboring town of Sonoma. The hard-hitting foot-stomping dance band has a Cajun/Zydeco and New Orleans rhythm n blues sound. Their fans describe them as: “the band with a beat that bites” and have a following all over the West Coast and British Columbia. They have played at the Health and Harmony Festival in Santa Rosa, the California State Fair and New Orleans by the Bay. The band includes: Willard Blackwell, vocals and washboard; David Scott, saxophone, pennywhistle, vocals; Beau Bradbury, drums; Rand Quan, guitar; Linda Hutchinson, bass; and Susie Davis, accordion, keys and vocals.

Jennifer McCoy June 09, 2012 at 04:10 PM
Sounds like a blast!
Brad Curtis June 09, 2012 at 04:46 PM
Don't forget Lucky Dog at Finnegan's tonight!


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