Tommy Castro

Tommy CastroNight after night, Tommy Castro, a fierce and fiery road warrior, fervently delivers his driving, blues-soaked, soul-baring music to fans all over the world. The road is where he honed his guitar playing to a razor’s edge, and it’s where he learned how to captivate an audience with his intensely passionate vocals and his memorable songs, licks, and grooves. It’s where he learned to turn his band into a dynamic, high-performance engine, able to bring down the house with a soulful ballad and then bring fans to their feet with a blistering blues rocker. Over the course of his four-decade career, Castro has played thousands of shows to hundreds of thousands of fans and has always left them screaming for more. Castro is a six-time Blues Music Award winner, including taking home the coveted BB King Entertainer of the Year award twice.

Tommy Castro & The Painkillers (the band currently features bass player Randy McDonald, keyboardist Michael Emerson and drummer Bowen Brown) will be making a visit to Portland for a performance at the Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta Street, on Friday, February 24 for an 8:00 pm show.  Tickets can be purchased in advance at for $20.00 or at the door day of show for $25.00. This event is open to minors under 21 when accompanied by a parent or guardian.


california-honeydrops-photo-by-keith-bersonThe California Honeydrops don’t just play music — they throw parties. Led by dynamic vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Lech Wierzynski and drawing on diverse musical influences from Bay Area R&B, funk, Southern soul, Delta blues, and New Orleans second-line, the Honeydrops bring a vibrant energy and infectious dance-party vibe to their shows. They’ve taken the party all over the world, playing festivals of all kinds and touring widely across North America, Europe and Australia. In 2016 the Honeydrops were honored to support Bonnie Raitt on her North America release tour — and in the past have been privileged to support the likes of B.B. King, Allen Toussaint, Buddy Guy, and Dr. John. Whether in those high-profile performances or in more intimate venues where the band itself can leave the stage and get down on the dance floor, the California Honeydrops’ shared vision and purpose remain: to make the audience dance and sing.

The band will returning to Portland for a two-night stand, Friday, December 2 and Saturday, December 3, at The Star Theater, 13 NW 6th Avenue for 9:00 pm shows with opening act Steep Ravine. Tickets are available in advance through for $20.00. This is a 21 & over only event.

sista-otis-photo-by-cm-bjornbergFollowing up on her October tour that saw New Orleans-based Sista Otis making stops in Southern and Central Oregon, the talented songwriting guitarist will be making a return whirlwind three-night, five-show run through Portland, Corvalis, and Hood River.

Renowned for her bluesy soul performances, Sista Otis cut her musical teeth as a traveling, street-kid performer, writing and singing her songs for pocket change, to later become a national touring and international recording artist. Originally from Detroit,  her 2004 breakout recording, Worldwide Release, generated high acclaim and airplay in twelve countries around the world. It received praise from publications such as Rolling Stone and The Advocate who called her one of the top ten indie artists to see live in the United States. The Detroit News described her as having “enough power to fuel a fire and enough soul to make James Brown proud.”

She will be performing at the following locations:

Thursday, Nov 3 – Bombs Away Café, 2527 NW Monroe Avenue in Corvalis at 8:00 pm.

Friday, Nov 4 – Duff’s Garage, 2530 NE 82nd in Portland at 6:00 pm.

Friday, Nov 4 – River City Saloon, 207 Cascade Avenue in Hood River at 10:00 pm.

Saturday,Nov 5 – The O’Neill Public House (formerly Biddy McGraw’s), NE 60th & Glisan in Portland at 6:00 pm.

Nov 5 – Trillium Café, 207 Oak Street in Hood River at 10:00 pm.

Contact the venues for further information.

Anders Osborne

Anders OsborneWhile growing up in Sweden, Anders Osborne discovered enough of a connection to American blues that he decided to move to the United States and settle in New Orleans where he’s since become a mainstay on the city’s immense musical scene. Between the potency of his richly detailed songwriting, his intensely emotional, soulful vocals, and his piercing, expert guitar work, Osborne is a true musical treasure. He is among the most original and visionary musicians writing and performing today and has been heralded by Offbeat magazine with being named the city’s best guitarist three times and best songwriter twice. Guitar Player magazine has named him “Poet Laureate of Louisiana’s fertile roots music scene.” With a handful of recordings on the Alligator label (his latest titled Spacedust & Ocean Views), appearances on the television show Treme, and performing with the likes of other well-known Louisiana artists as Keb’ Mo’, Tab Benoit, Johnny Sansone, and Mike Zito.

Anders Osborne will be performing at The Aladdin Theater, 3017 SE Milwaukie Avenue, on Thursday, November 17,  in a double bill with singer-songwriter James McMurtry.  Show time is 8:00 pm and it is open to all ages, with minors being accompanied by a parent or guardian. Tickets are $29.50 in advance through, or $32.00 day of show at the venue.

john-mayall-photo-by-arnie-goodmanThere are few performers today who can be labeled truthfully as legendary, but when attached to John Mayall the title is indeed fitting. A keystone in the development of the early ‘60s British blues scene that immigrated across the Atlantic and around the world, he is still at the top of his game more than fifty years later. A multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, and vocalist, Mayall, along with his band The Bluesbreakers, has introduced the world to many premier rock and blues musicians who have gone on to solo success, such as Bluesbreakers alumni Eric Clapton, Mick Taylor, and Jack Bruce. Tirelessly touring and releasing stellar recordings, Mayall was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2016.

John Mayall always draws attention whenever he performs in Portland. He will be returning to the Aladdin Theater on Monday, November 7 for what is certain to be another outstanding show. Tickets are $30.00 and are available in advance through Minors are welcome with a parent or guardian. The Aladdin Theater is located at 3017 SE Milwaukie Ave. Show time is 8:00 with an opening set by Portland bluesman Joe McMurrian.

thad-beckman-and-mary-flower-press-photoMary Flower and Thad Beckman are two diverse yet overlapping talents, and they’ll team up for a double bill at The Lake Theater & Cafe, 106 N State St in Lake Oswego, on November 7. Each will perform individual sets and then will close the night playing together for a few songs that will surely create some magic in the theater.

Multiple Blues Music Award nominee, guitarist, singer, and songwriter Mary Flower is that rare breed of American roots artist. With a devotion to the art form that is both lovingly and historically accurate while steeped in a creativity that lends it vitality and energy, Flower’s music continues to evolve and flourish in an age of increasingly digitized and compressed music.

Thad Beckman, with seven solo recordings under his belt, has performed on Late Night with David Letterman and Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble, and at The Kerrville Folk Festival, The Waterfront Blues Festival and countless other festivals, theaters, and clubs across The USA, Canada, and Europe.  John T. Davis of The Austin American Statesman describes Beckman as  “a voice that rasps like shoe leather on roadside gravel, and a finger-picked guitar on which notes fly by like railroad ties under a fast moving freight.” And Tom Russell simply calls him “one of America’s best guitar players and a damn good songwriter.“

This incredible twin-billed show will begin at 7:00 pm, with tickets available for $15.00 at



Four local singers known for their work in the blues, soul, and more will combine for an intimate night offering the music of Bette Midler. Rae Gordon, Julie Amici, LaRhonda Steele and Melissa Buchanan, plus a band of talented musicians, will bring Midler’s material to life at the unique setting of a quaint movie theater on the shores of beautiful Lake Oswego.

Award winning and multi-talented Bette Midler has won over countless hearts for years as both a singer and as an actress. A force to be reckoned, she is one of the hardest working woman in show business, who started in humble beginnings as a nightclub act in piano bars alongside Barry Manilow in the 60s and continues to delight audiences and inspire other singers to this day. Midler’s music includes some of the best known tunes that are included in the songtrack to many people’s lives.

Rae Gordon has long sought out Midler as an inspiration to her own musical journey, following in some of Miss M’s footsteps by starting in piano bars and also opening up for comedians. The ability for Midler to move from one song to another with humor, grace, and drama made this singer admire her connection to the audience and aspire to do the same. She is joined by her friends Julie Amici, LaRhonda Steele, and Melissa Buchanan, with Dean Mueller on bass, Ed Pierce on drums providing the rhythm for The Band of “Friends” that you’ll just have to attend to see who they are.

The Lake Theater & Café is located at 106 N State Street in downtown Lake Oswego. Tickets are available for $15.00 online at Show time is 7:00 pm.

Now in its fifteenth year, the Musician’s Toy Run Benefit, hosted by Francine West, will once again hold a day-long show aimed at bringing holiday joy to children. The event returns to the Trails End Saloon, 1320 Main Street, Oregon City, on Saturday, November 5 from 3:00 until midnight. Admission is only $5.00 or the donation of new unwrapped toys. Last year brought in $4,420.29 and five boxes of toys for the ABATE/Shriners Toy Run and they’re hoping to bring in more this year.

Francine West and her band The High Speed Wobblers will host a day filled with some of the very best musicians on the West Coast. Lloyd Jones, Jim Mesi, Norman Sylvester, Dover Weinberg, The Remedy Band, Hang Um High, and the Rose City Ramblers will all be hand to help with the cause. Also Bay Area boogie pianist and International Blues Challenge finalist Wendy DeWitt along with her partner Kirk Harwood will travel up to Oregon City to join in the fun. This is a remarkable line-up for a not-to-be-missed show that helps support a very good cause indeed!

December is right around the corner and the holidays will soon be upon us. Though they’re still a couple of months away, we wanted to mention a couple of special events coming up this December. Both of these are sure to sell out, so don’t hesitate, get a step ahead, and make your plans now by purchasing tickets.

For the 18th year, Sonny Hess will be hosting two nights of the NW Women Rhythm & Blues Christmas Concerts benefiting The Candlelighters, an organization aimed at aiding children with cancer. As a cancer survivor, this is an event that means a lot to Sonny and she is bringing in many of her closest friends once again to help with the very worthy cause.

The first show will be held on Thursday, December 8, starting at 7:00 pm, at The Trails End Saloon, 1320 Main Street in Oregon City.  The second show will be held on Sunday, December 11, at 6:00 pm at Carvlin Hall, SE 16th & Division. Appearing at these amazing shows along with Sonny will be LaRhonda Steele, Rae Gordon, Lisa Mann, Ellen Whyte, Kimberly Hall, Arietta Ward, Vicki Stevens, Lady Kat, and Kelly Pierce. Tickets are $22.00 – $39.50 and can be purchased online at

The second event to make note of will take place on Saturday, December 17 at Jimmy Mak’s, 221 NW 10th. Lloyd Jones will be presenting a special holiday show with two performances in one night, at 7:30 pm and again at 10:00 pm. The show titled Singing with Santa’s Sweet Angels will find Lloyd joined by local vocalists Lisa Mann and LaRhonda Steel, plus keyboardist-vocalist Teresa James coming up from Los Angeles. They’ll be backed by a powerhouse band including organist Louis Pain and drummer Brian Foxworth. Tickets for the Cascade Blues Association co-sponsored event are available through for $12.00. Use the code CBA for a $1.00 discount.

john-pounds-press-photoSalem-based bassist John Pounds has long been a favorite of the Oregon music scene, so when he suffered a stroke last March, many of his friends and fans wanted to help him out as much as they could and put together a number of benefit shows down around the Salem area. Well, here’s another chance to help John, show him your love, and experience a great full day of music provided by many of his good friends. For The Love Of John: A Benefit For John Pounds will take place at Bradford’s Sports Lounge, 10346 NE Halsey Street in Portland on Sunday, October 2. Schedule to start at 2:00 pm and running until 11:00 pm, the line-up will include Sonny Hess, Lisa Mann, Wes Tjerlund, Larry London, Jarred Venti, Garry Meziere, Jason “JT” Thomas, Phil “Suburban Slim” Wagner, Robbie Laws, Doug Rowell, Ed Neumann, and many, many more

Jeremy Moldavan-trujillo has also offered a bass guitar to be raffled off to help bring a little extra in for John. Come out and support John in his recovery and say hello to him as well as he is planning to attend the show.

If you’re unable to attend the event, you can still donate to help John with his recovery by going to Every amount helps — please show John your love.