Monster Jam Fest, hope for all-ages shows and Oxnard Music Walk
By Michel Miller 09/27/2012
Aaron Orbit is going to Toronto, Canada, to perform during Indie Week in mid-October. He will kick off his travels to foreign lands (and celebrate his birthday) with a show at Bombay Bar and Grill on Friday, Sept. 28, with Carlism, Space Panther, LEAGUES and Dante’s Elephant. Jeff Hershey and the Heartbeats are currently touring Europe with dates in Germany, Spain, Italy, France and the Netherlands. Hershey said he’s excited to finally meet some Euro fans face to face.
Affirm Records in Santa Paula is celebrating a handful of summer releases, including a duet by the Charles Law Band featuring Delaney Gibson on the song “Crazy Girl” and a cowboy poetry hymn by Andrea Kidd that we can’t wait to hear. Army of Freshmen has finished its record Happy to Be Alive ,which frontman Chris Jay says is the band’s best and “most rockin’” record to date. The band also shot a video in the historic Gardner Building earlier this month for the song “Ava.” The single and video will be released Oct. 16; the full record is due Nov. 13. The Shoddy Cons are finally in the studio after years of consistent local gigging. Frontman Graco Hernandez said the music is done and the band is finishing up vocals. They hope to be finished in late October. Punkers Stop Breathing just released a video for the song “What I Want” from their debut album, which is getting a nice push from No Idea records.
Save for Rock City Studios in Camarillo, Zoey’s on occasion, and random hardcore shows in secret locations, Ventura County’s music scene has been notoriously lacking in venues for underage audiences, but there may be a tiny light at the end of the tunnel. In tandem with the debut of its tasty new burger bar, Bombay Bar and Grill has been booking a few early shows, allowing the younger-than-21 crowd to see some of the region’s more popular musical acts and grab a bite to eat. Movie Town in midtown Ventura is putting the final touches on a stage in its back room as owner Josh Berman prepares to host all-ages shows there. Stay tuned.
Local hard rockers Angie’s Curse need 500 people to contribute just $5 to a Kickstarter campaign so the band can finally get a record made. At press time, they were approaching 20 percent of their goal. The deadline is Thursday, Oct. 6. Can ya help a goth out? Go to Kickstarter and search Angie’s Curse. With less than a week left to raise $15,000 toward recording costs, young singer-songwriter Britney Christian could use a wee miracle. If she doesn’t make it, maybe she should consider auditioning for The Voice — she has the pipes to wow. Speaking of The Voice, Lee Koch, whom we still consider a local, campaigned hard for help funding his record and managed to surpass his $24,000 goal. Congrats Lee!
Producer, vocalist and entrepreneur Jace Martin is planning the first Oxnard Music Walk on Saturday, Oct. 13, 6 p.m. The event, which will begin a series, is based loosely on New Orleans-style street ambience and will feature a variety of acts performing R&B, funk and hip-hop, including Caliente, Cosolive, LG and Unwritten and Riley Real. Martin, who owned the Cajun Country Café in Oxnard some years ago, would like to incorporate busking, spoken word and zydeco into the event in hopes of celebrating the city’s cultural richness and diversity. “You can go down Bourbon Street, and see 20 bands in a two- block radius,” he said, explaining his inspiration. For more information, visit www.downtownoxnard.org. There’s yet another new kid in town and he has some Monster plans. Ezio Van Horst, a 37-year-old entrepreneur from Simi Valley, is putting on the first Monster Jam Fest at the Ventura County Fairgrounds Oct. 26-28. The all-ages, family-friendly Halloween celebration will feature a 2,000-square-foot haunted house comparable to the Seaside Haunt of years past (no affiliation), carnival rides, pumpkin patch and a battle of the bands culminating with a metal concert on the third day featuring P.O.D., Static-X, Exodus, Prong, Cherri Bomb and headliner Hell Yeah featuring members of Mudvayne and Pantera. The winner of the battle of the bands will be put on the Sunday bill. Though news of the event has spread a little via word of mouth in Ventura, Van Horst told VCReporter that 700 tickets have already sold. Admission will be $7 on Friday and Saturday and $65 for the Sunday concert with unlimited rides. For more information and to register for the battle, visit www.monsterjamfest.com.
NoteWorthy is a monthly column dedicated to developments in Ventura County’s music scene. If you have a tip, write to Michel or give her a call.