Author: Chris Jay

SHOWS OF THE YEAR | Local scenesters share their favorites from 2019

by Chris Jay chris@armyoffreshmen.com From bowling alleys in Ventura to open air festivals in Vienna, from a legendary actor moonlighting as a singer/songwriter to a mask-wearing ska band moonlighting as cartoon superheroes, these are the shows and the artists that made a lasting impression on some of the Ventura County music scene’s finest in 2019. “Collective Soul at the Ventura County Fair. One of my all-time favorite bands. When I heard they were touring, I started making plans to fly out to one of their shows. Then I heard they would be in our own backyard. Ed Roland’s voice...

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SHOWS OF THE YEAR | Local music scenesters share their favorites

It’s turning into a yearly tradition here at the Reporter. Once again, we reached out to various members of the local music scene to ask them for their favorite shows of the year. The picks stretch continents and genres but we’re happy to say quite a few happened right here in our backyard. Now let’s all make a New Year’s resolution to go to more shows in 2019! “Morrissey at The Ventura Theater. He’s made it really hard to like him with some of the s**t he says, but I do love a ton of the songs that he’s...

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A WEEKEND OF BENEFITS | Dual concerts to raise money for Thomas Fire and Borderline shooting victims

This is not my first attempt at writing this. Initially I wrote an overview of benefit concerts and how some of the most legendary music events of all time — such as Live Aid, the Concert For Bangladesh, No Nukes — were all benefits. I explained how the purpose and emotions that go into benefits can create some truly inspired performances and that now, in the face of the recent tragedies, Ventura County will have two benefit concerts this weekend that have the potential to, blah, blah, blah. But you know what? It felt like a fluff piece and...

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PARENTAL ADVISORY | Raising them right with Dad Brains

From the screaming to the sleepless nights to the endless parade of bodily fluids, having a newborn is similar to the experience of touring in a punk rock band. It’s that realization that’s led to one of the more interesting musical projects in recent memory, Dad Brains. It all started, oddly enough, at a time when the brains behind Dad Brains, Pat Pedraza, found out he was going to be a father to a baby girl at the age of 40. The musician and actor, who admittedly thought he would never have kids, was shocked, excited and, like all...

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ON THE RECORD | Licity Collins: One Girl Town

With a unique and engaging voice reminiscent of cult singer/songwriters Jill Sobule and Brenda Kahn, Licity Collins does the standard soul-searching subject matter you’d expect on her debut release. Most songs are of the folky, stripped-down nature, and lyrically Collins doesn’t break any new ground. Having said that, you definitely get the feeling that she’s writing from a sincere and honest place, emotionally speaking, which is more than a lot of songwriters can say these days. And locals should keep an ear out for a sweet Ventura reference on the ballad “Sometimes.” While a little on the light side...

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