A Nuanced Evening of Music

Thursday evening (Jan 15) we drove through snow flurries to join a small group of weather-hardened music fans at Esther Bricques Winery to hear the local group Nuance play. The members are: Walt Gilbert, bass, vocals – Sam Howell, bass clarinet, vocals – Scott Tegarden, guitar, vocals.

Nuance are Walt Gilbert, Sam Howell, and Scott Tegarden
Nuance are Walt Gilbert, Sam Howell, and Scott Tegarden

We were treated to a broad range of music including fun tunes such as House of the Rising Sun, Georgia, and Green Onions. The guys are definitely not pinned down to any particular musical style and they have been described as playing “Chamber Funk” by Sam’s partner Clare.

Sam’s bass clarinet has a beautiful soft and typically clarinet sound with a low end that could go deeper only if it were a spade. It has the look of an ebony saxophone but with less bulk. This Wikipedia commons photo shows several examples.

Image of Bass Clarinets
Bass Clarinets

Watch your favorite Okanogan Valley Events calendar for upcoming engagements and don’t miss these guys. And be ready to sing along!

New Years Eve Fun

Vicki and Walt opened the big back door to fun and music for New Years Eve. The Wilders played solid favorites and the crowd kept the dance floor filled. At precisely 9:00pm (12:00, New York time) when the ball started dropping in Times Square a circle of friends formed on the dance floor to strains of Auld Lang Syne and a spontaneous chorus joined the Wilders’ band to welcome in 2015. Small town fun at its best.

New Years Eve at Vicki's Back Door
New Years Eve at Vicki’s Back Door

Following the festivities at Vicki’s we crossed the street to watch the North Half band finish out the night. This is one of the most talented groups anywhere and our little valley is fortunate they all call this place home. The North Half are Todd Mathews – vocals and guitar, Mike Danielson – bass and vocals, Jon Gee – keyboard, and Steve Blackler – hidden behind and playing the drums. Visit them on their Facebook page.

North Half at The Plaza
North Half at The Plaza

Ukanogan Music Scene

Ok – really bad pun* but…

Right here in Oroville, folks. An ukulele club formed this past year and after much practice they had a playing at the North Valley Nursing home in Tonasket. Familiar faces are already members and they’re seeking new members. More information can be found at their Facebook page.

The Ookoolele players will be playing at Esther Bricques Winery on December 18. This will be a caroling sing-along and all are encouraged to bring instruments and to play and sing along or just show up. Personally I would love to see everyone show up in an ugly Christmas sweater! How much fun would that be?

The Ookoolele players
The Ookoolele players

Quality instruments are available locally in Omak so you have no excuses! Omak Music not only has instruments, they have their own ukulele club so driving distance shouldn’t be a problem. No more excuses!!

If you would like a very nice custom ukulele made by a local luthier you might give Oroville’s Mark┬áKubiak a visit. His instruments are beautiful to see and play, and he’s begun work on ukuleles.

Click the pic and have a quick read about ukulele history at Wikipedia.

A beautiful Martin Uke
A beautiful Martin Uke

*Historical note: The earliest reference I’ve found to the name Ukanogan is from a 1906 newspaper article printed in a Portland, OR publication. http://oregonnews.uoregon.edu/lccn/sn83045782/1906-05-27/ed-1/seq-1/ocr.txt