A haunting good time | TheUnion.com

A haunting good time

Zepparella, an all-female band from San Francisco, explores the framework of Led Zeppelin's music and add their own improvised magic to their songs.
Submitted photo to Prospector |


WHO: Fright Night with Zepparella, Achilles Wheel and Novelists

WHEN: Doors open at 7 p.m., and the show starts at 8 p.m. Saturday

WHERE: Miners Foundry Cultural Center, 325 Spring Street, Nevada City.

TICKETS: $25 in advance, $30 at the door and available online at ‪www.minersfoundry.org, by phone at 530-265-5040, or in person at Miners Foundry or Briar Patch Co-Op.

INFO: 530-265-5040 or ‪www.minersfoundry.org

Miners Foundry Cultural Center presents Fright Night, Nevada County’s largest Halloween bash, Saturday. The legendary Halloween party now in its thirty-ninth year, promises another infamous evening of brilliant costumes and decorations, an epic dance party, and good ole’ fun rock ‘n’ roll music.

This year’s Fright Night features live music from Zepparella, an all-female powerhouse from San Francisco, who explores their own improvised magic within the framework of Led Zeppelin’s mighty songs.

In nine years as a band, Zepparella has released two live albums and toured throughout the United States opening for the likes of Weezer, Kiss, and Y&T.

Zepparella are known internationally for their playing and have graced numerous festival stages, private parties, theatres, and down and dirty rock venues.

The ladies of Zepparella

Drummer Clementine is the founding member of Zepparella. From the beginning of her musical career, her goal has been to be onstage every night.

The pursuit of that goal has led Clementine to constantly tour the US and Europe in projects as diverse as Bottom, AC/DShe, The House Of More, The Solid, Francis Bakin, and Stars Turn Me On.

She tackles the best rock drumming ever written with her own emotionally powerful style, bringing the Motown influence of the Bonham groove to the forefront.

The profound musical connection established with Gretchen Menn, Angeline Saris, and Noelle Doughty, creates the bond required to do this great music justice.

It was under the tutelage of classical guitarist Phillip DeFremery, a student of Andrés Segovia, that guitarist Menn began her path on the instrument.

Playing with tireless passion and constantly seeking out new challenges, her projects are often unconventional, genre-bending expressions combining elements of classical, rock, progressive, jazz, and metal.

On influences, Menn has never tired of her initial inspirations — Eric Johnson, Steve Morse, Frank Zappa, and Jeff Beck. But she has loved Jimmy Page’s guitar playing longer than she has played the guitar.

It was through the music of Led Zeppelin that she found a gateway into music that resonated deeply with her, creating a love for guitar-oriented music, and, ultimately, the guitar.

Bassist Saris has musical passions that span jazz to speed metal, R&B to rock, Cuban to hip-hop, and flamenco to rockabilly. She has done it all — and does it extremely well.

It is this versatility, her rock-solid time, tastefully crafted bass lines, and unequivocal skills that give her the ability to bring cohesion to the eclectic Zeppelin catalog. Saris credits John Paul Jones as a main influence, so it is no surprise that she shines as she interprets his thunder.

Finally, former Zepparella singer Anna Kristina will be stepping in for lead singer Noelle Doughty.

Kristina is a velvety vocal powerhouse who is like Joss Stone meets Ann Wilson meets Eva Cassidy. She is soulful, fiery and rocking yet uniquely warm and genuine.

Her original style came from an organic combination of her natural soulful sound, her wide range of musical influences, and her ability to sing anything from swingin’ jazz and R&B, to ballads and bluesy soul, to gritty rock.

To top it off, Kristina is a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter whose pants-clad slinky strutting stage presence captivates and commands audiences worldwide.

Achilles Wheel and The Novelists

Roots rock band Achilles Wheel returns to Fright Night this year hot off opening gigs with Phil Lesh and Friends, and performances at High Sierra Music Festival and the Four Peaks Music Festival.

The Achilles Wheel sound comes across as both old school and new school and is riddled with great songwriting.

The band features Jonny Mojo Flores on lead guitar and vocals, Paul Kamm on guitar and vocals, Shelby Snow on bass and vocals, Ben Jacobs (Poor Man’s Whiskey, Grateful Bluegrass Boys, Rusty Stringfield) on keyboards, Mark McCartney on drums and vocals and Gary Campus on drums and percussion.

Opening the show are The Novelists. Equally comfortable acoustic or electric, The Novelists showcase cliffhanger storytelling, multiple lead singers, and their signature four-part harmonies.

The Novelists have become a mainstay on the West Coast festival, college and house concert circuits and are planning several national tours throughout 2017. They’ve shared the stage with Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, John Prine, and Daryl Stuermer (Genesis).

Full of treats

Some of the many highlights of Fright Night include a spectacular light show by Mark Jacoby, old monster movies projected in the foyer, plus the entire Foundry, with its beautiful stone halls and high wood beam ceilings, festively decorated. Food will also be available for purchase.

This local tradition dates back to 1978 when Bobby Angel coined the name and produced the first five Fright Night’s at the American Victorian Museum as a fundraiser for community radio station KVMR.

The first Fright Night was $2 with costume; simulcast live on KVMR and featured Mighty Dread, Harry Harpoon and the House Wreckers, plus a special appearance by the Phantom of the Opera.

Thirty-nine years later, Fright Night has gone through many producers including artists and visionaries David Osborn and Charles Woods, KVMR, and Foothill Theatre Company, and it is now considered one of the Miners Foundry’s largest annual fundraisers.

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