Paul Emery takes the stage to wrap up NC Live |

Paul Emery takes the stage to wrap up NC Live

Saturday, The Foothill Flyers and Earles of Newtown will collaborate for an evening of jazz, swing and country to close out this year’s Nevada City Live concert series presented by Paul Emery at the Nevada Theatre. This special one-night only performance reunites Emery, a well-known local concert promoter and musician, with his former band mates — Ray Mann, Bob Woods, John Girton and Tom Schmidt — from such seminal local groups as Backwoods Jazz and Carmichael Traveling Street Band. The show will also be broadcast live on KVMR 89.5 FM.

Now in its second year, the Nevada City Live concert series celebrates and showcases the local performing arts community with professionally produced shows at one of Nevada County’s most iconic venues. Over the last six weeks, the series has successfully organized 14 performances with an array of award-winning and up-and-coming local and regional musicians, actors, dancers, poets and storytellers.

Joining The Foothill Flyers on stage will be the Earles of Newtown. The Earles of Newtown swing and sway through a time machine of American dance music ranging through Dixieland jazz, classic ragtime, country swing, wailing blues and genre-defying originals. The eight-piece ensemble features two vocalists, three lead instrumentalists and a backup/rhythm section that generates a gotta-dance vibe.

“Earles of Newtown remind me of all of my old bands,” said Emery. “Musically, they are better, but we were crazier.”

Emery first performed at the Nevada Theatre in 1972 with the Carmichael Traveling Street Band and immediately fell in love with the building and its stage, acoustics, and vibe. From 1976 to 1980, Emery and Mann performed every bar from Nevada City to Portland, Ore. Their spontaneous and theatrical antics along with their inclination for swing and ragtime å la Louis Jordan and the Jim Kweskin Jug Band made them a notorious act to see. It didn’t hurt either that Mann was also one of the few humans that could (and still can) play drums, bass and sing all at the same time.

Similar to The Foothill Flyers, the Earles rely on ‘20s and ‘30s swing music as their base sound. Musical director J. Earle Ford leads the Earles with a deceptively laid-back, jazzy vocal style and a hot trumpet. Just to keep things interesting, he also mixes it up with an alto horn, trombone and the occasional kazoo. Front man Chad Conner Crow shares vocals with Ford. He keeps the energy up on washboard and showmanship reminiscent of musical legends like Cab Calloway. Jim Trefethen jazzes it up with flashy solos on soprano and alto saxophone. Bob Woods brings it on with a blazing country rock guitar.

The backup/rhythm section provides a wall of sound with Joe Fajen on trombone, “Texas” Dave Wilcox on tenor banjo and guitar, Doug Bianchi on stand-up bass, and Karl Chelette on drums.

“This show brings the two eras of music together,” explains Emery. “It’s also a fun way to end the series.”

Tickets to the 8 p.m. Saturday show are $20 and available online at, or in person at BriarPatch Co-op or Yabobo.

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