Mardi Gras at the Miners Foundry in Nevada City to feature Mumbo Gumbo | TheUnion.com

Mardi Gras at the Miners Foundry in Nevada City to feature Mumbo Gumbo

Submitted to The Union

Pop a king cake in the oven and break out those colorful masks, costumes and beads — it's Mardi Gras!

Nevada City kicks off Mardi Gras with the annual Masquerade Ball, a lively dance party featuring live music from seven-piece spicy Americana group Mumbo Gumbo plus special guests Western Swing Hall of Fame inductee, Bob Woods Trio, Saturday at the Miners Foundry Cultural Center.

"Mardi Gras is a world-wide party, linking New Orleans' celebration with Brazil's Carnival," explains Mumbo Gumbo's founder Billy Fairfield. "It is a festive way to celebrate the new year, and hope that the joy of Mardi Gras — bringing people together — is symbolic of the year ahead."

For over 25 years, Mumbo Gumbo has been one of Northern California's top groups, bringing genre-bending Americana music to their many fans. Fronted by two first-rate singer/songwriters, Chris Webster and Tracy Walton, the band is anchored and driven by one of the region's longest-lived rhythm sections: drummer Rick Lotter and bassist Lynn Michael Palmer.

With Reggy Marks' sax, Jon Wood's guitar, and Steve Stizzo's keyboards fleshing out the band's expansive sound, Gumbo has built a reputation not just for danceability, but for creative depth.

It starts with the songs. Moving back and forth between Webster's sly, sometimes melancholy explorations of romance and individuality and Walton's ebullient, unabashed celebrations of family and commitment, Gumbo weaves a rich tapestry of sound and sensibility that transcends genre.

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Coloring the space between the kinetic rhythm section and the intertwined singers are three veteran musicians: Marks, whose saxophone, flute, percussion and soulful harmonies add a third voice to the sound; Stizzo, whose exquisite work on organ, piano and accordion add character as well as color; and Wood, whose guitar playing weaves in and out, shading the rhythms and occasionally lending a sharp, melodic solo.

"A Gumbo is a big stew, and Mumbo to us means "mixed", so we throw multiple genres in the big pot," said Fair on how the band blends elements of soul, zydeco, folk, blues, rock, cajun, Carribean, and country, into their uniquely festive roots music sound. "Many songs go through groove adaptations to remain fresh, and fun. Inspired grooves can be stretched out, each show has it's own unique energy."

Opening the evening is the Bob Woods Trio, a local favorite known for his guitar driven Americana honed in beer joints and honky tonks across the West. Woods has shared the stage with the Surfaris, Tiny Moore, Bill Kirchen, Albert Lee, Ramblin' Jack Elliot, Billy Joe Shaver, and many others.

Over the last 40 year's he has released seven original albums: Hillbilly Cadillac, The Night We Stole the Last Steam Engine, Don't Forget the Trains, Almost Live, Railroad Money, This Town and Swampbilly.

The evening will feature a no host full bar and Cajun food available for purchase.

Source: Miners Foundry

KNOW & GO

Who: Miners Foundry Cultural Center present Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball featuring the live music from Mumbo Gumbo and Bob Woods Trio

When: Saturday, doors open at 7p.m., show starts at 8 p.m.

Where: Miners Foundry Cultural Center, 325 Spring Street, Nevada City

Tickets: $25/Adv, $30/Door, this is a standing/dancing show with limited seating available. Tickets are available online at http://www.minersfoundry.org, by phone 530-265-5040 or in person at the Miners Foundry, or at the door.

Info: http://www.minersfoundry.org

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