Jesse Locks: Fright Night raises rock voices from the grave |

Jesse Locks: Fright Night raises rock voices from the grave

Jesse Locks

Every Halloween the historic Miners Foundry Cultural Center in downtown Nevada City transforms its beautiful halls into Fright Night, a thrilling spook show fit with musicians, comedians, dancers, tarot readers, jugglers, magicians, and other tricks and treats. Since the 1980s, Fright Night has been the stuff legends are made of with tales of fantastic costumes, amazing musical performances, and yes, plenty of good ole’ fashion debauchery.

This year’s Fright Night boasts an all-star lineup that includes the DeadBeats, Northern California’s favorite Grateful Dead cover band, along with the popular rock group Casual Fog backed by members of Them Hills, Golden

Shoulders, Black Bear, Kings & Queens, Pocket for Corduroy and Deathray.

The DeadBeats have been regular headliners of Fright Night. They are regarded as “the best Grateful Dead cover band” by the likes of Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart, for their spot-on version of the Dead’s unique style and vibe. Between the distinctive long musical improvisational jams and tripped out liquid light show, they re-create that special “something” which is at the heart of any Dead concert.

Before the DeadBeats channel the Dead, Casual Fog will summon the great rock voices from the grave. The last couple of years, members of Casual Fog have performed sold-out shows on New Years Eve as an array of different acts including Fleetwood Mac, the Ramones, the Cure and even the Rolling Stones. This Fright Night, Casual Fog will resurrect a handful of rock n’ rollers on stage. Who you ask? Keith Moon? Sid Vicious? Michael Jackson? Joe Strummer? Janis Joplin? Jimi Hendrix? Kurt Cobain? The guys are being tight lipped about it, so we’ll just have to show up and see.

World-renowned magician, the Great Merlini returns from his recent global exploits and a brief encounter with zombies to host a deliciously weird vaudeville show between band sets. The Great Merlini does more than just magic tricks. Each performance combines masterful storytelling with “can’t believe my eyes” fun.

Opening up are local rockers Remley and Placerville bluesman Jonny “Mojo” Flores. A no-host full bar and food will be available.

Lemonade is cool and refreshing, usually sweet and a little bit tart. Jesse Locks is a freelance writer. You can reach her at

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.