A "Lost Boys" movie poster
Wallace Baine

Weekender: Meet up with the Lost Boys, a math-music mashup & George Winston’s local connection

Hi friends,

If you’ve ever ridden the Logger’s Revenge ride at the Boardwalk, you might understand a bit about how I feel about the summer. We’re right at the top of the flume, ready for the plunge with the upcoming solstice. Hold on, it’s going to be a great ride.

Now, on with the show.

This Just In!

One of the jazz world’s greatest living guitarists, the incomparable Pat Metheny has been booked to perform live at the Rio on Nov. 2 in a show presented by Kuumbwa Jazz. And be sure to check out Lookout’s carefully curated and constantly updated planning guide, Down the Line, for the staggering riches and amazing choices awaiting Santa Cruz audiences. It’s our look ahead at the best shows, concerts and events through the rest of the year at clubs, stages and venues all over the county.

The logo for Baine's Nine

B9: What’s what in the week ahead

Here they are, nine necessary know-abouts for the week ahead. It’s the B9:

  1. It’s a solstice-themed art and wine (and music and food) festival called (fingers crossed) Here Comes the Sun, at Hallcrest Vineyards in Felton.
  2. Juneteenth is finally a recognized American holiday, but it’s been a tradition in Santa Cruz for many years. Celebrate the day at Laurel Park downtown Saturday.
  3. Say what you will about Texas, but the Lone Star State knows how to export great country singers, especially those named Radney.
  4. The quintessential Santa Cruz experience is watching the quintessential Santa Cruz movie in the quintessential Santa Cruz setting. “The Lost Boys,” on the beach at the Boardwalk, for free. Every local should do this at least once.
  5. So, uh, The Catalyst is doing this thing … it’s a rave. And it’s themed on Shrek … you know, the green ogre? Don’t question it, just jump in.
  6. Two accomplished veteran singer-songwriters, Marc Cohn and Shawn Colvin, combine forces in one show at the Rio.
  7. Moran Lake Beach on the Eastside is the site for an intriguing event every Tuesday this summer, featuring the soul-soothing music of crystal bowls.
  8. The adventurous jazz singer Jose James waves the flag for the work of the great Erykah Badu with a tribute show Sunday at Kuumbwa.
  9. If you like sweet and sultry, it’s time to discover the vintage vibe of jazz singer and social-media sensation Emmaline, visiting Kuumbwa on Friday.

Math, music and the Mutantrumpet: Indexical hosts a dance of disciplines

It’s a different sort of equation Friday as mathematician and former UC Santa Cruz professor Ralph Abraham joins forces with horn player Ben Neill at Indexical. Read more here.

Remembering George Winston

George Winston, who died June 4, is best known for his piano oeuvre, but Dancing Cat Records, his Santa Cruz-based recording label, helped keep Hawaiian slack-key guitar alive and gave many of its practitioners a boost. Read more here.

The Squid’s new power

Beginning June 21, Santa Cruz’s KSQD 90.7 FM will be beaming into radios as far away as Carmel and perhaps tripling its audience after a successful fundraising campaign enabled the station to buy additional licenses. Read more here.

A Catamaran summer

I myself will be among the writers, poets and artists on hand Tuesday at Bookshop Santa Cruz for the launch of the Summer 2023 edition of the Catamaran Literary Reader. Read more here.

Weekender ad The Catalyst Club 6/15
(The Catalyst Club)

Lookout Trivia is back!

And another reminder that our monthly Trivia Night is set to return Tuesday, June 27, at Abbott Square in downtown Santa Cruz. As the host of the event, which we did last summer from June to October, I had a blast running through trivia on everything from science to movies to politics to all things Santa Cruz County.

We’re going to do it the last Tuesday of each month, probably up to Halloween, and now that we’ve worked out those first-year kinks, it’s going to be a great ride.

Put it on your calendar, 6:30 p.m. on June 27. And, yep, it’s free.

Earworm of the Week

Yes, Father’s Day is upon us again. And it would be all too easy for us to devote this segment to a classic from the “dad rock” genre, or maybe a reassessment of “Cats in the Cradle.” But I’m going to take a different tack. I’m going to throw a little attention to the performer known as Father John Misty — and no, I couldn’t tell you if he’s actually the father of anyone. Misty has been around the recording scene for about a decade, and as Josh Tillman, his birth name, even a decade before that. If I’ve learned anything as a music fan over the past 20 years or so, it’s that the days of the middle-aged straight white male point of view as the default perspective in pop music are long gone. FJM is a throwback to that very unfashionable style. If he’d been born 30 years or so earlier, he might have had the career that, say, Jackson Browne had. But today, he’s a niche artist, one of the last voices of the white male “who takes himself so goddamn seriously.” That line — give him credit for self-awareness, at least — is from Misty’s epic, a 13-minute chorus-less musical monologue called “Leaving L.A.” For folks tired of white men contemplating their navels, this one might send you fleeing the room. But, maybe because I’m the right demographic, I am flat-out transported by the stately, almost apocalyptic grandeur of this piece. It’s theatrical, it’s despairing, it’s haunting, and it took him three years to write. It’s probably best heard at 3 a.m. It won’t light up the dance floor, but I’ll probably listen to it for the umpteenth time on Father’s Day.

All the Earworms in one place

For those who’ve been following my Earworm of the Week, I’ve assembled a playlist that contains them all.

Santa Cruz County Trivia

Name the Santa Cruz County media figure who publicly advocated for the election of Donald Trump as president five years before Trump was elected.

A mural in memory of Ritchie Valens at alma mater Pacoima Middle School
A Ritchie Valens mural at his alma mater Pacoima Middle School, in the San Fernando Valley.

Last week’s answer: What famous rock ’n’ roll pioneer has family ties to Watsonville? It’s the great Ritchie Valens, who was a huge star in the 1950s with such hits as “Donna” and, most famously, “La Bamba.” Valens was one of three stars — along with Buddy Holly and the Big Bopper — who died in a plane crash in 1959, known as “The Day the Music Died.” Stunningly, Ritchie was only 17 when he died. Valens (born Richard Valenzuela) was actually born and raised in Pacoima, in the San Fernando Valley near Los Angeles. But after his death, his mother and siblings relocated to Watsonville, where they lived for many decades. The movie biopic of Ritchie’s life, also called “La Bamba,” was directed by San Juan Bautista-based director Luis Valdez, and the Valenzuela family was involved in the making of the film. Ritchie’s older brother Bob was a central character in the film, and the real-life Bob lived as a well-known figure in Watsonville for years, until his death in 2018.


That’s all I got, friends. Come at me with comments, ideas, complaints, or thundering insights. Thanks to all Lookout members for your faith and support, and please, spread the word on what we’re doing.