Music

Sounds of the Season

The sequel

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Like it or not, the holiday season is happening

Personally speaking, I like it. But then again, everyone already knew that. Per usual, no physical evidence of my seasonal spirit exists anywhere in my life—no stockings have been hung, no presents procured, my tiny artificial tree remains in storage along with the snowboard helmet I’ve never used and some of the Shakedown’s former barstools. I probably won’t even get around to baking the 40 or so dozen Christmas cookies that is my annual tradition until after the holiday has come and gone.

The only thing I have done to prepare for Dec. 25 is to engage in a spirited debate as to whether Die Hard is a Christmas movie (for the record: it most certainly is) and listen to Christmas carols. If you’re the type of person who wants to see the sounds of the season performed right in front of you, before your very eyes, you are in so much luck. Along with the many concerts and performances that can be found in the calendar listings on the next page, here are a few less-traditional holiday entertainment options—in no particular order—before I turn my attention to New Year’s Eve and all its year-end shenanigans.

Sylvia Center for the Arts: Christmas comes with many traditions, and local singer/songwriter Robt Sarazin Blake is the person responsible for my favorite annual occurrence that is unique to Bellingham. Every year, he presents his “Very Subdued Christmas,” which this year will take place Sun., Dec. 22 and Mon., Dec. 23 at the Sylvia Center for the Arts. Blake sings songs and tells stories, all of which he promises have something to do with the holiday. As has become custom, Grace Gouran will be there to help perform Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas in Wales” and will no doubt steal the show right out from under Blake. Also on hand will be special guests Louis Ledford (Dec. 22) and the Best Intentions (Dec. 23). No word on their show-stealing abilities, but no doubt they’ll do their level best. Tickets are still available for the shows, but be warned: “A Very Subdued Christmas” sells out every year. Info: http://www.sylviacenterforthearts.org

Anacortes Music Project: The Anacortes Music Project, always up to something, has seasonal spirit to spare, and they want to spread it around. They’ll do so on Sat., Dec. 14 when they take over the Depot Arts Center for their yearly Rockin’ Yule Bizarre. There, you’ll find an array of crafts for purchase, a bake sale so you can pass off someone else’s delicious homemade baked goods as your own (don’t do that. Santa will know), a pizza truck and a whole day’s worth of bands—Fanny Alger; Ebb, Slack and Flood; Whisky Fever; the Mosstones, and others—all of which will put their singular spins on the songs of the season. Tickets are $10-$12 (folks younger than 15 years old are free) and proceeds will enable the Anacortes Music Project to continue to make Anacortes a more musical place. Info: http://www.anacortesmusicproject.org

Guemes Island General Store: Speaking of Ebb, Slack and Flood (see above), the last time they attempted to play the outdoor stage at the Guemes Island General Store, they were prevented by doing so by Mother Nature. I’m not sure what they did to bring down September’s massive lightning storm upon themselves, but they’ll be back to tempt fate at the Guemes Island General Store’s annual solstice celebration on Sat., Dec. 21. The shop has a big presence on the tiny, ferry-accessed island, and their solstice parties have become can’t-miss affairs. Ebb, Slack and Flood—should this show be more of a success than their last effort—will close out the Guemes Island General Store’s free winter music series for the year, and with the sunset of the 2019 series comes the return of brighter days, which is certainly cause for celebration. Info: http://www.guemesislandgeneralstore.com

Herb’s Cider: If you’ve ever harbored a secret desire to sing Christmas carols with a bona fide rock star (thus becoming a rock star yourself by sheer proximity), you’ll have your chance Sat., Dec. 21 at Herb’s Cider. When he’s not fermenting a delicious array of refreshing ciders, Tim Alexander—aka “Herb”—is the longtime drummer of Primus. Evidently he’s also into holiday sing-alongs, so he’s hosting one at Herb’s Bay Street tasting room. He’s invited his musical friends to help him out, and now all he needs is you to show up to the family-friendly event, slap down five bucks and make a joyful noise with him. As Christmas caroling goes, this is about as cool as it gets. Info: http://www.herbscider.com

Sehome High School: As a longtime Posies fan (I believe I’ve mentioned it a time or 20), I’m into it anytime they come back to the town that spawned them, in whatever form they might exist at that moment. When they perform a Dec. 21 concert at their alma mater, Sehome High School, it’ll be just the founding duo of Jon Auer and Ken Stringfellow, and songs from their forthcoming album will definitely be on the set list, and rumor has it they may break out some holiday tunes as well. Tickets are available via Eventbrite, and $25 gets you in, $100 gets you a ticket to the concert and dinner with the dynamic duo, while for an undisclosed amount of money (and probably several shots of holiday cheer), I’ll perform Frosting on the Beater in its entirety for you, complete with the same hairstyle sported by Jon and Ken in the 1980s. I’m kidding about that. Or am I? Info: http://www.kenstringfellow.com

More Music...
Events
Today
Holiday Pet Food Drive

10:00am|Whatcom County

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Giving Tree

9:00am|Village Books

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am

The Naughty List Market and Cabaret

2:00pm|Broadway Hall

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar

4:00pm|Swim Club

Treasure Island

7:00pm|Sehome High School Theater

Shrek the Musical

7:00pm|Burlington-Edison High School

Crazy for You

7:30pm|Bellingham Theatre Guild

Number the Stars

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

A Christmas Carol

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

Wild Things

9:30am|Connelly Creek Nature Area

Toys for Tots

10:00am

Pacific Arts Market

10:00am| Sunset Square

Holiday Tea

11:00am|Willowbrook Manor

Holiday Craft Bazaar

3:30pm|Lynden Library

Drayton Harbor Shellebration

4:00pm|G Street Plaza

Gingerbread House Making

4:30pm|Ferndale Library

Valley Made Holiday Market

5:00pm|Maplehurst Farm

Christmas on the Docks

5:00pm|Cap Sante Marina

Wonderland Walk

5:00pm|Washington Park

Photos and Stories with James K. Papp

5:00pm|Gallery Pegasus

Kids Night Out @ Western

6:00pm|Western Washington University

Honk! The Musical

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Lost Feast

7:00pm|Village Books

Christmastime is Here with Skagit Symphony

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Narnia the Musical

7:30pm|Claire vg Thomas Theatre

Darkness and Light

7:30pm|St. James Presbyterian Church

Tarnation and Holiday Games

7:30pm|Upfront Theatre

Tomorrow
Holiday Pet Food Drive

10:00am|Whatcom County

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Giving Tree

9:00am|Village Books

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar

4:00pm|Swim Club

Treasure Island

7:00pm|Sehome High School Theater

Shrek the Musical

7:00pm|Burlington-Edison High School

Crazy for You

7:30pm|Bellingham Theatre Guild

A Christmas Carol

7:30pm|Sylvia Center for the Arts

Number the Stars

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Pacific Arts Market

10:00am| Sunset Square

Toys for Tots

10:00am

Holiday Tea

11:00am|Willowbrook Manor

Valley Made Holiday Market

5:00pm|Maplehurst Farm

Wonderland Walk

5:00pm|Washington Park

Christmas on the Docks

5:00pm|Cap Sante Marina

Honk! The Musical

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Narnia the Musical

7:30pm|Claire vg Thomas Theatre

Tarnation and Holiday Games

7:30pm|Upfront Theatre

Darkness and Light

7:30pm|St. James Presbyterian Church

NSEA Work Party

9:00am

Breakfast with Santa

9:00am|Sedro-Woolley Community Center

Fairhaven Winterfest

10:00am|Historic Fairhaven

Winter Faire

10:00am|Whatcom Hills Waldorf School

Winter Arts & Crafts Festival

10:00am|Pioneer Park Pavilion

Sumas Book Club

10:00am|Sumas Library

Old-Fashioned Christmas Market

10:00am|Friday Harbor Brickworks

Award-Winning Book Club

10:30am|Lynden Library

Mastering Wisteria

10:30am|Full Bloom Farm

Snow Geese of Skagit

10:30am|Christianson's Nursery

Your Life is a Story Writers Group

10:30am| South Whatcom Library

Winter Wonderland Gift Gala

11:00am|Carnation Building

Saltadena Celebration

11:00am|Saltadena Bakery

Holiday Craft Bazaars

11:30am

Holiday Maker's Market

12:00pm|Terramar Brewing and Distilling

Festive Feasting Reception

1:00pm|Good Earth Pottery

Holiday Tea and Crafts

1:00pm|North Fork Library

Holiday Joy with Fidalgo Youth Symphony

1:00pm|McIntyre Hall

Teen Art Fair

2:00pm|Blaine Library

Shrinking the Worry Monster

2:00pm|Village Books

Big Holiday reds tasting

2:00pm|eifert & Jones Wine Merchants

Birding for Kids

2:30pm

Bowman Bay Holiday

3:00pm|Bowman Bay

Noel Ensemble

3:00pm|Jansen Art Center

A Deep Dive Into Eve Deisher's Psyche

3:00pm|Museum of Northwest Art

One Meditation

4:00pm| Boulevard Park

The Nativity

6:30pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Early Railroads of Whatcom County

7:00pm|Village Books

Holiday History Hi-Jinks

7:00pm|Downtown Bellingham

Contra Dance

7:00pm|Fairhaven Library

Center Into Solstice

7:00pm|Cafe Blue

Heralding Christmas with Skagit Valley Chorale

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Winter Solstice Concert with SeaMuse

7:30pm|Firehouse Arts and Events Center

The Kelley World Tour

7:30pm|Lummi Island Library

Cidertails with Alexine Langdon

7:30pm|housand Acre Cider House

Sunday
Holiday Pet Food Drive

10:00am|Whatcom County

Deck the Old City Hall

12:00pm|Whatcom Museum's Old City Hall

Giving Tree

9:00am|Village Books

Holiday Festival of the Arts

10:00am

Miracle Pop-Up Holiday Cocktail Bar

4:00pm|Swim Club

Number the Stars

7:30pm|Anacortes Community Theatre

Crazy for You

7:30pm|Bellingham Theatre Guild

Pacific Arts Market

10:00am| Sunset Square

Valley Made Holiday Market

5:00pm|Maplehurst Farm

Christmas on the Docks

5:00pm|Cap Sante Marina

Honk! The Musical

7:00pm|Bellingham Arts Academy for Youth

Narnia the Musical

7:30pm|Claire vg Thomas Theatre

Winter Wonderland Gift Gala

11:00am|Carnation Building

The Nativity

6:30pm|Mount Baker Theatre

Heralding Christmas with Skagit Valley Chorale

7:30pm|McIntyre Hall

Sedro-Woolley Community Breakfast

8:00am|American Legion Post #43

Langar in Lynden

11:00am| Guru Nanak Gursikh Gurdwara

Celtic Yuletide

3:00pm|Lincoln Theatre

Scarlett and Dicey

4:00pm|Village Books

Vaudevillingham

7:00pm|Cirque Lab

see our complete calendar »