Buskers and Drive-Ins
A cautious return to live music
What: Drive-In Music Live Concert Series
Where: Skagit County Fairgrounds, 479 W. Taylor St., Mount Vernon
WHEN: 7pm June 5, 12 and 19
Cost: $60-$120 per carload
Wednesday, April 28, 2021
By the time this issue goes to press, I’ll be a couple of days away from wrapping up the two-week safety window following my second shot of the Pfizer vaccine. As directed by the CDC, I’ll continue to vigorously wash my hands on the regular, keep sanitizer nearby and don a mask in public places, but am now contemplating a cautious return to venues and events featuring live music.
Although we’re nowhere near “normal” for this time of year when it comes to concert bookings and attendance, things are looking up. A Thurs., April 29 concert at the Mount Baker Theatre with the Lowest Pair—Americana duo Kendl Winter and Palmer T. Lee—will see the venue opening up for live music for the first time in more than a year, and limited seats remain to catch the in-person action (the show can also be livestreamed).
If outdoor music is more your jam during these precarious pandemic times, “1st on First” takes place from 4pm-8pm Sat., May 1 on the streets of lovely La Conner, featuring a variety of buskers plying their trade at various locales. On the boardwalk, pedestrians will find Mike Bucy, a local who traded a 9-to-5 job to perform music and lead charter boat trips—thus earning him the nickname Captain Mike. At the Galleria deck, Ferndale-based guitarist, singer and songwriter J.P. Falcon Grady will be performing originals and covers to passersby.
Additionally, find Rick Violin slinging strings at the Fire Museum, Dick Bugg at Peace Park, Tatters & Silk at Caravan Gallery’s courtyard, DJ and musician Joe Johnson at the Dirty Biter, and No Tonic Press—Michael McLaskey on guitar and vocals and Vince Fejeran on trombone—playing jazz originals, swing, blues and be-bop at Gilkey Square. Because it’s a free affair, tip the buskers who draw your interest. Remember that most of them have spent the past year with limited audiences to appreciate their various talents.
It’s not a bad idea to procure tickets now for a Drive-In Music Live Concert Series beginning June 5 at the Skagit County Fairgrounds in Mount Vernon, as both space and tickets are limited. The rescheduled shows kick off with blues and rock band Shaggy Sweet, followed by headliner Petty Fever. Fronted by Hollywood FAME Award Winner Frank Murray, the tribute to Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers is sure to offer up a memorable salute to Petty’s legacy, and you won’t go home without hearing hits such as “American Girl,” “Free Falling,” “I Won’t Back Down,” and many more.
If all goes according to plan, Santo Poco and headliner Jessica Lynne Witty will follow on June 12, and the series will wrap up on June 19 with cover bands Creedence Revelation featuring Randy Linder, and Randy Hansen’s Jimi Hendrix Revolution. Because it’s a drive-in, concertgoers will be able to enjoy the music at a safe and responsible distance from each other, while still being close enough to see who’s singing along to the live music they’ve gone so long without .
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