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What would the holidays be without a few spins of Vince Guaraldi’s soundtrack to Charles Schulz’s 1965 holiday classic, A Charlie Brown Christmas? Full of sweet, catchy tunes steeped in nostalgia and a simpler time, the album is a seasonal classic. On Dec. 15, jazz pianist and onetime Santa Cruzan Adam Shulman, who is best known as part of Marcus Shelby’s Jazz Orchestra and has been described as a “creative force on the San Francisco jazz scene for the past decade,” brings Guaraldi’s wonderful album to the stage. Joining Shulman are bassist John Wiitala and drummer James Gallagher. CAT JOHNSON



INFO: 9 p.m. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz. $12/adv, $15/door. 479-1854.


HENRY KAISER & EVIL GENIUS A prolific composer and guitarist whose stylistic comfort zone is seemingly

INFO: 7 p.m. Don Quixote’s, 6275 Hwy. 9, Felton. $10. 335-2800.


HOW THE GROUCH STOLE CHRISTMAS Two of the biggest names to come out of the Living Legend collective, Murs and the Grouch left the group back in 2012. But the Grouch, who puts on the annual “How the Grouch Stole Christmas” tour, has something special planned for this, its 10th year: he’s gotten the entire original lineup

of the Living Legends together to rock venues all over the country. AC INFO: 8 p.m. Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $30/adv, $35/door. 429-4135.


INFO: 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 15, Kuumbwa Jazz, 320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $20/adv, $25/door. 427-2227. WANT TO GO? Go to giveaways before 11 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 8 to find out how you could win a pair of tickets to the show.


BENJAMIN FRANCIS LEFTWICH Singer-songwriter Benjamin Francis Leftwich cites the late, great Nick Drake as a key influence, and the influence is clear. Leftwich, who hails from York, England, draws from indie-pop and folk, but his breathy vocals, heart-on-sleeve songwriting and lush, lovely instrumentation reveal his Drake discipleship. Where Leftwich veers off, however, is with his skillful use of electronics to add texture and weight to his sound. Where Drake stuck to acoustic sounds, Leftwich takes a more experimental, rock approach to his instrumentation—which is fine, because you’d be a fool to try to simply recreate the inimitable, lasting beauty of Drake’s compositions. CJ INFO: 9 p.m. Catalyst, 1011 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz. $15. 423-1338.


Rocking blues from a contemporary favorite. Friday at Moe’s Alley BEATS ANTIQUE

Electro-meets-world fusion standout group. Friday at Catalyst IRISH CHRISTMAS IN AMERICA

Celtic sounds and stylings for Christmas. Friday at Kuumbwa PEDRITO MARTINEZ GROUP

New York-based Afro-Cuban outfit. Monday at Kuumbwa TONY FURTADO

Renowned bluegrass multiinstrumentalist. Monday at Don Quixote’s


The Flobots’ unique mix of hip-hop, rap and alternative rock results in an unparalleled sound landing somewhere between Eminem and Green Day. The Denver natives stand out for their passionate activism and socially charged lyrics that focus on racial justice, immigration reform and the fight for a living minimum wage. Their newest album, NOENEMIES, is a crowdfunded collection of protest music. For over a year, the group has been hosting monthly workshops that blend community organizing with choir practice in a celebratory atmosphere; intended to “equip movement participants to create and lead songs designed to embody the change we want to see in the world.” KS

boundless, Henry Kaiser is a longtime fixture of the Bay Area music scene. An accomplished sideman, as well, he has appeared on more than 250 albums and scored dozens of TV shows and films. On Sunday, Kaiser is joined by Santa Cruz experimental standout act the Walkers, comprising brothers Bill and Rick Walker, whose genre-defying musical adventures have made them long-running local favorites. Also on the bill is the Portland/Los Angeles band Evil Genius, an experimental jazz trio that draws from punk, rock, jazz and more. The evening promises to be an exciting night of musical barrier-pushing, looping and experimental adventuring. CJ



November 30-December 6, 2016


November 30-December 6, 2016