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California Guitar Trio

California Guitar Trio

Local guitar virtuoso Marco Villarreal will be performing two sets of live Jazz, Spanish and Flamenco music during the March 1 grand opening celebration of Wiseguys Marketing Solutions, 5150 U.S. 30 in Hobart.

The free event runs from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. and includes a Mexican food buffet prepared by the instructional chefs from Hobart's U-Cook culinary classes and an open bar. All are welcome to attend this new local business celebration. For more: wiseguysprinting.com or (219) 942-0883.

Region progressive alt-rockers Stop.Drop.Rewind will be showcasing much of their newly released original album, along with a smattering of fun cover songs when they perform from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday at the two-year anniversary of Byway Brewing Co. The event is free to those 21 and older with a special anniversary beer being released that day. 

The California Guitar Trio of Paul Richards from Los Angeles, Bert Lams from Belgium and Hideyo Moriya from Japan are on their 25th anniversary tour and just added a March 9 date at the hip music venue Ignition Music Garage, 120 E. Washington St. in Goshen, Indiana. The CGT performs a mix of originals and cleverly arranged interpretations of music by such diverse catalogs as Queen and The Beatles, to Bach and Beethoven, to surf classics by The Ventures.  Opening the show at 7:30 p.m. Eastern is Northwest Indiana jazz guitar great Buddy Pearson (formerly of Freek Johnson). This is an evening for serious guitar aficionados not to miss! Tickets: $25 reserved, $18 general admission. More: (574) 971-8282 or www.ignitionmusic.net.

This Saturday, Philadelphia-born folk rocker Vance Gilbert performs an all-ages show at Front Porch Music, 505 E. Lincolnway in Valparaiso. Gilbert, currently with 12 albums in his catalog, originally aspired to be a jazz singer, but soon discovered his affinity to writing/performing story songs and focused on acoustic folk music. He soon became "buzzworthy" enough for Shawn Colvin to invited him to open for her, with other top artists then doing likewise. More: www.vancegilbert.com, www.frontporch.com or (219) 464-4700.

Longtime Region favorites PAWNZ performs a night of dance rock and pop covers from 8 p.m. midnight Friday at Buddy & Pal's Place, 1206 E. Summit St. in Crown Point. More: (219) 662-0088 or www.buddyandpals.com.

The Flex Group — a quintet of veteran Region rockers who perform classic to current covers — will play Saturday at Cuzin's, 17704 Oak Park Ave. in Tinley Park. More: (708) 633-1144 or www.facebook.com/theflexgroup15.

Just in at press time! Ides of March vocalist and guitarist Jim Peterik (ex-member of Survivor) will be returning to the Region to "re-interpret" some of his most famous songs on March 11 at Chicago Street Theater in Valparaiso. As the Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter puts it, "We're doing this show in the style of my 2016 album, 'The Songs,' which means acoustic, rootsy arrangements of some of my biggest hits, with me on guitar, my son Colin Peterik on piano, and Andy Ohlrich on fiddle. It's a different kind of show, and audiences have responded exceptionally well to it." More: (219) 464-1636 or www.chicagostreet.org.

Celtic rock group Switchback — anchored by the award-winning duo of Brian FitzGerald and Martin McCormack — returns a little early this year to Munster's Theatre At The Center, 1040 Ridge Road, for its annual pre-St. Patrick's Day musical performance March 4. Tickets are $30. Dinner tickets are an additional cost. While known for being rich in Celtic traditions, Switchback also performs Americana/Bluegrass music. Both sides of its musical coin are well revealed in the band's television specials — “The Americana Sessions,” “The Celtic Sessions” and "Music on the Mayne Stage" — which have aired on PBS. The group will perform locally again on March 14 at The Old Town School of Music, 4544 N. Lincoln Ave. in Chicago.

Singer/songwriter Al Rose has made this columnist's Regional Top 10 Albums list numerous times over the years. Catch Rose and his musical cohorts — Steve Hashimoto (bass), Steve Doyle (guitar/dobro) and Lance Helgeson (drums) — for a 9 p.m. show Friday at Fuller's Pub, 3203 W. Irving Park Road in Chicago. Admission free/21 and older. More: (773) 478-8060 or www.alrosemusic.com.

From noon to 2 p.m. Friday on the 89.1 FM Lakeshore Public Radio program "Midwest BEAT with Tom Lounges" will feature a call in by Robby Krieger, the legendary songwriter and guitarist of The Doors. Krieger will share memories of his years with The Doors and Jim Morrison, while discussing the group's soon-to-be released archival DVD, "The Doors Live at The Isle of Wight 1970" (via Eagle Rock), which ultimately was one of Morrison's final performances. The program also will feature some live recordings from that previously unreleased concert. Streams the show live at: www.lakeshorepublicradio.org.

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