Nicolas Bearde performs special December Holiday Show at Piedmont Piano Company

Nicolas Bearde & Friends
Celebrating the Season

Now celebrating his 11th anniversary, this special concert is a “must see” show for all fans of contemporary Jazz and Blues. With holiday classics and carols getting the signature Nicolas Bearde high-energy makeover, it’s a show you won’t want to miss. Joining him on stage are some of the Bay Area’s best: John R Burr (piano), Ron Belcher (bass), and Lorca Hart (drums).

Give the gift of music this Holiday season to family and friends. Make your reservations early. This “one night only concert” always sells out.

Saturday, December 9, 2017 at 8pm
at Piedmont Piano Company
1728 San Pablo Ave. (at 18th), Oakland, CA

$25 in advance / $30 at the door. Meet & Greet and reception to follow.
To reserve tickets with your credit card, please call (510) 547-8188.


Recording artist, Nicolas Bearde, a seasoned and highly respected showman, has established himself as a powerful presence in the contemporary jazz vocal milieu over this past decade. His silky baritone sound invites comparisons to Johnny Hartman, Lou Rawls, and Joe Williams, and his wit and engaging rapport captures and draws the audience into his live performances. Nicolas has 5 CD’s out on his own label, Right Groove Records, and his most recent album release, Invitation in January 2016, rose quickly to the Top 20 on the Jazz Week Charts, garnering rave reviews at home and abroad. nicolasbearde.com

John R Burr (keys)- John R. Burr is that rare pianist who combines jazz technique with a genuine love for folk music. The Philadelphia Weekly said, “Pianist extraordinaire John R. Burr has the most sparkling style since former Allman Brother-turned-Rolling Stone hired hand Chuck Leavell.” Discology wrote, “John R. Burr ranks with the best of the elegant jazzers.”

Ron Belcher (bass)– Bassist Ron Belcher travels the world from France to Japan and throughout the US bringing his rhythmically buoyant, emotionally uplifting style to the stage for a wide diversity of jazz artists. Performing or recording with such international stars such as Branford Marsalis, Regina Carter, Rodney Franklin, as well as a literal “who’s who” of the San Francisco jazz scene, Ron has garnered a reputation as one of northern California’s first-call jazz bassists.

Lorca Hart (drummer) – Drummer Lorca Hart grew up in Taos, New Mexico in a musical family. He was exposed to a variety of instruments and musical styles as a child but early on it became clear that the drumset was his passion. He has performed with many of the West Coast’s (and beyond) finest artists including : Carmen Lundy, Freddie Hubbard, Calvin Keys, Stanley Jordan, and others and can be heard on recordings by Hugh Masekela, John Heard, Justo Almario, Ronald Muldrow, Dave Pike, Phil Ranelin, and the Cross Hart Jazz Experience.

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Rolando Morales at Barone’s, The Vine at Bridges, Seahorse, and C’era Una Volta,

October 10, 2017

¡Hola, Mi Gente!

Is everyone gagging on the thick, toxic fumes?  Feeling a little sick?  And the fires are bad, too, huh?

It’s been hard keeping up with the the daily barrage of events.  The floods, the hurricanes, the earthquakes, the saber rattling, more sexual oppression, insults launched from the White House and Congress…  And now the fires in our back yard.  Everyone’s on overload.

My private gigs have slowed down a bit which affords a moment to breathe, even if it was smoky this morning…

If you need an escape from the madness this weekend, join me at Barone’s Restaurant in Pleasanton this Friday Oct 13 and leave your superstitions at the door.  We don’t have time for that nonsense.  DO bring your appetite, as the menu here is amazing.  And I’ll be there in the intimate bar on solo guitar and voice.  Details below.

Then on Saturday night October 14, I’ll host the long-awaited return of my dear, talented friend Janice Maxie-Reid to The Vine at Bridges in Danville.  She is the superb keyboardist-vocalist with the 4-octave range who has performed with none other than Stevie Wonder.  We always light it up when we play here together.  The last time was about 3 or 4 months ago, so don’t miss it!  Details below.

And remember that next week Saturday October 21st, my band returns to The Sausalito Seahorse.  Not only will we have a stellar band including the great Carlos Reyes on violin and Paraguayan harp, Danilo Paíz on percussion and vocals, Dave Flores on drums, and Yours Truly on guitar and guitar synth and vocals; We’ll also feature a very, very special surprise guest on bass.  We can’t really advertise him due to contractual restrictions.  Let’s just say we’re all so excited to be able to play with him again and look forward to seeing him on stage again with Tower of Power.  So his picture in the poster is a big Question Marc.  I wonder if he’s arriving in a VW?  Make your reservations at the Seahorse at (415) 331-2899.

Check out below what’s also happening with my return to Havana in Walnut Creek, Maria, Maria in Danville, and Alameda’s own C’era Una Volta.  Details and dates are below.

Come out and say hi and let me know you’re okay.

Ciao,

Rolando

PUBLIC PERFORMANCES FOR OCTOBER 2017 

Friday Oct 13, Barone’s Restaurant, 475 St. John St., Pleasanton CA, approx 7:30-10:30pm.  After two months away, Rolando returns to one of Pleasanton’s premier dining establishments.  Enjoy exquisite meals and service, libations and Rolando’s vast repertoire in the Cocktail Lounge for a great night out.   See www.baronespleasanton.com(925) 426-0987.

Saturday Oct 14, Vine at Bridges, 480 Hartz Avenue, Danville, approx 8-11pmThe Rolando Morales Duet returns to this cool winery and nightspot.  Enjoy a wonderful selection of wines, superb dinners and tapas while grooving to this powerful duet.  Tonight Rolando welcomes the enchanting keyboardist-vocalist Janice Maxie-Reid.  She has shared the stage with Stevie Wonder and Sting, so you know she’s doing something right!  And on guitar, voice and his pedal board of magic, the passionate Rolando Morales.  There’ll be lots of soul and classic R&B mixed into this Latin caldo, so don’t miss it!  www.thevineatbridges.com(925) 820-7210.

Friday Oct 20Havana Cuban Cuisine, 1516 Bonanza St., Walnut Creek, approx 8:30-11pmRolando returns after his hit debut last month to this fine Cuban restaurant and live music venue.  Great Cuban cuisine, ceiling fans swirling lazily and Rolando’s vast Latin repertoire and beyond on solo guitar and voice.   www.havanarestaurant.net,   (925) 939-4555.

Saturday Oct 21“An Evening with Rolando Morales and Carlos Reyes,” Sausalito Seahorse, 305 Harbor Drive, Sausalito, approx 8:30-11:30pm.  After two months away, these two passionate musicians finally return to The Seahorse to put on their unique show at this fun waterfront restaurant and club.  The great Paraguayanviolinist/harpist Carlos Reyes and passionate guitarist / vocalist Rolando Morales will play a short set in duet to close out the dinner hour, followed by a concert and dancing to the World Class Rolando Morales Group featuring a very special surprise guest bassist from Tower of Power to be announced at the show;  from Lauryn Hill, the exciting drummer Dave Flores; from Dizzy Gillespie and Ruben Blades, the powerful Nicaraguan Latin percussionist/vocalist Danilo Paíz; from Paraguay, the thrilling violinist and harpist from Arturo Sandoval and Steve Miller, Carlos Reyes; and the powerful Rolando Morales leading the journey on guitar, guitar synthesizer and vocals.   Don’t miss it!   $15.  Make your  reservations at (415) 331-2899, www.sausalitoseahorse.com.

Friday Oct 27Maria, Maria Cantina, 710 Camino Ramon Road, Danville CA, approx 6-9pm.  After a month away, Rolando returns for a Friday night show at Carlos Santana’s Danville restaurant.  Enjoy Rolando on solo guitar and voice with his diverse repertoire performing out on the patio by the fire pits.  See if he has any special guests sitting in…  (925) 820-2366,  www.mariamariarestaurants.com.

Saturday Oct 28C’era Una Volta, 1332 Park Street, Alameda, CA 945017-9:30 pm.  After a month away, Rolando returns to this fine Tuscan-style restaurant that welcomes you like family to embrace the spirit of Italy.  Rolando will take you on a musical tour of the Americas and beyond on solo guitar and voice in this intimate room. This is a great match and a rare opportunity to catch Rolando in Alameda!  www.ceraunavolta.us/ (510) 769-4828.

And don’t miss this exciting November 2017 Quintet performance: 

Thursday Nov 2,2017YOSHI’S PRESENTS “CARLOS REYES and the ELECTRICK SYMPHONY” at Yoshi’s, 510 Embarcadero West in Oakland.  Featuring an All-Star band including Santana’s lead vocalist Tony Lindsay, Rolando Morales, Janice Maxie-Reid and more.  Reservations at (510) 238-9200www.Yoshis.com.

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Joyce Gordon Gallery presents Art by Chukes and music by Miguel Y Los Buenos Ensemble

Join art and music lovers on Friday, September 29th 6-9pm for the Closing Reception of “Identity Theft” featuring live music by Miguel Y Los Buenos Ensemble.

“IDENTITY THEFT” 
featuring new works by Chukes
August 4 – September 30, 2017
Closing Reception: Friday, September 29th 
6-9pm

Joyce Gordon Gallery is a commercial fine art gallery located in the downtown district of Oakland, California. It exhibits art that reflects the social and cultural diversity of the Bay Area and international artists. The aim of the gallery is to respect the creative pursuits of the individual and seeks to make such work accessible to a broad audience.


 Gallery Hours:
Wed – Fri: 11-6pm | Sat:  1-5pm Sun: by appointment
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Rolando Morales Update for September 2017

¡Hola, Mi Gente!

I’ve been working day and night putting tech and everything else together for some big private and public shows throughout the Bay Area and beyond.  Thursday we’re doing a big private show up in St. Helena.  Then a couple days up near Lake Tahoe for more private shows.  Then all the way down again to Woodside for yet another private event.  It’s good to be in demand!  I put on four new tires on my car to ensure a safer week.

I broke up the intense prep work with a couple short but majestic hikes through the Oakland Hills near my house.  It’s nice to see Oakland continue to reveal her surprises.  Redwoods, eucalyptus, lakes…  Am I in the Sierras?  Naw, it’s just Oakland.

The public shows won’t begin until next week when I do my first Friday night Danville show at Maria, Maria in almost half a year on September 8.

But the noteworthy show is a great little festival happening on September 92-6pm.  My friends at the Women Entrepreneurs of Los Altos invited my band to play for the WE Vibe Block Party on the 100 Block of First Street in Los Altos.  I’ll be there with my All-Star Quintet putting on two shows.  We’ll also have my favorite flamenco troop “Caminos Flamencos” putting on a passionate show.  Details.

Other highlights this month include my duet on Mexican Independence Day, 16 de Septiembre with my Latin percussionist-vocalist and Sista-From-Anotha-Mista, Estaire Godinez at the Pairings Cellars in Pleasanton.  This will be the first time I do a duet at this venue and you know we’ll light it up.

I’ll also be doing a special duet on Saturday September 23 at The Vine at Bridges with the great violinist Carlos Reyes.  This will be the first time we’re able to do this together here in 2 years, so don’t miss it!  Details below.

Last, be informed that I’m debuting on Fridays September 22 AND 29 at Havana in Walnut Creek, a fine Cuban restaurant, bar and now, Live Music venue.  I’ve only done private off-site work for them in the past, and this will mark the first public in-house appearances in our history.  Swing by!  Details below.

And speaking of Walnut CreekMaria, Maria has abruptly ended their Sunday afternoon shows about 5 weeks earlier than usual.  This year’s strange weather, alternating between unusually cold and windy to intolerably hot has kept patrons off the patio, hurting their sales, so I’ll just do occasional weekends at both their restaurants depending on our schedules.  No more Sundays this season.  So now you know.

See you at the show!

Ciao,

Rolando

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Mark your calendar! This Friday Rolando Morales will perform in Brentwood’s CoCo County Winebar

Coco's Winebar presents Rolando Morales on Friday, August 11, 2017 between 7 - 10pm
Coco’s Winebar presents Rolando Morales on Friday, August 11, 2017 between 7 – 10pm

Friday Aug 11CoCo County Wine Bar, 633 First Street, Brentwood CA, 7-10pm.  Rolando makes his public debut at Brentwood’s Premier Wine Tasting Bar in the downtown retail district.   Rolando never gets out in this area publicly, so you far-east Bay fans, don’t miss this rare opportunity!  www.cocowineco.com,   (925) 634-9463.

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Friday July 14, 2017 Rolando Morales performs at Pairings Cellars, Pleasanton.

Rolando Morales performs at Pairings Cellars on July 14
Rolando Morales performs at Pairings Cellars on July 14

Friday July 14Pairings Cellars, 310 Main Street, Pleasanton CA 94566 at  8pm to 11pm.  Rolando returns to this exciting social hotspot in downtown Pleasanton.  This new wine bar features fine wines, tapas and now dinners, as well as Rolando Morales performing his broad repertoire on solo guitar and voice.  Free!  www.pairingscellars.com(925) 398-8846.

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Interview with world-renowned Musical Diva – N’Kenge

N'Kenge enchants Broadway Musical Audiences around the world
N’Kenge enchants Broadway Musical Audiences around the world

Recently we had the pleasure of a personal interview with N’Kenge, one of the most accomplished musical artists of this century.  Her accomplishments are too numerous to mention. First opera singer to win the Lena Horne Vocal Competition,  first opera singer to win the New York State talented teen, starred in the world tour of Man in the Mirror Tribute Show to Michael Jackson, starred on West End London in the production of the Genius of Ray Charles, was nominated for a Helen Hayes Award for outstanding lead actress in arena stage’s production of 3 Mo Divas, she sang for Obama, Kofi Annan, Bill Clinton, did 140 shows in 2014 alone and received a proclamation from New York City Hall for her community work. Oh, she sings in 11 different languages.  So it is a genuine honor to have her give us a personal interview.  Enjoy!

What are your favorite upcoming projects?

I’ve started rehearsals this week for The Golden Apple musical which will be performed next month in the encore series at New York City Center. I’m excited to play the principal role of Mother Hare that doubles as Circe.

This summer will be filled with some exciting projects. In June, I will play the role of Tonya in a Showcase of the Broadway bound “54 The Musical.

I also join Maestro Steve Reineke and the Philadelphia Orchestra in the concert Sophisticated Ladies/Ella Fitzgerald at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center.

What were your favorite performances?

Probably a combination of making my debut as Musetta in Puccini’s La Bohème at Virginia Opera and originating the role of Mary Wells in the Broadway’s MOTOWN: The Musical.

How did you get started in the entertainment industry?

I started singing at 10 years old at my elementary school in the Bronx PS 95. I landed the role of Patty in Snoopy, the Musical, and I got the music bug. All I ever wanted to do from that time onward was to sing and to make people happy through my music. I got a scholarship to get my Bachelor’s Degree at the Manhattan School of Music and a Master’s Degree at the Juilliard School. I was immediately singing with New York City Opera, Virginia Opera, and Seattle Opera once I graduated. Then I got cast in a show called 3 Mo Divas about opera singers who can sing in  eight styles of music. That was the show that transitioned me into the Musical Theater and Pop World.

You have classical training, do you miss performing classical music or do you still work on it?

I still perform classical music with symphonies around the world and was the lead in a Wagner Opera during a vacation break from MOTOWN: The Musical, on Broadway. Probably the first and last time I would ever perform Wagner immediately after doing an eight show week of Motown music. Ha, ha.

When did you realize you wanted to become a singer / performer?

At 10 years old. My fifth grade teacher gave me a chance to perform on stage, and I’ve been addicted ever since. My mom was a huge supporter and was giving me every opportunity to perform – once she realized I had this gift.

Do you have advice for any young people who dream to become singers.

Turning dreams into reality comes with a recipe of hard work, perseverance and passion. Stay focused and develop a circle of people that will support you. Music is a hard career to break into, but if it’s what you LOVE then every step of your journey is worth it.

N’Kenge is such an amazing woman, such an amazing artist, and a genuine role model for kids all around the world.  Learn more about her on her website:   www.nkengemusic.com

PERFORMANCE LINKS

FEVER- LIVE ON WEST END, LONDON in The Genius of Ray Charles

“DEFYING GRAVITY” AT IWF- Performed by N’Kenge

SKYFALL at the Legendary BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB in NYC

Enjoy more shows on her very own Youtube Channel.

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An evening with Rolando Morales and Carlos Reyes at Sausalito Seahorse, March 25, 2017

Full Rolando Morales Band will perform at Sausalito Seahorse March 25, 2017
Full Rolando Morales Band will perform at Sausalito Seahorse March 25, 2017

Saturday March 25, “An Evening with Rolando Morales and Carlos Reyes,” Sausalito Seahorse, 305 Harbor Drive, Sausalito, approx. 8:30-11:30pm.  After months away, these two passionate musicians finally return to The Seahorse to put on their unique show at this fun waterfront restaurant and club.  The great Paraguayan harpist/violinist Carlos Reyes and passionate guitarist/vocalist Rolando Morales will play a short set in duet to close out the dinner hour, followed by a concert and dancing to the World Class Rolando Morales Group featuring from the Gregg Rolie Band, the exciting bassist Gary Brown; from Brazil, the amazing drummer from Airto and Steve Winwood, Celso Alberti; from Rubén Blades and Dizzy Gillespie, Nicaraguan Latin percussionist/vocalist Danilo Paíz; from Paraguay, the thrilling violinist and harpist from Arturo Sandoval and Steve Miller, Carlos Reyes; and the powerful Rolando Morales leading the journey on guitar, guitar synthesizer and vocals.   Don’t miss it!   $15.  Make your  reservations at (415) 331-2899. www.sausalitoseahorse.com

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Project Freedom will be performed at Yoshi’s in Oakland May 24 & Kumbaya in Santa Cruz May 25

Project Freedom by Joey DeFrancesco out now!
Project Freedom by Joey DeFrancesco out now!
An homage to John Lennon opens Project Freedom with a gorgeous snippet of “Imagine” (Prelude) with a soaring tribute to J. Rosamond Johnson’s uplifting composition, “Lift Every Voice and Sing” rounding out the purifying package.   DeFrancesco’s new Project Freedom band, The People–a unit he’s currently touring the world with–helps him to see and feel things in a radically different manner than the past.
There’s in-the-pocket drummer Jason Brown who nearly got pigeonholed playing “straight Philly Joe Jones style; nothing wrong with that,” until DeFrancesco helped set him free. There’s guitarist Dan Wilson who has that “George Benson-Wes Montgomery-Grant Green thing down cold, and he comes out of the church, so that’s part of his thing too.”
Joey DeFrancesco
Joey DeFrancesco
DeFrancesco wanted to add a good solid saxophonist to the band for some time, and he found one in Troy Roberts, the man behind the tenor and soprano saxophones on tunes such as the alluringly intuitive “Better Than Yesterday.”
From self-penned titles such as “Karma” and “Peace Bridge,” DeFrancesco is telling a story of love, humanity and positivity at a time of overwhelming negativity, to spread goodness when the news runs rampant with stories of brutality, violence and prejudice.
One song that’s become a centerpiece within the ideology of Project Freedom is the quartet’s lustrous cover of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” a song DeFrancesco began improvising as an encore for his 2003 appearance at the Detroit Jazz Festival. “The crowd was perfect, the weather was perfect, the song just came out of me and the next thing you know the crowd is swaying, men took their hats off and women began to cry. Me too. It was a truly sanctified experience where we all became one, transcending music and melody. I wanted to relive that story, that feeling, on Project Freedom.”
Joey DeFrancesco,  is a modern-day avatar of the Hammond B3 organ and the Philadelphia history he shares with his principle instrument. Organ-based blues and jazz started in Philly and DeFrancesco is the first to tell you so.  His  bluesy, blustery sensibility is shared with the men in his family: saxophonist/grandfather Joseph DeFrancesco, and his father–organist “Papa” John DeFrancesco. Jazz lovers also dig DeFrancesco’s second instrument, the trumpet, and the inspiration gleaned from his first big boss, Miles Davis–with whom DeFrancesco gigged when the organist was in his late teens.
DeFrancesco stopped by the City of Brotherly Love to receive a star on the Philadelphia Music Walk of Fame alongside local giants such as Coltrane, Dizzy and Nina Simone.
Being a frequent flyer with a globe-hopping world touring schedule has given DeFrancesco insight into differing–but not opposing–viewpoints that he longed to espouse through music. “I always thought that as touring musicians, we were spreading peace. No matter what happens in the world, we keep playing. In a lot of the so-called forbidden places too.
When we’re there, through war and conflict, problems melt away through music. We’re playing for these people, hanging out with them, and we all come together and we’re grooving with each other because of the music. That is true freedom. Music is true freedom.”
Joey DeFrancesco & The People · Project Freedom
Mack Avenue Records · Release Date: March 10, 2017
 
For more information on Joey DeFrancesco, please visit JoeyDeFrancesco.com
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Jim Dennis Photography Studio Holiday Art Silent Auction Party – Sunday December 18, 2016

Jim Dennis invites you to his Annual Holiday Sales at Jim Dennis Photography
Jim Dennis invites you to his Annual Holiday Sales at Jim Dennis Photography
Jim Dennis studied under Ruth Bernard, the master of light and shades

As a young boy Jim Dennis was discovered by Ruth Bernard, the world famous photography who belonged to a young group of photographers that included Ansel Adams and Edward Weston.  He had the good fortune of training with her at a young age.  The way he uses shadows and light is reminiscent of these masters.

Come visit the gallery, shop for wonderful gifts of classic art and join up with other Art Collectors and Jim Dennis admirers for a celebration of the Holiday Season and the Beaux Arts.

When:  Sunday December 18, 2016 from 2PM - 8PM

Where: Jim Dennis Photography Studio and Gallery
       4300 Horton St, Emeryville, CA 94608
       (510) 595-8634

www.jimdennisphotography.com

Jim Dennis is a world renowned Bay Area Photographer whose work has spanned over thirty years, with exhibits 
at a variety of artful venues across the nation including: 
Kodak Gallery, New York, New York,
 Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago, Illinois
, The Oakland Museum, Oakland, California. 
Jim Dennis, a native of San Francisco recognized at an early age that he was visually oriented and 
was excited to discover that he could capture on film, elements that provoked thought and stirred emotion.

Jim Dennis Interview with an historic overview of many of his art pieces.

Jim Dennis loves music and enjoys to portray musicians.  He has an amazing collection of photos of classic musicians, including Miles Davis, Lou Rawls, Pete Escovedo, Sarah Vaughn, Sheila E. and many more.  He has photos of famous politicians and famous people including Willie Brown Jr., Barbara Lee, Dalai Lama, Princess Christina and too many to mention.

Stanley Jordan, Rolando Morales, Ranie Smith and Lloyd Gregory
Stanley Jordan, Rolando Morales, Ranie Smith and Lloyd Gregory

As a young staff photographer with Eastman Kodak, Dennis photographed people and places across the world:
the Taj Mahal in India; life in Morocco; cultural portraits in Turkey. He also photographed the Indy 500 and Grand Prix Races, a cattle round-up in Wyoming and the Ringling Bros. Circus, Barnum, and Bailey Circus. His personal extensive travels have provided him with opportunities to capture exciting photographic images in such places as Haiti, Mexico, the Caribbean, Hawaii, France, Italy, Britain, the Bahamas, Brazil, Costa Rica and the Ivory Coast.

Jim Dennis’ technical skills in photography were honed at Eastman Kodak where he collaborated with engineers 
developing state-of-the-art photographic equipment and products. He regularly attends professional development seminars and workshops to stay abreast of new developments in the photography world and has taught technical skills in photography to students at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco. Additionally, he studied with the famed San Francisco photographer Ruth Bernhard in developing his creative skills.

In addition to his personal clients, present corporate clients include: Pacific Bell, Pacific Gas and Electric, American Airlines, San Francisco Redevelopment Agency, East Bay AIDS Foundation, San Francisco Foundation, City and County of San Francisco, San Francisco Unified School District, City of Oakland, Oakland Unified School District, Walter Katz Foundation, World Savings Bank, KTVU-Channel 2, Highland Hospital and the Port of Oakland.

Come visit the gallery, shop for wonderful gifts of classic art and join up with other Art Collectors and Jim Dennis admirers for a celebration of the Holiday Season and the Beaux Arts.

When:  Sunday December 18, 2016 from 2PM - 8PM

Where: Jim Dennis Photography Studio and Gallery
       4300 Horton St, Emeryville, CA 94608
       (510) 595-8634

www.jimdennisphotography.com
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Rolando Morales December 2016 Newsletter

Rolando Morales will appear at Barone's December 2, 2016
Rolando Morales will appear at Barone’s December 2, 2016

Hola, Mi Gente!

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!  I enjoyed mine.  I drove down to So Cal in time to be with my Mom on her birthday last week.  It was really important to me that I spend that precious time with her and make her smile.  I stayed through Thanksgiving and drove back up the following day in time to get into a small car accident on Black Friday night in Dublin on the way home, work all night wrestling with a failing “Mail” program with AT&T tech until 2am, and hit a private gig.  I think everything is finally up and running in time for a heavy December schedule.

This week in addition to my private shows, I’m happy to be returning to Barone’s Restaurant in Pleasanton this Friday night for a solo show at a first rate establishment.  I always enjoy the patrons and staff at this warm, welcoming venue.  Details below.

And on Saturday December 3, I return to The Vine at Bridges in Danville for a nice Latin Holiday version of my sound.  I’ll have my buddy Edgardo Cambon along to add his fire on Latin Percussion and vocals.  This might be my last appearance at The Vine for several months, so don’t miss it!  Details below.

Rolando Morales Duo at The Vine at Bridges featuring Edgardo Cambon
Rolando Morales Duo at The Vine at Bridges featuring Edgardo Cambon

Know, too, that I’m returning for our annual  Christmas “La Posada” Celebration for the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce on Thursday December 8 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in San Rafael.  It’s a great opportunity for dining, networking, dancing and grooving to my music.  All the details are below.

The last public highlight happens on Saturday December 17 when I perform a special dinner show at RaeSet in Napa.  They’ll provide a special 3-course Asian fusion meal with paired beers, and I’ll do a show for each of two seatings.  All the details are below in the calendar.  Definitely make your reservations soon as seating is limited.  See www.raeset.com and order on line.  Details below in the Calendar. 

So check out your new December Calendar, come out and say Hey.  See you at the show!

Ciao,

Rolando 

PUBLIC PERFORMANCES DECEMBER 2016

Friday Dec 2, Barone’s Restaurant, 475 St. John St., Pleasanton CA, approx 7:30-10:30pm.   Rolando returns to one of Pleasanton’s premier dining establishments.  Enjoy exquisite meals, libations and Rolando’s vast repertoire in the Cocktail Lounge for a great night out.  See www.baronespleasanton.com(925) 426-0987.

Saturday Dec 3, Vine at Bridges, 480 Hartz Avenue, Danville, approx 8-11pm.  The Rolando Morales Duet returns to this cool winery and nightspot.  Enjoy a wonderful selection of wines, superb dinners and munchies while grooving to this powerful duet.  Tonight Rolando reunites with the wonderful Latin percussionist/vocalist from Uruguay who leads Candela, the great Edgardo Cambón; and on guitar, voice and his pedal board of magic, the passionate Rolando Morales.  This is only the second time they’re playing at this venue this year, so don’t miss it!  www.thevineatbridges.com(925) 820-7210.

Thursday Dec 8, Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Marin Annual Christmas “La Posada” Celebration, Embassy Suites Hotel, 101 McInnis Parkway, San Rafael CA, 5:30 to 9:30pm.  Cecilia Zamora, President of this fine organization, has invited Rolando to play for this fun celebration with members and non-members interested in this influential body of community leaders.  Enjoy Rolando performing on solo guitar and voice as you unwind to cocktails and hors d’ouvres, your included dinner and then the presentation of three annual prestigious awards.   Then Rolando will play a spirited set for dancing to close the evening.  You will emerge having made meaningful connections and sharing new insights.  $50 members/$65 non-members.   RSVP and purchase online: http://www.tinyurl.com/XMASLaPosada2016.  For info call (415) 721-9686 or email hccmarin@um.att.com.

Thursday Dec 15, Piacere, 727 Laurel Street, San Carlos, CA 9070, 8-11 pm.  After 2 years away, Rolando finally returns to this fine Peninsula restaurant that takes you on a culinary tour of Italy.  Rolando will take you on a sensory tour of the Americas and beyond on solo guitar and voice.  Come along for the ride.  www.piacererestaurant.com(650) 592-2040.

Saturday Dec 17, RaeSet, 3150B Jefferson Street, Napa CA 94558, Two Dinner Seatings: 5 to 6pm and 7:15 to 8:15pm.  Two Shows: approx 6 to 7:15 and 8 to 9:15pm.  Rolando debuts at this local Napa Asian Fusion casual dining room which pairs great food, great beer and great music.  Tonight they offer two seatings for a special 3-course Asian-inspired dinner.  Rolando will serve up his own unique blend of international flavors on solo guitar and voice, tailoring his sound to the moment.  $50 includes show, 3-course dinner and a tasting of Almanac beers.  Limited seating!  Reserve now at (707) 666-2475www.raeset.com.

Thursday Dec 29, Piacere, 727 Laurel Street, San Carlos, CA 94070, 8-11 pm.  Rolando returns to this fine Peninsula restaurant that takes you on a culinary tour of Italy.  Rolando will take you on a sensory tour of the Americas and beyond on solo guitar and voice in the fun, lively bar area.   www.piacererestaurant.com(650) 592-2040.

Friday Dec 30, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6 to 9 pm.   Rolando  returns to this popular dining spot for the last time this year on solo guitar and voice in the intimate Restaurant Room.  (650) 589-1163 and see  www.donpicosbistro.com

All other shows are private.  Why not hire Rolando for your own private event?  He’s available for corporate shows, weddings, parties, concerts and festivals. The Rolando Morales group is available as sextet, quintet, quartet, trio and duo depending on your entertainment needs and budget.

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Rolando Morales October Public Performances Calendar

Rolando Morales Group performs at Seahorse in Sausalito October 8
Rolando Morales Group performs at Seahorse in Sausalito October 8

PUBLIC PERFORMANCES FOR OCTOBER 2016 

Sunday Oct 2Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx. 2-5pm.  Rolando returns for the Maria, Maria Tardeada series.  Enjoy a Mexican brunch outdoors and Rolando performing on the newly renovated front patio on solo guitar and voice by the creek.  He may be joined by flautist Bob Harrison.  www.mariamariarestaurants.com, (925) 946-1010.

Friday Oct 7, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6 to 9 pmRolando returns to the place The Examiner and Independent have proclaimed has the “Best Seafood and Best Mexican Food” anywhere, on solo guitar and voice in the Restaurant Room.  Call (650) 589-1163, www.donpicosbistro.com.

Saturday Oct 8, “An Evening with the Rolando Morales Group,” Sausalito Seahorse, 305 Harbor Drive, Sausalito, approx 8:30-11:30pm.  After many months away, the Rolando Morales Group returns to put on their unique show at this fun waterfront restaurant and club.  Rolando will play a short set to close out the dinner hour, followed by a concert and dancing to an exciting version of the World Class Rolando Morales Group featuring the exciting Latin percussionist/vocalist from George Benson and Prince, Estaire Godinez; the funky bassist from Tower of Power, Marc van Wageningen; from Brazil, the exciting drummer from Airto and Steve Winwood, Celso Alberti; from Michael Franti and Spearhead, the return of the killer keyboardist Bob Crawford; and the powerful Rolando Morales leading the journey on guitar, guitar synthesizer and vocals.   Don’t miss it!   $15.  Make your  reservations at (415) 331-2899.www.sausalitoseahorse.com

Tuesday Oct 11, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 6-9pmRolando returns to Carlos Santana’s Walnut Creek restaurant for Taco Tuesday.  $1 tacos, baby!  Enjoy Rolando on solo guitar and voice with his huge repertoire and big sound out on the front patio.  See www.mariamariarestaurants.com, or call (925) 946-1010.

Friday Oct 21, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6 to 9 pm.   Rolando  returns to this popular dining spot on solo guitar and voice in the intimate Restaurant Room.  (650) 589-1163 and see  www.donpicosbistro.com.

Saturday Oct 22, Pairings Cellars, 310 Main Street, Pleasanton CA 94566, 8-11pmRolando returns to this new, exciting social hotspot in downtown Pleasanton.  This new wine bar features fine wines, tapas and Rolando Morales performing his broad repertoire on solo guitar and voice.  Free! www.pairingscellars.com, (925) 398-8846.

Sunday Oct 23, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 2-5pm.  Enjoy a Mexican brunch at Carlos Santana’s lively cantina and Rolando performing on thenewly renovated front patio on solo guitar and voice by the creek. He may be joined by Bob Harrison on flute.   www.mariamariarestaurants.com,   (925) 946-1010.

Tuesday Oct 25, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 6-9pmRolando returns to Carlos Santana’s Walnut Creek restaurant for Taco Tuesday.  $1 tacos, baby!  Enjoy Rolando on solo guitar and voice with his huge repertoire and big sound out on the front patio.  See www.mariamariarestaurants.com, or call (925) 946-1010.

Saturday Oct 29, Vine at Bridges, 480 Hartz Avenue, Danville, approx 8-11pmThe Rolando Morales Duet returns to this cool winery and nightspot.  Enjoy a wonderful selection of wines, superb dinners and munchies while enjoying this powerful duet.  Tonight Rolando reunites with the enchanting keyboardist/vocalist who shared the stage with Stevie Wonder and Sting, the great Janice Maxie-Reid; and on guitar, voice and his pedal board of magic, the passionate Rolando Morales.  They’ll cover the musical spectrum.  Don’t miss it!  www.thevineatbridges.com,(925) 820-7210.

Sunday Oct 30, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 2-5pmRolando returns for what may be the last Sunday tardeada performance of the season. Enjoy a Mexican brunch at Carlos Santana’s lively cantina and Rolando performing on the newly renovated front patio on solo guitar and voice by the creek. He may be joined by Bob Harrison on flute.   www.mariamariarestaurants.com,   (925) 946-1010.

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9/11 experience; Rolando’s in Danville Tues; San Bruno Fri; Pleasanton Sat; Walnut Creek Sunday

Tonight Rolando Morales with Bob Harrison at Maria, Maria Cantina, 710 Camino Ramon Road, Danville CA,
Tonight Rolando Morales with Bob Harrison at Maria, Maria Cantina, 710 Camino Ramon Road, Danville CA,

Sept 13, 2016

Hola, Mi Gente!

I wrapped up another jam-packed week with an intimate patio performance on Sunday September 11 at Maria, Maria in Walnut Creek. The full, attentive patio (and even those inside) were receptive to an impromptu musical tribute to the significance of the day. I allowed the gentle wind to select the songs from my book for my 9-11 segment and shared them with the audience. From Stevie Wonder to John Lennon to Djavan and beyond, the wind chose songs I hadn’t done before and the lyrics, mood and passion were perfect for the moment. Very special.
One never knows what’s going to happen from gig to gig. Every day is different. I enjoyed a great private concert up in Oakville on Friday with my talented friends Carlos Reyes, Janice Maxie-Reid, Estaire Godinez, Gary Brown and myself. We created stirring and entertaining moments.
And on Saturday, at Pairings Cellars, a unique version of my Trio — drummer Celso Alberti, bassist Dewayne Pate and myself— surprised and excited the Pleasanton audience with forms of music they weren’t used to seeing there! Hell, I even surprised the band with some of the tunes I called out. Several we had never done before, but I wanted to take advantage of the talent. We hit them strong.
This week I have some big private weeknight events with my band in store, alongside solo public appearances Tuesday at Maria, Maria in Danville, at Don Pico’s Friday, Barone’s Restaurant on Saturday Sept 17 and Maria, Maria in Walnut Creek on Sunday. Details below.
Remember, too, to make your reservations for the annual fund raiser put on by my beautiful friends at Sionfonds to benefit the children and their families in Haiti. It happens next week on Sunday Sept 25 from 4-8pm at Venga Paella in Oakland. These people really do exceptional work, have big hearts and kick it all off from right here in Oaktown. It’s a great night out with authentic paella dinners, sangria and other libations, Haitian crafts, and I’ll be providing the musical sound track. I urge you to click on their site to learn more and make your reservations. www.sionfonds.org.

You can also reserve here: http://www.pingg.com/rsvp/pk8a76g22yq3zbkhp.
See you at the show!
Ciao,
Rolando

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Rolando Morales September 2016 Calendar

Rolando Morales Trio at Pairings Cellars
Rolando Morales Trio at Pairings Cellars

Hola, Mi Gente!

The year is flying by like a ghost.  Are we already entering the last quarter?  Did we really lose so many?  Are these events really happening?

Throughout it all, I continue to perform my private and public shows throughout La Bahia and beyond, endeavoring to create good, positive feelings by sharing my music and passion.  I feel grateful to still be doing so as frequently as I do.  

September brings more of these blended opportunities, so please join me when you can!  I’m looking forward to some great private wine country events and playing for a repeat client that should bring in around 1,500 people.  

Publicly, I’m looking forward to Saturday Sept 10 from 8-11pm, when a new version of my Trio performs at Pairings Cellars, the brand new Pleasanton night spot.  We’ll have the great Brazilian drummer Celso Alberti; the deeply grooving bassist Dewayne Pate; and I’ll lead the way on guitar, guitar synth and voice.  Free!  Details below.

For those of you keeping score, after months away, I’m also returning to Barone’s Restaurant on Saturday Sept 17,also in Pleasanton.  Details below.

I’m also very happy to be contributing to the annual fund raiser put on by my beautiful friends at Sionfonds to benefit the children and their families in Haiti.  These people really do exceptional work, have big hearts and start it all from right here in Oakland.  The party happens on Sunday Sept 25 from 4-8pm at Venga Paella in Oakland.  It’s a great night out with authentic paella dinners, sangria and other libations, Haitian crafts, and I’ll be providing the musical sound track.  I urge you to click on their site to learn more and make your reservations. www.sionfonds.org.  You can also reserve here:  http://www.pingg.com/rsvp/pk8a76g22yq3zbkhp.   

There’s much more happening in your new Calendar, so check it out and say “Hola!”  See you at the show!

Ciao,

Rolando 

LAST PUBLIC PERFORMANCE FOR SEPTEMBER 2016

Friday Sept 2, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6 to 9 pm.  After almost a month away, Rolando returns to the place The Examiner and Independent have proclaimed has the “Best Seafood and Best Mexican Food” anywhere, on solo guitar and voice in the Restaurant Room.  Call (650) 589-1163www.donpicosbistro.com.

Sunday Sept 4, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 2-5pm.  Rolando returns for the Maria, Maria Tardeada series.  Enjoy a Mexican brunch outdoors and Rolando performing on the newly renovated front patio on solo guitar and voice by the creek.  He may be joined by flautist Bob Harrison.  www.mariamariarestaurants.com(925) 946-1010.

Saturday Sept 10, Pairings Cellars, 310 Main Street, Pleasanton CA 94566, 8-11pm.  Rolando returns to this new, exciting social hotspot in downtown Pleasanton.  This new wine bar features fine wines, tapas and the Rolando Morales Trio, this time featuring from Brazil, the superb drummer from Steve Winwood and Airto, the great Celso Alberti; bassist from Arturo Sandoval, Robben Ford and so many more, the great Dewayne Pate; and Rolando Morales leading the way on guitar, guitar synth and voice.  Free! www.pairingscellars.com(925) 398-8846.

Sunday Sept 11, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 2-5pm.  Enjoy a Mexican brunch and Rolando performing on the newly renovated front patio on solo guitar and voice by the creek.  If it’s too hot, it will be indoors.   He may be joined by Bob Harrison on flute.   www.mariamariarestaurants.com,   (925) 946-1010.

Tuesday Sept 13, Maria, Maria Cantina, 710 Camino Ramon Road, Danville CA, approx 6-9pm.  Rolando returns to Carlos Santana’s most elegant restaurant for Taco Tuesday.  $1 tacos, baby!  And Rolando on solo guitar and voice with his diverse repertoire performing out on the patio by the fire pits.  (925) 820-2366.  See www.mariamariarestaurants.com.

Friday Sept 16, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6 to 9 pm.   Celebrate 16 de Septiembre, Mexican Independence Day with Rolando  as returns on solo guitar and voice in the intimate Restaurant Room.  (650) 589-1163 and see www.donpicosbistro.com.

Saturday Sept 17, Barone’s Restaurant, 475 St. John St., Pleasanton CA, approx 7:30-10:30pm.   Rolando returns to one of Pleasanton’s premier dining establishments.  Enjoy exquisite meals, libations and Rolando’s vast repertoire in the Cocktail Lounge for a great night out.  See www.baronespleasanton.com(925) 426-0987.

Sunday Sept 18, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx 2-5pm.  Enjoy a Mexican brunch at Carlos Santana’s lively cantina and Rolando performing on the newly renovated front patio on solo guitar and voice by the creek. He may be joined by Bob Harrison on flute.   www.mariamariarestaurants.com,   (925) 946-1010.

Friday Sept 23, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6-9 pm.  Rolando  returns on solo guitar and voice, now in the intimate Restaurant Room.  Call (650) 589-1163 and www.donpicosbistro.com.

Sunday Sept 25, “Sionfonds for Haiti Presents: Party & Fund Raiser to Support Children & Their Families in Haiti,” Venga Paella, 229 Brush Street (at 3rd St.), Oakland 4 to 8pm.  Rolando lends a hand to some dear friends in their mission to provide education, nutrition, job training, community improvements and health care to rural Haitian families.  Enjoy a great party at this cool Oakland spot that will serve up a splendid paella dinner and drinks.  Bring a friend and meet smart, fun, caring people while Rolando Morales provides live entertainment on solo guitar and voice.  Bid for unique local and Haitian crafts and amazing services you’ll want, such as Haitian crafts, catered dinners with live music (by me!) and more!  $45 includes dinner.  www.sionfonds.org.  Reserve here: http://www.pingg.com/rsvp/pk8a76g22yq3zbkhp

Tuesday Sept 27, Maria, Maria Cantina, 1470 North Broadway, Walnut Creek, approx. 6-9pm.  Rolando returns to Carlos Santana’s Walnut Creek restaurant for Taco Tuesday.  $1 tacos, baby!  Enjoy Rolando on solo guitar and voice with his huge repertoire and big sound out on the front patio.  See www.mariamariarestaurants.com, or call (925) 946-1010.

Friday Sept 30, Don Pico’s Mexican Bistro, 461 El Camino Real, San Bruno, 6-9 pm.   Rolando  returns on solo guitar and voice, now in the intimate Restaurant Room.  Call (650) 589-1163 and www.donpicosbistro.com.

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We miss you Toots Thieleman

We miss Toots  Thieleman, by Rolando Morales
We miss Toots Thieleman, by Rolando Morales

Hola, Mi Gente!

Today we lost yet another musical icon, this time in the world of jazz.  The diminutive Belgian Toots Thielemans, a jazz harmonica player, guitarist and whistler, was indeed a musical giant.  He lived to the age of 94 and played almost as long.  “Why would I retire?” he once said.  “I do what I love.” 

His sweet, unique sound came from a  place he described as somewhere “between a smile and a tear.”  What an amazing life lead by an amazing gentleman!  We’re most fortunate that he shared his unique gift with the world for so many decades. I spoke with him and saw him perform several times over the years . He was kind, humble, honest and funny. He was Quincey Jones’ favorite musician and one of the world’s musical treasures. We’ll continue to enjoy his passionate legacy. We love you, Toots.

I just completed six days in a row of private and public gigs all over La Bahia, from San Jose to Walnut Creek.  They included some beautiful locales, sensuous Russian girls who wouldn’t stop dancing and even a good amount of tears from appreciative listeners.  It was a really good week that left me totally spent by the time late Sunday night rolled around.  

I’m wrapping up my active August with some more lovely private events and four public shows.  This Friday Aug 26 from 8-11pm, I do my very first solo performance at the Pairings Cellars, the brand new Pleasanton night spot.  I’m looking forward to unveiling my diverse repertoire to that new audience.  

Rolando Morales Performs Pairings Cellars Solo
Rolando Morales Performs Pairings Cellars Solo

I also have another fun duet show coming up this Saturday August 27 at The Vine at Bridges from 8-11pm with the charismatic Estaire Godinez, the Latin percussionist-vocalist who played with George Benson and Prince.  She lights it up!  

The beautiful Estaire Godinez joins Rolando Morales at The Vine at Bridges
The beautiful Estaire Godinez joins Rolando Morales at The Vine at Bridges, August 27, 2016 from 8-11pm.

I’ll also have Maria, Maria in Walnut Creek on Sunday Aug 28 from 2-5pm on the patio, and also next Tuesday Aug 30 at Maria, Maria, this time in Danville, 6-9pm.  A great way to wrap up the month.  See you at the show!

Ciao,

Rolando 

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