“SBAcoustic,” a series of acoustic concert by guitarists, opens with a show by Grammy-winners Alex de Grassi (left) and Andrew York on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at Santa Barbara’s New Vic Theatre.

A spectrum of musical styles are featured in concerts in Santa Barbara this weekend. So much music, so little time.

Bluesy Teresa James

Texas-born singer rollicking piano player Teresa James and the Rhythm Tramps make their first Santa Barbara Blues Society appearance on Saturday night at 8 p.m. at the Carrillo Recreation Center (100 E. Carrillo Street). Her tenth CD, “Here in Babylon,” was nominated for Grammy and Independent Blues awards last year. The late great Levon Helm said of James, “when she sings, you can feel it in your bones.”

Doors open at 7 p.m. Paull E. Rubin, local slide-guitar player and singer opens the show with an acoustic set at 7:15 p.m., and the band hits the stage at 8 p.m. There are free BBQ snacks, no-host beer and wine, outdoor patio, and a nifty spring-loaded dance floor. Tickets are $30. (805-722-8155,

“Monday Madness” Jazz

The Big Band tradition lives on in the Monday Madness Jazz Orchestra, presented by the Santa Barbara Jazz Society on Sunday at 1 pm. at Soho Restaurant & Music Club (1221 State Street, upstairs). The powerhouse 19-piece band, based at Santa Barbara City College, is comprised of professionals, students, and jazz educators. It’s been going strong for more than 30 years. Expect standards from Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Stan Kenton, Dizzy Gillespie and more. Tickets are, $25 and only $5 for students, sold only at the door. (805-687-7123,

“SBAcoustic” Kicks Off

“SBAcoustic,” a series of acoustic concerts by guitar players from around the world, plus related activities, is presented by the Santa Barbara Acoustic Music Association over the coming months. More information is at

The first concert features Grammy-winning guitarists Alex de Grassi and Andrew York on Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the New Vic Theatre. De Grassi is a fingerstyle guitar virtuoso, innovator, and an original Windham Hill recording artist. York spent 16 years with the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet but is equally renowned for his solo performances and compositions. They’ll perform original works, arrangements of pop, standards, and more. Tickets are $35.

Guitar makers present their handmade steel, nylon, resonator and harp guitars, and ukuleles at a guitar show on Saturday, from 2 to 5 p.m., also at the New Vic. 

Sunday evening, Carl Verheyen presents an evening of what he calls “Front Porch Blues” at 7:30 p.m. at the Alhecama Theatre. The former lead guitarist for SuperTramp (“Take the Long Way Home”), Verheyen is regarded as a guitar virtuoso capable of playing any style of music with both mastery and conviction. He’s joined by bassist Dave Marotta. Tickets are $25 at the door.

Quick Tip: Handmade, ocean-themed art and authentic sea glass jewelry is for sale at the Sea Glass and Ocean Arts Festival, held Saturday and Sunday at the Earl Warren Showgrounds. There’s also food, live music workshops, speakers, and contests.

Julia McHugh can be reached at


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