Greetings! We hope you are enjoying the sunshine whenever you can because, in this part of Oregon, April showers bring May…showers. But fear not my fine friends, for within our grasp is the remedy. Take one part beer, add some good food and slather on some music and watch those inner clouds disperse! We are truly fortunate to live where we do for you don’t have to go far to find all these things. Food? Forget about it. It’s the Willamette Valley! We do food! Beer? Beer is mostly water and guess where that fine beer making water comes from? The making of the beer? Only about 60 feet from the very taps from which it doth dispense. And the music. One of the things that has kept me in this area is the very fact that if you were to throw a rock in any direction (not something I necessarily do, mind you, this is a theoretical exercise) you stand a better than average chance of hitting a musician. That’s not to say they’re a dime a dozen, or that any Joe with a guitar on his back is a musician. What I mean is we are blessed with a large proportion of very talented people per capita.

That said, I would like to introduce to you three bands. From Corvallis, and playing our dart-board backed stage the first Thursday of every month, The Rusty Hinges. This old-timey trio is just one of many groups in our local area that are part of the “Roots” movement in music. This movement seems particularly salient in this region where there is a desire to return to a time when connections were local. “Rooted” in terms of who and what we are, where our food and water comes from and how we use and discard what we are done with and where your favorite musicians know your name. Visit Rusty Hinges at www.myspace.com/rhinges.

From McMinnville, just up the road a piece comes Jack Ruby Presents. Again, a sound that hearkens to the early 20th century of an agrarian way of life in tension with an increasingly rapid pace. Amid the reminiscence of simpler times come the dark strains of a socio/political shift in our collective consciousness. A time of rampant injustice in rural areas where life is supposed to be sweeter. Jack Ruby Presents brings those elements together to form a complex and passionate commentary of the way things were, in some ways still are, and indeed how some things never change. It’s pretty, dark… human in its defiant joy. JRP plays at the Calapooia Brewpub this Friday at 8pm. No cover.

www.myspace.com/jackrubypresents.

On Saturday, our fellow Albanians Terry, Jerrod and Pat, collectively known as BLEACH, A Tribute to Nirvana, will be paying us a visit for a 9 o’clock show. Don’t expect to see these guys dressed as those Seattle legends and trying to sound just as they did. This is a true tribute, an homage to the spirit of the band Nirvana. You’re not likely to hear your favorites from the radio. These guys play the songs that really made Nirvana special and that brought the word “grunge” into our popular vocabulary. This is stripped-down, brass-tacks rock and roll that is front man Terry Geil’s forte. If you liked Nirvana, or just like your rock and roll unadorned with unnecessary trappings, then this is the show for you. $3 cover.

www.myspace.com/bleachnirvanatribute.