Between June 15 and August 17, the City of West Hollywood through its Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission will present the 2014 Summer Sounds Concert Performance Series, which will take place outdoors throughout the summer at West Hollywood Park, Kings Road Park and Plummer Park. All concerts are FREE to attend. Limited first come, first serve seating will be available, or alternately bring a picnic basket and a blanket to enjoy the show. The concert dates and bands are below; descriptions and music links will be updated soon!
La Sirena y Mar de Ashe, Sunday June 15th, West Hollywood Park 1 PM*
Cuba. Puerto Rico. Nicaragua. Venezuela. México. Perú. The Dominican Republic. Guatemala. Chile. Colombia. And, of course, the United States. These are among the rainbow of nationalities that harmoniously blend together into the mighty ocean of talent that is ORQUESTA MAR DE ASHÉ. Led by vocalist, composer and arranger, La Sirena, Orquesta Mar de Ashé presents a delicious eclectic variety of danceable SALSA, Latin Jazz, Bachata, Merengue, Cumbia, Cha Cha, Son, and Bolero. Mar de Ashé boasts three vocalists, including not only the seductive siren songs of La Sirena, but also co-lead vocalist Oscar Daniel; creating a balance between male and female lead vocals, as well as sizzling harmonies and romantic duets. The orchestra features an explosive rhythm section, with piano, bass, timbales, conga, bongó, campana, guiro, guira, and tambora; and a smokin' horn section consisting of two trumpets, trombone, and baritone sax doubling on the alto. With its unique vocal sound, big brass, and traditional Latin percussion, Mar de Ashé plays both covers and originals, giving you something at once traditional, and yet completely fresh and new -- with its bilingual approach appealing to the full-spectrum audience. The talented members of this11-piece orchestra have played all over the globe for such diverse artists as Stevie Wonder, Earth Wind & Fire, Dizzy Gillespie, Linda Ronstadt, Diana Ross, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Luis Miguel, Eddie Santiago, Luis Enrique, Sonora Dinamita, Poncho Sanchez, Cuco Valoy, Bobby Caldwell, Luther Vandross, Doc Severinsen, Mel Tormé, Aretha Franklin, and James Brown, to name only a few. For more information including music samples, visit: here.
*Part of the One City One Pride LGBT Arts Festival as a celebration of parenthood on Father's Day (co-sponsored by the RaiseAChild.US and Pop-Luck Club)
Thom Dower, Sunday, June 29th, Kings Road Park 4 PM
Thom Dower is an artist who has also played professionally in Los Angeles for many years. He teaches guitar and performs for the LA Dept of Cultural Affairs. He will be playing the instrumental arrangements of melodies he has been playing at Plummer Park for years. He feels that the presence of the patrons of the park creates a response on the guitar player's part that, in turn,reflects a mood and sense of space. For more information including music samples, visit here.
Judy Wexler, Sunday, July 13th, Plummer Park 4 PM
Vocalist Judy Wexler has been garnering rave reviews and fans across the country and around the world. A touring and recording artist, she has headlined at jazz festivals, performing arts centers and major jazz clubs both nationally and internationally. She released her 4th CD, “What I See,” in September 2013 on the Jazzed Media label. Receiving wide national jazz radio airplay and stellar reviews, “What I See” showcases Wexler’s close creative ties to her longtime pianist/arranger and co-producer Jeff Colella. Music Man Blog calls the CD “one of the best jazz albums of the year!” Judy is widely known as a straight-ahead jazz singer and an inspired interpreter of lyrics, who has been cited repeatedly by critics as having the rare ability to find the essential truth of a song. She displays an unerring ear for underexposed gems and possesses a pliably warm, lustrous sound. For more information including music samples, visit here.
Julio Montero and the Far South Trio, Sunday, July 27th, Kings Road Park 4 PM
Julio Montero is an internationally acclaimed harpist who began his professional career in Spain in the early nineties, and since then, has performed in concerts throughout Europe, North and South America and Japan. He also served as musical advisor to the Cultural Foundation “Chavin” of Julio León Gómez; and has organized and taught workshops for various international harp festivals. In the United States, Julio has participated in many concerts and shows like "Fiesta Argentina" in 2005, 2006, 2010 and 2011 at The Ford Amphitheater in Hollywood, CA. He has also appeared in several television shows and has recorded, in collaboration with other artists, music for "Smithsonian Folkways." In his spare time, Julio enjoys to write and compose music. He is currently working on his next record production that will combine rhythms from Latin, International and American repertoire. Julio can be heard playing at concerts and special performances for various shows, special presentations, hotels and resorts throughout Southern California. For more information including music samples, visit here.
Jet Set Quintet, Sunday, August 3rd, Plummer Park 4 PM
With Mambos, Cha-Chas and plenty organ-drenched swing classics, the cocktail-centric anthems of the Jet Set Quintet recall the fads, fashion and optimism of Mid-Century America. Performing inspired original works, as well as original arrangements of timeless jazz classics, the Jet Set Quintet mixes a sonic cocktail that is equal parts musical virtuosity and pure entertainment. The swingin’ five-some showcases the musical genres from the late 1950’s to the early 1960’s, including the popular sounds of the TV and film studio orchestras of Henry Mancini, Billy May and Esquivel; The Cool School tones of Miles Davis, Dave Brubeck and Stan Getz; The Bossa Nova or “New Beat” of Sergio Mendes and Harry Bellefonte’s Calypso. So pour your favorite cocktail, relax and enjoy the mood and music of the Atomic Age –– courtesy of the Jet Set Quintet. For more information including music samples, visit here.
Riverboat Dixie Jazz Band, Sunday, August 17th, West Hollywood Park 4 PM
Riverboat Dixie Jazz Band was formed in 1998 and is dedicated to playing traditional New Orleans style Dixieland jazz and to enhancing the public appreciation of early jazz. Much of their repetoire consists of songs composed from 1897 through the 1920's, the "Jazz Age". Combining early American jazz tunes, interesting and humorous narrative, and popular audience participation, Riverboat Dixie entertainment is family oriented, exciting, upbeat and toe-tapping. For more information including music samples, visit here.
Chairs are provided at all Summer Sounds events. The Parks are ideal picnic spots, so bring a blanket and a basket and enjoy! (Please note: City parks are alcohol free).
West Hollywood Park: 625 N. San Vicente Blvd. Free 2 hour parking in the 5 story parking structure accessible from El Tovar Place (validation at the Park Office near the south playground). There's a number of local restaurants walking distance to the park, where you can pick up food for the concert and a Pavilion's Market one block away.
Kings Road Park: 1000 N. Kings Road (at Romaine St. 1 block south of Santa Monica Blvd). Parking: Kings Road parking structure and adjacent streets. There's a number of local restaurants walking distance to the park, where you can pick up food for the concert, and Gelson's Market is half a block away.
Plummer Park: 7377 Santa Monica Blvd. Free Parking in both Plummer Park parking lots accessible from Santa Monica Blvd. or Fountain Ave. There's a number of local restaurants walking distance to the park, where you can pick up food for the concert.
Go to Visit West Hollywood to plan your night out in WeHo.
If you are a musician whose music may be suited for a Summer or Winter Sounds Concert we have an open application process. Application deadlines vary but generally you can expect that we will have applications open in February and September of each year. More info on our 'opportunities' page.