John Gorka is coming to Caltech! If you haven’t heard John and his rich baritone voice, great guitar, and insightful lyrics, you might have heard his songs by the likes of Mary Chapin Carpenter, Ani DiFranco, or others. We’ve been aware of him for a long time, since he co-billed a show in the very early days of our series and in his career, way back in 1988. At that show, we first heard his joyous song, Branching Out, and in the intervening years, he has added scores of outstanding songs, such as Blue Chalk , Ignorance and Privilage, and the autobiographical I’m from New Jersey. Some of his songs are whimsical, but many are serious and make you really think and feel. He really is one of the finest in the business, which is why he is still at it, making a living from his music and touring the world. With so many great songs to draw from, including a brand new recording, True in Time, we don’t know exactly what we will hear Saturday night, but we know it will be memorable. John now lives in Minnesota, and just after fellow Minnesotan, Prince died a couple of years ago, John performed a very moving version of Prince’s song, When Doves Cry as a tribute. He is an incredibly versatile performer and he is a spontaneous and funny guy. Catch him live, when he is at his best. We’ve been working on his return for some years, so there’s no telling if and when we can get him back again.
Tickets for this show are $20 for adults, $5 for children and Caltech students. You can purchase tickets at the Caltech Ticket Office, 1200 E. California Blvd (southeast corner of Wilson Avenue and California Blvd) between 10AM and 4:30 PM, Monday-Friday or by phone with a service charge at (626) 395-4652. You can get them online (for a fee) until Thursday here. You can also buy them at the door (cash or check). The New Kingston Trio show in Beckman Auditorium (“Big Beckman”) is coming into view, March 31. Hear this fine “next generation version of the Trio, featuring Josh Reynolds, son of original member, Nick Reynolds. You are likely to be treated to such songs as Tom Dooley, Where Have all the Flowers Gone?, A Worried Man, and many, many more. Get a sample here. Be aware that this is a different assemblage of the Trio than appeared at Caltech a few years ago. We highly recommend this show, and if you mention the Pasadena Folk Music Society when you order your tickets at the Ticket Office or by phone, you will get $5 off on each ticket! See Public Events’ page about it here.
A reminder about the new parking situation at Caltech for those who have not attended a show for awhile: There will be the usual limited parking right behind the large Beckman Auditorium- It is OK to park in slots with names, but the lot may fill up. The parking lots between Michigan and Wilson have been mostly closed- a new building will soon begin construction. The most reliable parking will be on Wilson Avenue, either on the street or in the two parking structures just south of Del Mar Avenue, across the street from Beckman Institute. One structure is just north of the Institute at 341 S. Wilson Avenue, and the other, 405 S. Wilson, is just a bit south of the Institute. Rest assured that after 5PM on weekdays, and all day on weekends, you can park for free in these structures, despite signs that allude to the more restricted parking rules during the day on weekdays. You can even park at slots that have names on them! From the structures, walk around the big lawn in front of Beckman Institute and you will recognize where to go. On this map, we are suggesting that you park in structures #123 and #124 in the upper left. Beckman Institute is building #74, just to the east (right). If you need help figuring this out, try calling (626) 616-4559.
We repeat a couple of reminders below. Also, check out the Big Bear family of bald eagles (including alternating parents, 2 chicks and a nest), covered in snow right now. Nature in the raw and cold!
Also this weekend is the Pasadena Pow Wow at William Carey International University in Pasadena on Saturday, March 3 and Sunday, March 4. We want to see you at the John Gorka show on Saturday night, but this event starts around 11:00 AM, so you might be able to get to both. It is one of the best kept secrets in the Pasadena area, but if you want to hear some great Native American drumming and singing, along with dancing, right in Pasadena, come to 1530 E. Elizabeth Street between 11 AM and 7 PM on Saturday and until 5 or 6 PM on Sunday for this free event. We can’t find a current link to information about the event, but we’ve been assured that they are holding it again this year for the 21st time! This flyer from last year should give you the basics and we’ve given you the dates. There is a very limited value Facebook page here.
Art Night Pasadena is coming next weekend, Friday, March 9, 6-10 PM, See the Norton Simon Museum, the Museum of California Art, the new Parson’s Nose Theater, and hear taiko drumming at the Shumei Arts Council and a sampling of MUSE/IQUE at Paseo Pasadena. And there are many other sites, all free and connected by free buses. The newly refurbished USC Asia Pacific Museum has reopened. You can reach the heart of the event by Gold Line train by getting off at the Memorial Park Station. The hardest part is deciding how many and which sites you have time for. be sure to look at the entire list. There are plenty of places to eat, very nice places in Old Pasadena, and more affordable ones in the fringes. Be sure to give it a try if you have never been.