An Old School Weekend with Still Surfin’ and Friendship Train – Tributes to The Beach Boys and Gladys Knight and The Pips, “Feel Good Music,” and More at BBJ

1st Tuesday Jam with Gary Grainger and Friends, Nia Simmons and Geneva Renee, Still Surfin’ Beach Boys Tribute, Friendship Train Gladys Knight and the Pips Tribute, Secret Society at Bethesda Blues and Jazz Supper Club, August 2016Tuesday (8/2) Come one, come all to the 1st Tuesday Jam with Gary Grainger and Friends! This monthly event gives YOU the chance to jam and sing with bassist Gary Grainger, drummer Greg Grainger, and their world-class musician friends. You’ll have a blast whether you join the band onstage or simply come out, have some food and drinks, and enjoy the music. We offer free admission for AFM Union member card holders (must present Union Card and valid picture ID at door). The Jam starts at 8pm.

Wednesday (8/3) We’ve got a soulful night in store with DC-area singers Nia Simmons and Geneva Renée! Born and raised in Alexandria, VA, Nia Simmons has a vocal style is heavily rooted in gospel, R&B, and jazz. Not only has she performed as a headliner at notable venues (Blues Alley, The Carlyle Club), she has also been privileged to share the stage as a background vocalist with acclaimed artists such as Regina Belle, Howard Hewett, Bobby McFerrin, Kirk Whalem, Meli’sa Morgan, and Crystal Aikin, and others. Geneva Renée, the highly sought after mezzo-soprano whose range spans three octaves has been a featured soloist at events honoring Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton. An alumna of Howard University, Geneva is heavily influenced by classical, jazz, soul, gospel and pop. She has shared the stage with stars including Diana Ross, Maysa Leak, and Vanessa Williams. The music begins at 8pm.

Friday (8/5) Professional tribute band Still Surfin’ has been performing the music of The Beach Boys for over 15 years. Still Surfin’ features the incredible five part harmonies of The Beach Boys and they’re ready to entertain with authentic costuming, audience participation, great choreography, heavy spring reverb surf guitar, and the songs that everyone knows and loves. Just like the original Beach Boys, they might also pull out songs from other great ’60s surf bands like Jan and Dean, The Ventures, Dick Dale, and The Safaris. They play all the great car songs, too! Come out to see Still Surfin’ for a true-to-form show – just like the originals sounded on their live tours back in the day. Surf’s up at 8pm.

Saturday (8/6) Shadows of the 60’s Present Friendship Train – A Tribute to Gladys Knight & The Pips! Perhaps the most dynamic female lead singer of all time from Motown roster of stars, Gladys Knight, backed by the smooth vocals and choreography of The Pips, burst onto the music scene in 1961 and continued to enjoyed success for decades to come. Their hits include “With Every Beat Of My Heart,” “I Don’t  Wanna Do Wrong,” “You’re The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Me,” “I Heard It Through The Grapevine,” “Midnight Train To Georgia,” “Friendship Train,”  “Neither One Of Us,” and “If I Were Your Woman.” Because of Gladys’ soul-stirring vocal delivery, it is no accident that there aren’t many tributes to this unique group. Shadows Of The 60’s, known for their reputation of delivering the best in tribute productions, searched for three years to find such a gifted vocal talent. Join them as they return to the sound of one of the mighty pillars of that elusive Motown Magic, Gladys Knight & The Pips. The tribute begins at 8pm.

Sunday (8/7) Formed in 2008, Secret Society, the brainchild of Washington-area saxophonist Bryan Mills, was created to bring the “Live Band” sound back to today’s heavily computerized music market. Secret Society is that breath of fresh air. The combination of talent, experience and influences including John Coltrane, Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, The Police, Rick James and a host of others gives this band their own unique sound and identity. The group likes to use the simplistic description “Feel Good Music” to define exactly what it is that they offer. The WAMMIE-nominated group has been featured in magazines including Prince George’s Suite and Magazine 33 Virginia, as “one of the hottest bands in the region.” Bandleader Mills attended Howard University’s prestigious Jazz Studies Program, which gave him the opportunity to play with notable DC-area groups including The Marcus Johnson Project, and Thievery Corporation, and he currently performs with DC’s legendary Chuck Brown “The Godfather of Go-Go” Band. With Wayne Thomas on drums, vocalist Mike Madison, Robbie McDonald playing lead guitar, bassist David Dyson, and Patrick Cooper on keyboards, this recipe of musicians is sure to please the taste buds of the avid music fan! The band starts at 7:30pm.

Who’ll be on the BBJ stage soon? Kandace Springs with special guest Lee Mo, Jon B., Zo! with Carmen Rodgers, The Cindy Blackman Santana Group, Peter Asher and Albert Lee, Kenny Lattimore, and the Michael Jackson Birthday Tribute Concert, to name a few. Visit our Music Calendar and stay up to date!

Happy August! And thanks as always for coming out to support great music in Bethesda. We’ll see you soon.

Rick Brown

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