Local bands set tone for Sierra Solstice Celebration
Join local musical groups CruiseShip Volunteers and SR2 for the first Sierra Solstice Celebration next Saturday, June 21.
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The event will be held from 5-10 p.m. at Mill Creek Station, 150 Mill Creek Rd. off U.S. Highway 395 about nine miles north of Bishop overlooking Round Valley. Â
In addition to each band performing two sets of music during the evening, Mill Creek Station owner Roger Derryberry will be live videotaping CruiseShip Volunteers for their upcoming music video. Derryberry and his wife, Mary Lou Long, have put extensive energy into turning Mill Creek Station into a viable cultural center for the area, and both groups are excited to have the opportunity to perform on Mill Creek Stationâ€™s uniquely beautiful outdoor stage at the base of a historical rock quarry.
There is no cover charge for the event, but donations to the bands and Mill Creek Station will be gratefully accepted. There will be an open barbecue and a potluck starting at 5 p.m., and all are encouraged to bring something tasty to eat and share. Or, feel free to just come to enjoy the music, which will start around 6:30. Â
Drawing inspiration from an elemental experience with nature, the eclectic folk rock sound of CruiseShip Volunteers ambles to an altering rhythm and beats with an adventurous heart. This underground treasure of the Eastern Sierra performs mostly original music scattered with covers ranging from John Prine, Bob Marley and the Grateful Dead to Modest Mouse and Wilco. Â
CruiseShip Volunteersâ€™ core songwriters, Eric Ellis and Jeff Starosta, have been working together since Y2K, performing under a variety of aliases in the ensuing years. Their group has now solidified around the following lineup: Eric Ellis on guitar and vocals; Jeff Starosta on guitar and vocals; Joe Cadotte on bass guitar and vocals; Marty Burgenbauch on drums; and Gilly McChesney on vocals. Â
The CruiseShip Volunteersâ€™ music fosters imaginative vocal harmonies and acoustic grooves with a dash of the banjo, while speaking lyrically about life infused with the beauty of our local environment.Â Kick back and enjoy this extremely talented Eastern Sierra band while â€śthe music hums, we dance all night, and the snow glows under the moonlight.â€ť
The evocative instrumental sound of SR2 is built around the uniquely-tuned electric 12-string guitars of Bruce and Karen Licher. SR2 creates beautiful and compelling melodic structures blended with an insistent groove, and is a natural progression from Bruceâ€™s past work with his bands Scenic and Savage Republic.Â Expressive and mysterious, SR2â€™s sonic landscapes are an ideal soundtrack for traveling the backroads of the Southwest. Joining the Lichers for this Solstice performance will be Stephen Ingram on doumbek and African ashiko drum, and Sabrina Nioche on a full drum kit. SR2â€™s set will include a version of one of Bruceâ€™s â€śOwens Valley Driving Musicâ€ť compositions, an early song from the Savage Republic catalog, and several new songs written by Bruce and Karen here in the Eastern Sierra this past year. This will be SR2â€™s debut performance.
A hand-printed commemorative poster has been produced for the Sierra Solstice Celebration, and will be available for sale at the event along with CDs by CruiseShip Volunteers and Bruce Licherâ€™s former group Scenic. The poster is letterpress printed in four colors at Independent Project Press in Bishop, and features a linocut by Dana Ellis and hand-set type design by Bruce and Karen Licher, incorporating exquisite antique wood type from the collection of Sabrina Nioche.