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Feb 13th
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The Down Beets

music_LYLBDownBeetsWhile most bands are busy employing more technology in their show, splattering the stage from one end to the other with cutting-edge gear, the Down Beets are running in the opposite direction—and it’s made them run into each other. Last spring the 4-year-old alt-country bluegrass quartet decided to simplify things by changing into a one-mic format. At first, however, crowding around a single mic took a bit of getting used to. Singer Sheila Golden explains: “I totally got whacked in the head a few times by the banjo, I’ve whacked Jay [Lampel] with the guitar, and at a couple shows Jeremy [Lampel] had to run around to the other side to get near the mic. It can be really comical but we’re getting better.” “Getting better” has meant burgeoning into a sweet Del McCoury performance style that’s revolutionized the band.

These days, without having to worry about soundguys or a cable-entangling set-up, the Beets woo audiences with an intimate show that lends itself to down-home harmonies and orchestrated choreography, which they’re bringing to Don Quixote’s on Wednesday, March 31, alongside MilkDrive. While Golden takes on songwriting and rhythm guitar duties, twin brothers Jay and Jeremy Lampel (both formerly of StrungOver) whisk together a hot picking combo of three-finger style banjo and mandolin, while standup bassist Mike Luke often adds a rockabilly slap approach. Hitting up the Santa Cruz Bluegrass Fair, the Big Sur Bluegrass Festival, and the occasional farmers’ market around town, the band fittingly procures a dynamic folk show that’s homegrown, organic and, of course, tasty. There’s the rockabilly of “Will I Still Like You When I’m Sober?”, the satirical gospel of “He’s Got My Back,” and the traditional slow waltz of “Little Girl’s Lament.” But whether swinging or subdued, the Down Beets are now doing it closer than ever. Golden says the members’ tight proximity on stage these days has been a progressive step back in time. “When you play in a room through one mic you can really capture the essence of traditional acoustic music.” She adds, “Plus, it’s just nice to be able to hear each other.” | Linda Koffman

 


INFO: 7:30 p.m. Wed., March 31. Don Quixote’s, 6275 Hwy 9, Felton. $8. 603-2294. myspace.com/thedownbeets.
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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of February 12

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
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