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By Ashley Breeding | January 2, 2009
Laguna musician Kurt Mahoney was born with a passion for music, but it was the emergence of the Beatles in the 1960s, he said, that forever changed his life. Soon after, it was bands like Cream, the Grateful Dead, Miles Davis, and Bob Marley and the Wailers that expanded his musical interests, and he developed an affinity for Jazz and Reggae. ?It was the groove, melody, intensity of the artists ? all of it,? he said. ?Every ounce of my body was completely and utterly captivated.
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By Billy Fried | February 19, 2013
Laguna Beach should be celebrated as a music colony - especially for world-class reggae - as much as an art colony. It started back in the late '70s, when Laguna native Eric "Redz" Morton was 21 and gigging as the bassist in a L.A. Latin jazz band called La Luce. Unfortunately, this was the horrendous period of pop culture known as the disco era, and fabulously textured Latin jazz wasn't the music to eat 'ludes and snort coke to. Disco was decidedly not a path Redz was willing to follow (anyone who knows the rootsy Redz can't picture him in sequins and platform shoes)
NEWS
April 19, 2002
Haleh Laguna's essence and comfort oozes chill. Not as in a chilled drink, or a chilled glass, but as in "chill out." The comfort often found in everyone's abode soaks up relaxing vibes and chaos is usually not invited. For this reason my music pick for the week is appropriately titled "The Chillout Session." The variety of artists found on "The Chillout Session" has the comfort zone element in mind. Each artist keeps the speed of their songs to a low, slow, minimum enticing relaxation.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rhea Mahbubani and This post has been corrected, as noted below. | August 21, 2013
The men in Adam Lasher's family gave him the greatest gift - music. After his father died when he was 6, he missed having someone with whom to discuss cars, argue about sports or teach him how to tie a tie. Instead, his uncles and cousins exposed him to an array of melodies, developing his musical tastes. One uncle who not only greatly influenced the guitarist's life but also perhaps his style is Carlos Santana. "When I did see male elders in the family, they played music," said Lasher, 26, of Huntington Beach.
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By Joanna Clay | January 19, 2012
When one hears Gavyn Bailey's voice, it's hard to believe that the 13-year-old from Laguna Niguel doesn't have a recording contract. On YouTube he sings Ingrid Michaelson's "The Way I am" as if the song were written for him. While some kids might point to a heavy course load or an active social life as distractions, Gavyn's had to battle a much larger obstacle when it comes to focusing on his music. At 3 years old, Gavyn had a kidney transplant. His mother, Giselle Bailey, said that the day before he was born she was told he might not make it. About a year ago, his body rejected the transplanted kidney - a common occurrence for transplant patients - which caused him to have high blood pressure and a brain hemorrhage.
NEWS
By Candice Baker | March 21, 2008
Bassoonist Bill Hunker of the Pacific Symphony Orchestra taught Top of the World Elementary students about Mozart, rhythm and the joy of music as part of the school?s Class Act program. The PTA-sponsored series introduces a different famous composer to the students each year, as taught by a professional musician who also teaches about their own instrument. Students learn musical history and composition, listening techniques and fun facts about the composer?s life. This year?
FEATURES
By Ashley Breeding | May 23, 2008
Dr. Arian Mowlavi derives pleasure from writing songs and composing music because it’s an artistic outlet. He has devoted his life to a career in cosmetic surgery for the same reason. “I always knew I wanted to be a surgeon,” he said. “During med school, I decided plastic surgery was special because you must be creative — every face and feature you work with is different.” Most of the time, Mowlavi can be found at Cosmetic Surgery Clinics in South Laguna, where he’s practiced solo as a board certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon for nearly four years.
NEWS
November 22, 2002
Dennis Piszkiewicz While adolescents of all ages are lining up for tickets to see the rapper from Detroit in "8 Mile," there is a shorter line of folks at a single theater in Orange County that is showing a movie about the creators of much of America's best pop music, "Standing in the Shadows of Motown." If you like your music with melody as well as rhythm, see this film while you still have the chance. This movie documents the careers and music of the Funk Brothers, a group of a dozen or so jazz and rhythm and blues musicians who formed the house band for the "Motown" record label during the 1960s and early 1970s.
NEWS
August 12, 2005
TOM TITUS Laguna Beach's No Square Theater, having recently satirized its city in the annual "Lagunatics" romp, is reverting to traditional musical theater -- sort of. The local producing group will be holding auditions Saturday for one of the most popular staples of the genre, Rodgers and Hammerstein's "The Sound of Music," which the company plans to stage in its own No Square way. "We'll put the audience in...
NEWS
April 8, 2005
Suzie Harrison The City Council on Tuesday voted to move forward with this summer's schedule for Music in the Park and ask the Arts Commission to continue to seek ways to improve the experience for Bluebird Park residents and find alternative locations. There were sighs of relief from supporters when the City Council unanimously approved nine concerts for the series using the schedule proposed from July 24 through September 18. "I'm very pleased that the City Council is supporting Music in the Park," Arts Commission Chair Jan Sattler said.
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NEWS
April 3, 2014
Notables Honorable performance The Rotary Club of Laguna Beach recently honored Makenna Pitz as Laguna Beach High School Student of the Month for March in the Performing Arts Department. Makenna performed in the high school's "Guys and Dolls" musical. She also earned a M.A.C.Y. special recognition award, a Theatre II Pride Award and the DAR Citizenship Award. She is planning to attend a four-year university in Southern California, majoring in sociology or communications, with a goal of an entertainment business career.
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NEWS
April 3, 2014
We want to thank the Sawdust Festival Board of Directors and the city of Laguna Beach Planning Commission for agreeing to the Blue Water Music Festival last weekend held on the festival grounds. Rick Conkey and his team, including a large number of community groups and volunteers, deserve congratulations on organizing a mellow, musical event in a peaceful, historic setting. We hope the board and city will recognize the value of this event and agree to a repeat performance next year.
NEWS
By David Hansen and By David Hansen | April 3, 2014
The night before his Blue Water Music Festival last weekend, organizer Rick Conkey slept on an air mattress on the festival grounds, making sure no one stole the equipment. At 6 foot 5, his feet hung over the edge of the mattress. But he didn't care. He had other things to worry about. Would people show up? Will he have enough cash to pay the bands? Will he be able to show his face again in Laguna? He worried but he didn't let it show. By midday Saturday, people started arriving - not a lot, but some.
NEWS
By Billy Fried | March 26, 2014
Is there really anything else as newsworthy as this weekend's Blue Water Music Festival, the brainchild of music impresario Rick Conkey? It's massively massive fun. Say goodbye, Coachella. Adios, Street Scene. Adieu, Lightning in a Bottle. Laguna has its very own multiday music festival Saturday and Sunday. Two days, three stages, 34 bands and 18 hours of nonstop, live music showcasing Laguna's finest artists. You don't have to stay up late to hear great live music. You don't have to loiter in a dive bar, choke on stale air, congress with drunks or worry about late-night cops lurking in the shadows.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rhea Mahbubani | March 26, 2014
This weekend, Rick Conkey plans to showcase several causes that he holds dear - not the least of which is celebrating reggae music. The host of KX 93.5's "Music Matters" radio show is set to launch the American Reggae Hall of Fame by honoring the Rebel Rockers and their founder, Eric Morton, at the upcoming Blue Water Music Festival, which will feature an assortment of musical genres. "Laguna Beach is widely regarded as the capital of reggae in the United States, and that's largely because of the Rebel Rockers and Eric Morton," Conkey said.
NEWS
By Alicia Lopez | March 20, 2014
NOTABLES Fostering volunteerism Laguna's Gary Bittner has been honored with a Spirit of Volunteerism award for his work with the Foster Care Auxiliary of Orange County. Bittner is an auxiliary board member who recently initiated relationships with hotels to donate their lost-and-found items to the group, which provides services to foster parents, according to the group's Facebook page. He also works to get the group named as beneficiary for fundraising activities, such as golf tournaments and donation boxes.
NEWS
By David Hansen | March 6, 2014
Most people segment their lives in broad categories: family, work, play. Each category comprises many activities. In the play bucket, for example, there might be art, music, cinema or duck hunting. But what if there were no categories? What if our lives were not defined by boxes, straight lines and order? That, in essence, is the premise of Laguna's first real contemporary music festival in more than a decade. The Blue Water Music Festival will be held on the grounds of the Sawdust Festival March 29-30.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Michael Miller | January 29, 2014
To anyone who's ever listened to Bob Dylan, Fiona Apple or another brilliant wordsmith in action, the question "How do they do that?" may come to mind. Coming up at Sage Hill School next month may be an answer of sorts. As part of the Laguna Beach Music Festival, singer-songwriter and composer Gabriel Kahane will lead a free class titled "How to Write a Song" at the Newport Beach private school. The session, which begins at 1:30 p.m. Feb. 4, is intended for students and open for public observation.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Jonny Whiteside | January 14, 2014
Johnny Cash was more than a country music star. He was a social crusader, international ambassador, spiritual seeker and full-time entertainer. Ten years after his death, he remains a force so compelling that the Laguna Playhouse is presenting not one but two events focused on the Man in Black. Saturday's Cash-a-thon features a performance of "Ring of Fire," a musical that features almost 30 Cash hits, preceded by a visit from former Los Angeles Times pop music critic Robert Hilburn, author of the recent biography "Johnny Cash: The Life.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Rhea Mahbubani | October 28, 2013
For ticket holders, music festivals can be a treat. But for area residents, the only upshots can be bawdy fans, gridlocked traffic and noise de trop. Anticipating such criticism, Tyler Russell was determined to do things differently. So he conceived an event that straddles the line between exciting and toned down. Starting out, he rifled through a list of a couple hundred musicians and contacted only those who were of a high enough caliber, who then had to agree to a charity show.
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