Whether aspiring, adept or accomplished, musicians have another reason to love summertime in Old Town Temecula.
In its first season, with five sessions remaining, the “Edutainment – Discover the Music in You” series at The Merc is officially a resounding success.
Held on select Friday evenings at 6 p.m., Edutainment invites musicians and fans to participate in a 30-minute workshop followed by an Q & A and jam session/performance by the featured artist or group.
Participants are encouraged to bring their own instrument or use instruments that The Merc will have on hand.
“The first two sessions were packed,” said organizer Melody Brunsting of Melody’s Ad Works. “If this keeps up, we are going to need a larger venue.”
The next session, slated for Friday June 27th, will be hosted by the Waylon Hicks Project and Jeremy Brown.
Brunsting noted that jazz fans are in for a special treat as Hicks likes to make is music “accessible” by infusing funk, soul and hip hop into the band’s arrangements.
“Brown has shared the stage with Herbie Hancock, Quincy Jones, Christian McBride and many others,” she said. “We are thrilled at the caliber of talent that we were able to secure for this series.”
The August 3 session will feature Bluegrass musician Scott Gates as he discusses “Finding Your Band’s Unique Sound.”
“Gates’ bluegrass band Salty Suites includes an accordion player,” said Brunsting. “No one else in bluegrass would even think to feature an accordion, but it is their signature sound and they rock it.”
The August 10 session will be “Blues with Rocky Zharp and Jimmy King.”
Every good blues man has a story and Zharp is no exception. Fans will find Zhang has the right philosophy for one hosting a musicians’ workshop, “Music is my life: writing, performing, recording, teaching, and of course learning. We are always learning.”
August 17 will feature the Fallbrook Chamber Orchestra with “Discovering the Classics.”
The final session on August 24 is likely to draw a fairly specific crowd. “How to be a Teenage Success” will be hosted by Fusion Rock, a teenage band that has won OC music awards.
“That is the beauty of the Edutainment series,” said Brunsting. “No matter who you are or what genre of music you enjoy, you will find it here. Free admission inspires musicians of all levels to dust off their guitar, harmonica or violin — or just grab some spoons from the kitchen drawer – and discover their musical side.”
To learn more, visit temeculatheater.org.
Corie Maue is a local writer and regular contributor to SWRNN.