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HI HO, STEVERINO : With Allen as Grand Marshal, the Daylong 'Bash '94' Promises to Be Another Original

November 24, 1994|BILL KOHLHAASE | Bill Kohlhaase is a free-lance writer who regularly covers jazz for The Times Orange County Edition

How could you top it? Last year's Orange County Musicians' Bash featured some 300 musicians of all sorts offering music on five stages over a period of 10 hours. Presided over by Grand Marshal Jack Sheldon, it was the year's biggest musical party.

But "Bash '94," featuring comedian and television pioneer Steve Allen as grand marshal, promises to be every bit as big, with nearly 50 groups and more than 300 Orange County and area musicians taking part. The 24th annual edition of the festival, to be held at the Red Lion Hotel in Costa Mesa this Sunday, is a fund-raiser for the Orange County Musicians' Club, an offshoot of Local 7 of the American Federation of Musicians. Proceeds go to the club's financial assistance and scholarship programs.

Allen, the original host of NBC's "Tonight Show," is also a pianist, prolific composer (he penned the upbeat "This Could Be the Start of Something Big") and respected music scholar. He will perform some of his original songs, accompanied by arranger-saxophonist Tom Kubis' Big Band, in what is expected to be a highlight of the daylong event.

"Steve's an absolute gentleman, and his tunes are great," says Kubis, whose band has backed Allen for the past several years. "He claims to have written something like 5,000 tunes, some 30 every week, that cover all the bases: Latin, jazz, different forms of rock 'n' roll. It should be rip-roaring, hilarious fun."

Allen, who was often seen at the piano during his "Tonight Show" days, likes to joke and reminisce on stage, according to Kubis, sometimes staying away from the keyboard completely. "We had a recent show," Kubis relates, "where Steve sat down with some bongos and stayed there the whole night."

Allen's spontaneity and range should fit in nicely at the bash. With stages dedicated to Dixieland, big band, jazz, lounge and classical music, the event will pull back the curtain on a rich and varied--though sometimes hidden--entertainment scene in Orange County.

"We're presenting as many forms of music as we can," says Frak Amoss, Bash chairman and president of the Orange County Musicians' Assn. "Live music is our business, and we'll be offering everything from piano and flute duos to 18-piece big bands and everything in between."

The bulk of the program is jazz in its various forms. Highlights include Kubis' orchestra, which will back singer Carol Jolin before welcoming Allen; pianist Amoss' big band, with guest vocalist Roberta Linn (the original "Champagne Music Girl" on the "The Lawrence Welk Show"), and Glen Garrett's Brazilian big band Feijoado Completa with vocalist Katia Moraes.

Smaller groups will include guitarist and Concord recording artist Ron Eschete's trio, vocalists Micki Rhyne and Karen Gallinger, Frank Potenza and Luther Hughes with the Contemporary Jazz All Stars, and a tuba-fronted be-bop band known as Tubop. The revival of interest in Dixieland music will be reflected by 10 bands, including the Basin Street Stompers and the 20th Century Jazz Band, appearing in the hotel's Club Max room. Dancing is encouraged.

* JAZZ LISTINGS, Page 14

What: The Orange County Musicians' Bash.

When: Sunday, Nov. 27, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Where: Red Lion Hotel, 3050 Bristol St., Costa Mesa.

Whereabouts: Exit the San Diego (405) Freeway at Bristol Street south. Proceed half a mile to the hotel entrance, on the left.

Wherewithal: $17 in advance from the Orange County Musicians' Assn., 2050 S. Main St., Santa Ana; $19 at the door. Children under 12 free.

Where to call: (714) 546-8166.

Who's Playing This Bash

Big Band Room

Noon: Los Alamitos High School Jazz Band, with Wayne Bergeron

1 p.m.: Bernie Farr Orchestra, with Bill Cassi

2 p.m.: Al Latour's Big Band Command

3 p.m.: John Henderson Big Band

4 p.m.: Norm Major Big Band

5 p.m.: Tracy Wells Big Band

6:15 p.m.: Tom Kubis Big Band, with Steve Allen

7:45 p.m.: Frank Amoss Big Band, with Roberta Linn

9 p.m.: Carl Scroggins Swing Band

Club Max Dixieland Room

Noon: Cotton Pickers

1 p.m.: Jazz Generation

2 p.m.: Golden State Dixie Ramblers

3 p.m.: Dixie Rhythm Ramblers

4 p.m.: Hyperion Outfall Serenaders

5 p.m.: Basin Street Stompers

6 p.m.: Seaport Seven

7 p.m.: Riverboat Ramblers

8 p.m.: 20th Century Jazz Band

9 p.m.: The Dixie Six

Lobby Lounge

11 a.m.: Jim Parmeter & His Swing Sextet

Noon: The Johnny V Band

1 p.m.: Slide Effects

2 p.m.: The Sounds Of Swing

3 p.m.: Tom Bevan's Electric Air

4 p.m.: Guitarist Tom Long

5 p.m.: Joe Nappa and the All Stars

6 p.m.: Ray Templin's Chicagoans

7 p.m.: Mike Labrador and Friends

8 p.m.: Trinidad and Tobago Showboat Steel Orchestra

9 p.m.: Walter Lakota and the Latin All Stars

Jazz Room

Noon: Tubop

1:15 p.m.: Micki Rhyne and trio

2:30 p.m.: Dale Spaulding Blues Band

3:45 p.m.: Ron Eschete Trio

5 p.m.: Jack Reidling Trio, with Karen Gallinger

6:15 p.m.: Frank Potenza and Luther Hughes, with the Contemporary Jazz All Stars

8 p.m.: Glen Garrett's Feijoado Completa Brazilian Big Band, with Katia Moraes

Classical and Chamber Music Room

Noon: Huntington Beach School for the Performing Arts

1 p.m.: Corette Ensemble

2 p.m.: Norm Major Brass Quintet

3 p.m.: Leo Potts and Jack Reidling

4 p.m.: Artisan Brass Quintet

5 p.m.: Virginia Mitchell and John Barcellona

6 p.m.: International Strings

7 p.m.: Roselle Trio

8 p.m.: Sources (Fullerton College Music Faculty)

9 p.m.: Riviera Brass

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