The big news in music right now is the opening of the new Green Music Center this past weekend at Sonoma State University. Debut performances by Allison Krauss and Lang Lang were sold out, but following soon will be a long list of remarkable performers throughout the year. Check out the schedule here.
Yet this is just the icing on an already rich musical cake. The Wells Fargo Center for the Arts in Santa Rosa is nationally recognized for its shows, too, such as the Emmy-winning quartet from the Disney Channel TV series “Imagination Movers” performing this weekend, and legend Loretta Lynn on Oct. 28. Get your tickets here.
Sonoma County brims with more unlikely music venues, too. Here are a few of our favorites to boogie down, without having to battle crowds or buy expensive tickets:
Yes, it’s a vintage clothing store, but also a café and bar featuring live music on most nights of the week. The 10,000 square foot former apple processing plant plays host to local stars like Joni Davis, Peck the Town Crier, and open mic talent.
755 Petaluma Avenue, Sebastopol, 707-827-3460, auberginebarandcafe.com.
The winery comes alive from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. every Saturday through December, wowing the crowds with free concerts, bocce ball games and horse-drawn carriage rides. Pack a picnic, settle in for sweeping views of the Mayacamas Mountains, and enjoy a glass of Overlook Chardonnay or Steel Plow Syrah while listening to some of Sonoma County’s finest musicians.
101 Adobe Canyon Rd., Kenwood, 707-833-0053, landmarkwine.com.
The retro-chic bar in the retro-chic Flamingo Hotel is the perfect place to get your groove on, sip a signature cocktail, and even take dance lessons with Santa Rosa Salsa & West Coast Swing. Live bands rock the joint on Friday and Saturday nights, there’s salsa on Sunday, and swing on Tuesday.
Flamingo Conference Resort & Spa, 2777 Fourth Street, Santa Rosa, 707-545-8530, flamingoresort.com.
Tip: Break a move on the dance floor, not on the road. Leave the driving to Pure Luxury.