Things To Do in Santa Cruz: May 25-31 – Good Times


ARTS AND OPPRESSION COMICS EXHIBITION Promoting freedom of expression, combating censorship and building diversity, equity and inclusion through arts, the exhibit features artwork from Art Professor Dee Hibbert-Jones’ comics student awardees and see sneak previews from the newest limited edition Slug Comic featuring Thought Drinker by Amy Gerstler and Elektro by Ivan Brandon. Each work celebrates graphic works as a medium of resistance. Free. Wednesday, May 25, 4-5:30pm. McHenry Library, Special Collections and Archives (third floor), UC Santa Cruz. Face covering required while inside the gallery, and be prepared to show proof of vaccination.

INTIMATE STARES WITH KING TIDE With multi-instrumental Seaside musician James Findlay at the helm, Intimate Stares deliver engaging noise rock in the vein of Dinosaur Jr., Hum and Fu Manchu. Meanwhile, the genre-defying Oedipus & The Motherfuckers’ Steve “Acidhorse” Zero and Kage “Space-Hobo” O’Malley “have no influences” and have “never even heard their own music, so please write them and tell them what you think.” $10. Friday, May 27, 8pm. The Crepe Place, 1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz.

CAPOLOW AND DB.BOUTABAG WITH FREDOBAGZ Straight outta East Oakland, Capolow’s Bay Area hip-hop reached the masses in the 2010s with “Outta Sight” and “Drip.” But Capo truly made a name for himself in 2018, racking up millions of views with “Highway Robbery” and “Vomit.” His 2019 mixtape, Sandman, is considered a concise collection of the rapper’s “brag-centric, Bay Area trap.” Most recently, Capo teamed up with Kamaiyah for the collaborative tape, Oakland Nights. $20-25 plus fees. Friday, May 27, 8pm. The Catalyst Atrium, 1101 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz.

JERRY’S MIDDLE FINGER Since 2015, the Los Angeles-based outfit “delivers the best Jerry Garcia Band tribute experience in the world—performing and celebrating the music of JGB with unparalleled sound and energy.” The quintet’s wholehearted enchanted dance parties have no end in sight, so “whether you saw Jerry 500 times or were born after his time on earth, this much is true: JMF will make you feel like he’s still here.” $25 plus fees. Friday, May 27, 8pm. Felton Music Hall, 6275 Highway 9, Felton. 

HARRY AND THE HITMEN WITH MAMMATUS From a tradition of improvised rock and years of experimentation behind tight arrangements, Harry and the Hitmen unleash the best of Stax and Motown and original blue-eyed soul. Don’t be fooled by the suits; the longtime sextet is made up of perpetually evolving musical risk-takers who deliver “one-of-a-kind dance parties wherever needed!” For Mammatus, ear protection is recommended. The psych-stoner-desert rockers—think Hawkwind meets Blue Cheer while liquified peyote rains down on them—play loud, in a hurts-so-good way. Since 2005, the Santa Cruz outfit has gone on a few hiatuses here and there, but they are psyched to be working their way back into the public’s consciousness. $15/$20 plus fees. Friday, May 27, 9pm. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz.

secure document shredding

‘THE FAIRY QUEEN’ Henry Purcell’s The Fairy Queen celebrates the return of fully-staged, live opera at UCSC. Considered a “semi-opera,” the work was initially written as “incidental” music for Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In this version, the beautiful vocal and instrumental movements are blended with dialogue from the play. Visalia’s Sequoia Symphony members join UC Santa Cruz singers and actors. Bruce Kiesling conducts, and Sheila Willey directs. (Read this week’s cover story). $15-32/Free for students. Friday, May 27, and Saturday, May 28, 7:30pm. Quarry Amphitheater, UC Santa Cruz.

MARIACHI WOMEN WARRIORS The all-female Mariachi Divas de Cindy Shea has recorded 17 albums and scored two Grammys and 11 Grammy nods. Since 2003, the collective has been the official mariachi outfit of Disneyland. Formed by trumpet talent Cindy Shea, the band is one of the world’s most accomplished all-female mariachi groups. Also on the bill, all-female trio Ellas developed a unique fusion of mariachi and modern music using guitar, guitarron (bass), violin and their captivating harmonies, their debut Ellas #primerafila hit No. 7 on iTunes’ Latin charts. Each member has earned Grammys in their individual musical careers—inevitably, they’ll soon be taking home the award as Ellas. Presented by the Mariachi Women’s Foundation. $27-57. Saturday, May 28, 7pm. Henry J. Mello Center, 250 E. Beach St., Watsonville.

JAMS AND VISIONARY ART SHOW BENEFIT FOR WYLDER LEE Tatiana & Treetop Band—special guest Matt Hartle—offer original tunes inspired by a plethora of genres and “serendipitous experiences.” The Santa Cruz group jams hard from Americana to Afro-Latino grooves while driving an improvised odyssey into the unknown. As word spread, the six-piece has become increasingly noticed—recently, they opened for the California Honeydrops. There will be live painting from Hana Stanke, Tess Elation, the Letter Mermaid and others, and a silent auction. $15. Saturday, May 28, 7:30pm. Michael’s on Main, 2591 S. Main St., Soquel.

JASON KAHN WITH MINISTRY OF APATHY Each Jason Kahn performance is different because the music is improvised. Still, the source material relates directly to each venue he plays in. This twisted conglomeration of Kraftwerk and Brian Eno also features chaotic feedback and a purposely overloaded synthesizer, resulting in momentary collapse. Additionally, a variety of contact microphones, electromagnetic inductors and the synthesizer’s output via a mixing board are used to modulate the synthesizer’s parameters. The result is difficult to control but allows Kahn to achieve grandiose expressivity. $8/$16. Saturday, May 28, 8pm. Indexical, 1050 River St. #119, Santa Cruz. Proof of vaccination is required.

JOSHUA RAY WALKER WITH BEN CHAPMAN Texas singer-songwriter Joshua Ray Walker’s new album—his third full-length record in three years—See You Next Time is an accurate depiction of a honky-tonk dive and the loners who inhabit it: “barflies and wannabe cowboys, bleary-eyed dreamers and hopelessly lost souls.” It’s the final installment in a trilogy launched with Walker’s 2019 debut Wish You Were Here and the praised follow-up Glad You Made It, which made No. 5 on Rolling Stone’s “Best Country and Americana Albums of 2020” list. $20/$35 plus fees. Sunday, May 29, 8:30pm. Moe’s Alley, 1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz.

ARTEMIS Celebrate Kuumbwa Jazz’s belated 45th anniversary with Artemis, an all-star group featuring six of the world’s top jazz performers: pianist and musical director Renee Rosnes, trumpeter Ingrid Jensen, clarinetist Anat Cohen, saxophonist Nicole Glover, bassist Noriko Ueda and drummer Allison Miller. Named after the Greek goddess of the hunt, forests and moon, Artemis is a cooperative of artistry at its best, unleashing unforgettable performances fueled by mind-blowing musical interaction. $68.25/$73.50; $36.75 students. Tuesday, May 31, 7pm. Kuumbwa Jazz, 6275 Highway 9, Felton. Proof of vaccination or negative Covid test required. 


ANNUAL SANTA CRUZ LONGBOARD UNION MEMORIAL DAY SURF CONTEST It’s an annual tradition: Nearly 200 contestants compete every Memorial Day weekend in the longest-running longboard surf contest on the West Coast. The Santa Cruz Longboard Union’s mission is to “preserve, promote and perpetuate the values, belief and essence of surfing.” No better spot than Santa Cruz to assemble. Free for spectators. Saturday, May 28, and Sunday, May 29, 7am-4pm. Steamer Lane at West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz. (competitor sign-ups).

VETERAN SURF ALLIANCE MEMORIAL DAY PADDLE OUT The Santa Cruz nonprofit creates fellowship and community among veterans through surfing as an activity to ease the transition from military service to civilian life. The VSA’s Memorial Day gathering and paddle out in Capitola honor fallen service members. The memorial paddle out follows the color guard presentation. All veterans, community members and visitors are welcome. Free. Monday, May 30, 9am-noon. Capitola Beach and Esplanade, Capitola.


WOMENCARE ARM-IN-ARM This cancer support group is for women with advanced, recurrent or metastatic cancer. Meets every Monday on Zoom. Free. Registration required. Monday, May 30, 12:30pm. 831-457-2273.

LAUGHTER YOGA Having fun, feeling good and relaxing. That’s what Laughter Yoga is all about. Laughing is a form of stress relief. The group laughs as a form of exercise, and through eye contact and childlike playfulness—fake laughter becomes genuine and contagious. The body doesn’t know the difference between fake laughter and the real thing, so chemicals (dopamine, serotonin) are released, easing our minds and bodies. Free. Tuesday, May 31, 3:30-4:30pm. Inner Light Ministries (Fireside Room), 5630 Soquel Drive, Soquel.


COASTAL BIRDING WALK Nothing like a mellow 2.5-mile hike to soothe the soul. There will be many stops to view the birds, plants and scenery. Bring binoculars if you have them and good walking shoes. Meet in Wilder Ranch’s main parking lot next to the park map. Rain cancels. Masks required. $10 (day-use parking fee). Friday, May 27, 9am-noon. Wilder Ranch State Park, 1401 Coast Road, Santa Cruz.

SEASONAL WILD PLANT WALK WITH JESSICA TUNIS The “learning journey” delves into the abundant world of wild plants. Local naturalist Jessica Tunis leads the mile-long excursion, identifying wild plants and their unique properties. Learn about local plants’ healing and nutritional properties and the symbiotic relationships to the ecosystems that support them. Additionally, learn what makes a plant invasive. The walk concludes with tea, tastings, picnic snacks made from some of the wild edibles identified and a Q&A. $60; $10/children (7-12 years old with paying adult). Saturday, May 28, 11am-1pm. Quail Hollow Ranch, 800 Quail Hollow Road, Felton. [email protected]