Austin de Lone has one star-studded, bombastic weekend ahead of him.
The stalwart Mill Valley keyboardist, who seems to be in the middle of just about every major concert in town, has organized two of the biggest shows in the Bay Area this weekend.
The first is a Friday night concert at the Sweetwater Music Hall celebrating Village Music: Last of the Record Stores, Gillian and Monroe Grisman’s documentary about John Goddard’s legendary downtown Mill Valley music shop that went out with a raucous round of all-star performances in September 2007.
The film premieres Friday at the 35th Mill Valley Film Festival, followed by a performance by the Village Music All-Stars, a group whose members has been a secret. But with the likes of Elvis Costello and Nick Lowe in town for the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival, Bay Area faves like Boz Scaggs and Bonnie Raitt and a slew Mill Valley vets like Bob Weir, Huey Lewis and Sammy Hagar, there’s no shortage of possibilities. De Lone was at the helm of many of Goddard’s renowned Village Music anniversary parties over the years.
But de Lone’s second show this weekend is even more near and dear to his heart: his sixth annual fundraiser for the Richard de Lone Special Housing Project, the residential facility he hopes to create for people with Prader-Willi Syndrome. De Lone’s 14-year-old son Richard is afflicted with the rare chromosomal disorder that affects 1 in 15,000 births and causes those who suffer from it to be insatiably hungry and require ongoing care.
De Lone regularly schedules the fundraiser around Hardly Strictly and this year has the double bonus of most of the usual suspects being here for both gigs. Costello, guitarist Buddy Miller, Grammy-winning country singer Jim Lauderdale, the “Titan of the Telecaster” Bill Kirchen and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band are all in town for Hardly Strictly, and the latter is in town to celebrate the opening of their new West Coast venue, which will host the de Lone fundraiser.
Preservation Hall West at the Chapel is a newly remodeled 1914 building in San Francisco’s Mission district that was once a mortuary and later became the home of the former New College. The brainchild of Preservation Hall creative director Ben Jaffe and Bay Area restaurateur Jack Knowles, the venue includes a performance space with a 40-foot-high arched ceiling, as well as a restaurant and outdoor dining patio.
“Preservation Hall West is an opportunity for us to bring the philosophy of what we do in New Orleans at Preservation Hall to the Bay Area,” Jaffe said in a statement. “The connections between San Francisco and New Orleans are evident: we are two of the most unique cities in the world and we share so much in common, it felt like the next obvious evolution for Preservation Hall.”
The two-show de Lone benefit is the third in a four-show opening weekend for Preservation Hall West.
De Lone said that while the event serves as the organization’s primary fundraiser each year each year, it also provides a great opportunity to spread the word about Prader-Willi Syndrome.
“Awareness is a big part of the thing and that’s why it’s been great to have these folks come out every year and lend a hand," he said. “We’ve been very fortunate to be able to do these concerts and raise a nice chunk of change and keep our organization going.”
De Lone hopes raise approximately $5 million and have the residential facility ready to open by 2018. The organization is in the midst of going through feasibility studies and getting into strategic planning mode, eventually identifying either a vacant property or existing building to renovate.
This will be Costello’s third de Lone benefit, the last of which came in 2007 when he reunited with Clover, the Marin band who backed him on his 1977 debut album, My Aim Is True.
Costello will perform a solo set, including a new song he wrote with longtime Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter. The show typically has a variety show flow, with musicians jumping on stage throughout the night to join Costello and others. The Preservation Hall Jazz Band will join Costello for the first time ever, and Miller and Lauderdale recently recorded an album together and will perform a few tunes from it, de Lone said.
“It’s really great to keep having our good friends turn up and help us,” de Lone said. “It’s gonna be big fun.”
The 411:Preservation Hall West at the Chapel will be christened October 4 – 7 with an all-star line-up weekend featuring the following artists:
- Thursday, October 4, 9 p.m.: Preservation Hall Jazz Band with special guest Robert Earl Keen.
- Friday, October 5, 9 p.m.: Preservation Hall Jazz Band with special guests Steve Earle and Allison Moorer.
- Saturday, October 6, 7:30 and 10:30 p.m.: The 6th Annual Richard de Lone Special Housing Project: A Bagatelle and Jambouree featuring Elvis Costello and his band Austin de Lone, Bill Kirchen, Ruth Davis, Paul Revelli singing the songs of Robert Hunter, Charlie Rich, King Oliver and other hooligans. Other guest performers include Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale as well as the Preservation Hall Jazz Band.
- Sunday, October 7, 8 p.m.: Preservation Hall Jazz Band with special guests Justin Townes Earle and Amanda Shaw and the Cute Guys.
Tickets for all shows are available at Ticketfly.
Here's what else is happening on Mill Valley Patch:
- Grismans Set to Celebrate Goddard’s Village Music at MVFF35
- Beerworks Goes Beyond the Brew
- For City’s Regulation of New Businesses, What Size Should Matter?
- Mill Valley Strike Team Returns from NoCal Fires
- Police: Pure Thai Acupressure Robbed at Knifepoint, Employees Help Track Down Suspect
- City Council: ABAG Not the Enemy
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