Fascinating how just about Thanksgiving along come familiar cravings, a need for gathering in before the cold, a desire for over-eating, giving and being given to. Just in time to begin collecting presents! Like lots of wilder creatures, I start wanting to stow stuff away. Stocking stuffers, empty tins to put cookies in…and then I want the warmth of music and friends to share it with to ward off the chill.

Petaluma Arts Center has quite wonderful offerings both Saturday and Sunday this week, and I plan to be there for both. Saturday, I’ll hear Gus Garelik (also of the Hot Frittatas) and his Gravenstein Mandolin Ensemble, billed as a “unique and beautiful ensemble” performing Handel, Scott Joplin, Brazilian choros, Italian polkas, Klezmer waltzes, & more. Gus is well known for performances at Sebastopol’s French Garden.

Then Sunday afternoon I expect to be dazzled by Jazzmenco, flamenco/Jazz fusion emerging internationally as new style on its own, performed here by guitar virtuoso, Eric Symons and Spanish Guitarist, Alfredo Caceres playing beloved Spanish Jazz, Brazilian and Latin rhythms with a mix of Gypsy Kings, Stan Getz, and Paco de Lucia, “hot Latin jazz” featuring works by Jobim, Pixinguinha, Powell, with new Flamenco Rumbas and Latin Jazz, and original compositions. Eric Symons and his group have opened for Cleo Lane at the Spreckles Center, performed at COPIA and in concerts at the Sonoma Mission, and Robert Mondavi Winery. You can listen to the new on-line album from Eric Symons Group:
http://tapenawines.com/eric-symons-music.html

Three in a weekend is a lot, but I may even escape the Arts Center Saturday just in time to catch the end of D’Bunchovus at Aqus Cafe, a late- announced performance after a break for D’Bunchovus. A favorite number of theirs for me is their rendition of Chain, Chain, Chain, on view at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQ2V-4x097k&feature=related

Glad to say it’ll be a high-energy weekend for Petaluma music fans.