Pasadena Pops, Gershwin, & Louisiana Juke Joint

Sep 2, 2013

gershwin by Wojciech Wolynski:The Atlantic.comMichael Feinstein will be conducting at The Arboretum this Saturday with a production of “The Gershwins & Me.”

“It will be my great joy to present a unique and singular program devoted to the works of George and Ira Gershwin. The selections will range from well-known standards, to some delicious rarities that I hope will delight our listeners – for it is a rare experience to have the perfect combination of orchestra, guest soloists, audience, and venue to present what I hope will be a fresh and memorable celebration of these treasured artists.”

The evening with the Pasadena Symphony and POPS will feature Tom Wopat and Catherine Russell. Many may recall Wopat merely as Luke Duke from the 1979 television series The Dukes of Hazzard. What many may not know is that he has recorded eight albums. His musical taste seems to range from rock and roll, country (where he had several top 40 hits in the late 1980s), and classic pop standards. He first appeared onstage as a replacement in the 1977 musical I Love My Wife on Broadway, then went on to City of Angels, Guys and Dolls, and played opposite Bernadette Peters in Annie Get Your Gun. He played Frank Butler and was nominated for a Tony Award in 1999.

Catherine Russell is a contemporary jazz and blues vocalist whose father was Luis Russell, Louis Armstrong’s musical director. She has been a back-up singer and played percussion with David Bowie and her cover of Crazy Blues (1920) was used in HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, which was included in a soundtrack recording that won a Grammy Award in 2012.

Michael Feinstein: The Gershwins & Me
Saturday, Sept. 7th, gates open at 5:30 for picnicking; concert, 7:30-10 p.m.
The Arboretum, Bauer Lawn, 301 N. Baldwin Ave., Arcadia 91007
Tickets: $20-$88, purchase here

Catherine Russell–Richard Conde Photography


How often do you go to 7-11, stop in at the corner market, and shop at the grocery store—2, 3, 6 days a week? Imagine taking your groceries to the check out line, seeing the innumerable magazines—and all those words plastering the covers making not one lick of sense.

Imagine reaching the half century mark, a step past middle age, without knowing how to read this page.

TBI Literacy founder Theodore Johnson didn’t learn how to read until he was fifty years old.

“TBI Literacy is a non-profit organization that’s formed so we can work with children from first grade onwards, because I understand what happens if young adults are not capable of reading and comprehending.” (

TBI Literacy tutoring programs teach students reading, writing, and comprehension from K-12.

Since they don’t receive any formal funding, the TBI Literacy annual fundraiser was born. This year’s concert features The Joe Kincaid band, Barbara Morrison, Sonny Green, and “Texas Long Bird” Sherry Pruitt.

From 2012, here’s a video of Barbara Morrison at the Topanga Blues Festival singing “You’re the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me.” From this and the other videos we watched, she appears to have a wonderfully conversational relationship with her crowds; she’s casual, she’s grateful, and her humor is an easy flow, just like her music.

TBI’s Louisiana Juke Joint Concert
Saturday, Sept. 7th, 3-9 p.m.
TBI Garden, 2202 Santa Anita Ave., Altadena 91001
VIP tickets include reserved seating and dinner ($55)
General admission presale, $35; at the door, $40
Dinner is available for $10
Contact: Theordore Johnson at 626.791.5303 or 323.781.4006

Sherry Pruitt

Sherry Pruitt

Sherry Pruitt singing “There’s Sunshine After the Rain.”



1 Response for “Pasadena Pops, Gershwin, & Louisiana Juke Joint”

  1. I love these Pops concerts. Last year they would get a little chilly toward the end. This year, I doubt that will be an issue!

    See you there,



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