Livermore Valley Arts is kicking off its 2022-23 Bankhead Presents season with a bang all September long.
The opening-month lineup includes singer-songwriter Ben Folds headlining the annual Brilliance at the Bankhead fundraising gala this weekend, as well as concerts from Jefferson Starship, Charlie Musselwhite and The Brubeck Brothers Quartet, among other shows.
Folds, best-known for his work with the eponymous alternative rock band Ben Folds Five in the 1990s, often performs nowadays as a solo artist accompanied by uncommon instrumentation such as symphony orchestras and a cappella groups. For the Bankhead gala on Saturday (Sept. 10), Folds will be joined by the Livermore-Amador Symphony.
A few tickets remain available for the Brilliance at the Bankhead, whose proceeds benefit activities at the Bankhead Theater and Bothwell Arts Center in Livermore in addition to the broader efforts of LVA. Another showcase of the gala is a fundraising raffle for a 14-karat white gold diamond tennis bracelet (valued at $15,105) courtesy of Lance Cavalieri Jewelers.
The Bankhead Presents concerts roll on in September the following weekend, as blues master Charlie Musselwhite will highlight the works that help define his five decades in the music business.
"In an era when the term legendary gets applied to auto-tuned pop stars, this singular blues harp player, singer, songwriter and guitarist has earned and deserves to be honored as a true master of American classic vernacular music," LVA officials said.
Musselwhite will be onstage at the Bankhead next Saturday (Sept. 17).
Next up will be The Brubeck Brothers Quartet -- affectionately known as "BBQ" -- will perform their eclectic jazz arrangements in Livermore on Sept. 21.
"Although the quartet's style is rooted in 'straight-ahead' jazz, their concerts reveal an inherent ability to explore and play odd time signatures while naturally integrating the influences of funk, blues, and world music," LVA stated. "The group's creativity, technique, and improvisation can be heard in their uncompromising music, which reflects their dedication to melody, rhythm, culture and the spontaneous spirit of jazz."
Then on Sept. 23, Jefferson Starship, rock powerhouses from the 1970s and '80s, will play their best hits from that era.
With songs like "Miracles", "Play on Love" and "Count on Me", Jefferson Starship produced top-selling albums and rocked arenas across the country during the ever-evolving band's phase in between their Jefferson Airplane and Starship iterations.
"True to its legacy, the members have changed over time, but the heart and the magic of all those hits remain. Frontman and remaining founding member David Freiberg will light up The Bankhead stage, along with Donny Baldwin, Jude Gold, Cathy Richardson and Chris Smith," according to LVA officials.
The final concert for the series in September will be Dan Marschak and Cindy Browne Rosefield Jazz Duo in a courtyard concert on Sept. 30.
Bankhead Presents will also feature two comedy shows this month -- "Capitol Comedy: Two Cheers for Democracy" next Friday (Sept. 16) and the San Francisco Comedy Competition on Sept. 22.
For tickets and more information on all performances in September and beyond, visit livermorearts.org.