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PARADISE, Calif. - "Music Builds Community" is a common saying, but it's taking flight in the Sierra Nevada foothill community of Paradise.
Bird & Wag, Michael Bone, Maurice "Big Mo' Huffman, the Paper Hats and other groups will perform in a fundraiser Saturday evening to support the community venue that is growing in popularity in the town of Paradise.
A collective of musicians have been working together to develop this performance venue as a fit tribute to local and national music legend, Norton Buffalo. The performance space at the Paradise Community Guilds (the former Grange hall) is called the Norton Buffalo Hall, and fundraisers have supported the upkeep of the grounds and the venue that is dedicated to his memory. (See sidebar article for more about Norton Buffalo and his place in Paradise, by guest writer Peter Berkow).
Paradise Community Guilds' President, David Zink, said Saturday night's "Be the Community" music festival "brings back the collective of talents behind the recent "Night of Leonard Cohen Music" shows (March and November 2018). Funds raised through those events helped pay for a roof repair for the venue.
Zink says the Guilds foster a sense of community in Paradise by nurturing creativity, practicing stewardship of Nature, and promoting values of sustainability. He said Guilds' members work in a nonpartisan, non-demonimational way to stimulate the arts with a weekly Open Mikefull (Wednesday nights) and almost monthly concerts. They also have two gardens, and offer the community classes and workshops.
DETAILS: The "Be the Community" music festival fundraiser takes place Saturday, June 30, 2018 from 5-10 p.m. There is both an indoor and an outdoor stage. It is located at 5704 Chapel Drive in Paradise. It is off of Pearson Rd. not too far from the Gold Nugget Museum. This event is a fun, family-friendly event that supports the venue and its upkeep.
Norton Buffalo's time in the Paradise/Chico community was short, but his impact was huge. Even though he was almost always on the road (either as a stellar front man in his own band, or as a decades-long member of the Steve Miller Band) he enjoyed relaxing in our community. It was common, while he lived here, to stumble into Norton and his wife Lisa at local restaurants, playing authentic and traditional Italian folk music. it was a refreshing change from the rock and roll auditorium gigs and blues bar scene that was his "normal" life.
I first met Norton while performing at the same venues in San Francisco. When he came up to Chico to perform and visit, he fell in love with our area and dreamed of a way to re-settle up here. When he finally did, folks around Paradise soon learned he had a huge talent, and an even bigger heart. All of us who play at the venue named after him feel his presence smiling down at us.
(Submitted special to Action News Now by Peter Berkow, long time Chico musician, educator and producer. See photo below)
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