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Another Weekend Of Music In The Park

Written by Ronnie Sweeting – Producer/Mariposa Evenings

MARIPOSA Cousin Jack’s Mariposa Evenings – the free outdoor summer concert series brought to you by The Mariposa County Arts Council and its many fine sponsors – continues into its third weekend of thirteen, presenting, live, in concert: Colorado Road on Friday June 19, and Mike Hammar and The Nails on Saturday, June 20.

Colorado Road has grown from a folk duo to a 5-piece, acoustic/electric band format – adding bass, drums, violin, slide guitar, harmony vocals and more – that provides distinct rhythm and color to songwriter/leader, Gail Dreifus’ original neo-folk songs.

Dreifus is a lifelong singer, songwriter, guitarist based in El Portal and has been a fixture of the burgeoning local music scene for many years now. She has performed at the Strawberry Music Festival, Millpond Music Festival and National Parks, including Yosemite, Zion and Grand Canyon. She also produces the annual Yosemite Songwriter Retreat that features workshops with renowed songwriters like Joe Craven, Peter Rowen, and Terre Roche.

For more on Gail and to sample her music, visit

The triumphant return of world class Blues recording artists, Mike Hammar and The Nails to the Arts Park Stage on Saturday is, every summer, one of the most anticipated.

Native American Hammar – who grew up in Mariposa, and still maintains deep roots here – and his powerful electric blues band, The Nails, have become a staple of Mariposa Evenings, where every year they draw a huge crowd of locals and visitors for what we’ve come to call a “Blues Pow-Wow.”

Hammar and the Nails - photo courtesy Mariposa Arts CouncilGarnishing a reputation over the years as one of the most exciting, live blues bands performing in California – in 2009 and 2014, Mike and the band won the prestigious Monterey Bay Blues Festival’s Battle of the Bands – their recordings have had airplay on American Roots Music Radio (Norway, England, Germany, Belgium, Canada, and U.S. College radio circuit) and they are regularly featured on Sirius XM Radio’s B.B. King’s Bluesville station.

Mike’s song, “This Ain’t Goodbye,” from their second album, “Recipe for the Blues,” was nominated for an Independent Music Award.

The Nails still feature the glorious sound of the Hammond B3 organ played by renowned musician Allan “B3 Blues” Carroll, and the fiery guitar and soulful vocals of Hammar. More on this great blues group can be found at

All performances begin at 7 p.m. at the Mariposa County Art Park, located on Highway 140, between 4th and 5th Streets, in historic downtown Mariposa, Calif. Free parking on 5th Street along the Creek Walkway to the Park, also providing handicapped access.

The shows are free to the public – tips for the performers will be solicited, encouraged, and appreciated.

The Mariposa Arts Council, sponsor of Cousin Jack’s Mariposa Evenings, is funded in part by Mariposa County, the California Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

The MARIPOSA COUNTY ARTS COUNCIL, INC. is an incorporated not-for- profit organization, created to promote and support all forms of the cultural arts, for all ages, throughout Mariposa County.

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