Entertainment briefs 2/6

Portland's Terry Robb plays the Grill this weekend

Rhythm Culture (formerly known as Earth Tones) is a regular feature of the Pacific Northwest music scene.

A reggae beat drives the band’s signature sound, a mixture of Latin and Caribbean rhythms with blues and jazz influences.

"The purpose of all music is to connect all people with this global language and spread good vibes and positive messages. That's what we do,” says bassist Joseph Conrad.

Rhythm Culture is based in Portland, and led by drummer Byron Mercurius of Guyana, South America.

Mercurius has played with numerous musical groups such as Sam & Dave, Kool & The Gang, and Rising Lion.

He has toured the U.S. and Canada on many occasions with reggae, rock, R & B, and blues bands. As a studio musician he has laid tracks for Salt & Pepper, Billy Ocean, Keith Diamond, and Joylon Skinner, among others. Byron has a varied musical background, playing trumpet, guitar, piano, and then trap drum set. In addition to these talents, he has written several of Rhythm Culture’s songs.

Rhythm Culture also features Monty Skillings on trombone, Kenny Graves on guitar, Joseph Conrad on bass, and Ramsey Embick on keyboards. The group's Friday appearance at the Hood River Inn starts at 9 p.m. There is no cover charge for the performance.

Saturday, Feb. 9, Terry Robb & Friends shifts the focus to R&B with their return engagement at Hood River Inn.

The group features R&B guitarist/vocalist Terry Robb, pianist/organist Geno Michaels, and drummer Jeff Minnick of The Dalles. The music starts at 9 p.m. and has no cover charge.

Music returns to River City

Music returns with a flurry during the month of February at The River City Saloon.

Beginning on Friday, Third Estate rolls in for a 9:30 p.m. show. On Tuesday, Feb. 12, a Fat Tuesday party is planned with the ever-popular local flaunts — Rubber Chicken Lollipop. On Feb. 15, Wild River returns. On Feb. 16, Mayfield Road returns after being away for a couple of months. And one of the Northwest’s top draws, the Zen Tricksters, ends February with a bit of style with a show slated for Feb. 23. All shows are over 21 and there will be a cover.

The Big Easy plans for Fat Tuesday

A super Fat Tuesday celebration will be held all night on Feb. 12 at The Big Easy, a New Orleans Fish House and Barbeque located in the heights of Hood River.

The restaurant will be serving Bananas Foster and other Creole Classics and giving away plenty of throw beads as well. The throw beads are complimentary the weekend before Fat Tuesday as well.

Wine series set at North Oak

The event schedule for the Winter Wine series at North Oak Brasserie is now set. People interested in booking a table should contact the restaurant as soon as possible, said owner Mike Caldwell.

The series includes five course dinners featuring either a region, grape or winemaker as the accompanying wine selection.

“It’s a unique opportunity to relax and learn about wine and food pairing,” said Caldwell, who’s wife Shawna, will also talk about the pairings.

This year’s schedule includes: The Burly Wines of Spain, a Tapas Party on Feb. 24; Sineann Winery with winemaker Peter Rosback on March 21; The Tuscan Experience on April 18 and a Taste of Australia on May 23.

The dinners begin at 7:30 p.m. and the cost is $50 per person. Seating is limited. For reservations, call 387-2310.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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