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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