Arts Devo

From Wizard Apprentice to Sum 41, Chico is going off!

Wizard Apprentice

Wizard Apprentice

All killer no filler

Damn, Chico! There are some rad concerts on the immediate calendar. If you can’t get down with at least one of these artists visiting town over the next two months, you might not like music.

In addition to the aural badassness mentioned previously in this space—Howlin’ Rain at Argus Bar + Patio (Sept. 12); Tropa Magica at the Sierra Nevada Hop Yard (Sept. 13); Elvin Bishop and Charlie Musselwhite at Laxson Auditorium (Oct. 6) and, of course, Shannon & The Clams Tuesday (Aug. 27) at the Sierra Nevada Big Room (see “Sing along with the Clams,” page 26)—there is the wild Fierce Fun Queer Sounds lineup at Blackbird this Saturday (Aug. 24) in celebration of Chico Pride week. The four-act bill features local neo-goth trio Iver, plus Sac’s SpaceWalker (“She’s as punk rock as hip-hop gets.”), and two Oakland acts—Otzi (cool darkwave punks) and dynamic experimental performance artist/musician Wizard Apprentice (“a digital folk artist who vividly and simplistically expresses her inner world using resourcefulness and honesty”). Get there!

Sum 41

And there’s more! Here are four that recently crossed my radar:

• Sept. 22: Tom Brosseau at 1078 Gallery. This is the third visit to Chico in the last year and a half for the “highplainsman troubadour,” and the consummate storyteller returns as part of a tour in support of the just-released In the Shadow of the Hill: Songs from the Carter Family Catalogue, Vol. 1. It’s a collaboration between Brosseau and Sean Watkins of Nickel Creek and features some of the more obscure selections from various generations of the first family of country music. Local fave Pat Hull opens.

• Sept. 25: Richard Buckner. Chico loves the endearing singer/songwriter who can spin a tale as well as Mr. Brosseau. Buckner’s intimate night of songs and stories at Tender Loving Coffee last year was a 2018 highlight for Arts DEVO, and this time around he’s playing a house show. Get info and tix at

• Oct. 5: The Jack Moves at Argus. Real talk: Don’t take a date to this show unless you are cool seeing each other naked, because this New Jersey duo plays a brand of “sweet soul” that borrows heavily from sexy 1970s R&B and funk (think The Delfonics with a touch of Curtis Mayfield) and will put everyone with a pulse in the mood to at least move that body on the dance floor.

• Oct. 12: Sum 41 at the Senator Theatre. There is little doubt in my mind that, if I was born a decade later, I would’ve been a mall punk for a minute. I know me. Just as with KISS, Quiet Riot and Twisted Sister during my actual junior high/early high school years, I would have been powerless to resist the gargantuan ear-worm anthems of The Offspring, Blink-182, Sum 41 and the rest. Even today, if “In Too Deep” comes on the radio, I’ll cop a faux-British accent and sing my whiny heart out into my thumb mic. Sum 41 frontman Deryck Whibley is sober now and his band will be in Chico as part of a tour in support of the just-released album Order in Decline. See you and the rest of the Hot Topic crew in the pit!