WEEKEND: Maria in the Shower will wash away the blues on Saturday
Maria in the Shower
By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News
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Good and bad.
“We play them both,” he said in an interview from his Vancouver, B.C., home.
That being said, people can't get enough of Maria.
Nancy Vivolo, president of the Juan de Fuca Foundation for the Arts board of directors, doesn't hold back when discussing this quartet. Maria in the Shower will headline the foundation's annual fundraiser and dance Saturday night, so patrons have two choices: the $60 Juan de Fuca Foundation annual dinner, silent auction and acoustic concert at 6 p.m. or just the $15 dance with Maria at 8 p.m.
Both will take place at the Elks Naval Lodge, 131 E. First St., while information and tickets are available via www.JFFA.org. Tickets to the dance will also be available at the door.
“It's not just that they're amazing musicians,” Vivolo began, “but you can also expect acrobatics and physical theater.”
And to her, Maria in the Shower is beyond a band; they're “an event up there on stage.”
Vivolo extended an invitation to those who are, in her words, “worn out at the end of the week.”
Maria's men “are just the tonic. They'll pick you right up,” she said.
Garton, who's been known to play his accordion and horn at the same time, predicted that Maria will travel through swing songs and waltzes, Latin and African rhythms, as well as Celtic tunes, reggae and Americana.
“It's all boogie-able,” he added, “with a spirit of adventure.”
You will not, however see a shower or anyone named Maria. Garton, with bassist Brendon Hartley, drummer Todd Biffard and guitarist-trombonist Martin Reisle, shroud the band's name in mystery.
And neither Vivolo nor Juan de Fuca Foundation Executive Director Dan Maguire, who have caught the quartet's show more than once, had any clues to offer.
“I've never even seen Maria in a shower cap,” Vivolo quipped.
Maria in the Shower first appeared at the Elks Naval Lodge during 2012's Juan de Fuca Festival of the Arts; Garton gushed a bit about the venue.
“It's gorgeous . . . just a well-designed performance space,” with a ballroom-size dance floor, making it ideal for “the kind of dance party I like.”
As the conversation progressed, Garton listed some other styles Maria likes to play: bluegrass, rockabilly, Chuck Berryesque rock 'n' roll — sometimes all mashed together in one song. Then there's “Oh Molly Dear,” an almost-murder ballad, and “Amazing Grace” with Maria's own spin.
Bruce Hattendorf, another Juan de Fuca Foundation board member, recalls hearing Maria in the Shower do Prohibition-era jazz, folk and even a work song in which Biffard used a chain for thumping percussion.
“Fun-loving music scholars is how I would describe them,” said Hattendorf.
Maria in the Shower is part of the year-long Juan de Fuca Foundation concert series that will also bring the California and Montreal Guitar Trios to the Port Angeles High School Performing Arts Center on Nov. 17 and Geoffrey Castle's Christmas Celebration to the same venue Dec. 15. The series will culminate in Port Angeles' 21st annual Juan de Fuca Festival of the Arts, four days of music, dance and comedy May 25-28.
Saturday night's party is a significant fundraiser for the Juan de Fuca Foundation, with about 20 auction items including getaways to Victoria, Seattle, the Quileute Oceanside Resort and the lodges at Lake Crescent and Kalaloch. The auction items are listed at JFFA.org, while information is also available on the Juan de Fuca Festival's Facebook page and at 360-457-5411.
But that music, Maguire believes, will set this party apart from your typical benefit auction.
“Nobody does it,” he said, “like Maria in the Shower.”
Last modified: October 10. 2013 8:29PM