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Striking Chords, May Daze and Rosco Bandana This Weekend!

May 30, 2014 - Jim Price
The warm weather outdoor live music season kicks into full gear this weekend, with several notable events on area stages.

The third annual “Striking Chords Against Cancer” benefit concert will take place on Saturday afternoon at Altoona’s Railroaders Museum, raising proceeds for the American Cancer Society. The gates open at 2 p.m., with live music commencing at 2:30 on two stages. Entertainers on the acoustic stage include Matt Pletcher, Travis Singer, Jackson Monsour, Matt Wagner and The Backyard Rockers; while electric stage performers include The Syrins, 7th Gear, Flight 19, Shallow 9 and Chris Vipond and the Stanley Street Band. Tickets are $10 per person; advance tickets are available at the Altoona Giant Eagle location or at the American Cancer Society.

A new festival kicks into gear on Saturday in Bedford County. Organized by Bedford-based singer and songwriter Matt Otis, the inaugural May Daze Festival will take place at the Wills Mountain Festival Grounds in southern Bedford County. This festival will celebrate a variety of art, including pictured art, crafts, films and live music. A variety of bands and solo performers will provide nonstop music starting at 2 p.m. The solo entertainers, mostly performing early in the event, include Jacob Horton, Jud Bussard, Tommy Fix, Bucketlist, Sally Starflower, Kenny Fetterman and Charles William McClanahan. Also taking the stage will be host Matt Otis & The Sound, Painted By Millions, RyCo, Lies Inc. and looping specialist The Nick Miller Project. There will also be games and activities, and food and refreshments will be provided by the Horn of Plenty Restaurant in Bedford. Overnight camping is welcome. Tickets are $10.

Other outdoor events include a block party event hosted by Altoona’s South Hills School of Business. This event kicks off Saturday morning at 10 a.m., and will feature a wide variety of activities; including a craft fair, children’s activities, technology seminars, food, and live music from On The Run, Anchors to Anchors and more. Admission is free. And Canoe Creek State Park’s beach concession area will host live music on Saturdays and Sundays beginning this weekend. Real Country with Bill Ross, Jr. entertains on Saturday, and Jim Mosey performs on Sunday; music starts at 2 p.m. both days.

When Mississippi-based national recording group Rosco Bandana was last scheduled to visit the Altoona area to perform at McGarvey’s (formerly Aldo’s) in late February, the performance ended up being cancelled due to forecasts for a monster snowstorm with a possible 12 to 18 inches of the white stuff – that never happened. No snow is in the forecast for Rosco Bandana’s next visit to McGarvey’s this Friday night, but the group’s bright blend of country, folk, rock, blues and jam flavors is in the forecast, as well as lively sounds from opening acts Rogan Allen and Nobody’s Heroes. The music begins at 10 p.m., and admission is $5 per person. As anyone who attended Rosco Bandana’s last visit in December can attest, this band – whose music has been featured on CMT – provides an excellent show, and they are highly recommended.

Fans of hard-rocking country may also check out the first Belmar Hotel visit of Clearfield County-based group Dirtkicker on Friday evening. Dirtkicker features several names that should be familiar to longtime fans of the area rock community; including guitarists Matt Day (ex-Stept On and Green Eggs) and Chris Kane (ex-Control, Tugger and The Zoo), singer Gary Bickerstaff (ex-Ten Till Destiny and Bad Hair Day) and Sam Timchak (ex-Ozone Rangers). Dirtkicker will perform a variety of hard-driving modern country sounds starting at 9 p.m., no cover.

As always, readers are encouraged to support the wide variety of musical talent gracing area stages every week, and help ensure that such music continues to happen. And if alcohol is involved while enjoying the music, please drink responsibly, get a designated driver or call a cab.

Here is a full listing for live music on area stages this weekend and the coming week:


2nd Street at Woody Lodge Winery, Ashville (starts 5 p.m.)

Felix & the Hurricanes at Cesare Battisti, Altoona (starts 7 p.m.)

Rosco Bandana, Nobody’s Heroes and Rogan Allen at McGarvey’s (formerly Aldo’s), Altoona

Dirtkicker at Belmar Hotel, Altoona

Born and the Beanstalk at Buccinese Society, Altoona

7th Gear at Heidelberg Club, Altoona (starts 9 p.m.)

Money Shot at Bedford American Legion, Bedford

G Street at Mustang Saloon, Portage


Block Party at South Hills School of Business, Altoona; featuring On The Run, Anchors to Anchors and more (starts 10 a.m., free admission, proceeds benefit Operation Our Town)

Striking Chords Against Cancer Benefit at Railroaders Museum, Altoona; featuring Matt Pletcher, The Syrins, Travis Singer, 7th Gear, Jackson Monsour, Flight 19, Matt Wagner, Shallow Nine, The Backyard Rockers and Chris Vipond & the Stanley Street Band (starts 2 p.m., admission $10/person, proceeds benefit American Cancer Society)

May Daze Festival at Wills Mountain Festival Grounds (south of Bedford); featuring Matt Otis & the Sound, Painted By Millions, RyCo, Lies Inc., The Nick Miller Project, Jacob Horton, Jud Bussard, Tommy Fix, Bucketlist, Sally Starflower, Kenny Fetterman and Charles William McClanahan (starts 2 p.m., all ages)

Born and the Beanstalk at Williamsburg Community Center (ARC of Blair County Kayak Float after party)

Real Country featuring Bill Ross, Jr. at Beach Concession, Canoe Creek State Park (starts 2 p.m.)


Limb By Limb at McGarvey’s (formerly Aldo’s), Altoona

Emberstitch at Belmar Hotel, Altoona

7th Gear at 4D's Lounge, Altoona

Born and the Beanstalk at Shaw’s Bar, Altoona

Mahoney B and the Blacksnakes (formerly The Hawks Blues Band) at Teriz Place, Altoona

Shallow Nine at Blue Knob Clubhouse, Blue Knob Ski Resort

Washington Slept Here at Dew Drop Inn, Mann’s Choice

Backlash at Saxton Sportsmen’s Club, Saxton

Felix & the Hurricanes at Huntingdon Moose, Huntingdon

Bite the Bullet at Magoo’s, Cresson

Ganister at Castle Pub, Ebensburg

Craig Fitzpatrick at City Hotel, Northern Cambria


Jim Mosey at Beach Concession, Canoe Creek State Park (starts 2 p.m.)


Felix & the Hurricanes at Shaw’s Bar, Altoona


Open Mic Night at McGarvey’s (formerly Aldo’s), Altoona


Open Mic Night with the Backyard Rockers at D’Ottavio’s Gran Sasso, Hollidaysburg (starts 8 p.m.)

Ty Ayers at 4D’s Lounge (upstairs), Altoona


Open Mic/Jam Night at Pellegrine’s, Altoona (starts 9 p.m.)


Full Kilt at Molly Maguire’s, Altoona (starts 8 p.m.)

Josh Gallagher at Belmar Hotel, Altoona (starts 8:30 p.m.)

Brian Pavlic at 30 Something, Altoona

(More shows may be added to this list as information becomes available. Feel free to check back.)

To report additional shows or corrections to this listing, email information to

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Blog Photos

Southern Mississippi's Rosco Bandana, during their most recent visit to Aldo's in December. After a winter weather postponement in February, the CMT-featured group returns to McGarvey's (formerly Aldo's) this Friday night, with Rogan Allen and Nobody's Heroes opening.


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