- IMAGES COURTESY OF CURTIS REINHARDT
- ROCK : Band of the Southwest is pictured second. Band of the Southwest is also playing with the SLO County Band at SLO Farmers Market on July 9. Arroyo Grande Summer Concert Series rocks your way through Sept. 20. Shows are free and take place on alternating Sundays at 1p.m. at the Rotary Bandstand in Heritage Square. July 4: The Village Band. July 5: the Air National Guard Band of the Southwest. July 12: Guy Budd and the Gypsy Souls with Inga Swearingen. July 26: Rudolf Budginas. Aug. 9: Better Late Than Never and Wild River Ramblers. Aug. 23: SLO Jazz Federation welcomes the Larry Arone Quintet and the Mike Raynor Trio. Sept. 6: SLOfolks welcomes Moira Smiley and Voco with special guest Inga Swearingen. Sept. 20: MPR-Univision and KTSB-Telefutura. Info: 473-2250 or arroyograndevillage.org.
New Times Tell me a bit about your background with music and the concert series around SLO County.
Curtis Reinhardt In a nutshell, I’ve been involved with music, concerts, and performances since I was in junior high and through college and working at nightclubs, running performing arts centers; it’s gone on for 35 years now.
New Times So it’s quite a passion of yours?
Reinhardt Yeah, and it’s been my profession for most of those years.
New Times How long have you lived on the Central Coast?
Reinhardt Eight Years. I grew up in Missouri and lived in Kansas, then was a program director at the big arts center for a decade in Santa Rosa. I was also a talent agent.
New Times Was the Arroyo Grande Summer Concert Series your baby?
Reinhardt The integral part of the Arroyo Grande Summer Concert Series is that I’m a Rotarian and have been for 20 years and it’s my Rotary Club that built the bandstand [where the concerts take place] in the Village in Arroyo Grande, commemorating the centennial of Rotary in 2005. There has been a lot of bandstand activity by Rotarians. It has been my experience that those venues are built and then forgotten about and I was bound and determined, after I helped to raise the money to build the bandstand in Arroyo Grande…I wanted to make sure it was used.
New Times Who else is involved with bringing these concerts to life?
Reinhardt We work closely with the Arroyo Grande Parks department and the Village Improvement Association in Arroyo Grande. Both of those entities were interested in having concert series but didn’t have the time or the capability to put that together, so I approached them with the idea that I would be the outside contractor, and I have been organizing the series ever since, four years ago.
New Times So it has been pretty successful then?
Reinhardt It’s been highly successful.
New Times What can audiences expect during a concert at the bandstand?
Reinhardt Our events are varied—every show is different, a combination of artists, types of music, a different nonprofit and sponsors, and various raffle prizes. There is a lot activity for the concert attendee. They can listen to two different bands, enjoy the sun, and visit the local historic buildings surrounding the bandstand. The events offer more than just live music.
New Times Let’s talk about some of the upcoming music you’re excited about.
Reinhardt The great thing about being a promoter is I get to book the bands I want to book. This year’s series is the most eclectic and interesting to date. I put interesting combinations of music together. Rudolf Budginas on July 26—who knows what he’s going to do?—and a banjo player is his opener. That’s the first I’ve known of him playing a free concert outside. And Inga Swearingen performing is quite a coup. This is the first time a professional military band is playing (Band of the Southwest)… so it’s a double header (with The Village Band) the weekend of July 4.
New Times And what about your Pacific Breeze concerts in Shell Beach?
Reinhardt They were successful and we will do them again next spring.
Christy Heron wants to hear Dead Weather at the next A.G. Concert. If you can guess who’s in that band, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.