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Calendar of Events

There's always something going on at the Rockfish Grill and Anacortes Brewery. Check out our calendar for upcoming special events. Visit the Rockfish Grill for live entertainment including the best in jazz, blues and beyond.

Here is What's Happening at The Rockfish Grill

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Friday, March 2, 2012


Jazz singer Michael (Fred) Faast has assembled a group of nationally recognized musicians to perform a wonderful array of instrumental and vocal swing standards.

Swing 48 features the hot licks of national flatpicking champion, Roger Ferguson on guitar; the amazing improv and arrangements of former Nashville touring pro Paul Anastasio on fiddle; the rock solid rhythm and solos of bassist, Mick Nicholson (Navy Bluegrass Band); and the soulful vocals of Fred Faast on guitar.

With an extensive repertoire that includes Gypsy Jazz, Latin Jazz and American Song Book standards both vocal and instrumental, Swing 48 will have you tapping your toes from the downbeat.
Saturday, March 3, 2012


ThorNton Creek's music explores a variety of styles that range from haunting acoustic to bluesy rock. But ThorNton Creek takes it one step further to incorporate elements of blues, jazz, and country. ThorNton Creek's music has a pleasant familiarity, but they are not clones.

Thornton Bowman's lyrics and wistful Southern voice are at the heart of the band. Bowman grew up in Virginia near the Tennessee border. Many of his songs have a Southern, front porch feel. The band began performing in 1996 shortly after Bowman released his solo CD, In the Kitchen of the Blacksmith. His music has been used in several documentaries, around very many kegs and at least once in a Playboy video.

Don Miller (electric guitar, vocals), Steve Miller (bass), Mark Drake (drums), and Eric Smith (mandolin/Dobro/bottleneck guitar) fill out the band.
Monday, March 5, 2012


Join us for Dinner and a Movie! Every Monday night, stop by the Rockfish Grill, order any food item and get a ticket to the Anacortes Cinema located right across the street for only 5 bucks! Movie tickets are good for any day of the week.
Wednesday, March 7, 2012


It's our monthly Jazz invitational hosted by the Savage Jazz Trio. Join us for the best in mainstream jazz with special surprise guests, 6 - 9 PM the first Wednesday of every month.
Thursday, March 8, 2012


Note: Greta Matassa will be taking Trish Hatley's place for this March appearance:

Greta Matassa and her band perform Thursday, April 7th from 7-10PM.

In the Pacific Northwest, where she built her career, Greta Matassa wins wide acclaim; numerous times, the readers of Earshot, the Seattle jazz magazine, have voted her the best jazz vocalist in the Northwest. Jim Wilke, the Seattle jazz maven and host of the syndicated "Jazz After Hours" radio program, praises her versatility. "She has a fearlessness in approaching material,” Wilke says, "that makes her like an instrumentalist in a jam session.” Seattle Times critic Misha Berson described Matassa as a vocal chameleon who "can sound husky or crisp, ebullient or wailing, girlish or jaded.” Matassa displays all of those aspects of her talent in this live recording made at Bake's Place, a small club in Redmond, across Lake Washington from Seattle.

Matassa's fascination with songs began early. Her family moved frequently when she was small, but by the time she entered middle school, they had settled on Bainbridge Island in Puget Sound, opposite Seattle. This is what she said about her childhood:

"Growing up, my parents were big jazz fans and we had a lot of jazz music around the house. We listened to all the great stuff. I really liked the music from the thirties and forties, early Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday. I used to listen to a lot of Fred Astaire, a lot of Frank Sinatra. I never took lessons. While I was teaching myself to sing, my dad and I haunted used record stores. He'd choose anybody he knew that he thought would be interesting, and we'd just pick some people we'd never heard of and bring them home."

"I listened to instrumentalists, too, including Dizzy Gillespie and Art Farmer. My dad had a lot of West Coast jazz, Chet Baker, Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond. I listened to them, but I focused on the singers. I learned by singing along with them. I decided I wasn't going to be disciplined enough to do scales, so I thought, 'why don't I just see if I can find out how Billie Holiday got that sound and how Carmen McRae got her sound.' I'd sing with them over and over. I call it standing on the shoulders of giants. You sort of go along for the ride and see what it feels like. Then, as I got a chance to sing with rhythm sections, I'd experiment, throwing in an Ella Fitzgerald lick or a Sarah Vaughan lick, but at the same time struggling with how to become an individual, which is a lifelong endeavor. I didn't do all that well in school because I was mostly skipping out to work on music."

When she was a junior, Greta Goehle dropped out of high school and took a job in Salem, Oregon, with Tim Clark, a pianist and singer. "I just wanted to get my feet wet and find out what it was like. Tim was a kind of a loungy cocktail piano guy, a real Engelbert Humperdinck wannabe," she said, laughing. "He taught me the ropes. He dressed me up, dyed my hair, put Lee press-on nails on me and had me sing 'I Will Survive.' We were working at a country club, making four or five hundred bucks a week, which was pretty good for a 17-year-old. I was there for about a year and finally decided I'd had enough, and wanted to strike out on my own."

"Back in Seattle, I met the pianists Marc Seales and Barney McClure, and Michael Powers, the guitar player. Around 1985, Michael invited me to join him. I took a couple of players from his band and formed a small trio of my own. Then I hooked up with Jim Rasmussen's Jazz Police, a big band, and was pretty much their vocalist for about a year and a half. Around that time I was also still in a top forty band and starting to do some studio work. I had my finger in a bunch of different pies to try to get as much work as possible. I never had a day job. I just wanted to try to make a living as a singer. Diversification seemed to be the best way to stay employed."

She became even more diverse when in 1989 the Pacific Northwest Ballet asked Matassa to step in for Ernestine Anderson in a program based on the music of Kurt Weill. The show, in the Seattle Opera House, gave her wider exposure.

"The Weill show ran every two years for about ten years. It put me into the legit field and, eventually, led to Spectrum Dance Theater, which then got a grant and asked me to do a program with them. We debuted it in 1998. It was called ‘Voices of Jazz Danced,' a tribute to fourteen or fifteen jazz singers."

A few years later, Craig Baker, the owner of Bake's Place, encouraged Matassa to record at his club. In this intimate live recording. Matassa opens with "Why Try To Change Me Now," Cy Coleman's first songwriting success, and combines it with "Crazy He Calls Me," indelibly associated with Billie Holiday. She and the virtuoso bassist Clipper Anderson invigorate Gordon Jenkins's "Blue Prelude,” a staple of the 1930s, seldom performed these days.

Matassa integrated the selection of songs with her choice of musicians. She works often with Clipper Anderson, pianist Randy Halberstadt, drummer Mark Ivester and vibraharpist Susan Pascal. She and Halberstadt had collaborated on her show paying tribute to Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday, adapting arrangements from Fitzgerald and Holiday recordings. Now, they were free to work on original approaches.

"Randy and I got to talking about how nice it would be to actually have a chance to do some arranging of our own. I have such respect for these musicians. They're so good that we could have done just about any kind of standard. A pet project for years has been collecting songs that I think are not done enough. There's a whole slew of obscure Harold Arlen tunes that I would love to have a chance to do: 'It Was Written in the Stars,' for example, 'Sing My Heart,' 'I Wonder What Became of Me.' "

The title tune of her recent CD is an object of Matassa's rescue mission. Frank Sinatra recorded Jimmy Van Heusen's "All This and Heaven Too" with Tommy Dorsey in 1940. Chris Connor revived it in 1955. Since then, it has been largely untouched.

"For some of the songs, I gave Randy specific ideas of what I wanted. In others, he came up with what he thought would work. Jack Brownlow's arrangement of 'Close Your Eyes' already existed. It's just beautiful, a rich, ready-made thing to step into. I wanted material that represents me and the band in a good light, and also is accessible to an audience.”

Her close connection to the audience is a vital reason for Matassa's success. Lately, she has taken to letting the audience call the tune. She delights in encouraging her listeners to program an evening. It started, she said, when she was playing a gay club, Kid Mohair, on Seattle's Capitol Hill; with some trepidation, she asked for requests. To her surprise, the customers asked for songs by Billy Strayhorn.

"I said, 'well, gee, this is fun.' It also gave me a chance to do tunes that I thought I was bored with. Somebody will call 'Body and Soul' or 'Over the Rainbow,' songs that are done into the ground. But we do it because it was requested, and make up an arrangement. I like the spontaneity of having something thrown at me, someone saying, 'here, field this, and see what you can do with it.'
Friday, March 9, 2012


The Beachcombers are a 3 piece folk/rock band from Skagit County, led by singer/guitarist Skip Hamilton. Backing vocalist Karl Wagoner plays the bass and Ron Reese rounds out the trio behind the drum kit.

The Beachcombers play a rollicking brand of folk based rock, pop and country/rockabilly music. With a songlist that includes Bob Dylan, Mumford and Sons, Radiohead and Johnny Cash, eclectic is the only word to describe The Beachcombers' musical style.

With a generous sprinkling of their original music among the popular music they play, there's always something new and fresh at a Beachcombers show.

The Beachcombers have appeared all over the northwest, from Blaine to Seattle, from Spokane to Westport, playing in fairs, festivals and a multitude of clubs and casinos.

Their music is about well written songs, but at the same time fun to dance and sing along with, so come check out the Beachcombers and join in the fun!
Saturday, March 10, 2012


The Rockfish Grill presents the eighth annual "Guitarslinger" guitar player showdown 9 PM Saturday, March 10th hosted by the Colonel (pictured).

Past shows have brought us the top blues guitarists on the Northwest scene and this year will be no exception.

The 2012 line-up features guitarists Kimbal Conant, Mark Riley and Dean Riechert along with el Colonel. The rhthym section is made up of the ever solid Larry Hill on bass and John Rockwell on drums from Northwest group, the Fugitives.
Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Don't feel like cooking? Bring the family to the Rockfish Grill on Tuesday where kids twelve and under eat free all day (One child entree complimentary with each adult entree purchased).
Wednesday, March 14, 2012


Performing together for decades, the Stilly River Band delivers an exciting range of music, from bluegrass to progressive folk, Latin, Irish, rock and rhythm 'n blues. Their bluegrass arrangement of Sam & Dave's soul classic, Hold On, I'm Comin' will put a smile on your face for the rest of the day.

Known by some as “the bad boys of bluegrass”, the Stillys play and eclectic mix of music from traditional bluegrass to other less conventional styles played in a bluegrass format that the band labels “rude grass.”

The band features John Amber-Oliver on lead vocals and guitar, Jonathon Schneider on tenor harmonies and banjo, Stuart Torgeson on dobro and accordion, John Daugherty on vocals and stand up bass, Steve Stolpe on vocals and mandolin and Mike Schway on fiddle.

The Stilly River Band delivers accomplished musicianship, excellent vocal harmony and an always entertaining and unpredictable show. Looking for a cross between Earl Scruggs and the Tempations? These are your guys!

Friday, March 16, 2012


Seattle guitarist and singer Chris Stevens has been a favorite of Northwest blues fans for many years. His intense playing calls the prime years of stellar guitarists like B.B. King, T-Bone Walker and Kenny Burrell to mind. Preferring to deliver his electric blues lines with the rich tones of a big Gibson archtop, Chris combines scorching blues feeling with dazzling chops and constantly surprising musical ideas to create a style that cuts across genres, including blues, jazz... and surf!

Taking their unusual name from a song title by legendary blues guitarist Freddy King, the Surf Monkeys keep a firm footing in the blues while stretching the boundries with ultra cool spy themes, reverb drenched surf twang and Chris’ own “blues on the edge of jazz” originals. The Surf Monkeys truly are the missing link!
Saturday, March 17, 2012


Ben Rice wears square-rimmed glasses, collared button-up shirts, jeans, and black loafers. New audience members hoping to hear some great blues music seem shocked when Rice walks on stage – he is the complete opposite of what a blues singer looks like. However, once Rice picks up his guitar and starts singing, the Eugene audience is taken straight to the Deep South.

A fan of Rice’s describes him as a “black blues singer stuck inside a normal white guy.” Rice, originally from Newberg, Oregon, is the lead singer and guitarist of The Ben Rice Trio in Eugene. He is a perfect example of why you should never judge based on appearance. He describes himself as a shy and awkward person, but you would never perceive that about him from his performances. Rice says that the biggest influences of his music are artists like Carlos Santana and B.B. King. However, he is inspired by music from a large range of varying genres – everything from blues to rock, soul, and even eastern African music.

In addition to having the voice of a Southern black blues singer, Rice is an amazing guitarist. He picked up his first guitar, a 1981 Washburn A10, when he was only five years old. At the age of seven, he began taking lessons, and now, at the prime age of 22, Rice says that he can “convincingly play four instruments” – the guitar, bass, trombone, and drums.

Once Rice begins performing, a complete character transformation happens before the audience’s eyes. As Rice closes his eyes and begins playing his guitar, you can see his feelings in his face as he is moved by his own music. He’s a natural onstage. Then, he opens his mouth, and this deep, soulful voice comes out and blows the audience away. It doesn’t take long for the audience to get involved with the music. One verse into the first song and people are already tapping their feet or clapping along with the beat. Rice sways back and forth, eyes still closed, and belts out his blues.

Rice wasn’t always into the blues, though. He joined his first band in 1997 as a guitarist when he was nine years old. It was his two older brothers’ metal band, Minor Effects. The same year that he joined, Minor Effects opened for both Motörhead and Iron Maiden, two very popular metal bands. Rice’s blues career began two years later when he performed his first blues gig at the Hop Madness Celebration in Oregon.

Rice has been nominated for the Cascade Blues Association’s Muddy Awards 10 times. They have performed in multiple cities in Oregon, Washington, and California. In 2007, Rice and his band represented the Cascade Blues Society at the International Blues Challenge in Memphis, Tennessee. They placed second in the King of Beale Street competition.
Monday, March 19, 2012


Check out Anacortes' best Happy Hour, 3-6PM everyday. Enjoy pizzas, calzones, flatbreads, fish and chips, nachos, hot wings and more all for only 3.99 plus get $1 off all drinks.

Besides 16 handles of house brewed craft beer including year round cask and an extensive wine selection, the Rockfish Grill now serves your favorite cocktails!
Wednesday, March 21, 2012


The Spoonshine Duo featuring Jacob Navarro and William Cook of the popular group, Spoonshine, perform their own brand of home grown roots music the third Wednesday of every month.
Mt Baker Preview: HARPER CANCELLED!!
Friday, March 23, 2012

Mt Baker Preview: HARPER CANCELLED!!

Note: Harper has cancelled his west coast tour due to health resaons.

Mount Baker R&B Festival Preview Show:

PART HARMONICA VIRTUOSO AND PART rhythmic explorer, Harper is a fiery artist -singer / songwriter who blurs the lines between blues, soul, rock and world music. His latest Blind Pig release, "Stand Together" (2010) is the most artistically realized CD Harper has ever written. By combining traditional and modern influences, borowing from Western and Aboriginal music, Harper has created a highly original take on the roots genre which many have labeled "World Blues". His innovative use of electronic enhancement and feedback, breaks the traditional bounderies of the harmonica, giving his music its distinctive harmonics and effects. The powerful guitar sounds and the unique drone of the didgeridoo create raw yet eerie sonic textures, some how sounding primal and contemporary at the same time. No Depression Magazine,'s Rod Ames, adds that Harper " has written and arranged some of the most soulful blues rock filled music I've heard in quite sometime". Harper's latest CD reached number 10 on the Billboard Charts and the US Roots Music Charts. "Stand Together" also reached number 2 on the XM/ Sirius Bluesville national Charts, USA. 2010. "Stand Together" was also nominated for "Most Outstanding Recording" by The 2011 Detroit Music Awards. Harper was inducted into The Hall of Fame at The Blues Museum on December 17 by The South Canadian Blues Society in Windsor Canada.This show was sold out six weeks in advance. The performance was filmed by Rogers Television for a feature presentation to be aired later in 2012. A live CD was also recorded due to be released in March/ April of 2012.

Born in the United Kingdom, Harper’s musical journey began early, performing in brass bands playing the trumpet and euphonium. At the age of ten, his family moved half way the world to Perth, Western Australia, and his father introduced Harper to the harp. In Perth, one of the most isolated cities in the world, there was a thriving blues and folk scene. The blues had a rawness, an honesty and a passion of the soul which spoke to Harper deeply. Then, like every blues lover, Harper began his journey backwards to discover the deeper roots of the music.
"I think Muddy Waters really hit me hard. There was something incredibly special about his sound, his powerful voice and his songs. I would sing his songs constantly. I also really dug Sonny Boy Williamson II as well. I loved his rhythmic use of his harp. I was also inspired by a pretty wide range of players and styles like Little Walter, Sugar Blue and Stevie Wonder who guide me in my harmonica playing. "But Harper did not stop his search with the blues. It was a chance meeting with a Hopi "Dan Running Bear" in Silverton, Colorado, that led him down the path to rediscovering the music of his homeland. Fascinated with the spirituality and culture of the American Natives, he found the same qualities present in the Australian Aborigines of his homeland. On adding the native didgeridoo to his music, Harper says "It is a sound I grew up with, so it seemed natural to add it to my songwriting particularly when the lyrics related to the plight of the Aborigines in Australia. When I added the didgeridoo to the more traditional blues instruments, it worked. The deep woody qualities and its haunting drone seemed to enhance the emotional quality of my stories. The didgeridoo is a spiritual and healing instrument, and it seemed blues music accepted it with open arms."

Prior to his introduction to American audiences, Harper released six albums to great acclaim in his homeland of Australia. Harper received a Gold Record for "Sailing Australia" (America's Cup Theme). In 1994 he moved to Melbourne, Victoria and released his first album, "Tears of Ice". This was followed by "Yesterday Is Over" in 1996 with his band Blue Devil and "Live At The Soup Kitchen" in 1997 as a soloist. In 2000, he released "Glass on The Stepping Stone" and "Live At St. Andrew’s" in 2002. In 2003 he released "Way Down Deep Inside", for which he received two harmonica awards and “Album of the Year” honor from US Magazine's Guide to the Best of the Blues Harmonicas & Beyond. Over the years Harper has received multiple Australian Blues Awards for “Male Vocalist of the Year,” “Song of the Year,” and “Acoustic Artist of the Year.”Harper was also invited to perform at a Royal Gala Performance for the Queen of England in Perth, Western Australia.

His prolific recording career and memorable stage performances allowed Harper to take his music beyond Australia. He’s played in the USA, Canada, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Italy, Belgium and France. He first started performing in the United States in 1996, and has toured here regularly since. It was on one of these tours that he caught the attention of Blind Pig, which made him their first international signing. With a home at a U.S. label and growing appreciation for his music from American audiences, Harper made the permanent move to the U.S. His animated shows have been well received at blues festivals, world music festivals, and by fans of jam band music.Harper has become a huge favorite on the world wide festival scene with 28 festivals booked in 2008, 30 festivals booked in 2009 and 32 festivals booked in 2010 and 31 in 2011. It was during one of these recent festival appearances that Chip Eagle, Publisher for Blues Revue/ Blueswax enthusiastically offered "Harper is the most exciting act on the live scene today". He was also invited to perform harmonica on stage several times with US super group- "Journey".

Harper’s first Blind Pig release and American debut, 2005’s Down To The Rhythm, won accolades from the press for its unique sound and virtuoso performances, coupled with Harper’s compositional skill. “Harper is a crack harp player and he plays the instrument with both speed and efficiency, but it would be a mistake to pigeonhole Harper as just an impressive instrumentalist. He is also a solid songwriter, and a soulful singer with a knack for impassioned sincerity,” said All Music Guide. BluesWax noted, “There is much to enjoy here: clever songwriting, top-notch guitar, powerful rhythms, and some great Harper harp!

”Harper’s second release from Blind Pig Records, Day By Day (2007), provided fans wih another prime example of why his unique roots music style occupies a category of its own. Ramble Magazine raved that Harper's harp and lyrics have " depth of feeling and thought that is unusual in today's music ..Harper's music is essential. It should be widely heard". Downbeat Magazine added "Harper uses his trump cards- a strong and direct singing voice, a stirring harmonica out of Sonny Boy Williamson 11 and Little Walter , a droning didgeridoo - to give his melodic tunes an excitement that suits his intelligent use of blues rock and soul forms". Blues legend John Mayall loved Harper's songs so much so, that he included " Just What Your'e Looking For" as track 2 on his new CD "Tough" (Eagle Records)

Harper is at the top of his game on "Stand Together" (2010), showcasing his trademark powerful soulful voice, virtuoso harp playing, haunting didgeridoo, deeply, soulful grooves and unpraralleled songwrting and compelling lyrics. With his chops at their best and his band "Midwest Kind" sharing his vision, Harper will continue to turn heads of audiences who are looking for orginality, honesty, passion and skill in modern roots music., Harper's Michigan based band Midwest Kind features: Matt Besey on Guitar, Chris Wiley Smith on Bass Guitar/ Djembe and Scott Key on Drums.
Saturday, March 24, 2012


Lisa Theo is best known as an original member of two beloved Seattle bands, Ranch Romance and Mel Cooleys. She has performed in major folk festivals and venues throughout the United States and Canada.

Kim Field has performed coast to coast for decades, including stints with the Slamhound Hunters and his current R&B band, The Mighty Titans of Tone. Field has performed with the likes of Muddy Waters, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Robert Cray, the Fabulous Thunderbirds, Otis Rush, and John Lee Hooker.

With a dynamite band behind them , you wont believe your ears when these two seasoned veterans get together for some good ol fashioned country twang.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012


Join us for some great Django inspired tunes performed by local favorites Fidalgo Swing. Guitarist and host Allen Lewis will be joined each month by special guests to kick off our very own Djangofest right here at the Rockfish.
Friday, March 30, 2012


Geoffrey Castle, the founder of the groundbreaking group, The Guarneri Underground, will change forever the way you think about the violin, unless you've seen him already. Then you know that you're in for an incredible night of music unlike anything you've heard anyplace else.

Featured on CNN, NBC, CBS, NPR, hundreds of radio stations nationwide, Castle is known for his inspired, high energy, crowd pleasing virtuoso performances in venues both large and small, all over the world.

See him in an intimate setting, one night only, with his All-Star Band featuring Darin Watkins on drums and Eric Robert on Keys.

"Castle has created a pure, uncluttered masterpiece" - Seattle P-I

"Jaw Dropping Rock Violinist" - Anchorage Daily News

"If you missed him, kick yourself!" - Anchorage Press

"Castle redefines what is possible on the violin." - Kirkland Reporter
Saturday, March 31, 2012


About the Seatown Rhythm and Blues Band:

Hailing from Southern illinois, Guitarist Steve Black has brought his own style of Jazz, Blues and Funk to audiences not just in the US, but the middle and far east. Growing up in the Midwest in the 70's he played with blues greats like Luther Allison, Otis Rush, funk bands Confunkshun, Lakeside, the Barkays, and smooth jazz saxophonist Marion Meadows. Now residing in Seattle he plays with a number of well known jazz, blues and funk bands throught out the Northwest. He has a clean sweet and soulful sound that is guaranteed to raise a brow.

Nick Name Cool V PFunk, Vernon Petry originally from Spokane Wash
has 40 plus years experience with R&B music and has played professionally in Pacific Northwest, Canada, Oregon, and California. Playing all styles of music from the 70's to what is today. His originality and natural style of rhythm & soul keeps the groove movin.

Born in Chicago illinois this Multi
Instrumentalist, Songwriter arranger and producer, Jayar is a gifted singer as
well. With an Amazing four and a half octive range, his natural vocal talents
range from classic soul to hard hitting blues. This exteremely versatile artist has give many outstanding performances throughtout the country
and over seas. Over the years he has produced, not only for himself, but for
other solo artists and groups also.

320 Commercial Ave. | Anacortes, Washington
360-588-1720 | MAP
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