Media Life: Guitarist Montrose set for rare, solo Newcastle show

Fretless guitar pioneer Ned Evett also on tap; KCRA ready to change channels
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When guitar great Ronnie Montrose decided to put a series of “unplugged” solo dates together, his thoughts turned to Newcastle’s Constable Jack’s. The Bay Area resident and the foothills club go back several years. In fact, it’s the guts of Montrose’s former concert system pumping out the sound at Constable Jacks. As CJ’s owner Tim Looper tells it, Montrose’s other performances are in the Bay Area but he wanted to make a special trip up Interstate-80 to play the small-town club. Montrose, perhaps best known for his work with the Edgar Winter Group, Van Morrison and with his own self-named band with Sammy Hagar, will be performing hits like “Bad Motor Scooter” in the intimate confines of Constable Jack’s on Aug. 1. Looper said it’s been eight years since his last performance there and Montrose will be dipping into four decades of music for the all-ages show starting at 4 p.m. Looper said he likes the all-ages concept on a late Sunday afternoon because it provides a chance for younger musicians to get inspired by talented artists they might not necessarily have a chance to regularly catch in a small, club setting like Constable Jack’s. The next Sunday, Aug. 8, Constable Jack’s will keep the all-ages format as it welcomes the Ned Evett Triple Double. Evett perhaps doesn’t have the name recognition of a Ronnie Montrose but he does have the chops. He’s known as a master of the fretless guitar and has opened hundreds of shows for Joe Satriani. He’s joined by drummer Kofi Baker, the son of Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Ginger Baker of Cream, and five-string fretless bass player Doug Lunn. SWITCHING CHANNELS The forecast is for KCRA 3 to make a move next month into more varied programming on what has been its second HD channel. Starting Aug. 2, what has been the WeatherPlus station at channel 3.2 and channel 271 on Wave Broadband cable, will be switched over to what is being dubbed MOREtv Sacramento. That means a bit of a break for Mark Finan, perhaps the hardest-working meteorologist in Sactown. Finan has been all over the WeatherPlus station, as well as KCRA 3 and KQCA My58. Larry Kellogg, KCRA creative services director, said that Finan will stay busy with forecasts on the other stations and on MOREtv. MOREtv replaces a format that was started 3½ years ago as a joint venture with NBC. Kellogg said that when NBC pulled out of what was ultimately an unsuccessful effort for them, KCRA was left with the brand. The local station will stay with the weather format until the Aug. 2 switchover. After that, the station will dip into both new and old programming, including classic movies and comedies like “The Cosby Show” and “Roseanne.” Noon hours on weekdays will introduce the “Better Sacramento” lifestyle program. Viewers can expect plenty of comedy shows and programs “with attitude” like Jerry Springer and Maury Povich, Kellogg said. The switch won’t see an improvement in the analog-quality 480p picture on 3.1. That will stay but Stefen Hadl, who manages much of the electronics at the station, says there’s hope for the future. While nothings planned at this point, new innovations are making it easier for a station’s secondary channel to move up to the high-def 720p level, he said. KCRA will continue to televise in the 1080i level, which provides even a better quality of picture and just below the high-def gold standard of 1080p. Only ESPN has reached that level so far.