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Words and Music goes live and in-person


Mari Erin Roth

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Sports Editor


Multi-instrumentalist Tommy Miles take his position as “headliner” literally to provide another laugh for his audience at Patti’s Thunder March 17 in Quincy. Photo by Mari Erin Roth

Tommy Miles was the ideal performer to kick off the long-awaited season of Plumas Arts’ Words and Music. The event has been on hiatus for two years and artists and fans were very glad to see it return. Patti’s Thunder has been the venue hosting the event for … forever and everyone seemed comfortable to snuggle into familiar seats. Home-baked goods of an especially decadent variety graced the counter along with pitchers of ice water and glasses. Adult beverages were available as well. Jennifer Kaufmann Ready added a light-hearted joy to the event serving as the Plumas Arts emcee and host for the evening.

Miles is known as one of the few bagpipe players in the county, but he did not arrive to perform in a kilt or with Irish or Scottish pipes. He did however bring a very unusual double-necked “guitar” and a big box pedal bass. Miles played harmonica, guitar, double-neck guitar and bouzouki, and bass pedals that night. An uncanny memory and extensive repertoire are two of Miles’ immediately recognized talents. He was well rehearsed and polished in all his selections. It was no trouble at all for him to play “one more song” as requested by the crowd at the conclusion of his performance, multiple times. “It was a lot of fun, and I was glad to be invited,” said Miles. “Originally we’d planned to do it virtually (record it at the gallery and put it on YouTube) but we were able to do it live because local COVID cases are decreasing and the state mask mandate was lifted.”

Open mic followed the headliner Miles and the audience was treated to solo flute tunes of Irish origin from Rod Margason, original guitar tunes from April’s headliner Tristan Kadish, and a duo with local favorite Greg Willis and Tommy Miles on an original Miles tune.

“It’s great to have it back in person, and I hope to see everybody back at the next one,” said Miles. The Thursday, May 12, featured artists are the paired talents of Todd Reasor and Andrew Ohren. The event runs October through May due to all the other musical entertainments happenings in Plumas County during the summer. Words and Music is a real treat for locals through the winter months.

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