Comma Concerts moves to Valley

Carson City's coffee house concert series is permanently moving to Carson Valley. The first show will feature a concert by acoustic rock pioneer John Batdorf at Shady Grove Coffee Co. on Feb. 16. This show will be followed by several concerts throughout the year at various locations in Minden and Gardnerville.

Promoter and Minden resident Doug Reynolds started the series in 2004 with the goal of presenting world-class performing artists to small crowds. Reynolds said the decision to move the series came after two Valley locations opened recently.

"I always wanted to bring the concerts to town but there wasn't any place suitable to hold them. I helped book Minden's concerts in the park for a few years and I really enjoy that big picnic atmosphere with all the families and activities going on, but it isn't the best place acoustically for those who are there to really listen to the music.

"When Minden Village was built, I noticed that the 88 Cups coffee house had a perfect, amphitheater shaped patio area and Lee, the owner, was all for presenting live music there. That gave me an outdoor venue to try. Shady Grove Coffee Co. in Gardnerville opened and even though it was smaller than Comma Coffee, it does comfortably seat 65, which gives me just enough in potential ticket sales to pay some of the artists on my roster. We held our first show there last fall and nearly sold out. I also produced two free outdoor shows at 88 Cups last summer, gambling that I could pay the artists through donations from those in attendance. The first show drew 180, the second 285, and those in attendance were very generous. It took a full year to get as much support in Carson City that we received in the first three shows in Douglas County, so I made the decision to bring the whole series here for 2007."

The first show at Shady Grove will feature John Batdorf, an influence in the smooth, acoustic rock sound that was made popular by artists such as Seals and Croft, Bread, and Poco. His duo, Batdorf and Rodney, was a critically acclaimed act in the late 1970s. They were signed and produced by the head of Atlantic Records, Ahmet Ertegun, who also produced both the Rolling Stones and Ray Charles. Although they never achieved superstar status, the group was a regular opening act for the biggest concerts of the era, and Batdorf's smooth, acoustic style was credited as influencing many of the artists of the 1970s.

Tickets for John Batdorf are $15 and are available at Shady Grove Coffee Co., 1411 Highway 395, or online at The full schedule of concerts slated for 2007 can also be viewed on the Web site.


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