HAPPY HARBINGER: The best large-scale music and art events tend to spiral off a few (or several) smaller satellite events. There are many reasons for this, but let's note the one with the most heart: Sometimes one day, or one weekend, isn't quite enough to get in all the tunes you want to. With this in mind, Wente Vineyards in Livermore is the spot for a few prequels to its big, end-of-August Front Porch Festival. And we do mean end of August -- the seventh annual outing for the twang-a-riffic, day-long live music festival is Saturday, Aug. 31. But if that still seems far-off-ish away, you can get a Front-Porch-y fix earlier and you can get it twice.
STARTING ON... Saturday, July 13 with the Homegrown Concert series. Bands bearing the Front Porch vibe -- think a nice amount of Americana-style twang and rootsy flows -- will play the vineyard, including Tumbleweed Wanderers and Wolf Hamlin & The Front Porch Drifters. Then on Saturday, Aug. 3 the Homegrown Concert series returns with a set from The Wheeland Brothers (with Wolf Hamlin & The Front Porch Drifters again rockin' a set). Wine for sale -- of course -- and picnicky-good eats are part of the evening's choices for both shows. An advance ticket is ten bucks.
AND... If you do want to go full Front Porch, best look into those festival tickets as well sooner than later. Six acts are on the line-up so the tunes start mid-afternoon, at 3 p.m.