Get your Cowan tickets while they last!

9 Sep

John Cowan hi resTickets for a Sept. 25 concert in Martinsville featuring three members of the Doobie Brothers band are now on sale, and organizers say the show may sell out in advance.
John Cowan, John McFee and Friends will perform Thursday night, Sept. 25, at the Rives Theatre in uptown Martinsville. Cowan and McFee play bass and guitar, respectively, in the Doobie Brothers band. They will be joined by Doobie drummer Ed Toth.
The trio is touring in support of Cowan’s latest album, “Sixty,” which was released by Compass Records on Aug. 26. Cowan first gained fame as the lead singer of New Grass Revival, a band that also featured Sam Bush and Bela Fleck, among others. Cowan will be making his second appearance at the Rives Theatre.
“We had John Cowan perform at our season opening concert in 2013, and the audience response was fantastic,” said Dean Johnston, president of the Arts at the Rives(ART) community nonprofit. “Folks have been asking us to have him back ever since, and when the opportunity arose to bring John Cowan to Martinsville along with a couple other members of the Doobie Brothers, it was too good to pass up. There’s a good chance this show will sell out, so we encourage music fans to get their tickets in advance.”
General admission tickets for the concert cost $25 each. VIP tickets, which include a meet and greet with the band plus some food and drink, cost $75. General admission tickets are available at the Daily Grind coffee shop in uptown Martinsville, as well as Woodall’s Music & Sound in Collinsville. They can also be purchased online at
Doors to the theatre will open at 7 p.m. and Cowan’s band will take the stage around 8 p.m.
ART is a community nonprofit dedicated to promoting music, arts and education in Martinsville while utilizing the historic Rives Theatre as a space for community events and concerts. For more information, visit


Tickets now on sale for Sept. 6th & 25th shows

26 Aug

Riff Raff Left Hip comboTickets are now available for the Sept. 6th Cultural Crawl event featuring Left Hip Pocket and Dr. Z & the Riff Raff, as well as the John Cowan, John McFee & Friends concert on Sept. 25th. Online tickets are available at and sold locally at Woodall’s Music and the Daily Grind.

Cultural CrawlThe Cultural Crawl is a community event organized between numerous uptown Martinsville businesses, ranging from restaurants to museums and the Rives! Patrons who purchase $10 Cultural Crawl wristbands will receive discounts at numerous Cultural Crawl locations on Sept. 6th, including a $2 discount at the doors of the Rives. To purchase an online ticket to Left Hip Pocket and Dr. Z & the Riff Raff, click HERE.

All money from Rives Theatre ticket sales for the Sept. 6th event will be donated to local Martinsville musician Camry Harris, whose mother recently passed away. Camry, whose father has also passed, is now working to pay off several debts that he incurred upon his mother’s passing. He is the drummer in Left Hip Pocket and a truly wonderful young man.

John Cowan hi resJohn Cowan, John McFee & Friends will feature three members of the legendary Doobie Brothers band. The band will be touring in support of Cowan’s newest album, “Sixty,” which features a long list of who’s-who guest musicians, including Leon Russell, Alison Krauss, Rodney Crowell, Bernie Leadon, Sam Bush, Chris Hillman, Huey Lewis, Bonnie Bramlett, Ray Benson and many more. To purchase an online ticket to John Cowan, John McFee & Friends, click HERE.


Lizzy Ross, Major & the Monbacks play Saturday!

22 Jul

Lizzy Monbacks farm show FlyerJoin us Aug. 23rd for a fantastic co-bill at Shining Star Farm that will feature Lizzy Ross, followed by Major & the Monbacks!

Lizzy has been a Rives Theatre and Rooster Walk favorite for years! Check out all the latest HERE.

Major & the Monbacks are an awesome “rock’n’soul” band from the Norfolk area, and they stole the show Thursday night at Rooster Walk 6! Learn more about this full-sized rock band (complete with horn section!) HERE.

This outdoor show is always the best party of the summer in Martinsville/Henry County. Shining Star Farm is located at 3838 Barrows Mill Road in Martinsville. Please feel free to bring lawn chairs and blankets. Outside alcohol is not permitted.

Buy your tickets today and SAVE money. Just click HERE for online tickets. To learn more about group-ticket-sales options, email Tickets are available at Woodall’s Music and the Daily Grind.



Sweet Crude plays tonight!!

16 Jun

Sweet Crude poster copy (2)

In order to attend, you must RSVP with Dean Johnston by calling 276-732-2836. The $25 ticket fee includes dinner and drinks, plus the show! (RSVP is required to get an accurate head count for the dinner caterer). Thanks!



Maria in the Shower plays on May 2nd!

23 Apr


Piedmont Arts presents Maria in the Shower‘s high-energy amalgamation of music and theatre live at the historic Rives Theatre!

Part vaudeville show, part cabaret, part punk and part folk, Maria in the Shower is a deceptive name for a musical collaboration that seeks to defy description. 

Born in Vancouver in 2005, the band has been a fixture of the city’s underground music scene for a number of years, exploring the fringe of music and theatre. The four-piece act, consisting of Jack Garton, Martin Reisle, Brendon Hartley and Todd Biffard, is like a minstrel show that blends influences from gypsy jazz, rockabilly, swing and more into a creative and unpredictable sound.

All tickets cost $15 each. They can be purchased by clicking HERE.

Lee Boys to play the Rives on April 11th

28 Mar

The Lee Boys are considered one of America’s finest African-American sacred steel ensembles. This family group (guitar, two vocals, pedal-steel guitar, bass and drums) consists of three brothers and their three nephews, and they will rock the Rives on Friday night, April 11th!

This show is part of the Live at the Rives concert series, meaning season passes will be accepted. Tickets $8 in advance from Woodall’s Music and the Daily Grind, or $10 at the door on show night.

Sacred steel music is a unique form of Gospel music with a hard-driving, blues-based beat. The musical genre is rooted in Gospel, but infused with rhythm and blues, jazz, rock, funk, hip-hop, country. The band will be making its Martinsville debut and is also scheduled to perform at Rooster Walk 6 this spring.

Jon Stickley Trio to bring “jazzgrass” to the Rives tonight

5 Mar


Despite the snow, fans of both jazz and bluegrass should be in for a treat tonight when the Jon Stickley Trio (JS3) performs as part of the Live at the Rives concert series.

In a recent album review, a writer for Bold Life Magazine noted that JS3’s “arrangements are superb and fresh, and give someone like Bela Fleck a real run for his money.”

The trio, which features Stickley on guitar, Lyndsay Pruett on fiddle and Patrick Armitage on drums, exhibits world-class musicianship while offering a unique mix of bluegrass, jazz and jamband styles.

Based in Asheville, N.C., JS3 has been on a steady climb in popularity since forming less than three years ago. They are coming off a two-week run through Colorado that featured roughly a dozen shows in 10 cities, and they’re preparing for their first ever Merlefest appearance this April. In the past 13 months, the band has performed at Floydfest, Bristol Rhythm & Roots, Mountain Song at Sea festival cruise and Suwannee (Fla.) Springfest, among others. In the same span, they’ve also opened for Leftover Salmon, the Infamous Stringdusters and rock hall of famer Leon Russell.

“There aren’t a lot of vocals with the Jon Stickley Trio, but the musicianship is off the charts,” said ART President Dean Johnston. “If you liked past Rives shows such as Stephane Wrembel or cello player Dave Eggar, you will really enjoy this show. It’s part bluegrass, part jazz, part rock.”

Stickley grew up in Durham, N.C., performing in youth choirs as a youngster before learning the drums and playing in punk rock bands. In high school, he discovered bluegrass and soon became enamored by Tony Rice’s guitar playing.

He spent the next decade or so developing a flat-picking style and speed that rivals that of Rice, performing in bands such as Town Mountain, the Shannon Whitworth Band and the Biscuit Burners.

Tickets sold tonight at the doors of the theatre will cost $10 each.

For more information, visit

The Nighthawks set to bring blues, rock to the Rives this Friday

14 Feb


The Nighthawks, a legendary Washington, D.C.-based blues and roots rock band that has been touring for more than 40 years, will perform at the Rives Theatre this Friday night in uptown Martinsville.

The show is part of the Live at the Rives concert series, meaning season passes will be accepted. Advance tickets are available for $8 each from Woodall’s Music & Sound or The Daily Grind in uptown Martinsville. Tickets will also be sold for $10 each at the doors of the theatre, and the band will start playing around 9 p.m. Online tickets can be purchased HERE.

After forming in 1972, The Nighthawks’ lineup stabilized in 1974 with Mark Wenner (vocals and harmonica), Jimmy Thackery (lead guitar), Jan Zukowski (bass guitar), and Pete Ragusa (drums). They quickly evolved into a group that toured constantly up and down the East Coast. The band’s popularity led to countless opening gigs for Muddy Waters, James Cotton and Carl Perkins concerts, among others. The Nighthawks also backed up and recorded with John Hammond and Pinetop Perkins, according  to their website.

“Over the past four years, we’ve had a lot of great bands perform at the Rives Theatre, and many of them have been up-and-coming stars in the music world,” said Dean Johnston, president of Arts at the Rives Theatre (ART). “It’s truly a pleasure to host a group like The Nighthawks, who have literally toured the globe and played with a who’s-who of famous blues and rock artists over the years. This will be a special show.”

Thackery left The Nighthawks in 1986 to pursue a solo career. In his absence, the band featured a series of guitarists, including Jimmy Nalls, Warren Haynes, Danny Morris and Pete Kanaras. In 2003, The Nighthawks were featured in the first episode of season two of the popular HBO television series, The Wire.

Over the past 40 years, the band has released more than 25 albums. Friday’s performance, which was originally scheduled for Feb. 14 before getting snowed out, will be the band’s first appearance at the Rives Theatre.

The current band lineup features Mark Wenner (vocals, harmonica), Johnny Castle (vocals, bass), Paul Bell (guitar) and Mark Stutso (drums, vocals).

“The Nighthawks are a great blues and rock band,” said Johnston. “If you enjoyed past Rives shows from the likes of Bob Margolin, Devon Allman, Chris Duarte, Moreland & Arbuckle, Yarn and Albert Castiglia, you should come out to Friday night’s show in uptown Martinsville. You won’t regret it.”

ART is a community nonprofit dedicated to preserving the historic Rives Theatre by offering high-quality musical, educational and artistic programming. This volunteer-run organization is devoted to transforming the Rives Theatre from a movie house into a live-music venue and a community space for arts and education.

For more information about the band, visit

2014 Live at the Rives Theatre Series Opening Party featuring Yarn

7 Jan


It’s a new year and time to renew your Live at the Rives Theatre Series Pass for 2014. 

It seems like yesterday when the 2013 series opened with an Opening Party and concert by the bluesy John Cowan Trio. That concert marked the start of great year for Arts at the Rives Theatre (ART). Thanks to our patrons and sponsors, ART had funds to book the 2013 series in advance—a necessity when scheduling high-demand, professional touring bands.

The 2014 Live at the Rives Theatre Series will kick off on Friday, January 24 with an Opening Party and concert by Rives Theatre alumni and Rooster Walk fan favorite, YarnThis progressive bluegrass band’s upbeat sound always keeps the crowd engaged and fans just can’t get enough.

By purchasing a 2014 Live at the Rives Theatre Series Pass, patrons will not only get access to the January 24th Opening Party and concert by Yarn, including a full bar and our Fat Tuesday menu of Cajun food, but will get admission to nine additional Live at the Rives Theatre Series concerts throughout the year. Doors will open at 7 pm. Dinner will begin at 7:30 pm. Yarn will take the stage at 9:30 pm.

Our programming committee is currently working to complete the 2014 Live at the Rives Series line-up, which will include a wide range of musical genres, from bluegrass to rock to Americana and more.

If you have influence over your employer, please encourage them to donate to ART with a year-long Series Sponsorship by using our Series Pass order form. Series Sponsorships help support live music in our community and come with tickets to great concerts—perfect events for entertaining visiting clients.

Thanks in advance for your support of ART and the revitalization of Uptown Martinsville!

Opening Party with Yarn Ticket Options

Buy a 2014 Live at the Rives Theatre Series Pass ($125)
Includes admission to Series Opening Party with Yarn, free food and drinks and admission to 9 additional series shows.

Buy a Yarn VIP Party Pass ($50)
Includes admission to concert and free food and drinks.  Available locally at Daily Grind Coffee House & Cafe – Martinsville and Woodall’s Music and Sound.

Buy a Concert-Only Ticket to Yarn ($10)
Does NOT include food or drinks. Concert admission only at 9 pm.

Stephane Wrembel Returns to Rives, Dec 13

3 Dec

Called a “revelation” by Rolling Stone magazine, guitarist Stephane Wrembel and his band bring their ethereal brand of “Gypsy Jazz” to the Rives, with music from the groups’s fifth album, Origins. You will experience the guitar in a new, amazing way with Wrembel, whose career path has taken him from the Gypsy campsites of the French countryside to the stage of the 2012 Academy Awards, where he performed his theme to Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris.

Theatre doors will open at 8 pm, with Wrembel and his band taking the stage around 9 pm. Tickets are $8 in advance at Daily Grind and Woodall’s Music and Sound and $10 at the door.


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