Striking Chords Against Cancer This Weekend!

By October 18, 2019 Around the Area, Music

Here is a listing of Altoona area live music happenings for the weekend and week of Friday, October 18 through Thursday, October 24.

With most area outdoor fall festivals done and in the books for another year, live music now moves back indoors for the next six months.

A big indoor event happening on Friday night is the 8th annual Striking Chords Against Cancer fundraiser for the American Cancer Society, happening at Altoona’s Jaffa Shrine. Live music will be in the spotlight, with performances from Drew Dodson, Stephanie & the Wild Hearts, August Wake, Buzz on 27, Zach Wade & the Good Grief, Matt Pletcher & the PDX and Half Tempted. There will also be guest speakers, a basket raffle, children’s activities, food and refreshments and more. The doors open at 5:30 p.m., with the music getting under way at 6 p.m. Tickets are $10 per person, with children ages 12 and under admitted for free.

Blues and blues-rock fans might want to plan a roadtrip over the mountain to Johnstown on Saturday night, as Austin, Texas-based guitar great and blues rocker Eric Tessmer and his band return to the Flood City for a free concert at People’s Natural Gas Park (inside the Community Foundation Oilhouse). With a style and sound rooted in the traditions of Stevie Ray Vaughan, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix, Tessmer and his band will deliver their brand of scorching Texas blues and blues-rock, with guitar fireworks a-plenty taking the spotlight. Tessmer is no stranger to Johnstown; he has performed at the Flood City Music Festival (and its predecessor, the AmeriServ Johnstown Folkfest) in 2006, 2010, 2012 and 2015, plus a summer concert in 2017. Opening Saturday’s show at 7 p.m. will be Johnstown favorites Midnight Graffiti, with the Eric Tessmer Band taking the stage at 8:30 p.m. The concert – the season-ending concert at People’s Natural Gas Park – is being presented by the Johnstown Area Heritage Association (JAHA) and Flood City Music Festival.

While most local and regional fall festivals are now in the rear view mirror, Fulton County’s fall celebrations happen this weekend. The annual Fulton Fall Folk Festival happens through Sunday at locations throughout Fulton County, with various breakfasts, dinners, displays, presentations and festival gatherings taking place. Live music will be part of the festivities; local country hopeful Zac Grace performs on Friday night at the Tower Ridge Inn near McConnellsburg starting at 9 p.m., an Open Stage will happen at the Hustontown Volunteer Fire Company at 7 p.m. Saturday evening (musicians and groups welcome), and area country favorites Chris Woodward & Shindiggin’ will entertain at the Stone Hollow Farm south of McConnellsburg starting at 3 p.m. Sunday. And the fifth annual Akersville Fall Festival happens Friday and Saturday in Akersville (near Breezewood). This small festival features various local vendors, food and refreshments, children’s activities, and live bluegrass music both days. Admission is free. Proceeds from food sales benefit the restoration of the local church and elementary school.

And Seven Springs Mountain Resort near Somerset continues its four-weekend Autumnfest celebration this weekend. This weekend is Kids’ Halloween Weekend at Autumnfest, with children’s games, activities and fun in the spotlight, plus live music on both Saturday and Sunday. Saturday’s performers include Jeff Jimerson & Airborne, Told Ya So! and Rob Bayne; while Sunday’s performers include Chris Higbee, Right Turn Clyde and the Kevin Dale Band. There is a $5 parking fee for those attending Autumnfest.

For outdoor shows, in the event of inclement weather, please call or use social media to check ahead to make sure the show is still taking place, especially if you are driving any distance to attend.

Check out and support the area live music! And if you celebrate heavily while doing so, please designate a sober driver or call a taxi to get you home.


“Striking Chords Against Cancer” at Jaffa Shrine, Altoona; featuring Drew Dodson, Stephanie & the Wild Hearts, August Wake, Buzz on 27, Zach Wade & the Good Grief, Matt Pletcher & the PDX and Half Tempted (starts 5:30 p.m., donation $10/person [children 12 and under admitted free], proceeds benefit the American Cancer Society)

Jae Smith at Holiday Bowl, Altoona (Strike Zone Bar & Grille, starts 9 p.m.)

This Albatross at Bavarian Aid Society, Altoona (anniversary celebration, starts 8 p.m.)

Hotwax at Newburg Fire Association Social Hall, Altoona (starts 9 p.m.)

Felix & the Hurricanes at Duncansville VFW, Duncansville (starts 8 p.m.)

Washington Slept Here at Huntingdon Elks, Huntingdon (starts 7 p.m.)

Raining Blue at Woody Lodge Winery, Ashville (starts 6:30 p.m.)

The Mess at Patton American Legion, Patton (starts 9 p.m.)

Lux & Company at Olde Keg Bar & Grill, Portage (starts 10 p.m.)

Crossroads at Ebensburg VFW, Ebensburg (starts 8 p.m.)


Eric Tessmer Band with Midnight Graffiti at People’s Natural Gas Park, Johnstown (starts 10 p.m., free admission)

Happy Hour (Tom Fix and Sarah Mellott) at Altoona Grand Hotel (Grouse’s Nest), Altoona (starts 5 p.m.)

Lauren & Joe at Trianon Bar & Grille, Altoona (starts 8 p.m.)

Grateful Ted & Co. at Unter Uns Musical & Entertainment Society, Altoona (starts 8 p.m., open to the public)

Urban Myth at Bavarian Aid Society, Altoona (anniversary party, starts 8 p.m.)

R2B2 at Newburg Fire Association Social Hall, Altoona (starts 9 p.m.)

Greg Burley at U.S. Hotel, Hollidaysburg (starts 7 p.m.)

Stormy at Argonne Cafe, Hollidaysburg (starts 8 p.m.)

Brother Jack’s Lost Cause at Olde Bedford Brewing Company, Bedford (starts 6 p.m.)

Reboot at Huntingdon Moose, Huntingdon (Halloween party, starts 8 p.m.)

100 Proof at Steele’s Tavern, Hopewell (starts 9 p.m.)

Bruce Schettig at Woody Lodge Winery, Ashville (starts 6:30 p.m.)

The Boomers at Patton VFW, Patton (starts 9 p.m.)

Krazy Kat Daddies at Patton American Legion, Patton (starts 9:30 p.m.)

That Oldies Band at Jamestown PNA, Portage (starts 8 p.m.)

Downshift at Castle Pub, Ebensburg (starts 10 p.m.)

Ed N’Born at Sunshine Mine Inn, Coalport (starts 9 p.m.)

SUNDAY 10/20:

Chad Patterson at Woody Lodge Winery, Ashville (starts 2 p.m.)


Matt Wagner at Family Pizza & Pub, Altoona (starts 6 p.m.)

The Band OZ at Bavarian Aid Society, Altoona (starts 6 p.m.)

White Shadow at Altoona Grand Hotel, Altoona (starts 7 p.m.)

Felix & the Hurricanes at Black & Gold Tavern, Altoona (starts 9 p.m.)


Open Mic with Rich Dasch at D’Ottavio’s Gran Sasso, Hollidaysburg (starts 8 p.m.)


Open Mic Night at Unter Uns Musical & Entertainment Society, Altoona (starts 8 p.m.)


Open Stage at Greenbean Coffee House, Altoona (starts 6 p.m.)

Open Mic Night at Woody Lodge Winery, Ashville (starts 6:30 p.m.)

Steve Summerhill at Jethro’s, Altoona (starts 7 p.m.)

(NOTE: More shows may be added to this list as information becomes available. Feel free to check back.)

To report additional shows or corrections to this listing, email information to Deadline to submit information for the initial posting is each Friday morning at 9 a.m.