The 24th Annual Arcata Bay Oyster Festival. Bivalves are front and center, but the local music lineup touches all the bases including Bayou Swamis, Striped Pig Stringband, the Jim Lahman Band, Motherlode (working the fest circuit this summer) and Best Kept Secret with the ad hoc All Star Rockoystra, whose members are being kept secret. Saturday, June 14, Arcata Plaza.

The 36th Annual Humboldt Folklife Festival. Shift gears for Dell'Arte's sprawling three-week Mad River Festival and its full week of folky local music, with a kickoff at Mad River Brewery, Americana music for Sunday's Annie and Mary Day, a songwriters' night, a jazz night and a pair of country nights — first "old-fashioned" and then "outlaw." There's a barn dance in Arcata on Friday, July 18, leading to Saturday's wrap-up, the All Day Folklife Free Festival with dozens of musicians, bands, dancing, workshops and more, all around Dell'Arte. Saturday, July 12 to Saturday, July 19, Blue Lake and

Northern Nights Music Festival 2.0. Back for year two, the organic dance music festival on the Eel River has an all-star line-up including the amazing Beats Antique, Giraffage, The Floozies, Viceroy, EPROM, Fort Knox Five and tons of local DJs and producers. Friday, July 18 to Sunday, July 20, Cooks Valley Campground, Piercy.

The Second Annual Blue Lake Music Festival. This one's about the music, morning to night, and puts an emphasis on tributes with The Miracle Show (Grateful Dead), Silver Hammer (Beatles), Jimi Jeff and the Gypsy Band (Hendrix), as well as Motherlode (who know a James Brown tune if required) and half a dozen other acts. Saturday, July 26, Perigot Park in Blue Lake.

The 30th Annual Reggae on the River. This is a really, really big one, with the Mateel once again at French's Camp and taking it back to its roots in more ways than one. Among the classics: Jimmy Cliff, Alpha Blondy, Third World, Israel Vibration, Michael Rose, Sly & Robbie with The Taxi Gang and Mutabaruka, neo-classics like Gentleman, Iration and Gyptian, and homegrown faves including Ishi Dube, Winstrong, Thicker Than Thieves and Jade Steel. An irie time is guaranteed. Thursday, July 31 to Sunday, Aug. 3, French's Camp, just south of Richardson's Grove State Park.

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Bob Doran

Bob Doran

Freelance photographer and writer, Arts and Entertainment editor from 1997 to 2013.
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