May 15: Tom Rush at the Napa Valley Opera House

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New York City’s Prestige Records, while releasing early albums by John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Sonny Rollins and other jazz pioneers, walked through the damp concrete of Washington Square Park one day and picked up a few straggling folksingers along the way. Among the best and most notorious was raconteur Dave Van Ronk, but Prestige found an unknown gem in Tom Rush. Lasting on Prestige about as long as Ronk, Rush jumped to folk haven Elektra Records in time to release his best record, The Circle Game, featuring songs by Joni Mitchell and James Taylor that came to new life through Rush’s soothing tenor. From that point, Rush became an interpreter of modern songwriters rather than a revivalist looking back, and always makes sure to throw in a few originals for authenticity. He performs songs from his first album in 30 years, What I Know, on Friday, May 15, at the Napa Valley Opera House. 1030 Main St., Napa. 8pm. $35. 707.226.7372.Gabe Meline

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