John Vanderslice at Dutch Flat Hotel
An eclectic set of mismatched chairs surround the cozy lobby stage at The Dutch Flat Hotel. A player piano and a few busted stringed instruments hint at a dormant musical history, leaving the lobby of this establishment looking like an elaborate set piece in a Wes Anderson film. It’s a place where important shows happen… or will happen, at least, if things go the way Linda Vaccarezza, the new hotel owner, intends with a planned monthly concert series. She and the event organizer, Amanda Eagleston of Gold Country Concerts, have been planning this event for weeks. Amanda, who is close with many local artists says, “I seriously just want people to have a good time. Seeing people happy, and enjoying the music is the best feeling for myself. I want to shine the spotlight on talented souls while bringing the community together.”
The venue, an 1852 fixture in Dutch Flat, is one of California’s oldest hotels. You might guess it’s age from the architecture, but the energy here is brand new. In addition to their whimsical indoor stage, there is a beautiful outdoor pavilion. With four tiers of green grass seating, a patio, and porch seating around the entire building on all three levels, this place was built to entertain.
Manager and Chef Alex Ladner has prepared a delicious series of hors-d’oeuvres for the show. He and a modest support staff are all brimming with an infectious excitement. It’s easy to buy into the pre-show hype when everyone seems so genuinely excited to be part of the moment (and the salmon pâté doesn’t hurt). The service is excellent with such a large crowd, as if they throw these events all the time. But the night that followed was anything but business as usual.
Tonight’s night’s show, the final date in John Vanderslice’s solo acoustic tour, draws a sold-out crowd that fills the room. He holds a quirky, irreverent dialog with the audience between sets. There is laughter and much head nodding along with the tunes, and the evening feels like a rare and intimate party with friends. It looks to be another successful event for Amanda. She is known locally for curating these kinds of experiences, and it’s her vision we’re seeing executed here tonight. “I just want to bring people together because music feeds the soul.”
After the (live) music stops, JV puts on a selection of sounds that he’s brought along to encourage talk and maybe a little bit of dancing. As the crowd thins, the remaining concertgoers move to the billiards room upstairs and spend the rest of the evening conversing. It’s been a great night. If this is the kind of show that we can expect on a regular basis, it’s going to be a great year at The Dutch Flat Hotel.
For show scheduling, booking, or other inquiries, email Amanda at firstname.lastname@example.org