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Brian Wilson will play at Morongo on Sept. 16. | COURTESY PHOTO

The Venue Report, September 2021: Chicago, Pat Benatar, Wynonna Judd — and Much More!

Little Big Town.

Welcome to September!

Good news: As of this month, most of the area’s entertainment venues are back in action! Bad news: The Delta variant sucks! Both Palm Springs and Cathedral City are now requiring masks indoors, as well as proof of vaccination to go inside bars, restaurants and other public spaces. We recommend calling ahead and being alert for any changes or cancellations—and most importantly, be safe!

As a perfect example of COVID-caused confusion, we bring you the curious case of Coachella Crossroads. The outdoor venue, adjacent to Spotlight 29, had two September events scheduled: the El Grito Festival on Friday, Sept. 17, and Saturday, Sept. 18; and Miranda Lambert on Saturday, Sept. 25. On Aug. 27—after we went to press with the print edition of this column—we received this rather non-specific news release: “Out of an abundance of caution for our guests and staff, the Twenty-Nine Palms Band of Mission Indians has decided to reschedule some performances at the Coachella Crossroads event space. We realize this is a disappointment for the many people who have already purchased tickets for several upcoming events, but the recent surge of the Delta variant and rising numbers of COVID-19 cases has prompted this decision. We will be announcing new dates and additional acts coming to our exciting new venue in the very near future.” However, as of Aug. 31, both shows were still listed on the Coachella Crossroads website—and tickets even remained on sale for Lambert’s show. (The ticketing portion itself showed the El Grito Festival with new dates of May 6 and 7, 2022.) Just as we posted this online, we received another press release confirming that Lambert’s show was indeed being rescheduled. Take this as a cautionary tale, folks: Confirm before you go. As for Coachella Crossroads, we recommend watching the website for (eventual) updates. Spotlight 29 Casino, 46200 Harrison Place, Coachella; 760-775-5566; www.coachellacrossroads.com.

Headliners have returned to Fantasy Springs, starting with Chicago, at 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 11. Tickets range from $59 to $99. Grammy-winning country band Little Big Town will mosey in to the Special Events Center at 8 p.m., Friday, Sept. 17. Tickets are $79 to $129. George Lopez aims to bring laughs to Indio on 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 18. Tickets cost $59 to $99. Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, 84245 Indio Springs Parkway, Indio; 760-342-5000; www.fantasyspringsresort.com.

Spotlight 29 is hosting one big name this month in the Spotlight Showroom: Comedian Felipe Esparza is slated to lighten the mood at 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 4. Tickets are $30 to $45. Spotlight 29 Casino, 46200 Harrison Place, Coachella; 760-775-5566; www.spotlight29.com.

Agua Caliente in Rancho Mirage has a stacked September lineup. At 8 p.m., Friday, Sept. 3, Spanish rockers Caifanes will absolutely shred. Tickets range from $75 to $95. At 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 4, rock legends Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo will bring their history of hits to The Show. Tickets are $60 to $90. At 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 11, two of the funkiest groups to ever get down, Tower of Power and Average White Band, come to town. Tickets range from $45 to $75. At 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 18, classic-rock pioneer band Styx is set to perform. Tickets range from $65 to $105. Agua Caliente Resort Casino Spa Rancho Mirage, 32250 Bob Hope Drive, Rancho Mirage; 888-999-1995; www.hotwatercasino.com.

Meanwhile, in Cathedral City, the Agua Caliente there is set to host rising country star Tyler Rich at 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 4. Tickets are $25. Pay tribute to Jenni Rivera with Joyas Prestadas, at 8 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 18. Tickets are free to members at the ACE Club. Agua Caliente Cathedral City, 68960 E. Palm Canyon Drive, Cathedral City; 888-999-1995; www.aguacalientecasinos.com/cc.

Agua Caliente in Palm Springs is continuing its popular Jazzville series, taking place every Thursday at 7 p.m. Some highlights: On Sept. 9, catch the Tony Guerrero Quintet, led by jazz flugelhornist, trumpeter, composer, producer and namesake Tony Guerrero. You can celebrate Oktoberfest with Die Sauerkrauts on Sept. 23, or enjoy some samba and jazz with Brazilian producer Munir Hossn on Sept. 30. Tickets for all shows start at $10, and they’re available at www.jazzvillepalmsprings.com. You must be 21 or older to attend. Agua Caliente Casino Palm Springs, 401 E. Amado Road, Palm Springs; 888-999-1995; www.sparesortcasino.com.

Morongo Casino Resort and Spa is hosting a living legend this month, as Beach Boys founder Brian Wilson is set to perform at 8 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 16. Tickets range from $59 to $99. The next night, catch La Septima Banda, playing a variety of Mexican music, at 9 p.m., Friday, Sept. 17. Tickets are $45 to $65. Morongo Casino Resort Spa, 49500 Seminole Drive, Cabazon; 800-252-4499; www.morongocasinoresort.com.

Pappy and Harriet’s, per usual, is hosting some sold-out shows this month—so get tickets for what’s left while you still can! Note: Pappy’s is now requiring proof of a COVID vaccine, or a negative test within 72 hours of the event for entry, as well as masks indoors. At 8 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 8, catch the resurgence of Islands, the indie-rock group that had been inactive since 2016. Menno Versteeg set to open, and tickets are $20. At 8 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 9, witness living country legend Wynonna Judd with The Big Noise. Tickets are $45. At 8 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 19, new wave icon Gary Numan brings The Intruder Tour to the high desert. Tickets are $35. Pappy and Harriet’s Pioneertown Palace, 53688 Pioneertown Road, Pioneertown; 760-365-5956; www.pappyandharriets.com.

After almost 18 months of being closed, The Purple Room in Palm Springs is finally open again. Some entertainment highlights for the month: Comedy duo Lee Squared, who imagine how Liberace and Peggy Lee would navigate today’s world, is coming for a two night stay, at 6 p.m., Friday, Sept. 17, and Saturday, Sept. 18. Tickets range from $35 to $40. Another two night stay will take place at 6 p.m., Friday, Sept. 24, and Saturday, Sept. 25, featuring singer Jane Monheit, performing Ella Fitzgerald songs. Tickets are $55 to 65. Michael Holmes’ Purple Room, 1900 E. Palm Canyon Drive, Palm Springs; 760-322-4422; www.purpleroompalmsprings.com.

Coachella Valley Brewing Company is yet again hosting an abundance of local talent. At 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 11, celebrate Chelsea Sugarbritches’ Birthday Bash, featuring Long Duk Dong and The People of the Sun. An Acoustic Afternoon is slated 3 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 19, and will feature performers Nick Hales, Courtney Chambers and Wesley Gainey. Local rock fans can flock to Brewhouse Rock on 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 25, and listen to Sleazy Cortez, Fever Dog and others. All shows are free and open to all ages. Coachella Valley Brewing Company, 30640 Gunther St., Thousand Palms; 760-343-5973.

The Venue Report, September 2021: Chicago, Pat Benatar, Wynonna Judd—and Much More! is a story written by Matt King from Coachella Valley Independent, the Coachella Valley’s alternative news source. Coachella Valley Independent is a part of the CalMatters Network.

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