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The El Juan Farewell Tour and Casa Hogar Benefit

By Wayne Yetman

The Shelter Theater is hosting the final venue of the El Juan Farewell Tour 2016, a concert-jam, on Sunday, March 27, at 7pm. All proceeds will go to the new guitar program at the Casa Hogar Orphanage in Mexiquito.

With El Juan
Sun, Mar 27, 7pm
The Shelter Theater
Vicente Guerrero 4

El Juan (aka “The One,” aka Shane Gibson) and Tom Driscoll, two Shelter regulars, are partnering with a bevy of local musicians in a night of culturally exotic exuberance. “This is the big one,” said El Juan. “One last blow-out to cap off my five-year musical odyssey in San Miguel. The music will sizzle with emotion. It will touch your heart and soul and haul you to your feet.” The concert will weave together individual and group performances by Driscoll, Almitri Tzigane, Mago Camarena, David Ziff, and William Henderson in a music-without- borders collaboration. “Fans put me in the spotlight because I’m a singer,” said El Juan, “but these guys draw out the best in me. Musicians from so many backgrounds working together­—the synergies are magical.”

Tom Driscoll learned guitar in the folk revival of the early 1960s and the “British Invasion,” then worked himself through college with a variety of bands. He regularly appears at local festivals, with Wendy and the Lost Boys, and in a duo with Dave Bingham at Paprika. “I’m grateful to have enticed Tom, who is in great demand, into this effort,” said El Juan.

Almitri Tzigane has been performing around the Mexican Republic for 10 years, entertaining with fingerstyle guitar for blues, country, rock, and gypsy jazz. Mago Camarena is a Mexican-born guitar player who has appeared all over the world. He now works in San Miguel de Allende as both a soloist and with Mexgitanos. David Ziff, on saxophone, has a long history with swing bands and a recently formed local saxophone quartet. William Henderson will be playing an Indian instrument called the shruti box. His creative career has also encompassed writing novels and short stories and a series of gigs as a radio personality.

There is no entrance fee but El Juan is asking fans to donate a minimum of 150 pesos to support the orphanage’s new guitar program. Donations of used guitars would also be appreciated. An anonymous donor will be matching all profits from the concert. “Everyone needs love and music is love,” said El Juan. “The guitar program will lift spirits and build a sense of accomplishment.”

“I owe San Miguel so much,” El Juan continued. “Through the guitar program we will leave something tangible in the community.” The concert also celebrates the forethought of Phil Roger in establishing the Open Mic as a venue for aspiring performers, as well as John Wharton and David Johanssen, who have driven the event to new heights. The concert is at the Shelter Theater, San Rafael, March 27, 7pm. Tickets at La Biblioteca, Shelter Theater, and online at


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