Cloverdale, “the Gateway to the Redwoods,” is one of those unassuming little burgs with an actual big heart. Cloverdale, after all, built a train station for the SMART train 12 years ago, on faith alone! It also continues to support a hometown drive-in even as fast food joints get built on the south side of town, and its downtown has a smattering of culture in Friday Night Live, a series of free concerts presented by the Cloverdale Arts Alliance. This Friday, none other than Big Sandy and His Hi Fly-Rite Boys
pull their chrome Airstream bus up to the downtown plaza to serenade the boppers hungry for their Texas-swing style featuring a stand-up bass, lap steel and a portly voice raised on border-radio soul. Get up there early for the farmers market beforehand, and take a final dip in the Russian River afterward when they play on Friday, Aug. 20, at the Downtown Plaza. Main and Broad streets, Cloverdale. 7pm. Free. 707.894.4410.