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Accordions are loud. Good parties are loud. This is not a coincidence. Party down Cajun style with the Zydeco Flames at Rancho Nicasio with party favors and a Champagne toast for $35–$45.
Get swept away with rock group New Monsoon at Sweetwater Music Hall in Mill Valley. The evening also features an intriguing dinner menu built around the theme "Soiree from the Spice Route." Tickets are $37 for show only, $77 for dinner and show.
Singer-songwriter Joan Osborne burns down the house with two sets of her country, blues and folk stylings and Mark Karan opens the night with rock and roll at Phil Lesh's Terrapin Crossroads in San Rafael. Tickets are $45.
Get down with the Monophonics and the Ironsides at 19 Broadway in Fairfax, $18–$25. . . . Brewnell plays at the Old Western Saloon in Pt. Reyes. . . . Stir it up for a reggae party at Smiley's in Bolinas. . . . Guitarist Bart Hopkin plays at Station House Café in Pt. Reyes. . . . Tom Finch Group takes the stage at the Sleeping Lady in Fairfax. . . . Petty Theft steals Tom Petty's best tunes at Hopmonk in Novato, $45. . . . Sausalito's Osteria Divino offers a Tuscan dinner with music by the James Moseley Quartet, and it's $10 if you want music only. . . . The Presidio Yacht Club in Sausalito hosts the Lonestar Retrobates with fireworks at midnight, $40.
If only every train were as elegant as that one in Harry Potter. Well, there is one that outclasses even that: the Wine Train. Spend New Year's Eve in luxury with caviar, bubbly, a gourmet meal and dancing, all on a moving train! Well, moving some of the time—it returns to the station at 11pm, but the party keeps rolling until 1am. Tickets are $237, $267 or $45 for the afterparty only.
Celebrate in Monaco, figuratively speaking, at a Monte Carlo-style Casino at 1313 Main in Napa. Dress to impress, the flyer says, .007-style. Hopefully that doesn't include fighting two hired goons in a Komodo dragon pit (James Bond wouldn't mind, but you might). Tickets are $40–$135.
Westin Verasa Napa and La Toque host a Red Tie Affair, which includes a five-course dinner at La Toque and dancing held at the Westin Verasa Napa. Tickets start at $75.
Blues Brothers tribute band Briefcase Full of Blues plays two shows at Silo's in Napa, $45 (early show) to $75 (late show). . . . Domaine Chandon in Yountville hosts a Carnival New Year's Eve celebration and dinner for $300. . . . Silverado Resort and Spa offers dancing, Champagne and a midnight balloon drop for $50. . . . Longmeadow Ranch Winery in St. Helena offers a four-course farm-to-table meal and live music for $85. See you later, 2012!