Beck goes country at Monterey Fairgrounds.

Turf Wars: Raised on Hendrix, Mike Beck embraces his inner redneck in a new collection of cowboy tunes inspired by Merle Haggard.

A longtime fixture on the Monterey music scene, Mike Beck’s first popular local group was the late ‘70s bluegrass band Coast Ridge Boys. Since the Coast Ridge Boys called it quits in 1980, Beck has performed in the now defunct bar band the Cowboy Satellites and pursued a career as a singer/songwriter. On his solo albums like 2001’s Mariposa Wind, Beck played Western folk and cowboy music. He went in a country rock direction on his CD Rooted. Rooted, which has been getting played on local Americana radio station KPIG, includes songs like Beck’s stripped down take on Bob Dylan’s “I Want You” and his own “Oildale,” which sounds like Tom Petty fronting a classic Bakersfield country band.

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