"Western Lights Trio"

Our Music as a trio!

Playing as a trio our music has definitely grown in diversity from our days of playing with the full Western Lights Band. "Bluegrass and Beyond" by itself is no longer adequate to describe our music. We love the rich history and diversity of American music and strive to share the best of that with our audience. Our music as a trio now can probably best be described as “Acoustic Americana” a diverse mix of some of Our Countries best American Heritage music from Bluegrass, Folk, Swing, Country, Cowboy, Old-Time, Gospel, Waltz’s and more!

And here are some samples of our music as a trio!

Sample 1. Western Lights Trio, Music For A Summer Bbq!
Sample 2. Ashokan Farewell, Western Lights Trio
Sample 3. Western Lights Trio, a medley of classics with Jim Heberling on Drums
Sample 4. Angeline the Baker, a fun "new" Old timey tune!

Western Lights Trio, Upcoming Shows!

To Inquire about Upcoming Shows, please visit our Contact Page.

Past Playing Venues for Western Lights trio!

Private Birthday Party Event, Sacramento, CA. 5/19/2018
South Sacramento Interfaith Partnership Flood Closet, 5/11/2018
"On the Patio" at Brookside Restaurant and Bar, 11/12/2017
Rosemont's 9th Annual Celebration of Community Event, 8/12/2017
Atria El Camino Gardens Residents and Guests, 6/22/2017
Kiene's fly shop Christmas Party, Marconi Ave, Sac, 12/3/2016
"On the Patio" at Brookside Restaurant and Bar, 5/15/2016
Allied Arts Club of Sacramento, Dante Club 4/5/2016
85th Birthday Party event, Cracchiolo's Banquet Hall, Woodland, CA 12/28
Kiene's fly shop Christmas Party, Marconi Ave, Sac, 12/5/2015
Insight Coffee Roasters at the pavilion on Fair Oaks Boulevard, 10/16/2015
Eskaton Monroe Lodge Residents and Guests (private) 8/22/2015
Railroad Museum UC Davis International Conference (private) 9/15/2015
Atria El Camino Gardens Residents and Guests (private) 9/24/2015
Kiene's Fly Shop Simms special event (public) 11/19/2015
Wedding for Beth Nilsen and Juan Carlos, Woodland, CA 7/11/2015
Kiene's Fly Shop, Special Promotion, Beer and Taco's night 5/21/2015
Cielo Winery, Wine Club Member Appreciation Day 3/28/2015
Allied Arts Club of Sacramento, Dante Club 3/3/2015
Atria El Camino Gardens Residents and Guests, 11/15/2014
Salinas Family Multiple Birthday Party Celebration 11/1/2014
Opening for Jim Hurst at the Strum Shop in Roseville 9/28/2014
Gold Country Artists Gallery, Placerville, 9/20/2014
Atria El Camino Gardens Residents and Guests 9/7/2014
Eskaton Monroe Lodge Residents and Guests 9/6/2014
Chateau on Capitol Ave Residents and Guests 6/27/2014
Back Yard Summer bbq party 6/7/2014
Gold Country Artists Gallery, Placerville, 5/17/2014
Arcade Creek Manor Residents and Guests 1/18/14
Summerfield Senior Living in Yuba City, 12/22/13
Gallery 14 Holiday Group Art Show, 12/14/13
Strings Pizzeria, 9/6/13

Why a trio?

There are many venues that are not looking for a full 5 or 6 member band like Western Lights but instead are seeking a smaller, quieter group to meet their specific needs. Venues that may fit this live music need can include small restaurants with limited room, house concerts, wineries, weddings, back yard barbeques and similar events. The three founding members of Western Lights can meet these needs and as have been doing since January 2014. The Western Lights Trio may be a perfect fit for your "smaller" venue.

The Western Lights Trio includes Bill Ward on vocals and guitar, Melvin Fong on vocals and fiddle and Mike Brooks on vocals, mandolin and banjo. With over 20 years of experience playing together as members of the full Western Lights band the quality and diversity of the music we play as a trio will match or exceed the standard of excellence established by the full Western Lights band over their full history. For selected venues now we are also very excited and proud to include the very tasteful drum work of our good friend Jim Heberling with our music.

Some History and the future for the Western Lights Trio.

As can be seen looking at our history of Past Playing Venues we have shared our music at many diverse venues since beginning to play as a trio. These venues have included various Senior Living Community Social events, wineries, Art Galleries, Restaurants, private parties and weddings, birthdays, Christmas parties and other celebration events.

Our highlight event for 2015 was playing at the California Railroad museum for attendees of an international conference sponsored by UC Davis with guests from around the world. For selected venues we are very excited now to also include the very tasteful drum work of our talented and good friend Jim Heberling! Make sure you check out music sample 4 to hear Jim's drum work in our music. We feel the sky is the limit for us regarding future playing venues.

To inquire about or book our trio please visit the "Contact" Page.

Western Lights

Having fun playing for a backyard Summer Barbeque!

Jim Heberling on Drums for selected venues!

The Western Lights Trio at the California Railroad Museum.

The Western Lights Trio Audience at the California Railroad Museum


One last thing, what others have said about our music:

"It truly was a great concert and Jennifer has an amazing voice...Goose bumps people... more than once! “

- Audience member after playing a 2nd time a at Brookside Restaurant and Bar, Sacramento, 6/26/2016

“Bill, so when are we going to do it again???”

- Owner of Brookside Restaurant and Bar after a successful first time performance at Brookside Restaurant and Bar on 5/15/2016

From the lady who danced to the Kentucky waltz, Great Music, thank You!"

- a hand written note on an envelope with a tip inside for the band, at the Kiene's Fly Shop Christmas party From the lady who danced to the Kentucky Waltz

"One of our favorite local Bands, Western Lights Trio, will be providing entertainment for our Christmas Party (12/5/2015).  Bill Ward, Melvin Fong & Mike Brooks have been performing for more than 20 years in the Sacramento area. The band will perform from 12pm to 3pm.  You will love these guys!"

- Gary Eblen, General Managing Partner, Kiene's Fly Shop, Sacramento

"As part of a social night for a week long international conference on fresh-cut produce hosted by UC Davis in September we had the Western lights trio provide live music for a gala dinner we provided for our conference attendees at the historic California Railroad Museum.  The music provided by the group was a perfect fit for our event and conference attendees from many parts of the world.  Bill, you guys were great and loved by everyone!  Thank you so much!"

- Penny Stockdale, Event Planner & Registration Coordinator, UC Davis Postharvest Technology Center

"Your music for our wedding was awesome! Best wishes to you and thank you for contributing so much to my dream wedding. I am still smiling!"

  - Beth Nilsen, Bride, Wedding of Beth Nilsen and Juan Carlos, Woodland CA

"These guys were so good! People were dancing and our cash register was singing! Thanks guys for a great time. Our Customers loved it!"

- Gary Eblen, General Managing Partner, Kiene's Fly Shop, Sacramento

"Dear Bill, Thanks very much to you and your group for coming out to the winery and sharing your music with all of us.  We think that the day was very successful and we were thrilled with the large turnout of folks.  Your music helped make the day more festive and we can't thank you enough for providing the musical ambiance for our wine release event.  On behalf of everyone here at Cielo Estate Winery, thank you for helping to make our event a success! - Warmest regards"

- Wanda Beaudry,  Cielo Estate Winery, Shingle Spring

"Gold Country Artists Gallery, located in Placerville, has an art walk event every third Saturday of the month. It was our extreme pleasure to have the Western Lights Trio provide the live entertainment for that evening. These true professionals gave us an evening of outstanding music for our members and guests to enjoy. Hearing the comments of "They are great", "The music fits the town and our event", Very Professional" and with all of the smiles I saw that evening when the music played made me know that they would be back again. They are now booked for September. A great evening and great music. Thanks Guys! "

-  Craig Koski, President, Gold Country Artists gallery

"Hi Bill, My residents loved your group. I would love to book you again. I appreciate groups that want to spend a little extra time with our residents. Tells me you care about more than just the check. The grandmother of the little Girls you spoke of told me the girls loved the program. I will be calling you next week about another booking. Thanks again Bill...excellent job!!"

- Staci Weisz. Engage Life Director, Atria El Camino Gardens Senior Living

"The Western Lights trio has performed for our residents at Summerfield Assisted Living in Yuba City on numerous occasions over the past 2 years with our residents and staff always thoroughly enjoying the music provided by the band.   The variety and diversity in their music is wonderful and many of their "old time Favorites" seem to fit perfectly with music our senior residents love to hear.  We highly recommend the band for your consideration at your social events."

  - Chantel Ward-Gildea, Program Director, Summerfield Senior Living