Tony Saunders Featuring Vernon Black


Apr 11 Thu
Tony Saunders Featuring Vernon Black7:00 PM
Blue Note Napa
Apr 11 Thu
Tony Saunders Featuring Vernon Black9:00 PM
Blue Note Napa

Tony Saunders Band Feat: Vernon Black

Tony and Vernon have finally teamed up to make a team that is worth talking about. Together they lift each other up to new heights. They both have played with enough musical royalty, which they felt this and their friendship should turn into a musical collaboration of fun and great music. Vernon, for the past 10 years, has been the musical director for Booker T Jones. Prior to that, he has played with Maze, Mariah Carey and his favorite gig ever was with the musical legend Herbie Hancock.

Tony comes from music royalty growing up with his famous Dad, Merl Saunders. Tony had piano lessons from Herbie Hancock when he was very young and Sly Stone gave him an organ at age 10. Not many people may say their first gig was with Jerry Garcia/Merl Saunders band at age 17. Tony has played with Dr. John, Les McCann, Chaka Kahn, Stevie Wonder, Steve Cropper, David Crosby, Eric Clapton and George Howard. The last few years he has played with Paul Jackson Jr., Jessie J, Nils and Gail Jhonson. Tony’s last CD “Uptown Jazz”, stayed on the Smooth Jazz charts for 2 years, and he is currently working on a new CD titled “Sexy Somethin”.

Ages 8+

BLUE NOTE NAPA is located on the first floor of the Historic Napa Valley Opera House at 1030 Main St. We are an intimate 144-seat jazz club and restaurant, where you can enjoy performances of world renowned and local Bay Area artists alike. We offer a full menu with market-driven cuisine, as well as an elegant wine and cocktail list. Enjoy fantastic main courses, sharing plates, and desserts while you take in a show.

All ticket prices are based on per person. Dinner is served in all sections. Your ticket is your dining reservation. Separate reservations are not needed.

“Sapphire” Booth Seating:

Booth seating for parties of 4, 5- 6 persons: Our premier level of seating! Booths are only sold as four, five or six and are not available as singles or pairs. 1st come, 1st seated. You will be seated when you arrive. (Seating is dark blue color on map)

“Royal Blue” Center Table Seating:

Seating in premier center table areas in front of stage: Pairs are seated across from each other. 1st come, 1st seated  (Seating is light blue on map)

Standard Side Table Seating:

Seating in side table areas left and right of center section: Pairs are seated across from each other. 1st come, 1st seated. (Seating is yellow on map)

Bar Area Ticket Seating (only patrons 21+ may sit at bar):

Great View!! Bar Chairs are tall with backs and comfy padded seats. Purse hooks too. (Bar area is pink on map).

A portion of all ticket fees goes to the historic preservation of the Napa Valley Opera House.

Tickets are the same price whether purchased in person, over the phone or online.

Dinner Menu available in all seating areas

Tony Saunders Band

Tony Saunders’ life story could be the script to a hit

movie.  Son of legendary keyboardist and composer

Merl Saunders, Tony’s life has been a musical adventure.  

As a child he was taught piano by Herbie Hancock, and

for his tenth birthday he was given an electric

organ ​​from Sly Stone.


Growing up around his dad and the Fantasy Records

family of artists,  he was constantly surrounded by music

royalty, including famed record and film executive Saul Zaentz.  

Tony’s passion for the bass guitar began when he started sitting

in on recording sessions with musicians like Anthony Davis, who

played with Walter Hawkins, and Lee Miles of Miles Davis fame.  

“I got to see them both in the studio on a project my dad was producing.  

These guys had a feel that drew me to the bass. "That’s all I wanted after

seeing them play."

Tony graduated from the prestigeous Conservatory of Music in San Francisco

as a piano player,  but soon began honing his skills on the bass. He was influenced

by the sounds of James Jamison,  Stanley Clark, Jack Cassidy and others.  Tom Fogarty

of Creedence Clearwater Revival gave him his first bass guitar. Chuck Rainey and John

Kahn both took an interest in Tony, giving him bass lessons and a legacy to live up to.

By time he was  17 he was playing his first gig with Jerry Garcia and his dad in the Merl

Saunders / Jerry Garcia Band.

Tony's musical journey has continued on from that era through to the present.  He has

played and recorded with an astounding list of great musical talents, including Eric Clapton,

David Crosby, Jo Sample, Chaka Khan, Ringo Star,  Bo Diddley, The Hawkins Family, and others

too many to count. "This just touches the edge of who I have been blessed to play with", says

Saunders.  Tony has played on hundreds of albums, won two Emmy Awards for soundtracks,

and written award winning commercial jingles and movie scores.

Tony continues to record his own projects and produces for an impressive list of talent at

his state of the art studio in Northern California.  Tony’s latest single "Uptown Jazz" climbed

to number 5 on the Adult Contemporary Groove Jazz Charts.  It was released in September,

2015.  Tony's newest CD "Uptown Jazz" was released in March 2016.  His newest single,

"Shaniya", was also released in March, 2016.  The song is named after his granddaughter

Shaniya, who helped​ him record the song.