Santa Cruz Mountains Art Center, Ben Lomond, California, non-profit Arts Organization

"The Santa Cruz Mountains Art Center supports and encourages the arts

through education, exhibition and cultural activities,

reflecting the unique and diverse environment of the mountain communities."



9341 Mill St.      Ben Lomond, CA      (831) 336-3513


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Carolee Burrows

Below are a few samples from the August 2008 "Ukuleles Gone Wild" performances at the Art Center.

Side By Side Band

"Rock Around the Clock'"


Burning Bacon

"'Masters of War"


Sons of the Beach

"Run Around Sue"

Carolee Burrows




Carolee currently leads a 14 member band, Side By Side, who perform 1950s dance music and some Hawai'ian songs for private parties and other occasions. This month the band is opening band for the Santa Cruz Ukulele Club monthly meeting held this month on the 4th Thursday, March 26th.


Last summer, Carolee organized 2 Ukuleles Gone Wild performances at the Santa Cruz Mountains Art Center.  More performances are being planned for this summer.


Carolee's husband's band, Burning Bacon, debuted at her June 2008 Ukuleles Gone Wild performance that featured students from beginning ukulele classes taught at the Art Center. Almost a year ago, Bob and his front neighbor began jamming and soon 4-5 of his neighbor's surfing buddies joined them. Last weekend, their band played for the Luck O' the Irish dine, drink and gamble fundraiser for the local High School Grad-Night celebration in the Felton Fire Station.


At Left:    Carolee Burrows with the Santa Cruz Ukulele Club contingent during the 2008 Soquel 4th of July Parade.   Photo by Susan Lysik

Harbor Saturday morning jam


Born Carolee Margaret Robbins, 7-7-42 in San Francisco, 5th generation. Grew up in Mill Valley to creative parents who drank too much along with their likewise talented and witty friends. Summers spent around the Mill Valley Tennis Club's pool, a club my parents helped build. My dad was an excellent tennis player. He and his doubles partner, Russ Mills, were formidable opponents in any match. Together, mom and dad designed many homes in Mill Valley after building three for themselves. Blue Birds, Brownies, and Girl Scouts. Once in elementary school I won first place in an annual Be Kind To Animals poster contest. Art classes were my passion in high school, but I also enjoyed playing a townfolk in Gilbert and Sullivan light operas with my friends Steve and Jimmy Hopper. Sang in the Episcopal Church choir directed by Barry Minniah. I loved swimming and taught other kids how while at Tamalpias High School.




My first job was in Sausalito measuring yarn to be woven into window coverings. Piano and Arthur Murray dance lessons. Danced, bowled, played in the sand at Stinson Beach, and had fun double dating. Often during my Sophomore and Junior years I cut school and rode a bus into San Francisco to listen to Beatniks rant and sermonize about deep things. Cotillion balls in gowns with crinolines.
Graduated in 1960. A dentist in Kentfield taught me to be his assistant. Moved out at 18, up near College of Marin where I'd attended art classes following high school but had mostly played Bridge in its cafeteria. Moved to San Anselmo with high school chum Heide Cronquist. We'd walk down to the corner bar, Jeans Bit OBohemia, and sometimes Heide would go back and get my guitar and I'd sing "Summertime". One night, a guy from the Airforce base came in and ended up introducing me to my future husband, a young man he knew from the base who sang well.
Our voices blended and in 1963 we began singing as Tom & Lee in Marin County, mostly at a little cantina in Sausalito. Meanwhile, a higher salary as a clerk pulled me to Standard Oil in San Francisco and I moved back to Mill Valley into an apartment above Lady Baltimore Bakery and across the street from Mill Valley Records (closed 2 summers ago).





Married my singing partner 6-5-65. We had 2 children; Samantha (born 8-1966 in SF/6th gen.) and Alexander (born 1-1969 @ Marin General). We lived a while in Bolinas, then Tiburon. Managed the Drinking Gourd (Union Street) in San Francisco down from University of California Medical Facility, singing Friday nights and running the weekly Hootenannies. Sang second billing for about a year at the Purple Onion, kitty-corner to the Hungry I. Once in Tiburon, we shared billing with Janice Joplin and Big Brother and the Holding Company. And we scared ourselves almost to death following Big Brother (Janice comes off stage after singing 'Down On Me,' and says to me as she exits, 'Go Girl!') at California Hall in San Francisco to sing while they changed the band setup behind the big black curtain.
Our career took off. We signed with Fantasy Records, who, as was typical at the time (unbeknownst to us, of course), shelved our music; that is, they stole Tom's songs. 1968 we almost went to Saigon to perform for a lot of money. Our manager placed us with voice teacher Betty Davis in Oakland to help us persevere our schedule. Luckily, I was pregnant with Alex, so no Saigon. Ms. Davis was a fabulous teacher. One afternoon, she introduced us to a couple of her other students Grace Slick and! Carol Doda!
We broke up while touring in Chicago, Detroit, and Milwaukee. The social turmoil of 1970 was too much, Kent State, Women's Movement, Black Panthers, Weatherpeople, Bobby Seale and the Chicago Five, our children back in California, Vietnam War.


Up • Bruce-Bangert • Jody Bare • Dale Bates • Brenda Berg • Fro Butler • Carolee-Burrows-Artist • Frank_Borovich • Roberta Friedman Ceramics • Helene • Dan & Laurie Hennig • Shirley-Hudson • Anouk-Johanna • Leah King • Linda A. Levy • Tina Masciocchi • Geoff-Jenny-Morten • Stephanie Schriver • Lorri Scott • GloriaS • Kathleen Miller Thomas • Breda Voss • Larry Worley


 Arts Council of Santa Cruz County   Community Foundation of Santa Cruz County

         California Arts Council   Bruce Bangert   North Glass   Phoenix Ceramics  

       Earth Matters Foundation    Valley Women's Club    New Leaf Market Felton


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