Mock Crest Tavern Welcomes Blues Great Norman Sylvester

The blues came home to Mock Crest Tavern recently when legendary local musician Norman Sylvester stopped by to entertain us with a night of the best live blues in North Portland!

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Oregon Music Hall of Fame inductee Norman Sylvester is known throughout the Pacific Northwest for his long history of paying tribute to the many great musicians that traveled across the country to perform on the Chitlin’ Circuit. Today, along with his renditions of classic blues tunes, this bluesman has his own set list to entertain our crowd at Mock.

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Norman was backed up by Rob Shoemaker on bass, Frankie “The Funk Master” Redding on keyboards and Paul “The Groove Machine” Shoemaker on drums, and they got our crowd on their feet and dancing to their broad range of blues and dance floor music.

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Norman “The Boogie Cat” Sylvester was born in Bonita, Louisiana in 1945 and his music continues to be inspired by his Southern Baptist roots and the Gospel Quartet his father, Mack Sylvester, toured with over the decades. The family settled in the Pacific Northwest when Norman was twelve and today he is a member of the Cascade Blues Association. An organization with members that regularly play on Mock’s “Carpet Stage.” Over the years, Norman, along with his band, has gained a stellar reputation nation-wide and has shared the stage with blues greats like BB King, Buddy Guy, James Cotton, Junior Wells, Otis Clay and Peter Frampton, to name just a few.

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Mock Crest Tavern is honored to have Norman Sylvester and so many other great artists share their musical passion and talent with us. Check our calendar to find out who will be performing here next and join us for the best blues you’ll find in Portland!



Three Day Weekends at Mock Crest Tavern

We love a long weekend at Mock Crest Tavern, and because of this fact we regularly schedule three straight nights of the best live music for our North Portland friends. This is just one weekend’s sampling of the great music you can enjoy at Mock Crest Tavern.


Electric Brit

I started this weekend early, stopping in to hear the latest addition to the schedule, The Electric Brit. As the name implies, Steve “Griff” Griffiths is an Englishman who loves classic rock and has a long and impressive history in the music business as a sound engineer and sound crew for such bands as ELO, Blue Oyster Cult, the Scorpions and KISS. He has collected a wide array of skills and, even though he takes the stage solo, he is hear playing all the instruments on his recorded tracks that back up his live guitar riffs and time at the keyboard. Check him out at Electric Brit.


Big Bossa Quartet

Mock mainstay Big Bossa Quartet brings a mystical quality to our bar every fourth Friday of the month. Evan Shlaes leads the band with his vocals and on the vibraphone. Clark Salisbury backs him up on guitar, Dave Captien on bass and Fred Ingram on drums. They take the familiar hits, mix them up with a modern sound and fill our bar with classics, like “Easy Rider, along with Latin, blues, jazz, and pop standards in the classic cocktail lounge style that defined the social life of the 1950s and 60s.

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Big Yellow Taxi

Big Yellow Taxi members, Ken Brewer, Margot Kelly and Steve Kelly have been a part of the Portland music scene for years, playing funky acoustical Americana in several local bands, including Return Flight, Deep Blue, Soul Revue and the Eric Larsen Band, among others. Now performing acoustic sets of all genres, they provide an intimate musical experience that is perfect for Mock’s cozy venue. They take the stage every month at Mock and I’m already planning on coming back around for a second ride in their Big Yellow Taxi.

When your craving a three-day weekend make plans to come out to Mock Crest Tavern for three straight nights of great music. Check out our calendar to find out who’s playing this weekend.

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Arrogant Bastards Arrive at Mock Crest Tavern

Is it confidence, or is it arrogance? Maybe it’s just great music by Arrogant Bastards at Mock Crest Tavern on Saturday, February 24th.

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The Arrogant Bastards are bringing their arsenal of blues, funk and rock to our North Portland stage with all the gut and grind you’d expect from a band that has labeled themselves the “Bad Boys of Portland Blues.” Mock is the perfect bar to play host to their diverse musical style that is describes as “swampy soul of the Gulf Coast” and “hard driving blues style of Texas, with a splash of funkiness reminiscent of Motown and Minneapolis.” All that energy fuels their unique sound and induces their audiences to move along with each beat of the drum and each strike on their electric guitar.

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The five-member band is the creative dream of Big Daddy James on drums and vocals, Brad on keyboards, John on bass, Michael on lead guitar and vocals and Paul on vocals and rhythm guitar. They come from all four corners of the United States and bring with them influences the fuel their music with the raw sound of underground and garage based bands.

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Expect to hear classic favorites, like Hendrix, Zepplin, Deep Purple, Pink Floyd and Zappa infused with jazz, blues, and funk during their sets. It’s a trip down the FM stations when you could hear the unexpected new artists that are now standard in radio formatting. Arrogant Bastards takes us back to those days of discovery by reinterpreting their familiar songbooks through their own unique sound.

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Come out to Mock Crest Tavern on Saturday, February 24 for Arrogant Bastards. You’ll find that all that “arrogance” is warranted by their ability to play damn good music.

Mock Crest Tavern Welcomes University of Portland Music Lovers!

Another semester has started  at the University of Portland and Mock Crest Tavern would like to extend a warm welcome to all the new and returning students!

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If you’re looking for a new bar to call headquarters when you want to relax between classes, get out of the house, or just enjoy the weekend listening to great live music, then you’ve found your home-away-from-home at Mock. We’re a regular venue for musicians of the Cascade Blues associations and we often play host to national and international bands traveling the West Coast music circuit.


Check out our online leaderboard to see the great beers, along with ciders, cocktails, and wine we’re currently serving. We serve the domestic and import brews you love, as well.


And we have the best pub grub menu in North Portland, too!

Our chefs take pride in their work and are always trying to outdo themselves in our “micro” kitchen, with both traditional and experimental dishes. Try our breakfast menu after a late night.


Best of all, Mock Crest Tavern has a great group of regulars that make our bar a fun place to meet up with friends. Throughout the month we host poker and quiz nights and we’ve got Keno and video poker, and a great back patio that is perfect for enjoying our beautiful fall weather.


We’re also a great alternative when you need some study time. Our free WiFi will keep you connected so you don’t have to shut yourself away when you’ve got a big paper to write. And, when you’ve got a big project to get through we have great Irish coffees, too!

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Make a pub run to Mock Crest Tavern and see why we are North Portland’s favorite bar!


Introducing Mock Crest Tavern’s New Mural!

The next time you drive down Lombard Street you might notice a bright new feature adorning the eastside of our building. Well, take a close look because the vibrancy you’ll see the colors is indicative of the vibrant bar scene you’ll find inside Mock Crest Tavern!

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Local artist and avid bar patron Edmond Booth was discovered by Mock co-owner Jon Batchelor at our Southeast sister bar, the Yukon Tavern. Edmond is a regular there often sketching while enjoying his favorite craft beer. The scenes he creates are based on what he sees at the bar—people sharing casual conversation while enjoying a drink together at their favorite neighborhood bar.

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Depicting the great atmosphere of our North Portland bar was Booth’s main goal when he began working on the three-panel mural. Vibrant colors and figures outlined in heavy, black lines capture the energy of our bar. Booth’s art is energetic, and so are his figures. On Mock’s mural you’ll find a collection of people and animals, both realistic and mythical, engaged in conversation and surrounded by names and sayings that document the year it was painted. The artist calls out the names of artists who have passed and ancient text that honors people of every race, color, creed and origin.


You can find more of Booth’s art inside Mock. Several small works are on display along the eastern wall. The subject is similar—life inside a tavern.

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The next time you’re heading west on Lombard Street look up as you approach Mock Crest Tavern. Your eye will easily locate our bright, new, beautiful mural by Portland artist Edmond Booth.

Don’t Miss Out on the Big Show!

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We’ve been hearing about it for a year now and the anticipation is growing to a fever pitch. The 2017 solar eclipse will throw Portland into darkness this Monday, August 21st, and one of the best places to watch it is right here at your favorite North Portland neighborhood bar, Mock Crest Tavern!

The eclipse begins at 9:06am here in Portland, with a near total eclipse at 10:19am and the end coming at 11:38am. It’s a major astronomical event that last occurred on February 26, 1979, an overcast day that gave our city only a taste of what a full eclipse of the sun looks like on Earth. This year it’s going to be much better.


Portland lies in the path to see a 99.4% total eclipse, and it’s expected that one million visitors will be coming into Oregon on Monday. For those of us lucky enough to live in North Portland, it might be best to stay off the streets and enjoy this event on Mock’s back patio, sharing this rare show with friends and your favorite drink.

So, come on down, order your favorite beer and watch the eclipse with your friends at Mock Crest Tavern. Here are a few things you should watch for:

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Protect Your Eyes

Protect your eyes with special Mylar glasses that have the proper safety filters for your eyes. You can find them at grocery stores and drug stores but you should probably get them soon, as supplies may run out.


           Watch the Animals

Animals follow their natural instincts and begin to bed down for sleep when the skies grow dark. Surely, this was one of the ominous signs that put fear into the hearts of people in ancient times.



The Diamond Ring

Once you have the proper eyewear you can look for the first arc of the moon come into view as it enters the path of the sun. As it nears the center you’ll find the sun mostly covered, with a bright spot on one edge and a ring of fire surrounding the rest of the edge in what scientists refer to as the “Diamond Ring.”


           The False Sunrise

As the body of the moon moves closer to the center of the sun you may notice the horizon looks as though dawn is emerging in every direction at once.

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             Odd Shadows

Take a moment to look at the shadows of leaves on the ground around you. Look for double and triple layers within the grey shadows. This is an unexplained phenomenon that continues to confound scientists.


            Near Total Eclipse

The sun will be almost entirely blacked out at the height of the eclipse and a shadow will fall across Portland. The eclipse’s zenith will last for a total of seven minutes and 29-seconds (for us in North Portland it will be somewhere near that time since it won’t be a full eclipse).


After that, you’ll witness all these stages in reverse until the full sun is finally revealed once more. Then toast the sun god with an ice-cold beer at Mock Crest Tavern!

Mock Crest Tavern is Ready for Warm Weather on Our Back Patio


The spring sun is beginning to shine on our beautiful North Portland neighborhood, and Mock Crest Tavern knows everyone wants to be outside as much as possible, so we’ve opened up our back patio and made it ready for everyone who loves an ice-cold beer outside with friends. Mock Crest Tavern Building

Our patio is just like those you’d find at any of your friends’ homes. A partially covered deck and open grassy area, with plenty of seating and enough space for everyone to relax. It’s a great place to grab a smoke, sip a cocktail and listen to the sounds of great live music drifting outside from the live bands that play inside our tavern.

It’s a special event when we open our beloved back yard in the spring. Our deck has always been a great place to hang out during the warmer months, and with our heat lamps placed around the fenced-in area you can party into the night under their warm glow. And our wait staff is happy to join you outside to make sure you’ve got full pints and great food.

Nothing is better than watching the sun glint off an icy glass of beer on a warm spring day. At Mock Crest Tavern there is always room on our back patio for you to enjoy great tasting food and drinks and a good time with friends. Join us at Mock Crest Tavern on Lombard in North Portland and find a seat and a beer on our back deck with all your Mock Crest friends!

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