Author: Carlin, Larry

August 18, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008

Songwriter's blog -- A few weeks back it was noted here that Northern California bluegrass singer/songwriter/artist Rick Jamison had started a new songwriter’s blog. It is called On Songwriting, and the address has changed slightly. This is the new link. In addition to providing insights, tips and examples, Rick also features other songwriters, sharing their thoughts, experience and wisdom on songwriting. The most recent interview was with Robert Earl Davis of The Earl Brothers, and you can read the interview here. FYI, the Earls are still looking for a fiddler, so contact them at their site if you are interested.

Sawmill to showcase at IBMA -- Congratulations to the bluegrass band Sawmill Road for being selected to play at an IBMA showcase at the World of Bluegrass Convention in Nashville in late September and early October. About 150 bands submit in order to get one of 13 slots, and the boys had some tough national competition. All of the California bluegrassers who will be at the shindig will be taking seats down around the front rows of the luncheon tables to make sure that the band knows that they will be supported with loud cheers!

Helping a friend -- Alan Dreyfuss, the guitarist and vocalist extraordinaire in the East Bay bluegrass band Redwing, was recently injured in a violent carjacking in Emeryville. He was hit in the head, spent some time in the hospital, is now back at home but is still in tremendous pain. His car was totaled, and fortunately the creep that did this to him was caught and, as it turns out, was out of prison on parole. With any luck the guy will be going back to where he came from for a long time. If you would like to send a get-well card to Alan you can do so at 4600 Adeline Street, Emeryville, CA, 94608, or email him at Here's to a complete and speeding recovery to a fine man and member of the Bay Area bluegrass community.

Caught red-handed -- Late this afternoon at Pizzaiolo in Oakland catch the amazing trio Red Handed, featuring Laurie Lewis, Suzy Thompson & Nell Robinson when they play from 5:30-7 p.m. on the back patio. With fiddle, guitar and old-time banjo, these three cook up soulful vocals that you can enjoy along with farm fresh daily specials. The address is 5008 Telegraph.

Jammin’ in SF -- There is a bluegrass jam at Amnesia in SF on the third Monday of every month so this means tonight. The jam, which starts at 6:30 p.m., is for anyone who's just getting started pickin' or is looking for a supportive place to get better and learn more about bluegrass. If you play acoustic guitar, mandolin, banjo, fiddle, dobro, or bass and want to play bluegrass, go on by. The jam is hosted by David Zimmerman of Homespun Rowdy. After the jam tonight at 8:30 p.m. there will be a performance by Jeanie & Chuck’s Country Roundup.

Jammin’ in Alameda -- The place to be for bluegrass pickin’ on Monday nights is McGrath’s Pub in Alameda. Starting at 7:30 you’ll find familiar faces all around you on bass, mandolins, guitars, banjos and fiddles.

The Abbots in Moss Landing -- Every Monday night at Phil’s Fish Market in Moss Landing from 6:30-8:30 p.m. you can experience live bluegrass. Tonight see The Abbot Family play.

Jammin’ in Signal Hill -- Every Monday night, from 6-9 p.m., there is a bluegrass jam at Curley’s Café in Signal Hill. The address is 1999 E Willow Street at Cherry Avenue. Everyone is welcome. For more info contact Jim Wieser at

Unbuttoned zippers at the Freight -- Weaving influences from Appalachian mountain music to Celtic to traditional Scandinavian, the Boston neo-traditional band Blue Moose & The Unbuttoned Zippers (BMUZ) will be playing a show at the Freight and Salvage in Berkeley on the 19th.

Bluegrass in the mountains -- At the Braemar Country Club in Tarzana on the 19th you can see The Mid-Valley Boys play. Most concerts at the club are free and you can purchase dinner (a pasta buffet, complete with soup, dinner salad with added chicken breast) for $14, served all evening beginning at 6:30 p.m. Such a deal! Bar service available. Ample seating and free parking.

South Bay bluegrass barbeque -- Cabin Fever will be pickin’ some hot bluegrass to go along with the spicy barbeque at Sam’s Bar-B-Que in San Jose on the 19th from 6-9 p.m. Reserve a table at (408) 297-9151.

Bluegrass night in Chula Vista -- The San Diego Bluegrass Society is having its third Tuesday bluegrass night at Fuddruckers in Chula Vista on the 19th. From 6:30- 7 p.m. there is an open mic, followed by bluegrass karaoke hour from 7-8, and then more open mic from 8-9. During the karaoke segment you get to sing and/or play a bluegrass song with the host band, The Full Deck. Go to the web site to find out how to sign up.

Jammin’ in Loomis -- Every Tuesday evening from 6-9 p.m. you are invited to join the jam at the Wild Chicken Coffee House on Taylor Road in Loomis.

B. Judd, Bluegrass Philosopher -- “Never let your sense of morals get in the way of doing what is right.”
Posted:  8/20/2008

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