Author: Carlin, Larry

August 22, 2008
Friday, August 22, 2008

TGIF. It is the end of the work week and for some this has also been the start of the new school season. About now you are probably exhausted and in need of something to take your mind off of the fact that summer is all but over. Well, if there has ever been a busier Friday for bluegrass events, it doesn’t come to mind right away. There is so much going on today and tonight that you’ll need a scorecard to figure out where to go and when. Or else you can just keep reading below…

Hot fun in the summertime -- There will be some hot bluegrass being played at the Summergrass Festival at the Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum in San Diego's North County on the 22nd-24th with Bluegrass Etc., Don Rigsby & Midnight Call, Chris Stuart & Backcountry, The Infamous Stringdusters, Scott Gates & Pacific Ocean Bluegrass and lots more. This will be the final performance of Pacific Ocean Bluegrass before the launching of the new Scott Gates Band with new players.

Nell on the streets of Berkeley -- Nell Robinson & Red Level (with Andrew Conklin & Tim Hicks sitting in) can be seen playing bluegrass at the Downtown Berkeley Business Association Music Festival today from noon-1 p.m. at the downtown Berkeley BART Plaza.

Nightbirds land in Alameda -- Don’t miss Julay Brooks & The Nightbirds when they pick some bluegrass at McGrath’s Pub in Alameda on the 22nd starting at 8 p.m. The Birds are Julay on guitar, Larry Cohea on banjo, Markie Sanders on bass, and sitting in will be Butch Waller on mandolin and Tony Marcus on fiddle.

Fiddles in Sonora -- Fiddle's Etc. (old-time fiddle, country, bluegrass) will be fiddlin’ away on the 22nd from 7:30-9 p.m. at the Heart Rock Cafe, 1 S. Washington Street in Sonora.

Bluegrass in Sonoma -- At Murphy’s Irish Pub in the town of Sonoma on the 22nd at 8 p.m. enjoy bluegrass and old-time with The Lonesome Holler String Band and then on the 23rd at 8 p.m. it will be traditional bluegrass with High Country. Tasty food is available in a family-friendly atmosphere, and there is no cover.

Kitchen pickin’ -- Kitchen Help will be servin’ up some old fashioned bluegrass on the 22nd from 8-10 p.m. at Bob’s Courthouse Café, 2198 Broadway Street, in Redwood City. Sitting in on fiddle will be Mark Wardenberg, a member of the Mighty Crows and Hyperbole Mountain.

Contra dances in SF and Sonoma -- Marin County’s favorite (and only) old-time band The Roadoilers will be playing a contra dance on the 22nd at St. Paul's Church, 43rd and Judah, in San Francisco. Dance starts at 8 p.m., with a free lesson at 7:30. And then on the 23rd join them at Wischemann Hall in Sebastopol with the same times as above.

Hot summer nights in Temecula -- There is a series of free Friday night shows from 6-9 p.m. in old town Temecula called Hot Summer Nights that has multiple bands playing. One of the acts you can see there on the 22nd is the Celtic band Sligo Rags.

Bluegrass in Pacifica -- Devil’s Slide will be playing some bluegrass on the 22nd at the Chit-Chat Café in Pacifica from 7:30-9 p.m. No cover.

Sure bet -- Cadillac Sky can be seen and heard on the 22nd at the Black Oak Casino in Tuolumne. Opening act will be Bell Monroe and Her Brewgrass Boys.

Jammin’ in Sonora -- On the second and fourth Friday there is a jam at the The Frog and The Fiddle (formerly The Old Stan) in Sonora, so head on over on the 22nd at 7 p.m. This jam has no ending time so people are welcome to pick until they drop.

Kids playing bluegrass -- See OMGG (Marty Varner, A.J. Lee, and Nate and Max Schwartz) playing on the 23rd from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the San Ramon Farmer's Market.

Jammin’ in Chico -- The bluegrass jam in downtown Chico takes place on the 23rd at Augie's Coffee House at 230 Salem Street, between 2nd & 3rd Streets, from 2-5:30 p.m., with the first hour being a slow jam.

Turn your radio on -- Tune into Peter Thompson’s Bluegrass Signal radio show on KALW (91.7 FM) in SF on the 23rd from 6:30-8 p.m. The theme for this show is Who’s Goin’ Down to Town? with songs by Reno & Smiley, Flatt & Scruggs, Jimmy Martin, Del McCoury, Nashville Bluegrass Band, Blue Highway, Dave Evans, Charlie Sizemore, Tommy Webb, Rambler's Choice, Jody Stecher & Kate Brislin, Charles Sawtelle, Kathy Kallick, Vern Williams and more.

Jammin’ in Santa Cruz -- The Santa Cruz Fourth Sunday Bluegrass and Old-Time Jam is a friendly jam where everyone who plays bluegrass and old-time can get together to pick. Combining bluegrass and old-time in one jam circle wouldn't work too well so there will be at least three separate circles at the jam -- a slow jam, an advanced bluegrass jam, and an old-time jam. The fun will take place at Oceanview Park on the 24th and begin at 2 p.m. There will be plenty of room to spread out and more jam circles can be added. Oceanview also has a really nice playground and some picnic tables for child entertaining and snacking convenience. It does not have lots of parking, so you may need to unload your stuff, park, and then walk back. For more info email

Jammin’ in Temecula -- On the fourth Sunday of every month there is an open jam session at The Nettworks Ranch, which is in the Temecula/Murrieta Valley, a few miles north of where the 215 and 15 freeways split off, in that triangle. Take Scott Road west two miles off 215, or Bundy Canyon Road east four miles off of 15. Turn south on Daily Road and it is the first ranch on right. For more info call Diane at (951) 679-7951 or (909) 239-5154.

Jammin’ in Sebastopol -- There will be pickin’ of gospel, bluegrass and old-time music as usual on the fourth Sunday up in Sebastopol on the 24th. It takes place from 2-5 p.m. at the Sebastopol Christian Church, 7433 Bodega Avenue. Bring acoustic instruments and your favorite gospel songs to sing. For info email Mike at

Knice knockers -- The Knuckle Knockers will be playing at 3 p.m. on the 24th at Red Hill Books in the Bernal Heights area of SF, located at Cortland & Bennington Streets. The Knockers are Karen Celia, Martha Hawthorne and Bill Foss, and they perform old-time duets on fiddle, banjo and mandolin. Free music, free refreshments, and even some free books!

Jammin’ in Coulterville -- On the 24th join the old-time/Celtic jam at the Java Lounge Magnolia Saloon in Coulterville from 2- 6 p.m. For more info email

B. Judd, Blue
Posted:  8/25/2008

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