Author: Carlin, Larry

June 12, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009

Tumbleweeds in Newman -- Starting on the 12th and running through June 28th is the production of Tumbleweeds by the West Side Players at the West Side Theatre in Newman. Tumbleweeds, Tom Ryan's cheerfully irreverent look at the "Old West," is the popular comic strip in hundreds of newspapers. At the theatre the cartoon has been adapted as a lively musical bursting with wonderful music, lively lyrics and hilarious jokes. The strip gets its name from the likable cowpoke who tries his best to be an optimist. $10 General admission, $13 reserved seats. Shows on Friday and Saturday are at 8 p.m., and on Sunday at 3 p.m.

Dalton Mountain in Clovis -- Get an early taste of Grass Valley tonight when The Dalton Mountain Band plays the summer Bluegrass in the Park Series, 453 Hughes Avenue, in Clovis starting at 6:30 p.m.

Jammin’ at the Frog -- On the second Friday there is a jam at The Frog and Fiddle in Sonora, so head on over on the 12th at 7 p.m. This jam has no ending time so people are welcome to pick until they drop.

Vern and Ray Tribute -- At the CBA Father’s Day Festival next weekend there will be a tribute to the late/great bluegrass duo of Vern Williams & Ray Park, who really helped put bluegrass on the map in California back in the ‘60s. Laurie Lewis, Kathy Kallick & Friends will be playing this special show at 6 p.m. on the 20th on Vern’s Stage. If you want to beat the rush you can also see this show on the 12th at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley.

Lizards on the loose -- One of the funniest bands in the biz, The Austin Lounge Lizards, is on a mini-tour around the bay these next few days. On the 12th see them at the Kuumba Jazz Center in Santa Cruz, on the 13th at The Palms in Winters, and on the 14th at the Brewery Arts Center in Carson City, NV.

Hip hip, hooray! -- Missy Raines & The New Hip fuse bluegrass virtuosity with a jazz-tinged groove, and they are on tour this week all over Northern California. The band is multiple IBMA Bass Player of the Year award winner Missy Raines, Michael Witcher on resonator guitar, Ethan Ballinger on mandolin, and Dylan Hodges on guitar. On the 12th it will be the Sutter Creek Theater in Sutter Creek, on the 13th at the Youth Annex Building in Sebastopol (for info call Kevin at 707 824-1858 or, and on the 14th at The Palms in Winters.

Ragtime and Tin Pan Alley in Chico -- On the 12th there will be a Ragtime and Tin Pan Alley Open Mic at the Terrace in Chico at 6:30 p.m. Performers are invited to enjoy the music from the mid 1800s to 1950s as well as acoustic music that fits in with the sound of this era. There is no charge for this second Friday of each month event. Fiddle tunes, country, bluegrass, folk, blues, Cajun, boogie-woogie and more are welcome. Performances are held to the ten minute rule. Brief historical presentations about the era’s music and/or composers are encouraged. The address is 2750 Sierra Sunrise Terrace, off Bruce Road. For more info contact Bernie or Bob LoFaso at or

SF Free Folk Festival -- The 33rd Annual SF Free Folk Festival, with appearances by 49 Special, The Bolos, Laurie Lewis, The Wronglers, Caren Armstrong, Jeanie & Chuck Poling, The Earl Brothers and many more, will be happening on the 13th and 14th at the Presidio Middle School in SF.

It’s ’bout Time! -- The South Bay band ‘bout Time! will be making some bluegrass on the 13th at the dedication ceremony marking the opening of the newest extension of the Stevens Creek Trail in Mountain View. They will be playing two half-hour sets beginning at 11:30 a.m. at the Sleeper Park Bridge in Mountain View. Sleeper Park is off Grant Road (just past Cuesta Drive) at the end of Sleeper Avenue.

Birthday party at the Freight -- The Freight & Salvage will be celebrating its 41st Anniversary on the 13th with Phil Marsh and members of the Cleanliness & Godliness Skiffle Band, Eric & Suzy Thompson, Country Joe McDonald and Danny Carnahan.

Humbug Days -- On the 13th there will be bluegrass played by Mountain Laurel and The Anderson Family from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. for Humbug Days at Malakoff Diggins State Park in North Blumefield.

Bluegrass in Novato -- There is a lot of free music to be heard this weekend at the Novato Art,Wine & Music Festival, but there are only two bluegrass bands. On the 13th Marin’s longest running bluegrass band Dr. Elmo & Wild Blue will open the event at 11 a.m., and on the 14th Poor Man’s Whiskey will be taking the stage at 3:15 p.m.

Natural Drift doubleheader -- The bluegrass band Natural Drift on the 13th will be playing a free show at the Shadow Ranch Winery in Somerset from 1-4 p.m., and then starting at 7:30 p.m. you can see them at Hemelayas in Cameron Park. With a traditional, five-piece bluegrass instrumentation for a foundation, ND adds a fresh blend of the band members’ diverse bluegrass backgrounds to provide audiences with a delightful, engaging musical performance through their own passion and pure bluegrass sound.

GrassKickers in Merced -- The Central Valley band The GrassKickers will be pickin’ some grass inside at the Mercer Mall in the heart of downtown Merced on the 13th from 6-8 p.m. This is a free event.

Nellies in Alameda -- At McGrath’s Pub in Alameda on the 13th it will be traditional bluegrass by The Barefoot Nellies. Mary Gibbons will be sittin' in on guitar.

Turn your radio on -- Tune into Peter Thompson’s Bluegrass Signal radio show on KALW (91.7 FM) in SF on the 13th from 6:30-8 p.m. The show this week is titled The Banjo's African Roots, which will be an exploration that's led to some interesting collaborations, including Bob Carlin & Cheick Hamala Diabaté, Jayme Stone & Mansa Sissoko, and Bela Fleck with many musicians on his Throw Down Your Heart excursion. This program includes an interview with Bela. You can listen online on the KALW web site, and the show is also broadcast five times each week on

Jammin’ in Sebastopol -- The place for bluegrass pickin' on Saturdays is the Coffee Catz, 6761 Sebastopol Ave, from 2-5 p.m.

Dudes on grass --
Posted:  6/15/2009

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