Author: Carlin, Larry

Jan. 7, 2008
Monday, January 7, 2008

San Francisco Chronicle goes blue! -- It has been quite a year so far for photos of Bay Area bluegrass bands in the SF Chronicle. On the 2nd there was the great story and photos in the Datebook section about Pam Brandon, who leads the band Belle Monroe & Her Brewglass Boys . On the 4th there were three photos in the Datebook: The Whoreshoes, Five Dollar Suit, and The Earl Brothers. And on Sunday the 6th in the Pink Section there was a photo of the Sonoma County band Poor Man’s Whiskey for their upcoming show at the Great American Music Hall. Using history as a gauge, either it was a string of good luck or the Chron has finally begun noticing that bluegrass exists. Bet on the former...

Merle on National Public Radio -- In case you missed it the other day, Merle Haggard was interviewed on the NPR show All Things Considered last Thursday, and he talked about his new recording The Bluegrass Sessions. Through the wonders of modern technology, you can still listen to the interview here. For those who like to plan ahead, Merle will be playing at the Konocti Harbor Resort on the south shores of Clear Lake on February 8th. However, it is impossible to tell by going his and the resort’s sites if he will play a bluegrass show or his normal greatest country hits. You really can’t go wrong either way…

Tom Tworek Memorial -- This coming weekend the memorial celebration for the late bluegrass picker/photographer Tom Tworek will be taking place on the 13th in Palo Alto. For details, go here. On the 6th there was a nice obituary about Tom in the Santa Cruz Sentinel that you can read here.

Never too old to pick -- Do you ever feel like you are getting a little long in the tooth for picking up that old banjo or going to jams and festivals? Well, Nelia Hyatt, who turned 90 this past summer in North Carolina, sure hasn’t slowed down. She has been hosting Thursday night bluegrass jams at her Asheville home since 1947. There is a real nice video from the Charlotte Observer that you can and should watch here.

Roundup time in the big city -- Stepping up to the plate as a fill-in band tonight, Jeanie & Chuck’s Country Roundup will be playing at Amnesia in SF from 8:30-10:30 p.m. Amnesia is located at 853 Valencia between 19th & 20th Streets. No cover, but you must be 21 and over to attend.

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

Jammin’ on the Monterey Peninsula -- The new open bluegrass jam that takes place in Seaside on the second and fourth Tuesdays of the month will be happening on the 8th in the music room of Seaside High School from 6:30-9:30 p.m. All bluegrass pickers and singers are welcome, and there is plenty of room and parking. Contact Chuck Hurd at for more info.

Bluegrass in Moss Landing -- Every Monday and Wednesday night at Phil’s Fish Market in Moss Landing you can experience live bluegrass. Bean Creek alternates with The Courthouse Ramblers on Mondays. (Phil’s web site has contrary info, and needs to be updated.) Bean Creek is there tonight, and on Wednesday the 9th see Mr. Banjo and the Lonesome Wailers.

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

South Bay bluegrass barbeque -- John Murphy’s Carolina Special will be pickin’ some hot bluegrass to go along with the spicy barbeque at Sam’s in San Jose on the 8th from 6-9 p.m., and on the 9th see Diana Donnelly & The Yes Ma’ams, who will be entertaining you with bluegrass and vintage country songs. Reserve a table at (408) 297-9151.

Bluegrass trifecta in SF -- On Wednesday the 9th at the Hotel Utah in San Francisco you can see three bluegrass bands for one low price of $7. That is only $2.33 per act! The bill will consist of Rita Hosking & Cousin Jack, Belle Monroe & Her Brewglass Boys , and The Mountain Boys. Downbeat is at 9 p.m.

B. Judd, Bluegrass Philosopher -- “If you think things can’t get any worse it’s probably only because you lack sufficient imagination.”
Posted:  1/9/2008

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