Author: Carlin, Larry

Jan. 11, 2008
Friday, January 11, 2008

She can sure sing but can she cook too? -- Find out if Alison Krauss knows her way around the kitchen as well as she can croon a tune by watching Country Music Television's Southern Fried Flicks With Hazel Smith this weekend. The show is “one part movie, one part cooking show and all Hazel. Each episode will feature her hosting one of your favorite movies. During the course of the movie, she will also show you how to cook a real down-home dish and of course, give the hot dish on your favorite country stars. And you never know who might show up in her kitchen. Hollywood, and your waistline, will never be the same. On the next episode, Hazel will be joined by bluegrass beauty Alison Krauss, as they prepare chicken enchiladas.” The show airs on CMT at 6 p.m. on the 12th, and at 3 p.m. on the 13th. The accompanying movie will be Boys on the Side.

Loud and Claire -- The Claire Lynch Band had a successful Bay Area tour last month (thanks to Randy Pitts at Keith Case & Associates in Nashville for putting the tour together!), and little did anyone know at the time that it would be the last time we’d see Missy Raines playing with them. Missy has left the band to start her own ensemble (that includes LA’s own Michael Witcher on dobro) called missy raines and the new hip (lower case intended), and Claire’s new bassist is the multi-talented Mark Schatz, who is no stranger to California bluegrass stages. Claire had a wonderful time out here in ’07, and she made her own personal “Best Of” list that you can read on her web site. Here are three highlights:

-Best vocal jammers - Grass Valley Music Camps - my class!
-Best coffee on the road - Peets, Berkeley, CA (Sorry, St. Arbucks!)
-Best surprise and delight - The Palms Opera House, Winters, CA

Full moon in Berkeley tonight -- Even though it has been raining in the Bay Area for a week now and the moon has not been seen in eons, on the 11th at 8 p.m. you can see Rustler’s Moon w/Kathy Kallick & Bill Evans at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley. Kathy (guitar, vocals) and Bill (banjo, vocals) have been making significant contributions to bluegrass for many years. They've toured the country and the world with their music, collaborated with some of the top contemporary acoustic musicians, and released a number of influential recordings. Their current music with Tom Bekeny (mandolin, vocals) and Cindy Browne (acoustic bass) is rooted in traditional bluegrass, based on their original compositions, and influenced by the breadth of styles encompassed by these musicians.

Pink Floyd goes bluegrass! -- Or is it the other way around? The Sonoma County rockin’ bluegrass band (they have drums as pickups on their banjo, fiddle, mandolin, guitar, dobro and doghouse bass) Poor Man’s Whiskey will be performing their Dark Side of the Moonshine bluegrass version of Pink Floyd songs while dressed in Wizard of Oz costumes at the Great American Music Hall in SF on the 11th. Special guests include Aaron Redner and Nat Keefe of Hot Buttered Rum and James Nash of The Waybacks. Bluegrass and Pink Floyd in the same sentence? Sounds like we’re not in Kansas anymore…

Bluegrass in Sonoma -- At Murphy’s Irish Pub in the town of Sonoma on the 12th at 8 p.m. it will be the finest in traditional bluegrass music when John Murphy’s Carolina Special takes the stage. Tasty food is available and there is no cover there either.

Hoarse Chorus in Fairfax -- There is a new bluegrass ensemble called Hoarse Chorus whose members are Ted Silverman, Gary Kaye, Joe Kenny, and Steve Kallai, and you can see them play the winter Saturday afternoon series at Iron Springs Brewery in Fairfax on the 12th from 2-4 p.m. The pub brews great beer and they serve good food as well. No cover. Heck, you can watch the playoff football game, drink beer and listen to live bluegrass all at once!

Bluegrass in Alameda -- High Country, the Bay Area’s longest running bluegrass band, will be playing some hard drivin' traditional bluegrass at McGrath's Irish Pub in Alameda on the 12th from 8:30-11:30 p.m.

Bakersfield bound -- The whole gang is headed on down to Bakersfield for the SuperJam on the 18th-19th, a CBA event that will be held this year in lieu of SuperGrass, which may return in 2009. SuperJam will take at the Holiday Inn Select, 801 Truxton, in Bakersfield. The entire second floor has been blocked off for the CBA and there will be three jamming rooms. There will also be an open mic band scramble in the hotel lounge on Saturday from 9 p.m.-midnight. For more info, contact Duane Campbell via

Old-time is not a crime! -- At least, it isn’t in Berkeley. If you want to learn how to play old-time music, there is seven-week session that you can sign up for with instructors Allegra Yellin (guitar), Jordan Ruyle (banjo), and Amy Hofer (fiddle). You can learn new tunes, meet other old-time musicians, and have lots of fun while you are at it. The upcoming session will meet on seven Sundays from January 27th-March 16th (but not on February 3rd) from 4:30-6 p.m. near the Ashby BART station. Cost for the session is $115. Please register before January 21st. For more information, email, or call (510) 655-5715.

B. Judd, Bluegrass Philosopher -- “Folks who don’t know why America is the ‘Land of Promise’ should be here during an election campaign.”
Posted:  1/12/2008

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