Author: Carlin, Larry

December 30, 2009
Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Decade end. Not only are we coming to the end of another year, but also to the Aughts Decade. 2009 was another interesting, if not at times trying, year. The housing and stock market crises are slowing getting worked out, wars in far off lands continue seemingly without end, and the passing of some good music people was inevitable and sad. Lucky for us music fans, we still have bluegrass to get us through the difficult times whether it is going to jams, concerts and festivals, listening to CDs/iPods/etc., or just picking an instrument. Bluegrass has not changed much since it began over 60 years ago, and it will still be here when the calendar page is turned over to Friday, January 1st, 2010.

Out with the old, in with the old -- The best way to ring in the New Year is by pickin' with some good friends in a warm living room, and this is how I have been celebrating the night for about two decades now. But if you want to go out and enjoy some bluegrass, there are a few suggestions below. As for any regular jams on Thursday and Friday, your guess is as good as mine as to whether or not any of them will be happening. And with this being another long, holiday weekend, the Almost Daily News will not appear again here until Monday the 4th. Here's hoping you have a prosperous, enjoyable and bluegrass-filled New Year!

And here's a hand, my trusty friend, and gie's a hand o' thine; we'll take a cup o' kindness yet, for auld lang syne.

Life’s railway to heaven in 2009 -- The media is saturated right now with year-end best/worst lists, along with predictions for the New Year. Instead of jumping on that trite journalist band wagon, I am just going to mention a brief list of some noted musical folks who went on to Glory Land during this past year. Rather than go into detail with each name, if you want more info simply click on the links. Apologies to those who may have been inadvertently overlooked: Liam Clancy, Rick Hendricks, Mary Travers, Jack Cooke, Bess Lomax Hawes, Allen Shelton, Norton Buffalo, Mike Seeger , John "Marmaduke" Dawson, Bill Harrell, Archie Green, Vern Gosdin, Timothy Wright, Hank Locklin, Jimmy Boyd, Lance McCollum , Molly Bee, Tom Brumley, Tim Hart, Yodeling Lady Lolita, Lloyd Butler, Doris Butler, Wayne Nolan, and David Ross Boots.

New jam class in Berkeley -- The next Bluegrass Slow Jam class at the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley will start on January 5th. Led by Ran Bush, guest instructors include Bill Evans, Jim Nunally and Megan Lynch. For more info go to the link.

Winter music camp -- The new CBA Winter Music Camp, taking place February 15th-18th near Petaluma in western Marin County, is starting to fill up, but there is still some room left. A finger-style guitar class, taught by Steve Baughman, has also been added for the first time. Go to the web page above more info.

Shoreline in Felton -- Shoreline is a bluegrass band comprised of members of the same family. Based in Felton, the band plays regularly at various Santa Cruz music venues. Banjo player Steve Kling spent over 35 years playing at venues throughout California before actually noticing that he had a family of kids that loved bluegrass and wanted to play. The group’s approach is to blend traditional bluegrass harmony and instrumentation with group-written songs and contemporary material. See them play at Don Quixote’s in Felton on the 30th starting at 7:30 p.m.

Deep Elem at Phil’s -- Deep Elem on the 30th will be playing bluegrass at Phil’s Fish Market in Moss Landing from 6-8 p.m. No cover.

South Bay bluegrass barbeque -- Matt & George and Their Pleasant Valley Boys will be pickin’ some hot bluegrass to go along with the spicy barbeque on the 30th at Sam’s Bar-B-Que in San Jose from 6-9 p.m. Reserve a table at (408) 297-9151.

Jammin’ in Palo Alto -- There is a bluegrass jam every Wednesday night at Fandango Pizza in Palo Alto starting at 7 p.m.

The Brombies in Burbank -- The Brombies play bluegrass on the fifth Wednesday at Viva Cantina in Burbank starting at 8 p.m.

Jammin’ in Paso Robles -- "Matt's Jam" takes place every Wednesday from 6-8 p.m. at Matt's Music, 617 12th Street, in downtown Paso Robles. For more information call (805) 237-0054.

Year-end bluegrass tradition in Berkeley -- Since the Randy Pitts leadership days the Freight & Salvage in Berkeley has been ushering in the New Year with the longtime Bay Area bluegrass band High Country along with the duo of Jim Nunally & Dix Bruce, and there is no reason to change things now. This will also be the official High Country release show for their new CD titled Perfect Companions. The evening starts at 8 p.m. with great music as well as an appetizer buffet and silly hats.

Halos in Alameda -- At McGrath’s Pub in Alameda on the 31st starting at 9 p.m. some members of The Bay Island Ramblers and other pickers will be playing a mix of bluegrass and country songs to welcome in<
Posted:  1/4/2010

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