Author: Carlin, Larry

June 25, 2010
Friday, June 25, 2010

Friday musings -- The betting here is that you, as a bluegrass fan, are not visiting Michael Jackson’s grave today on the anniversary of his death, you’re not in line waiting to buy the newest electronic gadget from Apple, you’re not holed up in some bar at 7 a.m. nursing a high ball while watching some guys kick a soccer ball up and down a field in South Africa, and you are not driving your family and neighbors crazy while you try to play the vuvuzela, which, to the delight of banjo players the world over, is now the most maligned musical instrument ever. That is, if a one-note piece a plastic can be defined as a “musical instrument.” The guess here is that you are either off at the Susanville Bluegrass Festival, picking an instrument or getting ready to go find some great music this weekend. If the former is true, you are on the wrong web site. If the latter is true, you have come to the right place!

Gone fishin' -- Your Almost Daily News editor is headed east for a couple of weeks (and no, not to search for Osama bin Laden!) to visit family and friends, so there is no telling when or how often this column will be updated here. Apologies in advance if your show is overlooked. Yet through the wonders of modern technology combined with the huge ADN staff and budget, the column can and, with any luck will, be posted from afar on occasion.

Congrats to Del! -- Del McCoury is one of nine artists to win a National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship. In September, the 2010 awardees will attend a presentation and banquet at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Read the story here. And make plans now to see The Del McCoury Band & The Preservation Hall Jazz Band playing together on the 4th of July at the Marin County Fair in San Rafael.

Susanville bluegrass -- The Susanville Bluegrass Festival, featuring Rita Hosking, Shades of Blue, Dalton Mountain Gang, California Borderline, The Anderson Family, Piney Creek Weasels, Snap Jackson and others, starts today and runs through Sunday. Enjoy!

Kate Wolf -- The Kate Wolf Festival in Laytonville also starts today and runs through Sunday with Poor Man's Whiskey, Stevie Coyle, Scott Gerber & Cori Wood, Little Feat, The Waifs, Hot Buttered Rum, Sherry Austin Band, Steve Earle, The David Grisman Bluegrass Experience and many more.

Extended Woody in Mill Valley -- The Marin Theatre Company’s production of Woody Guthrie’s American Song has been extended through the 27th of this month. This show is fabulous! Some of the cast includes Bay Area pickers Tony Marcus, Chuck Ervin, Harry Yaglijian, and the musical/acting duo Misner & Smith. You can read a story and a review of the show in the Marin Independent Journal.

Green and bluegrass at Murphy’s in Sonoma -- At Murphy’s Irish Pub in the town of Sonoma it will be Celtic music on the 25th by Boys Night Out from 8-10 p.m., bluegrass on the 26th with High Country from 8-10, and Celtic music on the 27th with Greenhouse from 6-8. No cover, and good food and beer in a family friendly atmosphere.

Oak Grove in San Ramon -- On the 26th from 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. the Schwartz family band Oak Grove will be playing at the San Ramon Farmers Market, at Forest Home Farms Historical Park. It is also Kids Day at the market, which is a free event that includes a jump house, face painting and many other kid activities. Oak Grove will also have plenty of copies of their new CD available.

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

Turn your radio on -- Tune into Peter Thompson’s Bluegrass Signal radio show on KALW (91.7 FM) in SF on the 26th from 6:30-8 p.m. The show this week is titled Happy Birthday Kenny Baker. Born on this date in 1926 and called by his longtime boss, Bill Monroe, "the greatest bluegrass fiddler in the world," Kenny Baker has influenced virtually every contemporary fiddler with his music as a Blue Grass Boy, with Josh Graves, and with his many solo recordings. You can listen online on the KALW web site, and the first hour of the show is also broadcast five times each week on

Jammin’ in Paso Robles -- "Matt's Jam" takes place every Saturday from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. at Matt's Music, 617 12th Street, in downtown Paso Robles. For more information call (805) 237-0054.

Kitchen Help in Alameda -- The place to be for bluegrass in Alameda on the 26th at 8 p.m. is McGrath’s Pub when the band Kitchen Help will be playing. They will have their new CD on hand too. The band is Jennifer Kitchen on bass, Tom Cooper on banjo, Avram Frankel on dobro, Matt Kendall on mandolin, and Alex Mayers on guitar.

Jammin’ in Modesto -- There is a jam in Modesto taking place at Ingram and Braun’s Musik Shoppe on Saturdays from 3-5 p.m. at their location at 503 Bangs Avenue. Go on by to join the fun!

The Bluegrass Mix -- The site called The Bluegrass Mix streams bluegrass online 24/7. Sky Powers has a show called Pacifically Bluegrass, and it airs every Saturday evening from 4-8 p.m. out here in CA. He plays a fine mix of bluegrass, both old and new, with an emphasis on new releases and he also devotes a portion of his show to playing and promoting the bluegrass bands of the Pacific West and Rockies. Sky also welcomes requests, so email him at

Dusty Shoes in Grover Beach -- Every Saturday from 5-7 p.m. the Dusty Shoes Gospel Band plays bluegrass at the Station Grill, 170 W. Grand Avenue, in Grover Beach. This is a free event.

Alive dudes -- The Grateful Dudes will be playing bluegrass on the 26th at Vincenzo’s Pizza in Newhall from 7:30-10:30 p.m. Band members Bill Bryson, Dennis Fetchet, Scott Micale and Rodger Phillips have been playing at Vincenzo’s for over 20 years now.

Woebegone pickin’ -- Garrison Keillor's radio show A Prairie Home Companion on the 26th will feature music by The Wailin’ Jennys. You can tune into KQED (88.5 FM) in SF at 6 p.m., and then the show will be re-aired on the
Posted:  6/28/2010

Copyright © 2002 California Bluegrass Association. All rights reserved.
Comments? Questions? Please email