Peter Thompson's Bay Area Newsletter News
Thompson's Bay Area Calendar


For complete, regularly updated information -- and more (like a list of all the area's bands and radio shows) -- visit

Just added: Bay Area Bluegrass and Old Time Music history 1959-2001; see

Additions, corrections, and suggestions -- and your comments -- are most welcome via e-mail:

The KALW Fall Membership Campaign began this week, and the "Bluegrass Signal" special is on Saturday (9/13) from 6:30 - 8 pm. Thanks in advance for your support of the station and the program -- and see below for all the way-cool thank-you gifts available for that support.

Keep on the sunny side -


"Bluegrass Signal" radio show

Broadcast Saturdays, 6:30 - 8:00 pm on (91.7 FM in the Bay Area)
Archived for one week at (select 'Bluegrass Signal')
Re-broadcast Sun @ 8 am and Mon @ 8 pm (Pacific Time) on

Sept. 13: I Ain't Broke, But ... On the (103rd) anniversary of Bill Monroe's birth, the KALW Fall Membership Drive special. Lots of great music -- including some of Big Mon's -- presented (and available as thank-you gifts), along with your support via and/or 1-800-525-9917. Thank-you gifts include:
- BILL MONROE: Live Recordings 1956-1969 (Smithsonian-Folkways)
- HOT RIZE: When I'm Free (Thirty Tigers)
- LAURIE LEWIS & KATHY KALLICK: Laurie & Kathy Sing the Songs Of Vern & Ray (Spruce and Maple)
- VARIOUS ARTISTS: In the Deep Rolling Hills of San Francisco - A Collection of Bay Area Bluegrass & Old Time Music (BG Signal)

Sept. 20: Blue is Fallin'
On the anniversary of Charles Sawtelle's birth, the first new release from Hot Rize since his passing, along with a few favorite recorded moments from Charles.

Sept. 27: Reso Rootin'
On the anniversary of Uncle Josh's birth, two new ones featuring the dobro - "Three Bells" with the late Mike Auldridge, Rob Ickes, and Jerry Douglas, plus Jerry's tribute to Josh and Flatt & Scruggs, "The Earls of Leicester."

Oct. 4: Blue Grass Style
A few songs about music from the true vine, as a reminder of the inspiration for this weekend's fester. Contributions from Vern & Ray (and Laurie & Kathy) ("Blue Grass Style"), Al Wood & The Smokey Ridge Boys ("Sing A Bluegrass Song"), Dave Evans ("Carry Me Back To the Bluegrass," "My Bluegrass Memories"), Terry Eldredge ("Knee Deep In Bluegrass"), Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver ("The Grass That I'm Playing Is Really Blue"), Tommy Webb ("If It Weren't For Bluegrass Music I'd Go Crazy"), ...

Oct. 11: Blue Diamond Strings
... is the name of a new band with Eric Thompson, Jody Stecher, Kate Brislin, Paul Knight, Paul Shelasky, and Suzy Thompson. From the Asphalt Jungle Mountain Boys to the Blue Flame String Band, Any Old Time to Kleptograss, the Kate & Jody and Eric & Suzy (and Jody & Eric) duos, and many other collaborations, these musicians have made LOTS of music together -- and are featured on this show.

Oct. 18: Across the Tracks
New releases and reissues.

Oct. 25: Live On Arrival
KALW On-Air Folk Festival, with live music in our studios from 3-8 pm.

Nov. 1: Day Of the Dead (Grass)
Bluegrass versions of Grateful Dead songs + Grateful Dead versions of bluegrass songs.

Nov. 8: Happy Birthday, Roy Lee Centers!
A tribute to Dr. Ralph's most Carter-like lead singer. The Real Deal from the early '70s.


Concert & Club Dates

Sept. 11 (6 pm): Maverick - Coast Cafe, Bolinas
Sept. 11: Ed Neff & Friends/Blue & Lonesome - Willowbrook Ale House, Petaluma
Sept. 11: Mill Creek Ramblers - Mission Pizza, Fremont
Sept. 11: Bill Monroe Birthday Celebration - Laurie Lewis & the Right Hands plus Butch Waller, Jim Mintun, Max Schwartz, Melody Walker, Jacob Groopman, Chuck Poling (MC), and others - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley
Sept. 12-13: Old Time Bluegrass Jamboree - Blue & Lonesome; Phil Cornish & Pat Ickes Blue Grass; Ruby Mt. String Band; Contreras Brothers; California State Old Time Fiddle Group; Edison Serena & Clayton Rudiger; others - Soper Reese Theatre, Lakeport
Sept. 12-13: McCloud Mountain Bluegrass - Paige Anderson & The Fearless Kin; Jerry Rose; Caitlin Jemma & The Long Gone Stringband; Elspeth Summers; others - McCloud
Sept. 12: K?aren Celia Heil & Dan Warrick - Bernal Star, SF
Sept. 12: High Country - USS Potomac, Jack London Square, Oakland
Sept. 12: Nora Jane Struthers & The Party Line; T Sisters - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley
Sept. 13 (1 pm): Bearcat Stringband - Cato’s Ale House, Oakland - begins every 2nd Sat. shows
Sept. 13 (2 pm): Harmony Grits - San Gregorio Store
Sept. 13 & 14 (2 pm): High Country - Triple Rock Brewery, Berkeley
Sept. 14 (noon): Bearcat Stringband - Berkeley Horticulture Center
Sept. 15: Windy Hill - Amnesia, SF
Sept. 16: Cabin Fever - Sam's BBQ, San Jose
Sept. 17 (6:30 pm): Bangers & Grass (with guest Michael Witcher) - Memorial Park, Albany
Sept. 17: Sidesaddle & Co. - Sam's BBQ, San Jose
Sept. 17: Whiskey Brothers - Albatross Pub, Berkeley
Sept. 18: Hardly Strictly Warren Hellman exhibit opens - Contemporary Jewish Museum, SF
Sept. 18: Ed Neff & Friends/Blue & Lonesome - Willowbrook Ale House, Petaluma
Sept. 18: Mill Creek Ramblers - Mission Pizza, Fremont
Sept. 19: Red Dog Ash - Plough & Stars, SF
Sept. 21 (4 pm): Jim Hurst - house concert in Santa Cruz
Sept. 21: Steep Ravine - Throckmorton Theatre, Mill Valley
Sept. 22: The Earl Brothers - Amnesia, SF
Sept. 23: Slide Road - Sam's BBQ, San Jose
Sept. 24: Carolyn Sills Combo - Sam's BBQ, San Jose
Sept. 24: High Country - Albany Taproom, Albany
Sept. 25: Ed Neff & Friends/Blue & Lonesome - Willowbrook Ale House, Petaluma
Sept. 25: Mill Creek Ramblers - Mission Pizza, Fremont
Sept. 25: David Grisman Folk Jazz Trio with Jim Hurst - City Winery, Napa
Sept. 26: Bill Evans' "Banjo in America" - Berkeley Fellowship of the Unitarian Universalists
Sept. 26: Jim Hurst - Concerts off the Circle, Berkeley
Sept. 26: Grateful Bluegrass Boys, Tony Futado - Zodiacs, Petaluma
Sept. 26: The Dim Lights - Moose Lodge, Pacifica
Sept. 27 (11:15 am): The Dim Lights - Pacific Coast Fog Fest, Pacifica
Sept. 27: Beargrass Creek - Mission Pizza, Fremont
Sept. 27: Whiskey Puppy; Tennessee Studs - Plough & Stars, SF
Sept. 28: Paul Knight & Friends (Sharon Gilchrist, Avram Seigel, Blaine Sprouse, others) - Windrush Farm, Petaluma
Sept. 29: Whiskey Puppy; Tennessee Studs - Amnesia, SF
Sept. 30: Leftover Crow - Sam's BBQ, San Jose
Sept. 30: David Thom Band - Murphy's Irish Pub, Sonoma

coming ...

Oct. 3: Ralph Stanley & the Clinch Mountain Boys - City Winery, Napa
Oct. 5 (3 pm): reunion of two Jack Sadler bands at SCVFA monthly gathering - Hoover Middle School, San Jose; with the Overlook Mountain Boys ('70s bluegrass band), including Arthur Kee, Ron White, Jack Tuttle, and Jack; and Lone Prairie ('90s cowboy music band), including Paul King, Jim Mintun, Louise Mintun, and Jack.
Oct. 11: Del McCoury & David Grisman - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley
Oct. 18: Blue Diamond Strings (Jody Stecher, Kate Brislin, Suzy Thompson, Eric Thompson, Paul Shelasky, Paul Knight) - First Presbyterian Church Of Mountain View
Oct. 22: Caleb Klauder Country Band - Don Quixote’s, Felton
Oct. 23: Druha Trava - Don Quixote’s, Felton
Oct. 23: Marty Stuart - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley
Oct. 24: Iris DeMent - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley
Oct. 24: Druha Trava - Woodshed Music & Arts - St. James Church, 1565 Lincoln Ave., San Jose
Oct. 30: Bill Evans' "The Banjo in America" - Stanford University's Continuing Studies Series
Nov. 1: Kathy Kallick Band - First Presbyterian Church of Mountain View
Nov. 2: Kathy Kallick Band - Studio 55 Marin, San Rafael
Nov. 7-9: Dare To Be Square West - Oakland
Nov. 13-16: California Banjo Extravaganza - Tony Furtado, Mark Johnson, and Bill Evans plus John Reischman, Sharon Gilchrist, Chad Manning, and Jim Nunally - Grass Valley, Winters, Berkeley, and Santa Cruz
Nov. 29: Laurie Lewis - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley



Sept. 11-14: STRAWBERRY FALL MUSIC FESTIVAL - Nevada County Fairgrounds, Grass Valley
Hot Rize + Red Knuckles & the Trailblazers; John Jorgenson Bluegrass Band (w/ Herb Pedersen, Jon Randall, & Mark Fain); Kathy Kallick Band; The (Keith) Little Band with Blaine Sprouse; Steep Ravine; … Jerry Douglas Band (w/ Luke Bulla, Viktor Krauss, Josh Hunt, Doug Belote, Omar Hakim); Patty Griffin; Tower Of Power; Marcia Ball; Dave Alvin and the Guilty Ones; Chris Webster & Nina Gerber;Eliza Gilkyson & Nina Gerber; Nina Gerber's Late Night Lullabies; Hot Buttered Rum; The Hillbenders; Good Luck Thrift Store Outfit; The California Honeydrops; Los Texmaniacs; 10 String Symphony; LoCura; Achilles Wheel; Strange on the Range; … Barwick & Siegfried; Tom Ball and Kenny Sultan; American Nomad; Sourdough Slim & Robert Armstrong; Banana Slug String Band; Contra Dance with Faux Renwah; ...

Ginny Hawker & Tracy Schwarz, Joseph Decosimo & the Bucking Mules, The Cliffhangers, Frank George & Kim Johnson, John Cohen, Paul Brown & Terri McMurray, The Onlies, The Earl White Band, Twice As Nice, ...

Sept. 19-21: BLUEGRASSIN' IN THE FOOTHILLS - Amador County Fairgrounds, Plymouth
Adkins & Loudermilk, Reno & Harrell, Blue Moon Rising, Larry Efaw & The Bluegrass Mountaineers, Ron Spears & Within Tradition, Larry Gillis & His West Coast Friends (Ella & Henry Warde, Meghan & Curtis Leslie), The BladeRunners, Next Generation, The Grasskickers (2013 Emerging Artist winner), and 2014 Emerging Artist contestants: Doc's Holiday, The Littlest Birds, Red, White & Bluegrass

Ralph Stanley & the Clinch Mt. Boys; Hot Rize + Red Knuckles & The Trailblazers; Jerry Douglas & the Earls of Leicester; Dry Branch Fire Squad; Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands; Holler Down the Hollow: A Hardly Strictly Salute To the Masters; … Emmylou Harris; The Time Jumpers; Peter Rowan's Twang An' Groove; Alison Brown Quintet; Nitty Gritty Dirt Band; Béla Fleck & Abigail Washburn; Rosanne Cash; Lucinda Williams; Dwight Yoakam; The Flatlanders: Joe Ely, Jimmie Dale Gilmore & Butch Hancock; … Mavis Staples; John Prine; Carlene Carter; Bill Kirchen & Too Much Fun; Dave Alvin & Phil Alvin with The Guilty Ones; Robbie Fulks; Sarah Jarosz; Buckwheat Zydeco; Ryan Adams; Robert Earl Keen; Shawn Colvin; Tony Joe White; Buddy Miller & Friends; The McCrary Sisters; Yo La Tengo; Kieran Kane & Fats Kaplin; Willie Watson; Steve Earle & The Dukes; Dave Rawlings Machine; Malawi Mouse Boys; Blackie and The Rodeo Kings; Chris Smither; Bruce Cockburn; Blue Rodeo; The Waybacks; ...


Jam Sessions

Oct. 13-19: CBA Fall Campout - Lodi Grape Festival Grounds

Sundays (4 pm): The Lucky Horseshoe - 453 Cortland Ave., SF
First Sunday (1 pm): Santa Clara Valley Fiddlers Association - Hoover Middle School, Naglee & Park Sts., San Jose
2nd/4th Sun. (3 pm): Progressive Grounds Cafe, 400 Cortland Ave., SF (old time)
Second Sunday (2 pm): Methodist Church, Boulder Creek (831-423-5214)
3rd Sunday (1 pm): Creative Art Center (across from theater), Sunnyvale Community Center - 550 E. Remington Dr.
3rd Sunday (4:30 pm): "Full speed" jam - Community Living Center (Building 90), Veterans Affairs, 4951 Arroyo Rd., Livermore;
Fourth Sunday (1:30 pm): California Old Time Fiddlers Association - United Methodist Church, 19806 Wisteria St., Castro Valley
4th Sunday (1 pm): Ocean View Park, Santa Cruz
4th Sunday (2 pm): Sebastopol Christian Church (707-824-1960) (gospel)
Mondays: The Stork Club - 2330 Telegraph Ave., Oakland
Mondays: Fandango Pizza - 3163 Middlefield Rd., Palo Alto [old time]
Mondays: Taco Jam - invitational jam hosted by Tom Lucas - Baja Taqueria, 4070 Piedmont Ave. (@ 41st), Oakland
Sept. 22: Amy Scher, Alex Sharps, Karen Sonnenblick, Tom Bekeny, David Thom
Sept. 29: Tom Lucas, Mitch Polzak, Ben Bernstein, Ted Silverman, Gerry Tenny
Oct. 6: Amy Scher, Larry Cohea, Dave Courchaine, Brian Judd, Jerry Barush
Second and Fourth Mondays (6:30 pm):The Pick Jam - Amnesia, 853 Valencia, SF [precedes the Bluegrass Monday show]
First/Third Tuesdays: SUBUD Hall - 234 Hutchins, Sebastopol
Second/Fourth Tuesdays: Dublin Heritage Center Park - 6600 Donlon, Dublin
Wednesdays (6:30 pm): Bluegrass Jam - El Cerrito Music Works (upstairs), 11225 San Pablo Ave., El Cerrito
Wednesdays: Fandango Pizza - 3163 Middlefield Rd., Palo Alto
First Wednesday: The Plough & Stars - 116 Clement (@ 2nd Ave.), SF; hosted by Jeanie & Chuck Poling [bg, old time, classic country]
Fourth Wednesday: Armando's, 707 Marina Vista, Martinez
Fourth Wednesday: Aqus Café, Petaluma
Thursdays: Morgan Hill Grange; info: Dick Simunic
First/Third Thursdays: Marin Bluegrass Jam - Marin Lutheran Church, 649 Meadowsweet, Corte Madera
Final Thursday: Atlas Cafe, 3049 - 20th (@ Alabama), SF (415-648-1047)
Sat. (2 pm): Coffee Catz, 6761 Sebastopol Ave., Sebastopol (707-829-6600)
First/Third Saturdays: Mission Pizza & Pub, 1572 Washington Blvd., Fremont;hosted by the Mill Creek Ramblers
First Saturday (noon): Lamorinda Bluegrass & Old Time Music Jam - Lamorinda Music Store, 81 Lafayette Circle Lafayette
Second Saturday (12 pm): Santa Clara Train Station, 1005 Railroad Ave., SantaClara; info: Mary Kennedy
Saturdays (5 pm) preceding RBA concerts: 1667 Miramonte Blvd.(corner of Cuesta Dr.), Mountain View; info: Ed Cirimele


Instruction / Workshops / Music Camps


Mondays (Sept. 8-Oct. 13): String Band Blues w/ Suzy Thompson - Berkeley near Ashby & College; info/reg:
Tuesdays: Bluegrass Slow Jam with Ran Bush - Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, Bonita @ Cedar, North Berkeley
Wednesdays & Thursdays: Avram Siegel Bluegrass Jam Classes - Berkeley
Tue., Wed., Thur.: Bluegrass Banjo, Mandolin, Bluegrass Jam w/ Jack Tuttle - Palo Alto

Classes at the Freight & Salvage, Berkeley (Sept. 8 - Oct. 16) include:
Intermediate Old Time and Bluegrass Mandolin w/ Eric Thompson
Bluegrass Jam Class Level 1 w/ Bill Evans
Bluegrass Jam Class Level 2 w/ Bill Evans
Clawhammer Banjo for the Rank Beginner w/ Evie Ladin & Erik Pearson
Clawhammer Banjo Slow Repertoire w/ Evie Ladin & Erik Pearson
Easy Bass w/ Chuck Ervin
Blues Bass w/ Chuck Ervin
Introduction to Swing Guitar w/ Tony Marcus
Intermediate Swing Guitar w/ Tony Marcus


Workshops at the Freight & Salvage, Berkeley include:
First/Third Sundays (1 pm): Beyond Bluegrass Slow Jam w/ Ran Bush
Second/Fourth Sundays (1 pm): Bluegrass Slow Jam w/ Ran Bush
First/Third Sundays (1 pm): Old-Time Harmony Singing Workshops with a rotating cast of teachers, including Evie Ladin, Suzy Thompson, Allegra Yellin, and Karen Celia Heil

BOTMC Workshops
Sept. 18 (3:30 pm):
Old Time Banjo w/ John Cohen
Old Time Fiddle w/ Paul Brown
Sept. 19 (6:00 pm):
Old Time Banjo w/ Mark Olitsky
Old Time Fiddle w/ Earl White
Sept. 21 (11:00 am):
Old Time Fiddle w/ Frank George
Old Time Banjo w/ Luke Richardson
Southern Harmony Singing w/ Ginny Hawker & Tracy Schwarz
Banjo-Uke w/ Terri McMurray
Sept. 21 (1:00 pm):
Old Time Fiddle w/ Joseph Decosimo
Old Time Banjo w/ Kim Johnson
Primative Baptist Singing w/ Ginny Hawker & Tracy Schwarz
Tunesmithing w/ Mark Simos


Oct. 9-12: Walker Creek Music Camp - Petaluma
Instructors include Keith Little, Mike Witcher, Luke Abbott, Josh Tharp, Laurie Lewis, Tom Rozum, Eric Thompson, Suzy Thompson, Greg Canote, Jere Canote, Candy Goldman, Megan Lynch, Adam Chowning, Peter Ostroushko, Jim Kerwin, Sharon Gilchrist, Avram Siegel, Steve Baughman, Morgan Cochneuer, Carol Spiker

Oct. 10-13: The Yosemite Songwriting Retreat - Bug Rustic Mountain Resort; with Peter Rowan, Terre Roche, Keith Greeninger, Jayme Kelly Curtis, and Ukulele Dick

Nov. 7-9: Yosemite Band Sessions - Bug Rustic Mountain Resort; with Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands plus Blaine Sprouse


"Bluegrass Signal" on WAMU's Bluegrass Country
Webcast via; Pacific Time zone broadcasts: Sundays at 8 am and Mondays at 8 pm.

Sept. 6-12: Across the Tracks
Continuing the survey of new releases, with more from D.C.-area banjo players --- and from one of the Left Coast's finest -- as well as sets of mountain songs, contemporary treatments of Flatt & Scruggs, and gospel.
Sept. 13-19: What's Goin' On, part 1
Musical previews of the Strawberry Fall Music Festival, Bluegrassin' In the Foothills, Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, and other upcoming events.
Sept. 20-26: What's Goin' On, part 2
Musical previews of the Berkeley Old Time Music Convention with guest co-host (and BOTMC grand fromage) Suzy Thompson.
Sept. 27 - Oct. 3: It's Just the Night, Part 1
The first of two programs celebrating bluegrass "night" songs, with four contributions from the Stanley Brothers, three from Bill Monroe, and others from everyone from Jimmy Martin to the Infamous Stringdusters, Tommy Jarrell to Jeff White, the New Coon Creek Girls to the Steeldrivers. And more, including Del's title track.
Oct. 4-10: It's Just the Night, Part 2
The second of two programs celebrating bluegrass "night" songs, with contributions from Dave Evans & River Bend, David Davis & the Warrior River Boys, Doc Watson, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Good Ol' Persons, The Grascals, Kathy Kallick Band, Mac Martin & The Dixie Travelers, Mac Wiseman & John Prine, Red Allen, Tony Rice, and a reprise of Del's title track.
Posted By:  Rick Cornish

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