Author: Slim, Sims

Actual Bluegrass Content

Since my column from last month never saw the light of day due to a website glitch, and since everybody and his brother has already commented on Grass Valley and Susanville, and since it had more than my usual Bluegrass content, I’ve recycled it as follows:

As I write this, I’ve just finished listening to Gene Bach’s Siskiyou Bluegrass Show ( An hour of fine BG listening, for sure! Gene and I seem to have similar tastes in BG music. Put this one on your “favorites” list and give it a listen. The show plays three or four times a week at various hours, so you’re bound to be able to catch it at least once. As a famous man once said, “don’t miss it if you can”.

Due to illness, we missed Parkfield this year. Last year was our first there and we were so looking forward to going again. I’ve been hearing about the Stairwell Sisters for some time and wanted to see what they’re all about.

I also wanted to see the Get Down Boys. I remember hearing them at this year’s Great 48 Hour Jam, where they blew us away at the Saturday night open mic. Lucky for me, they’re going to be at Grass Valley.

This will be our second year of serious “festing” and I find I really enjoy the smaller gatherings where I can see performers that you don’t get many chances to see. I don’t feel it’s a bad thing if the big names aren’t there in force, when I can see some of the great lesser-known acts that don’t get around as much.

Speaking of which, I heartily recommend attending the Susanville festival the weekend following Grass Valley. This one’s put on by the above-mentioned Gene Bach, apparently a man of many talents (and he plays the mandolin). We had a fine time there last year and expect another this time.

I must correct an omission in my May Welcome Column. I mentioned that it was hard to put together a band at 9:00 a.m. (at the spring campout). The locals were opening a time capsule at the fairground gate and somebody suggested that “we” should play a few tunes for the assembled spectators. I scoured the campground for some pickers, but breakfast, coffee-drinking, and shooting the breeze seemed to be higher priorities at the moment! Then I happened onto Mikki Feeney, Randy Morton and an unnamed mando player (I’m sure he’s got a name, but I didn’t catch it), who were already jamming. They scurried to the gate and, while they were gearing up, Jonathan Bluemel came by and was recruited to fetch his banjo. The music was well-received and some of the audience came back later to hear more. Thanks to those pickers!

So, there you have it. We just got home from GV and S’ville and – wait a minute, the phone’s ringing –

That was Gene Bach on the phone, telling me I won two tickets to Havasu next year. Attendees at Susanville were told to put receipts for anything they bought in town during the festival in a box and a drawing would be held for tickets to several upcoming fests.

Yahoo, we’re goin’ to Havasu !

Posted:  7/2/2011

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