2016 is shaping up early to be a great year for bluegrass music in San Diego. How’s this for a kick off for the New Year:
Thursday-Sunday January 7-10, 2016: The Great 48 Jam Session in Bakersfield. There will be lots of jamming, hosted suites by SDBS, Summergrass and the North County Bluegrass and Folk Club, showcase performances, vendors, exhibits on display, open mic, and more. Performing in concert will be top national band Sideline. The action will take place at the Bakersfield Double Tree and is produced by the California Bluegrass Association. You can expect pickers from all over California and neighboring western states for what has become a premier winter event. Visit: www.cbaontheweb/events for details.
Sunday January 17: The Gibson Brothers at the Del Mar Powerhouse. There will be a matinee at 2pm and an evening show at 7pm. The Gibson Brothers are “bluegrass superstars” (New York Times) with the International Bluegrass Music Awards to back up that title. They have twice won IBMA’s biggest award, Entertainer of the Year (2013, 2012), along with Vocal Group of the Year (2013, 2011), Song of the Year (2013, 2010), Songwriter of the Year (Eric Gibson), and Gospel Performance (2012, 2010). General admission is$25; patron seating is $40. For info and tickets: www.delmarfoundation.org/bluegrass.
Friday, January 22, 2016: Grammy Nominated (2012) Special Consensus, with opening band Gone Tomorrow. SDBS presents top touring band Special Consensus in concert at the First Baptist Church of Pacific Beach on Friday evening January 22 at 7:30pm. Special C was wildly popular in its last appearance in San Diego a few years back. Admission is free, donations will be solicited. Gone Tomorrow goes on at 7pm pm, Special C at 7:30pm.
Whew, and that’s just January! Coming in March is outstanding fiddler Michael Cleveland and his band Flamekeeper. Also look for other special events to be announced.
A sad day for the Hillcrest Farmers Market. The 7th Day Buskers end their 18-year run. For 18 years, Shawn Rohlf and his 7th Day Buskers brought great music to the Hillcrest Farmers Market every Sunday. It was a great run, with many of the region’s top bluegrass performers serving time in the band. Through it all, Shawn, founder and band leader, kept it rock steady. With his band in high demand for paying gigs, he kept his feet firmly on the ground, providing great free music to the local community every Sunday. See the article, on page 3, on the band’s run at the Farmers Market, and tell Shawn and his Buskers “thanks” when you see them.
Interested in getting involved in the local bluegrass scene? There are lots of opportunities here in San Diego. Check out the North County Bluegrass and Folk Club at their website: www.northcountybluegrass.org and learn about their first Tuesday of the month jam sessions and concerts, and take a peek at their other events as well. Also, don’t miss a peek at the San Diego Bluegrass Society website: www.sandiegobluegrass.org to read about their second, third, and fourth Tuesday events, which include jam sessions, open mic, an instructed slow jam, and monthly concerts. Better yet, stop by any one of these Tuesday events and see for yourself, and be sure to bring your instrument!