Front Porch

  • Big Kitchen: The Musical Returns to San Diego!

    Judy Forman hurries from table to table, checking on the breakfasts of the outdoors diners. It’s Sunday, and the Big Kitchen is packed. She pauses ever so briefly. “We’re going back on Broadway!” she says as she seats folks at a table. Forman is talking about The Big Kitchen: A Counter Cultural Musical, the stage […]

  • Josh Stotler’s Wooden Wonders

    The acoustic bass guitar bears a shape that hints back to the early Hofner model played by Paul McCartney when the Beatles hit it big. A closer look at the neck shows four fret inlays in mother of pearl, each an identical copy of the four mop tops’ iconic silhouettes from the photo on their […]

  • A How-To Book for Entertainers

    As an amateur musician, I got a call several years ago for an afternoon gig. A party, a wedding, I really can’t remember what the event was. What I do remember was that the band played outdoors and, as the afternoon progressed, I was less and less in the shade of the temporary canopy and […]

  • It’s Not Just Gary Heffern Anymore! The Finnish Music Scene in San Diego

    It’s tough growing up Finnish-American. When the other kids had relatives named John and Jane and Fred and Nancy, mine had names like Kirsikka and Minttu and Einer and Hannes. Since Finland is one of Europe’s smaller countries, there aren’t a whole lot of Finns skating around. Finns are also a very diasporic people. So […]

  • Doktor Dave Sawyer Enriched San Diego’s Music Coverage

    Dave Sawyer— given the musical moniker “Doktor” by no less than [the late] Hot Rod Harris—is leaving San Diego for the sometimes greener, sometimes whiter, and occasionally brilliant-with-color pastures of northern Idaho. Family is a powerful force, and Dave has the kind of heart that responds most strongly to sympathetic vibrations— and so he is […]

  • Guitar Workshop Plus: A Great Way to Improve Your Chops

    Any musicians out there looking to hone their craft will want to check out Guitar Workshop Plus, taking place on the campus of California State University San Marcos from June 18 -23. The music camp is an immersive experience, with classes and seminars open to students of all ages and skill levels, in any style […]

  • San Diego Musicians Spice Up Gator Fest

    Perhaps the most accurate word of San Diego’s ongoing fling with all things Louisianan is “growth.” Spring is in the air; time for baseball, blooming flowers and eating gumbo while rocking to a zydeco beat: could it be time once again for Gator by the Bay? The calendar never lies, and this year’s celebration down […]

  • Echo Mountain String Band and the Importance of Jamming

    The first time I jammed with the Echo Mountain String Band, I left with a fat lip. It was the annual Santa Barbara Old-Time Fiddler’s Convention in 2015. The beautiful grounds at the Rancho La Paterna were filled with fiddlers, banjoists, guitarists, and mandolinists that had gathered to jam on some old fiddle melodies and […]

  • Chuck Berry Was the Beginning of It All

    Chuck Berry, who passed away at the age of 90 on March 18, was the Beginning of it all. His is a shadow that falls over those who took up guitar after him. He created the language and vocabulary of rock ‘n’ roll, both as musician and songwriter. His body of work, truly, is the […]