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June 2024
Vol. 23, No. 9

Bluegrass Corner

April Bluegrass News

by Dwight WordenApril 2023

Spring is coming, if the rain ever stops, and bringing with it some great bluegrass opportunities. Here’s a rundown on a few.

Students of all ages enjoy Fiddle Camp.

Julian Family Fiddle Camp. May 3-7 in the mountains of Julian, California. From the Camp website: Inaugurated in 2011, the Julian Family Fiddle Camp (JFFC) is a five-day acoustic music camp for people of all ages and musical abilities. JFFC is held annually at a full-service, rural family retreat center near the historic mining town of Julian. All meals, instruction, and evening concerts are provided for a single fee.

Classes are offered in fiddle, banjo, guitar, upright bass, mandolin, and vocals by top notch visiting teachers. To sign up and learn more: Founded by Avery Ellisman in 2011, this year the Camp will take place under the tutelage of the California Bluegrass Association, with Avery still heavily involved. I have attend the camp every year (except one) since its inception and can testify it is a great learning experience and tons of fun.

Bluegrass Day at the Fair. Sunday, June 11 on the Paddock Stage, noon to 5pm. For decades the San Diego Bluegrass Society and the North San Diego County Bluegrass and Folk Club partnered with the Del Mar Fair to present Bluegrass Day at the Fair, featuring concerts, demonstrations, and more, until the fair was shut down by the Covid pandemic. This year the fair returns and so does Bluegrass Day!

Kids on stage at Bluegrass Day at the Fair. Photo by David Cupp.

Details are still in preparation, but look for a youth performance by talented youngsters, a band scramble open to all, and top-notch bluegrass band concerts. Look for more details in future Bluegrass Corner columns as they become available.

Nu Blu in Concert. Thursday April 13, 7 pm at the Solway Baptist Church at 4747 Soledad Mountain Road in Pacific Beach (formerly First Baptist Church of Pacific Beach). For years SDBS has presented excellent touring bands in concert at this great venue, until they were shut down in 2020 by the Covid pandemic. We are pleased to see concerts returning with an inaugural event hosting North Carolina’s Nu Blu. There will be an opening set by San Diego’s Prairie Sky. These concerts are free to the public. Donations are solicited with all the funds going to Nu Blu. So, come and enjoy a great time, and help support one of America’s great touring bluegrass bands

Southwestern Yacht Club SDBS Bluegrass Jam. Friday, April 28, 6:30-9pm with open mic and pick-up bands. Last month SDBS tried out the Yacht Club as a potential new venue and folks loved it. So, SDBS has negotiated an agreement with the club to host an event for SDBS members and guests on the fourth Friday of every month.

  • On the first Tuesday of every month, the North San Diego County Bluegrass and Folk Club hosts a jam session and featured and performance at the Round Table Pizza in Escondido at the corner of Washington and Ash. Open mic is from 6:30-8 pm, then a featured band is presented from 8-9pm. April’s featured band is Prairie Sky.
  • On the second Tuesday of every month, the SDBS event at the Mainstream Bar and Grill in Poway. It is temporarily suspended until the weather improves for this outdoor event.
  • On the second Tuesday of every month, the SDBS event at the Mainstream Bar and Grill in Poway. It is temporarily suspended until the weather improves for this outdoor event.
  • On the third Monday of every month, SDBS sponsors an instructed slow jam where folks can learn classic bluegrass tunes at a pace they can digest. The event is located at Our Savior Lutheran Church, 4011 Ohio St, in North Park, 7-8:30pm.
  • On the fourth Sunday of every month, SDBS and Duck Foot Brewery host an open jam session at Duck Foot Brewery, 8920 Kenamar Dr. #210, 1-3pm.
  • Every Thursday the Thursday Night Pickers meet at the Round Table Pizza in Encinitas. For info:

You can learn more about these events online.

Gerri and Bill Frisbie.

Bill Frisbie will be missed. We have lost, way too soon, a well-know presence in the San Diego bluegrass scene. Bill Frisbie was taken by brain cancer so fast that we are still reeling from his sudden loss. Bill was an outstanding guitar player and human being. He played in too many bands to recount, hosted the Thursday Night Pickers, and was a regular presence performing and jamming at Summergrass, Bluegrass Day at the Fair, and at SDBS and NCBFC events. He had a great smile and a kind word for everyone. He leaves a hole in our hearts, but we know he will not be forgotten. We send our support to his wife Gerri.


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