Bluegrass Corner
  • Dennis Caplinger: So Long, Old Friend

    San Diego has lost one of its bluegrass anchors. From Vista, California, Dennis Caplinger , who died last month at age 57, was a virtuoso and Grammy Award-winner. He began playing drums when he was just four years old and took up bluegrass music at the age of 12. A few years later as a […]

  • Sad News and Great News: The Yin and Yang of Bluegrass Music.

    The sad news is that Byron Berline, fiddler extraordinaire, and John Hickman, outstanding banjo player, have both passed away. Byron Berline died from a stroke at age 77 in July and John Hickman left us in May after a long illness. Byron and John were long-time compatriots, playing together in a number of great bands […]

  • Summergrass is Back! Save the Date: August 20-22.

    After suffering through the Covid shutdown, Summergrass, San Diego’s Premier Live Bluegrass Festival, is back! Headliners include top national talent: The Lonesome River Band, Special Consensus, Bluegrass Etc., High Fidelity, the Po Rambling Boys, and a covey of great local bands, including Virtual Strangers, Chris Cerna and Bluegrass Republic, Drought Tolerant Bluegrass, Bluegrass Brethren, and […]

  • San Diego Bluegrass Is Coming Back!

    Memorial Day saw a for-real live bluegrass concert at the Big Red Barn in Valley Center. Featuring top flight national band Nu Blu, the event was open to the public. Beyond that, Duck Foot Brewery has re-started its Sunday bluegrass jam sessions, our first campout has taken place, the Red Barn has more events booked […]

  • Getting Involved in Local Bluegrass

    Getting Involved in Local Bluegrass. The Covid shutdown is starting to lift for live music. Limited-attendance events are now allowed, and more restrictions are scheduled to lift in mid-June, absent some type of setback. The Summergrass Festival is on track for August 20-22 this year, and planning is beginning to restart local bluegrass events. Let’s […]

  • Summergrass Is Back!

    Summergrass is the premier Southern California bluegrass festival held every August since 2003—except of course last year, which was canceled due to covid. But, good news—Summergrass is on schedule for August 20-22 of 2021. The 2021 festival features the Lonesome River Band, Bluegrass, Etc., the ‘Po Ramblin’ Boys, and High Fidelity with more to be […]

  • Sympathy for the Music World

    We are coming up on a full year of dealing with Covid. Bands have been unable to perform live. Venues are shuttered. Agents, publicists, side players, music shops, instrument repair shops, music newspapers (including the Troubadour!) suffer, as do all those engaged in the music world for a livelihood. Here in San Diego’s bluegrass world […]

  • Tony Rice: An Appreciation

    Tony Rice died in December at the age of 69. He is considered by many to have been the greatest and most influential guitar player in bluegrass history. From his obituary in the New York Times: Mr. Rice left his mark on a host of prominent musicians, including his fellow newgrass innovators Mark O’Connor and […]

  • Happy Bluegrass New Year to All!

    2020 has been a tough year for everyone. In our bluegrass music world, festivals were canceled, jam sessions suspended, concerts foregone, and the economic fiber of the music world, including this newspaper, stretched terribly thin. There were some highlights though, reminding us of the positive camaraderie that can be built through music and of the […]