Cover Story

  • Clinton Davis: Living Tradition

    In our recent past, we had what some refer to as a folk revival. Musicians were turning off their amplifiers and reaching for their acoustic guitars. Mandolins and fiddles crept their way from the woodworks of bluegrass festivals into rock venues and were muscling out guitar solos and synthesizers on radio airwaves. Instruments like the […]

  • John Murray: Heart of a Young Lion

    I first heard the young bass virtuoso John Murray five years ago, when he was just 11 years old after fielding a phone call from his mentor, trumpet-master Gilbert Castellanos, who made the seemingly outlandish claim that he was “the next Scott LaFaro” (the legendary bassist for Bill Evans, who died in a car accident […]

  • Mara Kaye: Freedom to Be Fearless

    The blues flows through San Diego. It has for a long time. Sometimes it has been obvious, flowing on the surface, and other times it has tunneled underground from far, far away just to bubble up underneath our feet. But, improbable as it may sound, a continuous stream of one of the greatest branches of […]

  • Kindness, Love, & Understanding: Blue Largo’s Eric Lieberman & Alicia Aragon Sing Their Own Song

    If you’ve followed the music scene in Southern California anytime during the last 40 years, you already know the name Eric Lieberman. If not, you’d certainly know his bands: The King Biscuit Blues Band with Ken Schoppmeyer and Paul Cowie, Tuesdays at Winston’s in Ocean Beach with the Rhumboogies, or every Thursday at Croce’s with […]

  • In Service Through Music: ASTRA KELLY has found her calling

    On a moonlit strip of highway in Colorado, the van Astra Kelly was driving hit some black ice. She was finishing up a solo tour that had taken her around the country a few times. In almost two years, she’d logged 85,000 miles on the conversion van that skidded, rolled, and landed upside down on […]

  • Charlie Arbelaez: Making Music in the Pandemic

    I have a distinct memory of the first time I heard Charlie Arbelaez play the saxophone. I had been invited by a band member (bassist Antar Martin, I believe) to witness the debut performance of a new San Diego-based band, (Coast Bop) at the sadly moribund 98 Bottles at the north end of Little Italy. […]

  • That Blonde Bassist JULES WHELPTON: Homegrown Rocker is Made of Music

    She’s hard to miss. Platinum blonde hair and a presence that pleads for those watching to have fun, to jump around, to get lost in the music just like she does. When you catch Jules Whelpton live on stage or in any of her live music videos, or even just check out any photo of […]

  • Troubadour Online: The Quarantine Edition

    Greetings, Troubadour readers, friends, and supporters. With everything shut down for the time being, there is no print issue for the month of April—there aren’t any locations to deliver to, for one thing! And imagine an empty calendar page! We’re going to continue with this online version. We’ll bring you new articles and columns and […]

  • DAVE GLEASON: It’s All About the Music

    San Diego is well known for its rock and jazz scenes, but of late country music has also begun to receive a bigger share of the spotlight. While there have been plenty of great local musicians who play in the genre, it’s likely no coincidence that the current resurgence began right around the time guitarist […]