Recordially, Lou Curtiss
  • A Letter from Woody Guthrie to Fred Scratcher (aka Fred Gerlach), part two

    Dearest Fred (continued), I guess I’m really trying to say that Leadbelly hated this brand and breed of a full-blooded imitator just about as bad as I’ve always hated them. My worst pain so far in my trip through this revoluting life-span of mine has been set off and caused by these armies of blind […]

  • A Letter from Woody Guthrie to Fred Scratcher (aka Fred Gerlach) with a comment or two from little Anny Guthrie

    Note: Fred Gerlach was one of the few 12-string guitar players who played in the Leadbelly style back in the day. Although he never met Leadbelly, he did live for many years with Leadbelly’s niece, Tiny, and was a part of People’s Songs. Gerlach ran regularly with Woody Guthrie, Cisco Houston, Pete Seeger, and all […]

  • Tales from My Dad

    My dad was 14 years old when he hopped the Great Northern Freight Train, determined to see the world and work his way doing it. In his 70 years he managed a good piece of things, met a lot of people, became a member of the board of the Hobos Union, joined a bunch of […]

  • A Bunch of Hard-to-Get Records

    TOMMY COLLINS: Tommy was one of the first Bakersfield Country Singers and songwriters but other than the Bear Family box set this is the first set of his to appear. Tommy always had good bands and his sides for Capitol featuring Tommy’s distinctive vocals accompanied by Buck Owens, Fuzzy Owens, and others. It includes his […]

  • Mary McCaslin

    We were putting on a Lightnin’ Hopkins concert at the Bifrost Bridge coffeehouse back in the late ’60s and needed an opening act. Conrad von Metzke who was really in charge of the thing got in touch with Ed Douglas at the Blue Guitar who recommended this young singer-songwriter named Mary McCaslin, whom he had […]

  • Reminiscing

    I used to stay in Chula Vista with my Grandmother in the summer months back in the 1950s and that’s where I got acquainted with the Maddox Brothers and Rose. They owned a club in National City (I think it was called Club Twenty-One). At any rate, they played there quite a bit. Now, I […]

  • Frank Stokes

    There was a Memphis area blues singer, one of my favorites, in the ’20s and ’30s, named Frank Stokes, who was one hell of a guitar picker and an exciting and original vocalist. He made several records on his own and worked with another guitarist named Dan Sane in a duet that they called the […]

  • Pickin’ Around

    Virginia and I kicked off the show at the reunion of the Heritage Coffeehouse last Saturday (Oct 14) and it got me to thinking about my early days in the San Diego scene. I started playing music on Dexter Sykes’ front porch in Imperial Beach. Mostly it was country music that we heard on XERB […]

  • Reunion at the Heritage

    The cinder block building that, 54 years or so ago, housed the Heritage coffeehouse, located at 3842 Mission Blvd. in Mission Beach, is having a reunion with a lot of the folks who used to play there (including myself) this month on October 14. The building now calls itself the Single Fin Surf Bar, but […]

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