Ramblin'

Let's Pick

When we talk about bluegrass to non-bluegrass people sometimes it can seem like we are in some kind of weird cult. We often tell them what a great community of people there is in bluegrass. As one friend put it, "it's like finding the fountain of youth." Relationships that we build within this musical community will no doubt last a lifetime. We have the ability to come together to play music. Whether you are evangelical Christian, Atheist, Dish Washer, Spiritual, Office Manager, Green, Transgender, Banjo player, Jewish....you get the point. It's about the music. It's about the relationships that we build together with the common bond of this music. Bluegrass music has surpassed generations of rock 'n roll, Elvis (whoever thought bluegrass could make it after Elvis?!), the 80's, Miley Cyrus naked on a big iron ball. There is something special about this music. And that is why we believe it is important our community is open minded, accepting, diverse and inclusive of everyone and anyone. 

If you believe that too, please take a moment to support #BluegrassPride, a float in this years SF Pride Parade. This will most definitely be the most widely viewed bluegrass performance in history. Check out the links below and consider donating to the float expenses. 

Bluegrass is for everyone. And we are with #BluegrassPride  

https://www.gofundme.com/BluegrassPride

This is also a good time to become a member of the California Bluegrass Association. Follow the link below to become a member. https://www.cbaweb.org/About/Join

 

 

Festival Season

For California bluegrassers, June is the month. Why? The Father's Day Bluegrass Festival held in Grass Valley. It's almost like the Mecca for bluegrass musicians. They come from all over California, from New Zealand, Colorado, Nashville. They come from everywhere. We've been going to this festival for years. We've "grown up" so to speak there. Some of the closest people that we have in our world, we've met there. Grass Valley is such a special place. Some of us have played with other bands at this festival, but as the Bow Ties we were chosen as one of the California Showcase bands. It's quite an honor, really. Sharing the stage with so many incredible and legendary acts from over the years. We played an evening set at the Pioneer Stage then for some ungodly reason, we had the morning opening set on the Main Stage Saturday morning. If you know anything about bluegrass festivals, you know that the *ahem* younger ones tend to stay up til weary hours of the morning pickin' bluegrass with our friends that we don't often get to see. Needless to say, we were a little worse for wear Saturday morning. But we got through it and the crowd was happy and we were happy to play music for them.

The following weekend we made an even farther trek out to Susanville, California. This high dessert community is all the way through and passed the Lassen Volcanic National Forest. What a beautiful, albeit long drive. We played two sets, opening the festival on Friday morning and then in the early afternoon Saturday. This is a great little festival. For those who don't like the crowds and dust of larger festivals, this is a great one to check out. There's a Super 8 motel right up the street with a pool. The warm weather plus the pool was a big bonus for our manager, Jessica. She was holding down the cannonball contests there with the younger kids. 

Festivals are an amazing way to stay connected with folks all over the country. Sometimes we only see them once a year. But it's amazing how much you can connect with people, even if it's for such a small period of time. For now, we are back on to our monthly gig at Amnesia in the Mission District of San Francisco. Check us out every second Monday of the month. Labor Day weekend we'll be traveling up to Boise, Idaho for their Hermit Music Festival. This should be a fun one. If you're up that way, come check it out! Hope to see and pick with you soon.

Sunny California Bluegrass

Summer is here and with it our incredibly warm and temperate weather. We sure are lucky to live in such a great place. Last weekend we were honored to play at the 41st Annual Father's Day Bluegrass Festival in Grass Valley. It was actually colder for a few days than it had been in probably 30 years. We talked with some of our friends who only wear flip flops the whole time, they actually had to go and buy socks. Which is great, because you know those festival feet get to looking' pretty gnarly after a while. :-) One night it rained for a little while and the smell of the damp earth summoned those nostalgic memories of summer campouts with the family as a kid. 

This weekend we are headed to Susanville for their bluegrass festival. Should be a good time. Susanville is out in Lassen County near Mt. Lassen, we're assuming. We are really looking forward to meeting more people and picking as much as possible.

We've got lots of new merchandise to unload too. Brand new hats, koozies, stickers. All kinds of good stuff. And of course if you can't make it this weekend, we have our monthly gig at Amnesia Music Hall in San Francisco every second Monday.

Happy New Year and all that

2015 went by in a flash! The Bow Ties want to send you and yours wishes of a great, prosperous and music filled 2016!! We are planning on doing some fun events and shows this year and hope that you will come with us! 

First thing you should know, we are moving our monthly Amnesia show to the Second Monday of the Month. The nights show is generally preceded by the Amnesia Pick an open bluegrass pick/jam. It's generally a nice crowd of experience and intermediate players but beginners are welcome too! On occasion we'll have an opening act, but most of the time it will be us from 9pm on ready to get off road! We have also politely withdrawn our Second Tuesday spot at the Hall on Market Street. This was a great gig, but very challenging for us to get to on time with our day jobs and all. But if you are ever in the neighborhood, you should check out the spot! They have mini-restaurants offering local specialties with a wine and beer bar. They often do fundraisers for local non-profits too, so they are supporting local groups which is always a great thing.

Not much else to report, except we are really excited to do some woodshedding this year and just have a good time with bluegrass. We are grateful for all of our friends and family that have supported us over the last year. And also thank you to all the kind folks that had us over to play their weddings, parties and other events. You are also keeping the gospel of bluegrass alive and well!! Here's to another great year!

Welcome to Winter

As we come closer to the end of the year we realized that it's been a little more than a year that we started the band. Maybe we need to have a 1 year anniversary party! Who's in?! There are so many things to be grateful this year. We succeeded in producing a seven track EP, recorded, mixed and mastered at Bird and Egg Studios with our good friend Nino Moschella. We played at one of our favorite bluegrass festivals, The Good Old Fashioned Festival with so many of our long time picking friends and mentors. We held down two monthly gigs at Amnesia and The Hall in SF. We played countless weddings and private parties. It seems bluegrass is on the up and up. And its thanks to the fans of American roots music who keep the music relevant to their lives and appreciate the simple, yet profound, aspects of bluegrass music. 

The new year has many great opportunities for us. We plan to do an American Northwest Tour hopefully sometime during summer or before. We couldn't be more excited and humbled to have been selected as one of the California Showcase bands for the 41st Annual CBA Father's Day Bluegrass Festival held in beautiful Grass Valley, California. If you are a picker or know anyone who likes bluegrass, this is the festival of the summer!! 

We look forward to another year of bringing you good, traditional bluegrass and hope to see you very soon. Check out our upcoming shows. January 2nd we'll be at the Fernwood in Big Sur, its a free show! Then we'll hit the hot springs after!! Book a room and make a weekend out of it!! The following Monday we will take the reins on the First Mondays at Amnesia for Bluegrass Monday. For those of you who know, the place was recently sold by our great comrade, Shawn Magee. The good folks at SF City Beer Store bought it and have just reopened after a short period of some much needed renovations. Come and celebrate life, love and bluegrass with us on January 4th. 

Thanks very much to all our fans, friends and families! See you soon!