This weekend. Bluegrass First Class in Asheville
Hadn't been before, anyone going or know much about it. They have a great lineup on friday and saturday...good jams?
Dang it. I'm stuck in Ohio.
We few, we happy few.
They have some large conference rooms open for jamming, though that doesn't seem to prevent the jam sessions in the hall, the stairwell etc. If nothing has changed in this regard, the fact that there's an open bar in the hotel leads to mixed sobriety among the listeners (and some jammers). We had one fellow who insisted on playing spoons along with the jam (nobody knew how many he'd had as he kept loosing is drink and going back for another). All in all though the jamming was quite good. The Ballroom has Ok sound (when I was there anyway it sort of depended on where you were sitting) but if you can get into the center it's quite good. I wish I could go, but too many of those job/kids/etc. issues to deal with.
2002 Prucha F5
2003 Gibson F5FB
2010 Stratocaster HSS
1965 Fender Telecaster
1962 Martin D18
I heard there might be a few Loars lurking the hallways this year. Should be interesting! The big show is not on the stage. Asheville is just full of top end pickers.
I'm too busy, and too broke to go this weekend, but I'm planning to visit Jack of the Wood's Thursday night jam this week. I wonder if there will be any "cross pollination". I guess I'll find out.
I'll be there doing double duty playing banjo with Travers Chandler and Avery County and with Ken Scoggins and Miller's Creek. Come by and say hello.
I won't be there, but I will say that I really loved Asheville...despite the whirlwind speed of my visit (to see one of the last Nickel Creek shows, when they had Bela Fleck as a guest). Great food, some talented buskers, and just a charming place in general. It is however a very long drive from Washington, DC. The last hour or so of that drive is exceptionally beautiful, but I don't think I have the will to do it again if I'm not going to stay longer than a weekend. Looks like a cool event though.
There is almost no jamming at this festival. If you want to jam this place is not for you.
Hey Now! BaBa Booey!
I hit a festival every weekend of the year, and I can tell you the last two years I have not been happy with the jamming at this event. Where were you picking at cause I missed it both years I have attenend. Now... the bands are great and its a killer lineup for pro bands. If you want to see a good stage show then go, however the jamming for me lacks.
Hey Now! BaBa Booey!
I can attest to the jamming this year. It's going to be powerful. It happens all around the hotel nowhere near the show part. Maybe you just hung out at the wrong place.
Well, I'm back from the First Class and my fingers are still sore from all that hot pickin. I found it going on in the hallways, private meeting rooms, big party rooms,and just plain sleeping rooms. There was the ring of banjos, the bark of mandolins and the punch of guitars all over that grand hotel. It was Bluegrass First Class. One of the best groups there this year was the Dry Branch band.
Brian Alridge is no slouch on the mandolin. Got into a Monroe jam with him and Evan Riley that I'm sure was being looked down upon by Big Mon from above. We were doing tunes even Monroe wouldn't do live on stage. Then we got up with AL Wood for some pre-1960 Monroe duets. Old AL can still cut the Monroe tenors and a really fine Monroe style banjo. His son on the guitar was just amazing. Everywhere I turned there were pickers. Constant band lineups at the pit area in the lobby that was free to the public. Vendors displaying their wares all over. I saw Loars all over that place. Even a Dude showed up. One little kid had a Doyle Lawson Gibson model that was peeling the drapes off the wall. Someone had a really nice "fake"Loar made by Hutto. What a great place to get away from the winter time blues. Milton Harkey did it again.
I had a great time on Thursday at Mrs. Hyatt's. You and Evan are sure STRONG pickers! Next time I might even be brave enough to take my mandolin out of its case. I felt a whole lot safer behind a 6-string, being a 1st timer there and all. We'll be back for sure. The Oprahouse is my kind of scene.
Didn't make it into town today, though. Too much to do around the homestead. Three years of neglected growth is tough to knock back. If I start right now, I might just get a handle on it ... in a few years.
Did that new KM1000 hang in the jams?
The Kentucky KM-995 Earl Scruggs model shyed away from the rule of Loar-dom. But it was a decent example of current Chinese production. It had the new Louise Scruggs version of the flowerpot, tho. I couldn't see if Earl had signed the label, tho. Sure had his truss-rod cover.
Now, as far as the show goes, the hotel was packed!!
I cannot comment on the shows; slug that I am, I only picked!
But the turnout was certainly good and I saw lots of great picking and saw lots of my local buds. Lots of good music!
Sho would like to go but I'm broke!
The show part was long sold out. This is a local happening event that gets many bluegrass fans to pay the $50 a day and it only holds 800 people. So the other 800 people were just there to pick. So even if Evan and I wanted to see the show we couldn't. But to us the show was not on the stage but the picking going on outside the stage.
I'd bet there's no signature on that Earl Scruggs 955 because it's the Prototype. I'd guess that they are still trying to decide on the spec's. Does Earl really want to go with the non-traditional "speed neck" and scooped extension?
Earl was always ahead of his time on getting speed on the neck. He wanted the scooped extension because he knew how bad Curly sounded with his pick click in the Foggy Mtn. Boys. That's why Curly seldom if ever took a break.
The hard part was wanting a finish like Bill's original Loar and silver plated parts.
Oh, it was Curly Seckler's pick click Earl was worried about?! Here I thought that Earl, himself, was having trouble with his old National finger picks clicking on the extension.
So, when is this Earl Scruggs KM955 due out on the market?