Old Time Music SPRING SITUATION
May 11 & 12, 2012
NIGHT May 11 - SQUARE
DANCE at ASHKENAZ -- feauring the Earl White Stringband and caller Masha Goodman Crawford. A
fiddle-and-banjo band pumping out music that
makes you want to get up and dance, and a
caller who love to introduce
uninitiated to the fun of a square dance party, with the emphasis on
No dancing experience is needed, the callers will teach all dances from
and will call the moves all the way through. No need to bring a
although you can if you
want. And same sex partners fit in fine. All
welcome. Doors open at 7:30 and the dance will start at 8:00. Ashkenaz
is located at 1317 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley -- just south of
Gilman Street. Free parking across the street in the REI
lot. Beer, wine, soft drinks and snacks are available for
Masha Goodman Crawford learned to play banjo, tinwhistle, and buckdance
back in the late 70's. She became the main caller for the Chicago Barn Dance Company,
teaching clogging, calling dances, and performing with a wonderful bunch of musicians
including Mark Gunther, Mark Ritchie, Fred Feild, Brad Leftwich, John Lilly, Steve Rosen,
Lynn "Chirps" Smith and others. She performed, called dances, and taught at the Chicago Folk Festival,
Old Town School of Folk Music, Wheatlands Folk Festival, Holstein's, and loads more that
she can't remember. Moving to England and Ireland in the 80's, she performed at the Eastbourne Folk Festival,
Cheddar Folk Festival, the Dun Laoghaire Fraochan Festival with Dublin band
Fire Hose Reel, and at similar venues across Europe. She moved to
California 'round about '96, where she performs in the "Winter
Night's Yeow" tour, the Strawberry Music Festival, and as a
frequent guest artist with Faux Renwahs.
Earl White has been a prominent figure in the old-time music and dance community for more than 30 years. An original and founding member of the famed Greengrass Cloggers, he has danced to many of the fiddling legends, including Tommy Jarrell, the Highwoods Stringband, Plankroad Stringband, The Red Clay Ramblers, and the Hot Mud Family, to name a few. Earl White received his first fiddle in 1974 and is one of few Black Americans reviving the music that was once an important part of rural black communities and life on plantations in the American southeast. Earl is known for his extensive repertoire of unusual tunes, and his driving, energetic, heartfelt style. Joining Earl will be Maxine Gerber, Adrienne Davis, and Allegra Yellin.
For those who want a break from dancing, join the jam session in the back studio, open to all comers.
SATURDAY May 12 -- FREE EVENTS at the Freight -- here's the SCHEDULE (subject to change; updated 5/4/12)
In the LOBBY:
will be jamming in the lobby, beginning with the OPEN BAND for the family dance, as well as nooks and crannies upstairs,
and outside if the weather cooperates.
to 1:00pm: FAMILY DANCE with caller Erik Hoffman and OPEN BAND (this means YOU!) led by Geff & Masha Crawford in the lobby --
all ages welcome! Dances will be geared towards families and kids,
with some that even a babe in arms can do! You don't need to bring a
partner, and no previous experience
is necessary, Erik will teach all the moves. And when you're worn
out from dancing, pick up an instrument and join in the open band!
Stewart Port, luthier and instigator of the Tin Can Banjo
Project, will be leading a "Build An Instrument" workshop for kids
and families in the lobby - bring your own tin can! See pictures from last year here.
|12:10-12:30 pm: The Ragtime Skedaddlers
(Dave Krinkel, Nick Robinson and Dennis Pash) explore the long
tradition of ragtime music played on stringed instruments, with twin
mandolin rags, cakewalks, two-steps, marches and waltzes from late 19th
and early 20th century America. Their initial CD
has received praise and rave reviews from ragtime and jazz afficianados
as well as lovers of string band music, and they will be debuting their
new CD Mandolins at the Cake Walk.
|12:40pm-1pm: Black Crown Trio
combine the best elements of old-time stringband music and Bill
Monroe's "high lonesome" sound to create a unique fusion that is at
once old-school and brand spanking new. John McKelvy made his debut to
bluegrass & old time fans as the high lonesome vocalist, guitarist
and songwriter for the hillbilly gothic pioneers, The Earl
Brothers. Matt Knoth, hails from San Jose, CA where he grew up
listening and playing bluegrass and old-time music with his father, Al.
In addition to the 5 string banjo, Knoth is a well respected
flatpicking guitarist and founding member of the rocking old-time
group, The Mercury Dimes. Elise Engelberg, a Kentucky native, got her
start in music as a classical violinist. After moving to California,
she rediscovered her bluegrass roots and began learning to play the
fiddle. Since then, she has became a sought after fiddler in the Bay
Area old time scene. Elise has recorded with the Crooked Jades, The
Mercury Dimes and has toured with the Stairwell Sisters.
|1:10pm-1:30pm: Dianne Ferlatte
& Erik Pearson - stories for
all children. Diane Ferlatte is a nationally-aclaimed storyteller whose
repertoire includes fables, folktales, legends, ghost tales, historical
tales, and contemporary and personal stories. Ferlatte sees herself as
a preserver of the oral tradition, folk history, culture, and
values. She received The National Storytelling Network's Oracle
2002 Circle of Excellence Award and The National Association of Black
Storytellers Zora Neale Hurston Award. Her storytelling CD Wickety
Whack—Brer Rabbit is Back was a 2008 Grammy Award nominee for
Children's Spoken Word. Erik Pearson, who has performed and recorded
with the Crooked Jades and numerous other bands, accompanies Diane on
banjo and guitar.
1:40pm-2:00pm: The Drifter Sisters - The Drifter Sisters are Berkeley-bred beauties Robin Fischer (red-hot fiddle stylings) and Allegra Thompson (classic country crooning). You can usually find them playing Blue Honky Time tunes while nestled between flower-sellers at the Farmers' Markets.
|2:10pm-2:30pm: Laura Lind
has a powerful unique voice and an extensive repertoire of traditional
historic songs and fiddle tunes, and is a prolific and published song
writer. She rocks and sings the blues. In 2007 her lead-picking on
Autoharp won 1st place in the miscellaneous category
at the Fiddle & Bango (sic) Contest, Columbia, California, . She
was voted first place three-years-in-a-row in a vocal duet as "People's
Choice for Outstanding Performance on the Open Stage" at the Mt. Laurel
Autoharp Gathering in Pennsylvania (1998-2000). Her duet album, "Wild Birds" received airplay in 17 countries, and the West County Professional Tea Sippers debut studio CD "The Kettle Is On" received an award for the Best Old-timey CD of 2010 from the National Traditional Country Music Association.
|2:40pm-3pm: The Rhythm Rangellers are a family band that plays a wide variety of music. Paul Rangell and Emily Abbink were original members of Bayo Seco and most recently have been appearing weekly in Santa Cruz performing Italian, Mexican, and Puerto Rican music on mandolin and guitar. With their sons Ben and Rafael, they have appeared regularly at the BOTMC string band contest - see a video here.|
| 3:10pm-3:30pm: Alex Sharps first appeared on the Freight stage two years ago at the 2010 Spring Fling. He has continued to grow as a musician, most recently playing with Them Boys,
the Bay Area's exciting new youth acoustic quartet (average age is
16.25). Today Alex will be doing a solo set featuring his stellar
fiddle and banjo playing.
TWICE AS NICE - Mark Olson and Penelope "Penny" Critchlow: Singing and playing in the tradition of recordings by the Carter Family, early Country and Bluegrass music, String Bands, and the cherished harmony duets of the Delmore Brothers and the Louvin Brothers among others.
Fiddle: Earl White
Harmony Singing: Penny Critchlow and Mark Olson
Autoharp: Laura Lind
Old Time and Rag Time: A Listening Session on Shared Tunes - Nick Robinson & David Brown
Old Time Mandolin: Eric Thompson
Stringband Blues: Suzy Thompson
Beginning Fiddle: Eric Hoffman
Banjo: Ben Sigelman
Mountain Dulcimer: DJ Hamouris
Guitar: Karen Celia Heil - Fiddle tune backup, intermediate level: for those who know and can play basic chords and a few bass runs. More advanced players might pick up some tips as well!
Hambone: Eric Hoffman
wait, there's more - Alan Jabbour and Ken Perlman will be in town doing
house concerts, dances, and workshops around the Bay Area. Check
out their schedule at http://www.alanjabbour.com/schedule.html.