Report To Members: A Successful NCBS Year
This year, the NCBS Bluegrass On Broadway Festival enjoyed its best attendance, and included the popular Northern California Bluegrass Awards. The BOB’s NCBS International Bluegrass Music Museum Film Festival included 6 excellent films and a personal appearance by two Lousianna-based filmmakers.
The NCBS/SCBS Santa Cruz Bluegrass Fair, now 3 decades old, opened the summer festival season with great bands and a nice crowd. The former Brookdale Bluegrass Festival staged by Eric Burman and his crew is now the NCBS-sponsored Boulder Creek Bluegrass & Old Timey Festival and is held in March, July, and December each year.
The most enjoyable bluegrass weekend of the year is the NCBS Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival in August, a showcase of our California bluegrass talent, and a gathering of musical friends and family. The event finances the work of the Society throughout the year.
NCBS is a key sponsor of Jake’s Brown Barn Bluegrass Festival, which found new life this year after losing its original venue. The festival honoring California bluegrass pioneer Jake Quesenberry has moved one month later to the second weekend of October and 3 miles south to Gilroy.
The NCBS San Francisco Bluegrass & Old Time Festival has emerged as one of the nation’s best urban bluegrass festivals, with 10 days of concerts in San Francisco, Alameda, and Marin counties.
The NCBS also sponsored the Old Time Music Campout In The Country in Sebastopol and the PTA Palooza — a huge benefit concert for a local elementary school in Palo Alto. The NCBS-sponsored Johnson Farm Pickin’ Party with the Abbott and Johnson families is a glorious afternoon of music and friends in Boulder Creek.
The NCBS also sponsored and assisted with over a dozen other bluegrass concerts in Aromas, Berkeley, Mountain View, and Napa with another planned for San Francisco. NCBS also sponsored two bluegrass-related musicals at the Cinnabar Theater in Petaluma and the Paperwing Theater in Monterey. NCBS-sponsored jams are held throughout the Bay Area and Santa Cruz Area.
The NCBS Website has been substantially upgraded to provide complete information about the Society’s many projects and is updated daily. A new member e-newsletter, The NCBS Bluegrass News is now published each month, or more often if needed. The NCBS Facebook Page provides frequent updates about the organization’s activities and area bluegrass information. Bluegrass By The Bay magazine is available in both print and electronic delivery.
The NCBS National Stolen & Missing Instrument Page on the www.ncbs.us website is a free central-reporting location for theft victims and a service to potential buyers of used instruments. The NCBS offers free Consulting Services to area promoters and bands who need advice.
The NCBS Information Booth carries fliers for all area bluegrass events presented by any promoter or band. The booth was at approximately 35 events this year.
NCBS members continue to volunteer at the national level with the International Bluegrass Music Association, Leadership Bluegrass, and the International Bluegrass Music Museum.
The Society’s hard-working volunteers and members make it all possible! Thanks for your support!
– Michael Hall, Past President and Content Editor