Mar 7 2015

10th Ever L.A. Old Time Social Friday Night Concert!

Fri. 5/15, 8pm, $20:**

The Velaslavasay Panorama, 1122 West 24th St., 90007

The Happy Neighbor Club (House band for the night)

The Gallus Brothers

Beverly Smith & John Grimm

Riley Baugus, Sabra Guzman, Trevor & Travis Stuart

**Pre-sale tix available HERE & NOW!!!


The Gallus Brothers:


The Gallus Brothers sound like a record collection found in the basement of a retired acrobat with a penchant for good old fashioned blues. Devin Champlin savagely syncopates on a reso-phonic guitar, while Lucas Hicks amps it up by playing percussion on a suitcase full of bones, bells and antique tomfoolery. Both are talented multi-instrumentalists and their sets are a mix of country blues, old tin pan alley songs, mandolin and fiddle tunes, and a dash of danger by way of acrobatic antics. They have played across the US and Canada from festival stage to smoky bar, wooing crowds with their fun music, their good humor, and their willingness to jump on a table, stand on each other, and juggle while playing a good old tune from way back when.


Beverly Smith & John Grimm:


John Grimm and Beverly Smith live in the mountains of North Georgia in the beautiful little town of Dahlonega, in Lumpkin County. For the past 25 years, John has owned and operated the towns music store, Vintage Music, while Beverly toured the world in various band configurations. Since 2010 John and Beverly have been performing together at festivals, concerts, workshops and dances across the country and abroad. Their performances feature traditional country duets, fiddle tunes and originals.   They choose their songs well;  their traditional songs and tunes reveal a deep familiarity with and great love for the genre. From archaic banjo and haunting fiddle tunes to raucous hillbilly singing and aching ballads they display an ease that sounds nothing but genuine.

John Grimm is an award winning fiddler and multi-instrumentalist who has played with many old time bands such as The Georgia Mudcats, The Georgia Potlickers, and Rural Radio Company. He was a recent recipient of the Dr. Gene Wiggins Award in recognition of long and significant contributions to traditional music in N. Georgia. Dr. Wiggins was the author of the book “Fiddling Georgia Crazy” the definitive book on fiddler John Carson. John played the role of John Carson in the PBS film “The People vs. Leo Frank” and has appeared in the Atlanta production of “The Cotton Patch Gospel”. In addition to his old time performances he teaches fiddle with the highly successful “Pick & Bow” after school program, and has played with The Indigo Girls, Jonathan Byrd, Shawn Mullins, Rising Appalachia, The Little Country Giants, Pauline Scanlon and others.

One of the most respected guitar players in old time music today, Beverly Smith is also in demand as a singer, fiddler, and dance caller. Besides her three highly praised recordings of early country duets with mandolinist Carl Jones, her guitar playing has been featured on recordings of fiddlers Bruce Molsky, Rafe Stefanini, Tara Nevins and Brad Leftwich, and her singing with Mick Moloney, John Doyle, Laurie Lewis and others.  Along with June Drucker, Rose Sinclair and Tara Nevins, she was a founding member of The Heartbeats Rhythm Quartet.   She has taught guitar, fiddle and dance at music camps including Ashokan Southern Week, Augusta Heritage, Swannanoa Gathering, Blue Ridge Old-Time Music Week, Festival of American Fiddle Tunes and Summer Acoustic Music Week as well as Sore Fingers UK; Haapavesi, Finland; and La Fuente del Musica in Spain.  She has been a featured guest on A Prairie Home Companion, ETown, Mountain Stage and Voice of America, has toured extensively in both the US and the UK, and has played concert halls and festivals all over Europe, Canada and the US. Her guitar playing was featured in the October 2000 issue of Acoustic Guitar Magazine. Besides her duo with John Grimm, Beverly currently plays and tours with Alice Gerrard, the indisputable Queen of Old Time Music.


Riley Baugus, Sabra Guzman, Trevor & Travis Stuart:



Riley Baugus represents the best of old time American banjo and song. His powerful singing voice and his expert musicianship place him squarely in the next generation of the quality American roots tradition. Riley first came to music through his family. His father had a love of old time music which touched the young Riley on a molecular level. His family’s attendance at Regular Baptist church gave him early exposure to the unaccompanied singing that is a time-honored tradition for ballad singers throughout the Appalachians. Starting on the fiddle, Riley quickly moved on to the banjo, building his first instrument from scrap wood with his father. With a friend, Riley visited elder traditional musicians throughout North Carolina and Virginia. When not teaching or building banjos, Riley can be found out on the road performing.  He plays with the Dirk Powell Band and with Kirk Sutphin. He is a frequent guest of Polecat Creek and of Tim O’Brien with Dirk Powell. With Ira Bernstein, he presents the show “Appalachian Roots”, a unique showcase of Appalachian music and dance. Riley makes his home near Winston-Salem, North Carolina.


Sabra Guzmán has been a part of Virginia since 2007, where she’s become a fully entrenched member of the burgeoning old-time & country music scene of the Appalachians and beyond. A founding member of the award winning old-time bands Old Sledge and Old Buck, Sabra is well known for her solid guitar & bass skills, her unique vocal stylings, and her captivating stage presence. She has been seen at many prestigious venues & festivals – Freight & Salvage, Pickathon, Blackpot, Club Passim, The Los Angeles Old Time Social, The Ark, Floydfest, Bristol Rhythm and Roots – and received a coveted first place Traditional Old Time band at the Clifftop Appalachian Stringband Festival. Sabra brings a musicianship and her unique approach to all projects, regardless of genre or instrumentation.


The Stuart Brothers are world renown for their masterful performances of Appalachian fiddle and banjo duets. Trevor and Travis were born and raised in Bethel , a rural farming community in Haywood County, NC — an area of magical beauty where the Blue Ridge and Great Smoky Mountains meet and once the ancient Cherokee settlement of Sonoma. These majestic ranges surrounded the young brothers with the rich musical and cultural environment of Appalachian fiddle tunes, Baptist spirituals, banjo pickers, all night square dance shindigs and poetic tale weavers.

With deep family musical roots, their great grandfather was the legendary fiddler Rev. Henry King, and great uncle the banjoist and singer Austin Stamey. The brothers learned some of the oldest regional fiddle and banjo styles from masters such as the Smathers Family, Byard Ray, Oscar “Red” Wilson, Gordon Freeman, and the Sutton family. They formed their first band in junior high and played for local clogging teams, local functions and fiddlers conventions. Since then they have toured extensively throughout the US and several foreign countries, teaching and performing at major festivals and music camps.


The Happy Neighbor Club:


The Happy Neighbor Club loves getting together to explore old-time string band traditions from obscure corners of the globe. The members, all from the greater Los Angeles area, have been playing music since the 1960s in various configurations, but met a dozen years ago upon discovering a shared love of early 20th century dance tunes played on fiddle, mandolin, accordion, guitar, cello, and bass. Expect to hear an exotic mix of Mexican paso dobles, Hawaiian marches, Italian polkas, Texas rags, Puerto Rican mazurkas, and even a Finnish hummpa.

Mar 7 2015

10th Ever L.A. Old Time Social Kick Off Party!

Thurs. 5/14, 7pm, $5, 21+

El Cid, 4212 W. Sunset Blvd, 90029

  • Sausage Grinder
  • Tom Sauber & Tom Carter (UT)
  • Joe Sands Fontenot Cajun Creole Band

Sausage Grinder:

Sausage Grinder

Sausage Grinder, Los Angeles’ all-natural hillbilly and country blues band, combines the traditional sounds of fiddle and banjo breakdowns with the low-down sound of country blues, topped off with a touch of ragtime and hillbilly jazz. The versatile acoustic ensemble features fiddle, banjo, guitar, mandolin, jug, washboard, and a few odds and ends.

Sausage Grinder was formed in 2008 out of a desire to play this classic music “right” without being slavish imitators or academic lecturers. As old-time and blues fiddler Adam Tanner puts it, Sausage Grinder’s “reverence to the old 78s hasn’t restrained them from exploring even grimier nooks and crannies … unrestrained and impolite the Grinder’s performances are visceral and joyous — a blast from the past with a nod to the immediacy of the future!” Or as LA Weekly says succinctly, the band’s performance feels “reminiscent of an old Mickey Mouse cartoon.”


Tom Sauber & Tom Carter:

Tom & Tom

Tom Sauber and Tom Carter have been playing old-time southern fiddle and banjo together since the early 1970s. Both first learned from the New Lost City Ramblers, but each in their own way pushed further into the music. Sauber grew up and lives in Los Angeles. In addition to playing in numerous bluegrass and old-time bands–current bands include Loafer’s Glory with Herb Pedersen and his son, Patrick, and Tom, Brad, and Alice, with Brad Leftwich and Alice Gerrard–he received a MA in folklore from ULCA where he researched and recorded the fiddle and banjo music of southern transplants like Earl Collins and Eddie Lowe. Tom is an excellent fiddler and singer, and teams here with his banjo playing friend, Tom Carter. Carter took more of an academic route through the music. After leaving his native Salt Lake City for college in the East, he ended up studying the traditional string band music of the southern Blue Ridge while a graduate student in folklore, first at the University of North Carolina and then Indiana University. While in North Carolina, he played banjo and recorded with the Fuzzy Mountain String Band, as well as producing a number of LPs that introduced everyone to the music of Emmett Lundy, Luther Davis, and JW Spangler. Carter now lives back in Salt Lake City, but the two Toms get together and make music whenever possible.


Joe Sands Fontenot Cajun Creole Band:

Joe Sands Fontenot Cajun Creole Band

No catchphrases…..just the real deal. The Fontenot Cajun Creole Band plays for the love of traditional styles of the music of our culture. The group has sprung up from get togethers in Mr Joe’s back room over strong coffee, laughs , and pots simmering on the stove. We play because we love the music and our culture.

Many Louisiana creoles came to the west coast for work after the war and formed communities in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

Mr Joe “Sands” Fontenot, on accordion, was born outside of Mamou and raised in L’Anse Grise, Louisiana and moved to Los Angeles seeking work. He brought his music with him like many creoles. In the tradition of Danny Poullard in the bay area and Joe Simien in Los Angeles, Mr Joe carries on the tradition of practicing and keeping the culture alive by playing and extending the music to those that come and sit with him in that practice room at the back of the house. Just like those before him it is all about the feel of the music and passing it on by ear. He will be the last to tell you but his relations are strong in the french creole music tradition as his cousins continue to play on stages and festivals back home.

Guy Martin, on fiddle, was born in New Orleans to a creole mother who spoke french first. He spent time in his early years listening to his Avoyelles Parish born creole grandfather play the fiddle as well as learning Louisiana French from his family. In college he was fortunate to have his ears seasoned on the live playing of Dewey Balfa as well as Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys while working at Mulatte’s cajun restaurant. He feels lucky to continue playing tunes under the guidance of Mr. Joe.

Carolyn Russel brings her depth of experience and feel of playing with Wilfred Latour and Joe Simien internationally.  She was instrumental in bringing much of cajun and creole music to Southern California.


Feb 10 2015

Save The Date: 10th Ever Social!


Click on the postcard for link to info

(final details being fleshed out now)

Feb 10 2015

9th Ever LAOTS


Poster illustration and design by Nick Bachman


This year is the 9th Ever Los Angeles Old-Time Social!

May 15, 16, 17  will see concerts, workshops, parties, jams and a big square dance!  May 18th is the Topanga Banjo and Fiddle Contest to top off the weekend!   Full day by day calendar and details below.  If you need more info, email

Thurs. 5/15, 8pm, $5 – $10 donation:  Kick Off Party!

1642, 1642 Temple Ave., 90026

  • The L.A. Bluegrass Hoppers
  • White Chocolate Drops
  • Smoggy Mountain Stringband

Full Kick Off details and band bios HERE!!


Fri. 5/16, 8pm:  Concert!**

The Velaslavasay Panorama, 1122 West 24th St., 90007

**Pre-sale tix available NOW>>>

Full Concert details and band bios HERE!


Sat. 5/17, 12-11pm, Workshops & Square Dance!

$20 for the day (workshops included) or $10 for the Dance only.
American Legion Post 206, 227 North Avenue 55,  90042

Square Dance  |   Family Dance  |  Cakewalk:
Family Dance & Cake Walk – 6:30,  Square Dance 8pm

Cake Walk Cake Baking Sign Up & Info HERE:
Contact Katy

•  Callers:

•  Bands:

  • Hollywood Boll Weevils
  • The Turpentine Rug Stompers
  • Brian Vollmer & Ben Townsend
  • Spencer & Rains

For caller and band bios go HERE!

Worskshops 12 – 6pm!

  • Fiddle Chording or How to Play Tunes You’ve Never Heard with Tricia Spencer & Howard Rains
  • Ben Townsend: Clawhammer Banjo
  • David Bragger: Old Time West Virginia/Kentucky Fiddle
  • Chris Berry: Carter Family Guitar
  • Paul Rangell: Mandolin
  • Rebecca Stout: Clogging/Buck Dancing for Families/Kids
  • Ruth Alpert: Clogging/Flatfooting
  • Susan Michaels: Square Dance Calling

FULL Description, Times & Sign-up HERE!

Apr 23 2014

9th Ever Los Angeles Old Time Social :: Press Release!


Apr 2 2014

2014 L.A. Old Time Social – Workshops!

All day from 12pm  – 6pm.

American Legion Hall Post 206, 227 N. Ave. 55, Los Angeles, CA 90042
$20 for the day.
Please email davidbragger [at] for registration and questions.


12:00 – 1:00 Clawhammer Banjo From the Ground Up with Steve Lewis
Learn the basics of this popular banjo style and put them to use on a couple of great tunes! No experience necessary. Bring your banjo and start having fun!

Steve Lewis discovered the banjo and old-time music the same year he began his teaching career. Since that time he has been a regular performer, instructor, workshop leader and contestant at festivals and fiddler¹s conventions from San Diego to San Francisco. Steve began playing for contradances in 1989. He currently produces and plays for the 4th Saturday dance in South Pasadena. He also leads the 1st-Sunday Oldtime Jam at the Viva Fresh restaurant in Burbank (11:00 – 2:00 pm). Although he plays in several local bands, makes banjos in his ³spare time² and does little else, Steve denies any banjo obsession.

•  1:00 – 2:00 — Fiddle & Banjo Duets Workshop with Brian Vollmer & Ben Townsend
Brian Vollmer & Ben Townsend present mountain styles of playing fiddle & banjo. The workshop will examine fiddle tunes with banjo accompaniment.
Ben Townsend, of Romney, WV was introduced to the world of old-time music by Paul Roomsburg of Hampshire County West Virginia. Since learning the basics, he has studied with Riley Baugus, Ron Mullennax and Paul Brown. He was awarded a Scholarship from the Augusta Heritage Center to further his studies on the fiddle with Dave Bing of Roane County WV. As a member of both The Fox Hunt and Old Sledge, Ben has traveled across the country and around the world spreading his take on West Virginia old-time music and has shared the stage with acts varying from Ralph Stanley to the Henry Girls of County Donegal Ireland to the Taiko drummers of Yamagata Prefecture, Japan.

Brian’s musical background started with his family. Born into parents who loved, listened and played Bluegrass and Old-Timey music, he went everywhere from festivals, shows, and “pickin’ parties” with them as a toddler, a youth, and eventually he picked up a banjo and started to perform in his father’s Bluegrass band (on the side of his punk band) when he was 14. His early banjo work (both 3-Finger and Clawhammer) was based on a week long study with extraordinary banjoists Reed Martin and Bill Keith at the same music camp. He practiced all the time back at his parent’s home in the thick woods off the Patuxent River in Howard County near Skaggsville, MD in a community known as Holiday Hills…

• 2:00 – 3:00 — Fiddle Chording or, How to Play Tunes You’ve Never Heard with Tricia Spencer & Howard Rains
Tricia Spencer will teach her technique for chording fiddle tunes, an ideal method for learning tunes on the fly. Fiddle chording also allows a fiddler to focus on bowing rather than those pesky notes and opens up a new way to play old time music in jam settings. Howard Rains will provide guitar accompaniment and humorous commentary.

Spencer & Rains play old time fiddle tunes and sing old songs in the style of their home states while also exploring other American regional styles of fiddling. Both multi-instrumentalists deeply absorbed in traditional music, Howard and Tricia preserve, present, and teach old time music while at the same time making it their own. Not only do they love to play dances, festivals, and house concerts, Spencer & Rains are highly sought after as instructors and  love to teach old time music at camps, workshops, and private lessons. Have a look and a listen and enjoy!

• 3:00 – 4:00 — Old Time Crooked Fiddle Tunes and Bowing with David Bragger
This workshop is for all levels! The objective is to get the fiddler playing some incredible, crooked tunes that will rock any jam session. I’ll be drawing from a vast repertoire of Kentucky and West Virginia fiddle tunes that are crooked, rhythmic and easy to grasp. As always, my workshops emphasize the key ingredient to old time fiddle: bowing!! All workshop attendees will receive audio files of the tunes with phrase by phrase instruction. Please email for registration and questions.

David Bragger plays banjo, fiddle and mandolin in the old-time stringboard Sausage Grinder and in several local dance bands. David teaches old-time fiddle, banjo and mandolin to students of all ages and levels. He is also the host of the Old Time Tiki Parlour which showcases concerts and workshops by the best old time musicians alive, including Kirk Sutphin, Dan Gellert, Bruce Molsky, Bob Carlin, Bertram Levy, etc. His students have won awards at festivals from Topanga Fiddle Banjo Festival to Galax, Virginia.  Most importantly, he shows you how to have a foot-stomping ruckus of a good time!

4:00 – 5:00 — Italian and Mexican Mandolin Styles with Paul Rangell
Paul Rangell will introduce a selection of Italian and Mexican tunes on mandolin. Emphasis will be on learning the simple melodic lines, then gaining strength with support from adjacent strings and chords. Guitarists are encouraged to join this workshop too, as we will cover the guitar chord back-up through the nimble fingers and delightful rhythm guitar playing of Emily Abbink.

Paul Rangell has been playing guitar and pursuing traditional music since a boy in the 1960s. He plays guitar in several bands, focussing on rhythmic accompaniment to fiddle music of many lands.  He also plays mandolin, violin, tenor banjo and guitarron in various configurations. Locally, you can hear him every Sunday morning at the Buttery Cafe with his family band, The Rhythm Rangellers, with The Percolators, with Adam Rose, and with Irene Herrmann in groups that specialize in selective instrumental repertoire. He is a regular at the Farmer’s Markets and plays Italian and Mexican mandolin tunes every Tuesday night at La Posta (Seabright) with his wife, Emily Abbink. He loves old-time American songs, Brother Duets, early country, Western Swing, and classic Mexican songs. He has taught many summers at The Festival of American Fiddle Tunes (Port Townsend, WA)  and Lark in the Morning (Mendocino, CA) as well as private lessons for several years on guitar, mandolin and fiddle.

• 5:00 – 6:00 — Carter Family Guitar with Chris Berry
Mother Maybelle Carter was one of the most influential old-time and early country guitar players. We’ll start with the “Carter Scratch” and move on to a few classic Carter Family songs and some techniques for picking up tunes on your own. Audio and video recorders welcome and encouraged. Bring a thumb pick and/or flat pick; I’ll be teaching Maybelle’s thumb-and-finger style but the technique is easily adaptable to flatpicking. (Beginners: if you can play a song in C or G then you know enough to get something out of this workshop.)

Chris Berry, a native of Long Beach, California, has been playing country blues and old-time country music on guitar and banjo for over 20 years. He learned many tunes from the late legendary Illinois/Southern California fiddler Mel Durham and plays banjo on his CD “Skillet Fork.” He has taught and played at many Los Angeles-area festivals including the California Traditional Music Society’s Summer Solstice and Equinox Festivals, the Topanga Banjo and Fiddle Contest, and the Goleta Old-Time Fiddlers Convention. When Chris isn’t busy playing old music, watching ’60s British television or ’70s American game shows, he works as an editor and web designer.


1:00 – 2:00 — Flatfooting with Ruth Alpert
Flatfooting is the traditional, solo percussive foot dance that goes along with Southern Appalachian Mountain Music.  Your feet are a rhythm instrument, keeping the beat for the musicians with much room for personal expression and style.  No previous dance experience is necessary.  It’s easy and fun and very aerobic!  We’ll start with basics, and add on for those who would like more complexity.

Please bring shoes that can slide, but that you won’t slide out of…. leather soles with a chunky heel, or worn out sneakers, etc.  Cowboy boots or shoes with a narrow heel might thrust your weight too far forward onto the ball of your foot.  If in doubt, bring a selection and see which work best!

Ruth Alpert has been flatfooting for 37 years.  She has taught workshops, danced with old-time Appalachian string bands, busked (street performed) in various cities in at least 6 states.   She currently is the percussion section of The Honeysuckle Possums, a local Santa Barbara all female Americana band.  

2:00 – 4:00 — How to Call a Square Dance with Susan Michaels
Learn how to call squares for your friends and family.  Beginners welcome.  Or just show up and get your dancing shoes on.

Susan Michaels is a teacher and a caller of traditional American dancing, especially contra dancing and square dancing. She has called and taught dances at local evenings, weekend workshops, week-long elementary school programs, week-long family camps and dance weekends throughout the U.S. and Canada.

• 4:00 – 5:00 — Flatfooting 101 with Rebecca Stout
Straight from the mountains of Appalachia this beginner friendly class introduces the student to the funny stories, history, culture, styles, steps and all-out fun of Appalachian percussive step dance. There will be demonstrations, practice sessions, questions, and music for all to enjoy. No partner or dance experience necessary! The student learns the Soldier’s March, Jimmy, Mitchell, Bowman, Leaf Shuffle, Zig Zags, Chugs, Nashville, Coleman and Buck Step and more. 2hrs.

While no special shoes are required, Rebecca recommends a shoe with a hard, slick sole, such as a man’s business shoe, penny-loafers, cowboy boots, granny-boots, oxfords or simple slippers. Flip-flops, sandals and crocs are not recommended.

Rebecca began clogging as a child in Cordele, Georgia, as part of the precision dance team The Dixieland Cloggers. She went on to spend the next three decades developing and fine-tuning her unique “Tennessee Shuffle” style of free-form flatfoot, inspired by friends, relations, masters and mentors throughout Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky and West Virginia. Today, Rebecca teaches traditional Appalachian Flatfoot  focusing on dance as a percussive instrument.

Please email davidbragger [at] for registration and questions.

Mar 31 2014

9th Ever LAOTS Cakewalk!

cakewalkphotographs by Georgia Junker

A Message from Katie Lou, our fearless Cakewalk Leader:

Dear Friends,

Enter the Cake Contest !!!
Generous  and wonderful people like you bring a cake to be entered in the  exciting cake contest that happens right before the cakewalk.  Cakes are judged  based on appearance only, so let your imagination  go wild! Fabulous ribbon prizes are awarded for the most beautiful, most outrageous, most original, sexiest, goofiest , strangest, most attractive cake etc.  The cakes are then played for by people who are participants in the cakewalk.

“What is a cakewalk,” you ask?
The easiest way to describe it is it’s like musical chairs but with old time music and dancing and each round there’s a cake as a prize!  Wow.
Our tradition at the Social is for all cake winners to share all the cakes won at the cake walk at a big yummy cake eating fest as one of the very best parts of the Old Time Social.  It probably is EVERYONE’S favorite part of the Social, in fact.  There is always plenty of cakes for everyone.
The Cakewalk will be on Saturday, May 17th after the family dance at 6:30 and just before the main dance at 8pm-ish!

Get your cakes to the Legion Hall no later than 5:30.  (227 N. Ave. 55) There will be signs letting you know where to bring the cakes when you arrive.

Think outside the cakebox!

For more info email Katie at

Mar 11 2014

2014 – L.A. Old Time Social Dance Bands & Callers!

Saturday, May 17th, 12pm – 12am
$20 for the day (workshops included) or $10 for the Dance only.
American Legion Post 206, 227 North Avenue 55,  90042

•  Callers:

•  Bands:
Family Dance—

  • Hollywood Boll Weevils (Los Angeles)


When Joe Wack moved to Los Angeles, he joined with his soon-to-be wife Katy Croshier under the name of the Hollywood Boll Weevils,
playing dances, parties, and street gigs for the early days of the Hollywood Farmers’ Market and the opening of Universal City walk.
Katy’s fiddle and Joe’s guitar or banjo backup form the nucleus of the group, which has seen various musician friends sit in through
the years.  Joining them for the Family Dance in the Social will be fiddler extraordinaire Frank Hoppe, a frequent playing partner.


  • The Turpentine Rug Stompers (Los Angeles)

Square Dance— for full bios go here.

  • Brian Vollmer & Ben Townsend (NY & WV)
  • Spencer & Rains (KS & TX)

Mar 11 2014

2014 – L.A. Old Time Social Kick Off Party!

Thurs. 5/15, 8pm, $5 – $10 donation:

1642, 1642 Temple Ave., 90026

  • LA Bluegrass Hoppers
  • White Chocolate Drops
  • Smoggy Mountain String Band


LA Bluegrass Hoppers:

HoppersThe L.A. Blue Grasshoppers, UCLA’s very own old time and bluegrass band, brings a high-energy repertoire of dance tunes and polished harmonies drawing from the high, lonesome sound of Appalachia. Comprised entirely of UCLA students, we won the Band Competition at the 2013 Topanga Valley Fiddle and Banjo festival, along with individual awards for banjo and guitar solos. Our eponymous album, L.A. Blue Grasshoppers, was recorded and produced at UCLA and is available for purchase on CDBaby and from members of the band.

White Chocolate Drops:
The White Chocolate Drops are a duo of multi-instrumentalists Jonathan Shifflett and Nick Bachman. As students of old-time educator David Bragger, it wasn’t hard for them to find interests in common. The two find time to practice between Nick’s work as an animator and Jonathan’s studies in journalism.

Jonathan Shifflett: “I studied classical guitar in college and then switched to banjo ’cause I thought I wouldn’t have to try as hard…Two years later I’m still trying.” Nick Bachman: “I’m from Iowa originally, been playing for three years. But I came from a punk music background. I guess that’s all.”

The two share a love for the African-American old-time tradition and play with a historical sense of crookedness and harmonic confusion.


Smoggy Mountain String Band:


Amber Cavener (vocals): Amber was raised on old time music – her father and grandfather were both guitar players and singers from North Carolina. Family gatherings filled with music making led to a lifelong passion both for her and her brother, Jarvis Long III. Amber fronted ska, rocksteady and gypsy jazz bands before founding a traditional rockabilly group, Amber Foxx, with her husband Bobby Cavener in 2003. The group has played festivals in the U.S., England and Australia.

Bobby Cavener (upright bass): Bobby was interested in music at a young age. Guitar lessons opened him up to folk, blues and early jazz. A broken thumb made him believe music was out until a friend showed him the upright bass. Along with being a founding member of his wife’s rockabilly group, Amber Foxx, Bobby also performs with his brother-in-law’s hillbilly country band, J.W. Long & The Weyman Creek Boys.

Jarvis Long III (guitar, vocals): Jarvis has held a lifelong love of country music. In 2006, after stints of punk rock and rock and roll, Jarvis returned to his roots when he formed J.W. Long & The Weyman Creek Boys, a hillbilly country band, with his brother-in-law Bobby Cavener. Jarvis brings the rhythmic energy of his rock and roll background to his newfound passion – old time music.

Peter Linden (banjo): Peter fell in love with old time music while attending college in New York. Since moving back West, he has filled life with as much of it as he can, and with a little more sun.

Kyle McNally (fiddle, vocals): Kyle began playing the violin at an early age. After setting it down for many years, his passion for music was reignited when he moved to North Carolina and heard the sounds of old time, which he’s been playing ever since.

Feb 28 2014

2014 – L.A. Old Time Social Friday Night Concert

Fri. 5/17, 8pm, $20:**

The Velaslavasay Panorama, 1122 West 24th St., 90007

**pre-sale tix available SOON.


Triple Chicken Foot:


Triple Chicken Foot is an Old Time trio playing fiddle and banjo tunes and songs in Los Angeles, California with Ben Guzmán on fiddle/mandolin, Mike Heinle on banjo and Kelly Marie Martin on guitar.  They all three sing.  For over six years, playing old time music in Los Angeles, they have performed at the Autry National Center, LACMA, The Watkins Family Hour, weddings, numerous clubs around Southern California and on NPR. They have also performed at local festivals: Goleta Fiddlers Convention, Topanga Banjo and Fiddle Contest and the New Los Angeles Folk Festival, up the west coast at the Portland Old Time Gathering, the Berkeley Old Time Music Convention, and on the Palomino stage of the Stagecoach Festival.  Spending time with veteran players around Los Angeles and the country at many late night jams, they have been soaking up fiddle tunes and gospel songs, and have found their voice with foot stomping dance tunes, beautiful duets and three-part harmony of acapella ballads.  They haven’t played the Social in a couple of years and thought it might be high time to do so again.


Spencer & Rains:




Spencer & Rains play old time music. Tricia Spencer  is a Kansas fiddler who grew up learning the tradition of old-time music from her Grandparents.  At an early age, she was perched up on some stage tapping her foot to the beat of fiddles, banjos, mandolins and guitars.  While growing up, her free time was spent traveling to festivals and fiddling contest throughout the Midwest and hanging around listening and learning from Pete McMahan, Ceril Stinnet, Lymon Enloe, Dwight Lamb, Amos Chase, and Lucy Pierce. Tricia is a multi-instrumentalist who has studied with some of the great masters in old-time and is highly sought after as a performer, dance fiddler, and instructor. Howard Rains is a native Texas artist and fiddler living in both Austin, TX and Lawrence, KS whose twin obsessions are painting and playing traditional American fiddle music. Howard plays rare, old traditional fiddle tunes learned from friends, family and old recordings. His release “The Old Texas Fiddle” reintroduces listeners to the pre-contest styles of Texas fiddling. The New York Times has called Howard “an authority on old Texas-style fiddling.” As much known for his painting as his fiddling, Howard has painted many of great old time musicians, both living and gone.

Together, Spencer & Rains play old time fiddle tunes and sing old songs in the style of their home states while also exploring other American regional styles of fiddling. Both multi-instrumentalists deeply absorbed in traditional music, Howard and Tricia preserve, present, and teach old time music while at the same time making it their own. Not only do they love to play dances, festivals, and house concerts, Spencer & Rains are highly sought after as instructors and  love to teach old time music at camps, workshops, and private lessons. Have a look and a listen and enjoy!


Brian Vollmer & Ben Townsend:


Brian and Ben both starting playing Old-Time as teenagers, Brian in Tennessee and Ben in West Virginia. Regularly seeing each other at fiddler’s conventions and contests over the last 10 years, they’ve shared many a session. When Brian began working on his latest CD, Old-Time Music Party, Ben was a natural choice to join in. Of late, Brian and Ben have been touring the East Coast and are excited to be heading out west to play some true southern Old Time.