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BBF:Phantoms of the High Country, Molly Tuttle Band and more

May 19, 2018
8:00 pm
Freight & Salvage

Berkeley Bluegrass Festival Night 2 - Phantoms of the High Country, Molly Tuttle Band, Jeff Scroggins & Colorado, Bluegrass Pride

Saturday, May 19th
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm

Tickets on sale 3/23/18 at 12:30pm. Freight & Salvage donors may purchase tickets now, call the box office at 510-644-2020.

Berkeley Bluegrass Festival brings together leaders of the genre, up-and-coming artists, and music fans for three days of concerts, jams, free workshops, and good old-fashioned merriment to kick off the summer music festival season.


Phantoms of the High Country
In the 1970’s, San Francisco became an unlikely Mecca for bluegrass music. The Southern rural sounds had made incursions into popular culture via the movie soundtracks of “Bonnie and Clyde” and “Deliverance.” Busloads of Japanese tourists would unload at Paul’s Saloon, the Marina District bar that served up bluegrass or bluegrass-tinged music seven nights/week, and the joint was hopping most nights. When national touring bands came to San Francisco, they often made a stop at Paul’s Saloon, to listen to and maybe jam with the locals. JD Crowe and the New South (with Ricky Skaggs, Tony Rice, and Jerry Douglas) graced the stage on their way to Japan. Ralph Stanley and Bill Monroe were both known to stop in after playing the Great American Music Hall. If you were interested in bluegrass in the Bay Area, it was the place to be.

The Paul’s Saloon scene was pioneered by guitarist Bob Fowler and fiddler Ingrid Herman (Woody Herman’s daughter) and their band, the Styx River Ferry. As the music grew in popularity throughout the country, many of the Bay Area bluegrass players moved on to Nashville to further their careers. The Styx River Ferry bandmates were the first wave of that reverse migration. But they had plowed fertile ground from which a strong local bluegrass scene grew. The bands High Country and The Phantoms of the Opry were arguably the most popular of that scene. The Phantoms of the High Country is made up of members of both these bands, coming together to celebrate that vibrant decade. Pat Enright (guitar) left the Bay Area in 1974, and is a founding member of the now-legendary Nashville Bluegrass Band. He gained fame as the voice of one of the Soggy Bottom Boys in “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?” He will be joined by High Country’s Butch Waller (mandolin) and Larry Cohea (banjo), High Country alumnus emeritus Ed Neff (fiddle/mandolin), and Phantoms of the Opry alumni Paul ShelaskyGene Tortora (dobro) and Laurie Lewis (bass).

Molly Tuttle Band
A virtuoso multi-instrumentalist and award winning songwriter with a distinctive voice, Molly has turned the heads of even the most seasoned industry professionals. She began performing on stage when she was 11, and recorded her first album, The Old Apple Tree, at age 13. Since then, she’s appeared on A Prairie Home Companion and at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, was featured on the cover of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine, won first place in the prestigious Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at Merlefest, and, this fall, received a Momentum Award from the International Bluegrass Music Association in the instrumentalist category. Her lovely voice, impeccable guitar playing, and sensitive song writing make her a star on the rise. She has already received more than two million YouTube views and is currently gearing up to release her first solo EP.

Jeff Scroggins & Colorado
Jeff Scroggins & Colorado is a high-energy five-piece bluegrass band located in the Western Frontier state of Colorado. Their distinctive sound showcases an eclectic range of influences that marry second and third generation bluegrass, delivering a unique experience that captivates audiences and keeps them guessing: It’s a powerful, high mountain “bluegrass explosion” that features world-class banjo and mandolin playing, incredible vocals, a solid and energetic rhythm and an easy stage banter that has delighted listeners all over the world.

Fronted by internationally acclaimed two-time National Banjo Champion ​Jeff Scroggins, their distinct style is immediately recognizable due to Jeff’s unique and diverse range of influences, which include Alan Munde, Don Reno, Jimmy Page and Eric Clapton. His fiery style and lightning-fast licks have earned him worldwide recognition and have left many a first-time listener in stunned disbelief!

The band also features the award-winning mandolin playing of Jeff’s son Tristan Scroggins. At only 21 years old, Tristan is an award-winning instrumentalist and accomplished songwriter in his own right while the instrumentals he shares with Jeff play a large role in the band’s unique and energetic style. In 2016, Tristan was nominated for the Instrumental Momentum Award by the International Bluegrass Music Association . West Virginia native Greg Blake provides powerful bluegrass vocals steeped in country heritage, bringing a truly authentic sound developed from a lifetime of singing bluegrass, gospel, and country. Twice nominated for the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America's (SPBGMA) “Traditional Male Vocalist of the Year” award, Greg’s phenomenal guitar playing has earned him nine nominations and five consecutive wins as SPBGMA’s Guitarist of the Year. They are joined by Oregon native, 2016 Rockygrass Fiddle Champion, 2016 Arizona State Fiddle Champion, and 2017 IBMA Momentum Award Nominee Ellie Hakanson on fiddle and vocals. In addition to their individual accomplishments, the band was featured as the California Bluegrass Association's Emerging Artist of the year, an honor given into the past to bands such as Della Mae, and Chris Henry & the Hardcore Grass.

Bluegrass Pride
Founded on the principle that bluegrass is for anybody and everybody, the CBA created Bluegrass Pride in 2017, an initiative to become the first ever bluegrass association to take part in an LGBT Pride celebration. By doing so, Bluegrass Pride hoped to take the love, acceptance, and joy at the heart of this music and invite the world to take it with them. This message struck a chord with the crowds and judges of SF Pride, who loved their unique and enthusiastic presence in the parade. The California Bluegrass Association and Bluegrass Pride were officially named the Best Overall Contingent in the 2017 SF Pride Parade, the first time in parade history that a first-time entrant has won the top prize. Now in their second year, Bluegrass Pride is continuing to grow and spread the word that bluegrass is for everybody, by hosting regular beginner-friendly jams, sponsoring a local concert series, and marching in the 2018 SF Pride Parade.

Laurie Lewis



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Laurie LewisNot only has the International Bluegrass Music Association twice named Laurie the Female Vocalist of the Year – not only did she win a Grammy for her contribution to True Life Blues: the Songs of Bill Monroe – but she also graduated from Berkeley High. Since graduation, she’s recorded more than 20 albums – with the Good Ol’ Persons, Grant Street, Kathy Kallick, and her current band Laurie Lewis & the Right Hands, as well as several solo projects – and is now working with many talented new artists, helping them find their way in the recording business.

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