• 2018 Festival Logo Wide

    Click on video to see highlights from the March, 2018 festival and a peek into our plans for 2019: Exploring our African roots from Zimbabwe to Appalachia.

    Ticket sales for producing a festival typically do not cover the cost of production. And that’s where you come in! FolkWorks depends on your generosity. When you click to donate below, 100% of the money we raise in this campaign will go to pay talented performers and teachers.

    Please donate what you can to allow us to present the best diverse musical traditions for this amazing event.

    Read more: FolkWorks Folk/Roots Festival Appeal

    COLUMN OF THE WEEK

    January-February 2019

    Valentine’s Day

    By Chris Wilson

    free vintage valentines day clipart 26Ah, romance. The day is dedicated to celebrating love and intimate relationships. A beautiful day of hearts, flowers, special restaurant dinners; it also includes familial love and platonic friendships for many. Though in common parlance the general public has dropped the title “Saint” in Valentine’s Day, most know that there was indeed a St. Valentine and that this day is named in his honor.

    But who exactly was this saint? And why do we celebrate his day on February 14? The choice of this particular day is because that was the date when Valentine died in A.D. 278 – beheaded by Emperor Claudius II of Rome. It is no surprise to learn that this emperor was also known as “Claudius the Cruel.” The Emperor wanted a strong army to wage war campaigns on behalf of Rome but was having difficulty finding men willing to leave their wives and families to join his army. His solution was to forbid marriages and engagements in all of Rome. Valentine defied this order and married young couples in secret; on the order of the Emperor he was arrested and then beaten severely before his beheading.

    Read more: VALENTINE’S DAY

    CD REVIEWS

    TITLE: Empathy Moves The Water

    ARTIST: The Crooked Jades

    LABEL: Jade Note Music

    RELEASE DATE: November 13, 2018 

    By Art Podell

    Crooked JadesFans of The Crooked Jades won’t be disappointed by the latest issue from this remarkable group of musicians and I’m convinced that their newest CD, Empathy Moves The Water will quickly be added to existing collections of their music. Empathy Moves The Water will be the ninth album from the group since their debut album in 2000, and true to form, The Crooked Jades are alive and thriving and they just may have produced one of the best Americana albums of 2018.

    Read more: THE CROOKED JADES - EMPATHY MOVES THE WATER

    TITLE: EVERYBODY’S TALKIN’: A TRIBUTE TO FRED NEIL

    ARTISTS: VARIOUS, INCLUDING ERIC ANDERSEN, RODNEY CROWELL, VINCE MARTIN, ETC.

    LABEL: Y&T MUSIC

    RELEASE DATE: AUGUST 14, 2018

    Fred Neil without the Wrecking Crew

    By Ross Altman, PhD

    Everybodys TalkinFred Neil co-founded (with conservationist Ric O’Barry) the Dolphin Project on the first Earth Day, April 22 in 1970. Everybody’s Talking is a wonderful tribute album to Florida folk music legend Fred Neil. All net proceeds from the sale of the album go to the Dolphin Project.

    Read more: EVERYBODY’S TALKIN’: A TRIBUTE TO FRED NEIL

    TITLE: HOLY SMOKE!

    ARTIST: RAFE STEFANINI & DAVID BRAGGER

    LABEL: OLD-TIME TIKI PARLOUR

    RELEASE DATE: DECEMBER 2018

    OLD-TIME FIDDLE & BANJO DUETS

    By Justin Manglitz

    Holy SmokeIf you have ever wondered why preachers of yore routinely railed against fiddle and banjo music, this record explains it exactly. Every downbeat encourages fornication, every backbeat compels another drink of whiskey, every tune puts your very soul in jeopardy. Holy Smoke! is old-time music in its perfect form, tight fiddle and banjo, Africa and Europe in equal portions, a completely traditional modern culmination of the first truly American music.

    Read more: RAFE STEFANINI & DAVID BRAGGER - HOLY SMOKE!

    TITLE: OLD WORLD MUSIC OF THE SOUTHERN APPALACHIANS

    ARTIST: HOG-EYED MAN

    LABEL: OLD-TIME TIKI PARLOUR

    RELEASE DATE: NOVEMBER 2018

    By Pat Mac Swyney

    hog eyed man coverOld World Music of the Southern Appalachians is the 4th release from Old-Time duo Hog-Eyed Man; featuring Clifftop fiddle champion Jason Cade accompanied by talented multi-instrumentalist Rob McMaken. Jason grew up learning older fiddle tunes and styles from Bruce Greene in Yancey County, North Carolina as well as from his mother’s teacher Byard Ray. Rob hails from north Georgia and provides a solid, engaging back up with chording and melodic lines on mandolin, guitar and lap dulcimer.

    Read more: HOG-EYED MAN - OLD WORLD MUSIC OF THE SOUTHERN APPALACHIANS

    SPOTLIGHTS

    HUBBY JENKINS

    Hubby Jenkins

    With JOHN REED TORRES
    SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 2, 2019 - 8:00PM
    McCabe’s Guitar Shop
    3101 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405
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    MONDAY, FEBRUARY 4, 2019 - 8:00PM
    YARD Theatre
    4319 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90029-3510
    Presented by Down at the Yard Music Series

    Read more: HUBBY JENKINS

    LEYLA MCCALLA

    Layla McCalla

    TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 5, 2019 - 8:00PM
    ArtPower – University of California San Diego – The Loft
    9500 Gilman Dr. Price Center East, San Diego, CA 92093
    -----
    With SUNNY WAR
    WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 6, 2019 - 8:00PM
    Zebulon Cafe
    2478 N Fletcher Dr, Los Angeles, CA, 90039

    Read more: LEYLA MCCALLA

    JIM KWESKIN WITH CLINT DAVIS & HIS JUG BAND

    Jim Kweskin Clint Davis

    FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 8, 2019 - 8:00PM
    McCabe’s Guitar Shop
    3101 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405

    Read more: JIM KWESKIN WITH CLINT DAVIS & HIS JUG BAND

    KODO

    kodo

    SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2019 - 8:00PM
    Granada Theatre
    1214 State St., Santa Barbara, CA 93101
    -----
    SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 10, 2019 - 8:00PM
    Segerstrom Center for the Arts – Samueli Theatre
    600 Town Center Dr., Costa Mesa, CA 92626
    -----
    TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 12, 2019 - 8:00PM
    Walt Disney Concert Hall
    111 S. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012

    Read more: KODO

    FEATURE ARTICLES

    My Trip To NAMM 2019 (Not that NAM)

    By Art Podell

    NAMM 2019 ACCI visited the NAMM trade show in Los Angeles on Sunday, January 27th. Or did I? If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it…I checked my Fitbit and it had clocked six miles and then some while I was in the Convention Center so there is proof that I spent time in that behemoth in Anaheim, wandering the two thousand plus booths sponsored by vendors of everything and anything that closely or remotely is associated with the production of music. Did you get that number? Two thousand, one hundred twenty-eight separate vendors displaying their wares by my casual count. The Thomas Guide of yesteryear had nothing on the printed menu of vendors handed out so casually at the doorways of the great halls. They might as well have given me a phonebook from Toledo Ohio.

    Read more: MY TRIP TO NAMM 2019 (NOT THAT NAM)

    A DAY AT NAMM 2019 WITH ANNETTE & NOWELL

    By Annette & Nowell Siegel (Living Tree Music)

    NAMM 2019As we predominately make, restore and repair acoustic instruments we almost always make Hall E our first stop at NAMM, here you will find the majority of them outside of Martin and Taylor.

    Read more: A DAY AT NAMM 2019 WITH ANNETTE & NOWELL

    NAMM SHOW 2019

    By Nancy Felixson

    NAMM_NF_1
    NAMM_NF_2
    NAMM_NF_3
    NAMM_NF_4
    NAMM_NF_5
    NAMM_NF_6
    NAMM_NF_7
    NAMM_NF_8
    1/8 
    start stop bwd fwd
     

    Read more: NAMM Show Slide Show 2019 - Nancy Felixson

    GATEKEEPERS OF FREEDOM 2018:

    TWENTY-FIVE REVIEWED CONCERTS, CDS, THEATRE PERFORMANCES AND A VERY SPECIAL GRAMMY MUSEUM EXHIBIT

    VOICES THAT STOOD UP FOR A BETTER AMERICA IN 2018

    Exclusive to FolkWorks

    By Ross Altman, PhD

    Ross AltmanHere are the Gatekeepers of Freedom for 2018—those performing and performance artists who travel, sing and record the music that keeps us sane in a mad world—who carry the torch of Woody Guthrie and Joe Hill, Pete Seeger and Paul Robeson, Marian Anderson, Billie Holiday and Phil Ochs, Utah Phillips and Rosalie Sorrels, Malvina Reynolds, Victor Jara and John Lennon. We turn to them in times of need, for inspiration, for their long memory, for satire and protest, above all, for truth.

    Read more: GATEKEEPERS OF FREEDOM 2018

    CONCERT REVIEW

    KRIS KRISTOFFERSON & THE STRANGERS

    In Concert at Theatre At Ace Hotel

    Sunday, January 20, 2019 at 8pm

    RABBI HILLEL TO KRIS KRISTOFFERSON

    By Ross Altman, PhD

    Kris KristoffersonWhy write a song for Martin Luther King if you’re not going to sing it on his birthday—and not just his birthday, but his 90th birthday? That’s my question. I gave up watching Columbo last night—not to mention a full lunar eclipse—and not just a full lunar eclipse, but a blood-red wolf moon—to see Kris Kristofferson and the Strangers in concert. I drove all the way downtown to the Theatre at Ace Hotel, searched for a parking place, and stood on line to buy a ticket I could afford.

    Read more: KRIS KRISTOFFERSON & THE STRANGERS

    GRAMMY NOMINEES

    FILM AND THEATER REVIEW

    THE B-SIDE:

    “Negro Folklore from Texas State Prisons"

    A Record Album Interpretation

    The Wooster Group: REDCAT Theatre in Walt Disney Concert Hall Complex

    Thursday, January 31, 2019, 8:30pm

    If I Had a Hammer

    By Ross Altman, PhD

    Negro Folklore From Texas State PrisonsIn 1935, thirty years before this album by historian Bruce Jackson was made, America’s original ballad collector John Lomax found his greatest single source in another Texas State Prison—Sugarland, Texas—where folk singer Lead Belly sang his first song for him—The Midnight Special. Like Jackson, Lomax had only primitive recording equipment—which he carried around in the back of his big blue Ford station wagon. Bruce Jackson was prepared for what he was about to hear—because he had heard it all before, in Lomax’s pioneering efforts, and Lead Belly’s example of an African-American prison work song leader.

    Read more: THE B-SIDE “NEGRO FOLKLORE FROM TEXAS STATE PRISONS"

    FULL CALENDAR

    MUSIC       DANCE

    TODAY'S CALENDAR 2/22/19


    MUSIC


    fwpick

    7:00pm IVAN & TZVETANKA VARIMEZOVI

    Bulgarian Village Music

    Kalabash School of Music

    5725 La Jolla Blvd., La Jolla, CA 92037

    Presented by the Center for World Music


    7:00pm SIMON SPALDING

    Shantyman fiddler

    Home of Walter & Sheila Nelson)

    19146 Strathern St., Reseda, CA 91335

    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    8:00pm MARK HUMMELS' GOLDEN STATE LONE STAR REVUE

    McCabe’s Guitar Shop

    3101 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica, CA 90405

    310-828-4497


    8:00pm ROSE'S PAWN SHOP

    Grand Annex

    434 West 6th St., San Pedro, CA 90731-2632

    310-833-6362


    8:00pm INTERNATIONAL GUITAR NIGHT

    Soka Performing Arts Center

    1 University Dr., Aliso Viejo, CA 92656

    949-480-4278


    8:00pm SUSANA BACA / BANDA MAGDA / MICHAEL LEAGUE

    Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts

    18111 Nordhoff St., Northridge, CA 91330-8448

    818-677-3000


    8:00pm SPECIAL CONSENSUS

    Boulevard Music

    4316 Sepulveda Blvd., Culver City, CA 90230

    310-398-2583


    8:00pm MICHAEL MC GINNIS AND FRIENDS

    Coffee Gallery Backstage

    2029 N. Lake Ave., Altadena, CA 91001

    626-798-6236 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



    DANCE


    NO EVENTS TODAY


    RECURRING EVENTS


    MUSIC


    7:00pm - 10:00pm VENTURA BELL ARTS HOOT (SONGMAKERS)

    fourth Friday

    Bell Arts Factory

    432 N. Ventura Ave., Ventura, CA 93001

    TJ Zeiler 805-910-7565 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    8:00pm - 10:00pm KATTYWOMPUS CONCERT / JAM

    every Friday

    Dollmakers Kattywompus

    412 S. Myrtle Ave, Monrovia, CA 91016

    626-357-1091

    Jennifer Ranger 626-357-1091


    DANCE


    9:30am - 12:00pm KAYSO FOLK DANCERS

    every Friday

    Casa del Prado, Rm. 206, Balboa Park

    1800 El Prado, San Diego, CA

    Jerry Waddell 619-479-8015 `


    7:15pm - 10:00pm WEST VALLEY FOLK DANCERS

    every Friday

    Canoga Park Senior Center

    7326 Jordan Ave., Los Angeles, CA

    Jay Michtom 818-368-1957 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    7:45pm - 11:00pm PASADENA FOLK DANCE CO-OP

    every Friday

    Throop Unitarian Church

    300 S. Los Robles, Pasadena, CA

    Jan Rayman 818-790-8523 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    7:45pm - 10:45pm WEST LOS ANGELES FOLK DANCERS

    every Friday

    Brockton School

    1309 Armacost Ave., West Los Angeles, CA

    Beverly Barr 310-202-6166 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    8:00pm - 11:00pm L.I.F.E.BALKAN DANCE

    every Friday

    LA DanceFit Studio

    10936 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA

    Sherrie Cochran 626-293-8523 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    8:30pm - 11:30pm KYPSELI GREEK DANCE CENTER

    every Friday

    The Tango Room

    4346 Woodman Ave., Sherman Oaks, CA

    Louise Bilman 323-660-1030 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


    9:00pm - 11:00pm BEVERLY HILLS ISRAELI DANCING

    every Friday

    Temple Emanuel

    8844 Burton Way, Beverly Hills, CA

    James Zimmer 310-284-3638 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


ARTIST: MARLA FIBISH

TITLE: MARLA FIBISH IRISH MANDOLIN BASICS: TUNES AND TECHNIQUES (DVD)

LABEL: MARLA FIBISH MUSIC

RELEASE DATE: 2012

By Annette Siegel

Marla_Fibish_Irish_Mandolin_BasicsSo you want to learn some Irish mandolin basics, but don’t know where to turn? Irish mandolin traditionalist Marla Fibish, the mandolinist behind the Three Mile Stone and more recently The Morning Star CDs has a great solution. She’s put together an instructional Irish mandolin DVD. Usually you would have venture out to find a local Irish session (still recommended) to pick up these tunes. (It would be helpful to have a basic mandolin/music theory background to understand some of the language she uses.) But lucky for us fledgling Irish mandy players, Marla has given us a leg up by being able to learn some Irish tunes in the comfort of our own home. And I don’t know about the rest of the mandolin learning population, but it sure helps me to learn when I have a visual aid.

The DVD opens with Marla and her trademark Vintage Gibson A Mandolin (early 1920s) playing the tune Humors of Bandon and explaining how the mandolin has only been involved with Irish music in the last 40-50 years…and that it’s still finding its way. This sort of makes you feel like a pioneer. She also talks about how to develop your own “Irish” music ear by listening to different musicians and various instruments used in Irish music to develop a “feel” for this type of music.

And anybody that’s plays, or tried to play, the mandolin can tell you how important tuning it is. Marla explains this further in detail by having your “pairs” in tune as well as the octaves on the fifth fret sounding together. She covers the left hand technique and how in Irish music the mandolin’s strength is the sustain and how very important the right hand is, as well as the selection of the pick you use…these are all covered fully. It’s truly amazing how many nuances of sound you can create using different pick shapes, thicknesses and where you place your fingers on the mandolin.

Marla_Fibish_Irish_MandolinNow - on to the tunes. She divides the tunes into three categories: reels, jigs and waltzes. You’ll learn that the picking patterns with the right hand are oh so important. Marla jokes that the notes are almost optional as long as the patterns are right and you keep your right hand moving, down on the downbeat and up on the upbeat! The reels are a fun way to start. The tune structure is AA/BB and the melodies are simple but easy to remember (the first ones, anyway!). My husband (on the guitar) and I were playing them together in no time. Marla presents the tune in a very easy, understandable manner; breaking it down and then playing the tune up to speed, showing a close up of the left hand fingering. Then she plays the tune at a “practice” pace for you to play along. I found it easy to stop the DVD and play the instruction over and over again, till I got the part or musical phrase. There are just the right number of tunes to get your feet wet and whet your appetite for more! This DVD is a delightful way to learn to play this style. I certainly hope it is only the first of more to come from Marla on Irish mandolin instruction!

This recommended DVD may be purchased by emailing Marla This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by visiting herwebsite.

Annette Siegel is one half of Living Tree Music & The Seagulls with her husband Nowell. She also holds a “day” job working for the Bob Hope Estate/Family for the last 18 years.

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