We’re just a week away from autoharp player, singer, storyteller Bryan Bowers’ Saturday, May 30 appearance at Caltech’s Beckman Institute Auditorium (Little Beckman) at 8:00 p.m. From the moment you see Bryan Bowers bring out his freshly tuned stack of autoharps in different keys at one of his shows, you feel that you are in the presence of a master. In 1993, Bryan was the first living member inducted into the Autoharp Hall of Fame to stand only with Maybelle Carter, Kilby Snow, and Sara Carter.
He’s a very big fish in the autoharp world and he’s in California because of last week’s annual California Autoharp Gathering near Fresno. Hear Bryan sing and play his own composition and title tune for one of his early recordings, “The View From Home,” followed by the traditional tune, “Flowers of Edinburgh:”
The Philadelphia Folk Song Society wrote, “For all the acclaim Bryan Bowers has won as the master of the autoharp, what radiates from the instrument under his touch is not flash but warmth and brilliance….You get a good feeling being a member of Bryan Bowers’ audience, the good feeling that comes from watching someone doing just what he needs to do and doing it well and for all the right reasons.” Along with creating some fine original songs and adding new sparkle to familiar and obscure traditional songs and tunes, Bryan has introduced many to some fine contemporary songwriters, as he does with Dace Carter’s moving “When I Go.” Bryan’s web site is http://www.bryanbowers.com. Make plans now to come to this show!
Tickets for the show are $15 for adults and $5 for Caltech students and children. Order them at the Caltech Ticket Office from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday at (626) 395-4652 or in person (no service charge) at Winnett Student Center on campus. You can buy tickets online for this show as well as the upcoming bluegrass and mountain folk music of Susie Glaze and the Hilonesome Band on Saturday, June 13.
On KPFK’s Roots Music and Beyond (90.7 FM 6-8 AM), we have a couple of special treats coming up. <9″>Tomorrow, <0″>Saturday May 23, Mary Katherine Aldin will be sitting in for Mark Humphrey with a special edition of Alive and Picking. The following week, John and Deanne Davis are scheduled for one of their fifth-Saturday-of-the-month Heartfelt Music shows on Saturday, May 30, also 6-8 AM. They will be playing some great music, so listen in! You can hear the shows for two weeks after their broadcasts on KPFK Audio Archives.
Music festival season continues in Southern California with the 32nd annual Claremont Folk Festival on Saturday, May 30. Performers include the David Grisman Bluegrass Experience, Blind Boy Paxton, Perla Batalla, Ross Altman, and many more. Music and workshops begin at 10 a.m. and it goes all day, but get over to Pasadena in time for Bryan Bowers!
The Huck Finn Jubilee and Bluegrass Festival will be held in Ontario on June 12-14 and features Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys, Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder, Hot Rize, Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn, Steve Martin and Steep Canyon Rangers, and many others.