Bryan Bowers and Geoff Goodhue at Caltech Saturday, May 12

Join us for the return of Bryan Bowers, master autoharp player and traditional singer. Though other talented folks have followed in his footsteps, Bryan Bowers continues to be the pinnacle of autoharp playing in the folk music world, and he delivers a fine mix of songs, instrumentals, and stories. Bryan will be in California for his annual visit to the California Autoharp Gathering in the Fresno area after he leaves Pasadena. We heard Bryan at the Fret House last year, and he continues to amaze us with plenty of new songs in his repertoire.

Born in Yorktown, Virginia, Bryan was profoundly affected by the singing of field and railroad workers, and this style of singing is an important part of his sound. It wasn’t until college that he took up playing the autoharp, but he quickly became a master of the instrument that he has redefined over the years. He is as important to modern autoharp playing as Earl Scruggs has been to the banjo. In his hands, the autoharp has amazing capabilities of notes and chords, and his playing brings to mind a full orchestra, with its full-bodied and varied sound.

He mixes a few original songs with some gospel, traditional, and songs of current songwriters, many of them very funny, such as “Zen Gospel Singing.” Bryan’s humor, easy manner, and natural storytelling abilities make his performances a pure delight.

Bryan will be touring and performing with Geoff Goodhue, mandolin and guitar player, now living in New Hampshire. Geoff tours with a group called Beg Steal or Borrow and he has performed with Tim O’Brien and others. This will be a great show!

Tickets for this show are $20 for adults, $5 for children and Caltech students.  You can purchase tickets at the Caltech Ticket Office, 1200 E. California Blvd (southeast corner of Wilson Avenue and California Blvd)  between 10AM and 4:30 PM, Monday-Friday or by phone with a service charge at (626) 395-4652.   You can get them online (for a fee) until Thursday here.  You can also buy them at the door (cash or check).

A note about parking for our concerts if you haven’t been to a show for awhile:  There will be the usual limited parking right behind the large Beckman Auditorium- It is OK to park in slots with names on weekends and evenings, but the lot may fill up.  This is the best place to park for the handicapped (try to come a little early- email us at if you need help planning your visit). The parking lots between Michigan and Wilson have been mostly closed- a new building will soon begin construction.  The most reliable parking will be on Wilson Avenue, either on the street or in the two parking structures just south of Del Mar Avenue, across the street from Beckman Institute.   One structure is just north of the Institute at 341 S. Wilson Avenue, and the other, 405 S. Wilson, is just a bit south of the Institute.   Rest assured that after 5PM on weekdays, and all day on weekends, you can park for free in these structures, despite signs that allude to the more restricted parking rules during the day on weekdays.   You can even park at slots that have names on them!  From the structures, walk around the big lawn (much of which is currently fenced in for the building projet to the north) in front of Beckman Institute and you will recognize where to go.  On this map, we are suggesting that you park in structures #123 and #124 in the upper left.    Beckman Institute is building #74, just to the east (right).  If you need help figuring this out, try calling (626) 616-4559