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Photos and Fun Stuff 2007
November 10, 2007
When you walk into the Emerald Valley Opry in Eugene, Oregon your mind plays a little trick on you and you would swear you somehow ended up in Branson, Missouri! This monthly event has so much glitz, glamour and down home fun that you find yourself expecting to run into the likes of Dolly Parton, Mel Tellis or Roy Clark backstage! We actually shared the stage with traditional country band Alton Wayne, the AMAZING master guitarist Bobby Gibson, the traditional bluegrass band Junior & Jeanette Clark, and the every charming Vern & Kathy Criddle who specialize in western songs and cowboy poetry. (Kathy Criddle wins hands down for most sterling silver on one stage outfit!). Powers Auditorium holds about 600 VERY ENTHUSIASTIC music lovers who are spurred on all evening by the outstanding emcee work of KNND 1400 AM DJ Dallas McCord. Dallas and his co-committee members produce this show as a fund raiser to keep music in their local school. They are absolutely some of the nicest people we've every had the opportunity to work with. . . . . and we work with a whole lot of really nice people! Don't miss this Bi-Mart sponsored event if you're ever in Eugene, Oregon the 2nd Saturday or each month. (Special thanks to Mark for driving the band bus, to David for running the CD table, and to Ken for taking the pictures!)
Tim cuts loose with a mandolin break Tom & Kathy debut a duet that brings Ever wonder what things look like from We met so many wonderful people!
down the house! backstage?
October 13, 2007
Fall is a beautiful time in the state of Oregon, and what better way to spend the weekend than at the EZ Orchards Harvest Festival in Keizer, Oregon. There was something for everyone at the event, whether it was the corn maze, the hay wagon (drawn by real horses!), the petting zoo, the pumpkin patch, the wonderful goodies for sale, the face painting or a simple bask in the sunshine while listening to the live music. Thanks to our host John for the wonderful performance area and for the explanation on just how those corn mazes are designed! With all the young people present, Tom just couldn't help himself and ended up leading a rather large group in an extended version of "The Hokey Pokey" at one point. The younger set also took great delight in the introduction to "Bigfoot Jubilee" and the fact that so many of the geographical locations mentioned in the song were places they were familiar with. If you like family oriented fun this event is worth both the drive and the reasonable price of admission. We're hoping to make this a yearly event for the band!
A beautiful day on a wonderful stage! Get Tom around kids and he just can't help himself. Cutting loose on an old time fiddle tune.
Leading the "Hokey Pokey" with his new friends.
September 21 - 23, 2007
Time for a little band R & R, and what better place to do it than at the Tygh Valley Bluegrass Festival in Central Oregon. Although the weekend turned into a bit of a "busman's holiday", we had a wonderful time. On Friday evening, the producers had a last minute band cancellation for the band contest, so Dennis and Kathy partnered with three members of Fiddlegrass to form an impromptu band call "The Mashed Potatoes". . . . . which took second place in the contest! Saturday morning Kathy had literally just ordered her breakfast when she was asked to teach the bass workshop. It was well worth the missed meal as the students were all advanced players who had a lot to share with each other. This was followed by the annual band scramble which Kathy emcee'd and ended up playing bass for the winning band, which had Dennis in it! Saturday afternoon Tim, Kathy and Dennis led a hugely successful "slow jam" that at one time had over 60 people in attendance. The highlight was a visit by Pauline McGuire, who is a personal friend of the Carter family. She shared the history of the Carter Family music with the workshop group and then led everyone in singing "Will The Circle Be Unbroken". What a treat! Saturday night Tom showed up with 15 Polish students from an International Dance Troupe he was hosting. They got on stage and treated us all to a song in their native language and kept us all entertained with their charm and delight in the "American Country". Sunday began bright and early with the honor of backing Jack and Pauline McGuire as they presented an hour of Carter Family music and history to an appreciative audience. We made some wonderful new friends over the weekend (see our Comments page for some of the notes they sent!) and highly recommend this festival as the best way to end your summer festival season. (Please check out the website of our friend Cleve Friedman for a TON of photos from this festival!)
Dennis on mando! Leading the "slow jam" was great fun. Kathy What a thrill to sing songs of the Carter family Tim and his lariat proved to be a
had the treat of playing a McMasters guitar! with Pauline McGuire! huge hit, especially with our friends
September 14 - 16, 2007 (Tom goes to banjo camp)
Tom got to go to the
American Banjo Camp at Fort Flagler
near Seattle. It's the five string love child of
Ken Perlman and
Peter Langston. How much fun could a
hundred and fifty obsessive compulsive pickers and frailers have? With sleep as
a minimilist option, count your three fingers for plenty pickin' good time!
What's a ticket to banjo heaven worth? Tuition? $375. Gas? $60. New camera to
replace the one stolen from your car the night before? $239. Courage it took to
call Kathy and tell her our CD's had been stolen in the same escapade?
Let's say $150. Speeding ticket in the Olympia ticket trap? $114. Pickin',
grinning', and singin' with the likes of Postmodern Neo-Bop Idealist
Danny Barnes, Sublime Jazz Man
Pat Cloud, Dr. Banjo
Peter Wernick, Renaissance Banjo Visionary
Bill Keith, and Slide Soul Man
Orville Johnson just for good measure? P-R-I-C-E-L-E-S-S!! Tom had
the pleasure of introducing Danny Barnes and Pat Cloud to
Black Diamond polymer coated
"Black" strings. In return he promised to never again play an unambiguous major
Idealist Danny Barnes and Sublime cool banjo. Check out that "Ain't the five-strings and Bluegrass
Jazz-Man Pat Cloud We
Having Fun" banjo neck!
Boy Bill Keith
September 2, 2007
There's nothing like a day at the state fair, especially if you get to perform while you're there! The Oregon State Fair added extra stages this year so they could bring even more live entertainment to their event. We performed on the brand new Picnic Grove Stage to a wonderful afternoon crowd. After the show we invited people to come to the CD table and tell us their stories as the state fair represents the gathering together of people from all over the state. What wonderful tales we heard! Afterwards it was time for some BBQ with a pair of lovely ladies who shared not only the table but their dental floss with us! The grand finale of the day was attending the concert by super entertainer Craig Morgan. When Craig sings "Amazing Grace" it would make a believer out of the Devil himself. An elephant ear for the road and a salute to the fair staff for doing such a phenomenal job. What a wonderful way to celebrate Labor Day Weekend!
Dennis belts out a high tenor tune. Showing the state fair what 4-part harmony is all about. This gig was just too much fun!
September 1, 2007
What a treat to spend the day at the Leary Family Reunion providing the background music as this lovely family gathered together to celebrate each other. The event was held in beautiful Columbia Park in Portland, Oregon. Big trees, lots of grass, and generally just a fine example of what Portland is all about. The surprise of the day was that Dennis does a rather outstanding version of "Danny Boy" when surrounded by an Irish family! Special thanks to everyone in the family who made us feel so welcome and shared their stories with us (winner of the day was the story Paul told us about his conversion to bluegrass while stationed in Vietnam!).
What a treat to get to perform an acoustic set! Tom and Tim performing for a dance of the wee folk.
August 4, 2007 (Kathy and Dennis go slumming)
Nothing on the calendar. Tom is off following the trail of the dinosaurs with his family. Tim had a family day at the movies. Looking at each other and saying "Oh what the heck!" Kathy and Dennis decided to take a drive to the annual Clatskanie Bluegrass Festival and see what kind of trouble they could get into. Hugs from dear friends, jams with new ones, lots of comments about the "12 More Miles to Clatskanie" sign everyone passed to get there (yes, it is the namesake of the song), and best of all a visit with Mike Nadolson of Tricopolis Records. Dennis is now officially sponsored by Tricopolis Records and is sporting a brand new Rosewood Blueridge guitar! Special thanks to Cynthia Bach for - literally - feeding Kathy dinner, and to Robert, Steve and Sandie for inviting us to jam with them and for sharing their hybrid banjo/guitar (incriminating photos below!).
Jamming with our MySpace friend Robert Mike Nadolson of Tricopolis Records Is it a banjo? A guitar? Whatever it is, it's
congratulates Dennis on his new guitar FUN!
July 14, 2007 (gig two)
It was a two-gig day, so after a quick lunch and costume change we headed to Newberg, Oregon to perform at a private party. Our host turned out to own over 50 classic cars, so in addition to putting on a concert for his family and friends he also had his own private car show! The cars were beautiful, the food was fabulous (thanks to Bob from Michigan for all the angel food cake!), and the band had a wonderful time performing for the crowd. The highlight of the evening was when the band surprised Kathy with a new arrangement of "I Still Miss Someone" featuring Tim on guitar and Dennis on harmonica. It was so hauntingly beautiful it was all Tom and Kathy could do to sing it without getting teary! Wow! Thanks to Brian and Carrie for making us a part of their family for the evening!
This REO Sedan was Kathy's favorite. There's nothing like bluegrass from a flatbed stage! Check out this mid-30's Ford Hot Rod
in Phoenix Rising Red!
July 14, 2007 (gig one)
Our day started early as we headed over to the Troutdale Bite and Bluegrass to play a set along with a host of other wonderful bands that producer Sharon Sandgren had lined up for the day. This is always a warm festival, so we brought along a basket full of fans donated by the RiverCity Bluegrass Festival to pass out to the crowd. Needless to say, they were a hit and the audience loved it when Tim tied a comment about the heat, the fans and the RiverCity Bluegrass Festival into his introduction to "Burning Down the House"! This event will be showing up not only on the local cable television station, but is also available at www.tapers.org. It was fun to catch up with our friends from such bands at Ida Viper and Mollybloom, but the highlight had to be getting to catch Athena and the River City Boys at their final performance in their current (original) configuration. Special thanks to Fern the Cookie Lady for the green room goodies!
It was a beautiful day with a wonderful crowd. Thanks to Stew Dodge for the wonderful sound!
June 30, 2007
O'dark-thirty AGAIN as the bus pulled out at 6:30 am for Southern Oregon and the wedding reception of Riley and Stephanie. Thinking we were making great time, we decided to pull off the freeway for lunch at the historic Wolf Creek Tavern. What a treat! Still thinking we were timely we hit the road again, discovered we were lost, found ourselves, discovered we really should have filled the gas tank in Wolf Creek, and FINALLY arrived just in time to play the happy couple down the aisle! It was an amazing party with guests from Boston, Alaska, and all points in-between. They built us a stage just for this event, fed us like royalty, and made us all feel just like part of the family. Tom led the group in a marathon Virginia Reel that will not soon be forgotten (by the guests OR the band!). After we broke down the stage we gathered on the porch of the happy couples homestead cabin to jam and play requests. How sweet to fall asleep later that night to the sounds of the bride playing her guitar and singing to us! Sunday morning we were fed an amazing biscuit and gravy breakfast, discovered that the wall decor in the outhouse was the lovely Rhonda Vincent, borrowed five gallons of gas to get to the nearest gas station, and had a wonderful discussion on the history of the land and the joy of living a simple life. Riley, Stephanie, their family and friends are truly an inspiration and we were honored to be a part of their special day!
The Black Diamond String Fan Club! Riley and Stephanie Pitts enjoy the band. Tom leads a marathon Virginia Reel.
What an incredibly beautiful location! Yes, we really did run out of gas! Sunday morning at the homestead cabin.
June 15 - 16, 2007
Life on the road means rising at 0'dark-thirty to get in line for the ferry to Victoria at seven am. We had the brilliant idea to play music all the way over to Vancouver Island, but mostly we just slept! Once we disembarked we had the rare experience of a little free time to play tourists and wander Victoria's gardens and shops. We arrived at the Sooke River Bluegrass Festival to find that our sponsor "Triangle RV Centre" had supplied us with a lovely little trailer to live in for the weekend. A bit cozy, but how nice to have not only a roof over our heads, but a stove, a table, and other amenities right at our fingertips. Our hosts Jordan and Eric had parked our "home away from home" so that everyone had to walk by to get to the seating area. We met more nice folks that way! Sooke is a gorgeous location for a festival and now in its seventh year had terrific organization, welcoming hospitality, and just about every flavor of weather. When Tom launched into the chorus: "Cry, Cry, Cry" in the song Big River, the clouds unloaded on our audience. Everyone scurried for shelter under the canopies or chairs or jackets but not one soul left the show. How wonderful of the sky to stop "crying" just in time for the next set by our friends "Restless Lester". Our sonic angel, Mark Gensman, helped set up our mics and in the spirit of international cooperation worked with our friend Phil from Four Chords of Wood to make sure we sounded our very best. We'll not forget our 'hobo stew' compliments of Bernie Cline that warmed us so well on a chilly night. Meeting songwriter Frank Bernard and getting to play backup for him as he opened the festival was just too much fun. Trading hugs for "loonies" (to take showers) and getting to share the stage with some fabulous Canadian musicians are memories we'll never forget. And we will always hold our affection for the Canadian audience so ready to smile, sing-along, laugh, share a story whether sun bathing or blanket-swaddled in the rain. Do you feel the love?
We were the only band representing the USA. How A moment of Friday night stage banter. Kathy gets down!
nice of them to hang our flag for us!
June 14, 2007
What an honor to be one of the very first bands to be a part of KOA's "Kampertainment America" series! We performed at the Port Angeles/Sequim KOA on our way to perform at the Sooke River Bluegrass Festival in Canada. Port Townsend is an amazing town! They had us on the radio, in the newspaper, and there were posters all over town. We were surprised and delighted to have over 150 people in the audience for our show! Our hostess Shelly gave each of us a brilliantly colored yellow KOA hat to wear, which just made us stand out that much more against the backdrop of the beautiful Olympic Mountains. They put us up in a cute-as-a-button two-bedroom log "Kabin" for the night, and gave us access to all their amenities. It was great fun and we met some wonderful people. This program is a "win-win" for both artists and the Kampgrounds of America. Be sure to check your local KOA and/or the ones along your travels to see if they are hosting live music!
Cindy Crosby and our "Kabin". We were thrilled with the size of the crowd! Our host Shelly introduces us.
Check out those yellow hats! Dennis and Tom cut loose With our host Shelly and the beautiful Olympic
mountains as our backdrop.
May 31 - June 3, 2007
It was the first every Goldendale (Washington) Blue Moon Fiddlin' Around the Stars Bluegrass Festival, and what an event it was! We arrived Thursday and started with Tim and Kathy's shopping trip to the local grocery store, where we were informed we were "new strangers". You guessed it, when Kathy returned the next day she was an "old stranger"! Thursday's true highlight was getting to meet astronaut Dr. Steve Robinson. He was in town to help celebrate the "blue moon" and to make appearances up at the Observatory and at the local schools. Friday we spent most of the day following Dr. Robinson around to each school in town as we did assemblies on NASA and bluegrass music. We even ate lunch with the third grade, and spent about an hour and a half signing autographs for them! It was fun being on stage at the festival Thursday night, but on Friday it was just too fun to look out in the audience and see the kids singing along to "Rhubarb Pie" and "Bigfoot Jubilee"! We also discovered that it's very different to drive through town when every child in town is your new best friend! Saturday Kathy hosted the band scramble and due to lack of bass players performed with the first, second, AND third place bands. That afternoon the band did an "unplugged" set for our sponsor Allyn's Building Center. It was fun to be able to talk about our instruments and meet more of the townspeople. After having dinner at Sodbusters with our friends from Lee Highway, we headed back to the festival grounds for a phenomenal lineup of music that included the traditional sounds of Lee Highway, the Americana/Contemporary Bluegrass sounds of Kathy Boyd & Phoenix Rising, and those monsters of modern bluegrass music, our new friends Ida Viper. Wow! Sunday morning Kathy hosted the gospel show before everyone headed home to get ready for our next road trip. We had so much fun all weekend it just might have been illegal! Thanks to Lorraine Reynolds for putting on this event and to Jim Allyn for sponsoring our visit. We're already looking forward to next year!
What a thrill to get to hang out with On stage at the festival. When in a hardware store. . . Performing at the grade school was
astronaut Steve Robinson! Tim makes music with the just too much fun!
May 12, 2007
It was not only our annual 'hometown' concert appearance, but the official release party for "Burning Down the House". Fire Chief Tim Dawdy did us the honor of introducing the band (sort of goes with the title of the CD, don't you think?). Haggen Foods and Lee Farms donated lots and lots of rhubarb pie both in honor of the song (which at the time was on Rhapsody's "Most Listened To Music" list!) and in order to raise money to build a new patio at the historic Heritage Center. Local businesses donated beautiful flower baskets to be raffled off between sets. Congratulations to our winners Maggie (Ground Zero Sound), Karen (Odyssey Hospice), Ed (William Berkshire, PC) and Monte (Metro West Realty)! 'Honorary' KBPR member Alex Truax joined us for two songs, which is always a treat. This year it was extra special as he'll soon be leaving town to attend college in Colorado. Be sure to catch Alex this summer with Zach Driscoll and 3/4 Time if they're playing anywhere near you! Of course, no successful concert is complete without a good meal afterwards. Thanks to Applebee's for treating us so well at such a late hour. Most of all, THANK YOU to everyone who has helped our new CD to be released with such excitement and enthusiasm. In the past month we've appeared in Bluegrass Unlimited, on the opening page of Cybergrass, and been featured in two sections of CD Baby. Our music is being played everywhere from France to Belgium to Canada to all areas of the United States. We are honored, humbled, and hoping to bring our music live to a festival near you in the near future!
Special guest Alex Truax sings "Ring of Fire" The Mother's Day flower basket raffle Kathy sings about that
was a huge success! Rhubarb Pie
April 20, 2007
It was a day full of adventure and wonderful surprises. One of those moments in time when not much happens as you planned and it all turns out just fine anyway. Tom and Kathy started out the day with a swing by NWMedia to pick up our new CD "Burning Down the House" (see the mercantile page) and then running over to CD Baby to drop copies off. Along the way the phone rang. It was none other than Chris Stuart letting us know that he and Janet Beazley had missed their flight and would possibly be a little late for the show we were doing together that evening. Long story short, we added a few songs to our set and as a bonus treat everyone at the Gresham Little Theater got to hear a short set by Eric Uglum and his sons, Austin and Christian. Still no Chris and Janet, so we threw together a short set that ended with everyone jamming onstage to "Got To Do My Time" (how appropriate!). The audience roared as Chris and Janet arrived and took the stage for a phenomenal set. Special thanks to Chuck and Chris Palmer, producers of the RiverCity Bluegrass Festival, for pulling last minute taxi duty. Thanks also to Michelle for letting us have the theater for an extra hour, to Mason for being the perfect host, and to Sharon for her emcee work. Most of all, THANK YOU to Chris Stuart and BackCountry for sharing the stage with us. It was an experience we'll not soon forget!
You can't beat a great stage and a Eric Uglum and sons were as surprised The ADORABLE Janet Beazley belts
phenomenal audience! as everyone else that they were going to out a tune.
play a set!
*Special thanks to Keeper of the Flame Robert for the photos!
January 13, 2007
Kathy had the opportunity to spend a
very COLD Sunday in Goldendale, Washington running around with
Lorraine Reynolds, who is planning the
Fiddle Around the Stars
Blue Moon Bluegrass Festival coming up on May 31 - June 2nd. Wow! For any of
you who know Kathy and think she's high energy, you should meet Lorraine! What a
dynamo! It was also an opportunity to meet with the owners of
Allyn's Building Center, who are
sponsoring the band for the festival.
May 31 - June 2nd folks. I can see this festival growing and growing over the years. Be able to say you were there for the first one!
Javier Short and Jim Allyn from A little promo for our sponsors! Lorraine Reynolds is the town's event
Allyn's Building Center planner. What an awesome woman!
January 5 - 7, 2007
We started the year by being the hosts of the official jams at the RiverCity Bluegrass Festival. Thursday evening started off with a bang as we jammed for about 4 1/2 hours in the upper lobby of the Oregon Convention Center. On hand to learn all about bluegrass jamming were Anne Marie and Denise of the Portland Tribune. (To read the article they wrote click here). Instruments were traded, songs were shared, friendships renewed or begun, and everyone who participated received a special "I Jammed With Kathy Boyd & Phoenix Rising" button and Black Diamond Strings sticker for their efforts. The next official jam began bright and early Saturday morning. Our friends were so excited they got there and started before we did! Sundays jam was a bit more subdued, but quite charming in it's own sleepy-eyed third day of the festival haze. We didn't just jam though! Kathy emceed the Cascade Stage all weekend and Tom taught his now famous "Stage Fright" workshop to about 25 participants. This workshop is becoming the hit of festivals wherever we go! We'd like to send a special thank you to everyone who participated in our efforts over the weekend and to all the new friends we made. We're looking forward to seeing you again soon!
Tom and Kathy share a Giving the convention center that bluegrass sound! Kathy horsing around with Anne Marie
jamming laugh. . . of the Portland Tribune after the interview. . .
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