From The Folknik July/August 2003
(Volume XXXIX, Number 4)

e-zine of the San Francisco Folk Music Club
(click here for membership info)

The San Francisco Folk Music Club is a nonprofit corporation
dedicated to the enjoyment, preservation and promotion of
acoustic music in individual, family, and community life.

Table of Contents

Camp Harmony? It's only July!

Kids's Rates Lowered for '03-04!
It's not too early to start thinking about Camp Harmony and New Year's 2004! Check your mailing label and renew your membership now if necessary to be sure you receive the next issue with the Camp Harmony Registration Form. You must be a member of SFFMC to register for camp. Members in good standing on September 1 have priority admission, though in the past few years everyone has been able to get into camp. Camp will run from Tuesday, December 30 through Sunday, January 4.

We have lowered the price for children aged 3-12 this year. The Committee and the SFFMC Board recognize that Camp Harmony has become very expensive for our many members with younger children. We also have taken note of the many Harmony kids who have grown into valuable members of the folk community, and we want this trend to continue! We hope more families will discover how fun and rewarding this camp can be.

Our prices are still tentative, but we expect an adult early bird will pay $260 for 5 days of camp and kids will be $135. Early bird (on or before November 1) per-day registrations probably will be $55 for adults and $29 for kids (aged 3-12). Registrations postmarked after November 1 will most likely be $61 for adults and $32 for kids per day.

There is, as usual, no full camp discount for later registrations. We will welcome on-site registrations WITHOUT MEALS (Drop Ins) for about $43 per day for adults, $25 per day for kids.

We will still have some Campership funds available to all campers who need them on a first come-first serve basis. If you are flush this year, please consider donating to this fund. Your donations are tax deductible! There will be a place on the Harmony Form to make a contribution, or you can send an extra check to SFFMC. Please mark it "Camp Harmony Donation."

Your comments on camp are of interest to us on the Camp Harmony Committee. We know that we cannot please everyone, but we do consider your suggestions. Email them to or snail mail to Mary Luckhardt, 920 32nd St, Richmond, CA 94804. We look forward to a wonderful camp in 2004! back to top

Labor Day Camp - Boulder Creek

At Boulder Creek Scout Reservation, near Boulder Creek (off Hwy. 9, south of Big Basin State Park), on Bear Creek Rd. It's the same place as last year's Labor Day and this year's July 4th campouts.

Register early; the ranger wants a rough count of attendees in advance. We send a confirmation letter and directions after you register. Registration form is here and will also be in the online folknik for July/Aug, 2003. The SFFMC website is

New Information
Rates: The Scouts have raised rates, so just to break even, we must raise them to $10/adult; the day use fee is now $5/day.

This camp is open to people who have not joined SFFMC, but we encourage them to join (which they may do at camp). If you have friends who are interested in folk music, please invite them. We usually have plenty of room. There are tent spaces and 8 tent cabins with cots.

RV Parking: We may have to park RVs elsewhere than Cubland, our usual spot. The new spot may be the parking lot. Please be flexible; it's the Scouts' decision.

Workshops: Let's revive the workshop tradition at summer campouts! This needs someone to encourage and coordinate advance workshops and to set up a bulletin board like the one at Camp Harmony - a large board or cardboard marked with days and time slots. To volunteer for this, contact Phyllis Jardine,, (925) 846-4549.

Anyone can lead a workshop; list them with the subject, the leader's name, and the place, e.g. in the kitchen, around the pool. If we don't get workshops set up ahead of time, we can still do them at camp.

Parking and unloading
We must park in the parking lot; we cannot drive directly into campsites. 2 or 3 cars at a time will be allowed through the gate, but only on the paved road. Cars may go near sites - but not into them - to unload and reload after camp. Do not drive off the paved road without permission. There are hand carts for carrying gear to campsites. Pack as light as possible.

SFFMC volunteers will register campers and direct parking; please follow their directions. Back vehicles into spaces after unloading (Boy Scout Rule).

Volunteers - help needed
Everyone does an hour of camp duty: registration and parking, or cleanup after camp on the last day. We always need parking lot volunteers - especially on Saturday afternoon and Monday morning.

Final camp cleanup includes the kitchen, restroom and litter patrol throughout the campsites. These jobs are essential and always need volunteers! Please sign up for them at the registration desk as soon as you can after arriving.

Other ways to volunteer: early arrivals (check in: 2:00 pm Fri.) can help post signs, register and direct parking.

And please show up for your chore. If you cannot, leave a note at the registration desk so we can cover the time.

Special Volunteer Jobs
We would like volunteers in advance for the following jobs. To sign up, contact Phyllis Jardine at

Registration supervisors: preferably people who have done registration before. Involves setting up registration table and information at start of day, occasionally helping volunteers at registration and ensuring that the cash box and cash are safe at days-end. This can be divided into 2 or more blocks of time per day.

Cleanup coordinator: preferably one who has done cleanup before. Involves going to the dining hall on the last day and delegating cleanup chores to listed volunteers. Also involves ensuring the kitchen is locked at the end of cleanup.

Quiet hours
We have neighbors directly across Bear Creek, so we have to keep singing and talking quiet after 10:00 pm. If you plan to sing/play later than 10:00 pm, keep your circle as far from Bear Creek as possible.

Saturday night potluck
Potluck at the outside dining area near the camp kitchen on Saturday night at 6:00 pm, and a concert in the amphitheater afterwards.

You may store your potluck food in the fridge or freezer in the kitchen until the dinner. Label everything, and don't leave anything in the kitchen when you leave camp. The deadline to retrieve food will be posted - probably noonish on Monday. After that, food will be put on the outside tables, then thrown away if unclaimed.

We can use the stoves, pots & pans, serving dishes & utensils, etc. in the kitchen. Bring your own plates and silverware; disposable suggested. Sorry, there's no dish washing machine.

We plan to hire a lifeguard - hopefully for Saturday and Sunday. Days will be announced at camp, at the pool or registration table. There is no charge for swimming.

"Pack it in, pack it up." At the end of your camp stay, bag your trash and carry it to the ranger's trailer near the maintenance shed (across from kitchen - look for signs). Use the plastic bags hanging from the trash cans in your campsite. The kitchen may have extra bags (try the cleaning supply drawers) or check the men's restroom near the dining hall. Please take recycleables home with you.

Boy Scout Rules
No alcohol or drugs are allowed at the camp. back to top

Musical Meetings
Musical meetings of the San Francisco Folk Music Club are held every other Friday at 885 Clayton Street, between Carl and Parnassus Streets in San Francisco. Singing and jamming in three separate rooms start at 8:00 p.m. Guests are always welcome, no one is expected to "perform," and there is no charge. Snacks are provided through $1 food kitty donations or finger food contributions.
Date July 11 July 25 August 3 August 22 September 5
Setup Ken Hayes Melissa Sarenac Ed Wyre Melissa Sarenac Faith
Bulletin Board Debbie Klein Vicky Julian Ed Wyre Yvette Tannenbaum Debbie Klein
Host/ess Carolyn Jayne Yvette Tannenbaum Phil Morgan Paula Kristovich Marisa Malvino
Host/ess   Shirley Baker Denise Soler Ed Bronstein Fred Bates Faith
Singing Room  Estelle Freedman Melissa Sarenac Melissa Sarenac Yvette Tannenbaum Phil Morgan
Theme Young & Old Brothers & Sisters Roads & Rivers Love & Passion Lost & Found
Cleanup Chuck Oakes Chuck Oakes Chuck Oakes  Chuck Oakes Chuck Oakes

Board Meetings
The SFFMC board meets on the second Tuesday of each month—potluck at 6:30 p.m., meeting at 8:00 p.m. All Club members are welcome to attend the potluck dinner and the Board meeting.
  • July 8: Phil Morgan's, 817 Arlington, Berkeley, (510) 525-1965
  • August: No Meeting
  • September 9: Phil Morgan's, 817 Arlington, Berkeley (510) 525-1965 back to top

Club News
Faith is away during June and July, and among festivals where she is performing in July is the Vancouver Folk Music Festival (

Long-time member Mitch Gordon gives beginning classes in Irish button accordion, which he proclaims as "the ideal Irish session instrument." Classes are held in Berkeley on the first Thursday evening of the month, and rental instruments are available. Contact Boaz Accordions at (510) 845-1429, or Mitch at

Jamie Delman has guitars for sale: a 1964 Gibson LG-1 acoustic, dark sunburst, in mint condition, for $1100; a mid-70s L6-S electric for $575; a great Carlos "beater" with good tone and action, for $150; and a 1975 Yamaha FG-200 with a beautiful warm tone, for $300. Call Jamie at (415) 552-7595.

Thanks to Bev and Jerry Praver, Peter Ross, and Estelle Freidman, we have a plethora of articles about folk music clubs in the British Isles-so much that we have to spread them over two issues, with Ireland and Scotland coming first and England waiting for the next issue.

As always, to announce a marriage, a baby, a new CD, special gigs or events, instruments for sale, or other similar news, e-mail

Fold-in/Folk Sing August 24

The fold-in is at noon, Sunday August 24, at the home of Marian Gade, 136 Highland Blvd., Kensington, (510) 524-9815. The more, the merrier - to help with the folknik, enjoy a meal afterwards, and to make music. Bring a potluck dish and instruments. back to top

Irish Folk Clubs

In May, 2002 we visited Ireland for three weeks; our primary goal was to visit as many singing sessions as possible. Music is plentiful in Ireland but not easy to find unless you do lots of homework, and most of it is instrumental. We did a lot of research on Mudcat ( searching the past discussion and asking a lot of questions. A good web site to start with is

Friday, May 3 - An Góilín at Mayes Pub in Dublin. An excellent evening with lots of fine singers. One guest, Siobhan Moore, was brilliant. (For more on An Góilín, click here.)
Saturday, May 4 - Hughes Pub in Dublin. A fine instrumental session, thinly attended.
Thursday, May 9 - went to McCarrol's Pub in Ballycastle, County Antrim. A fine instrumental session with some group singing. This session went so late they served free sandwiches at midnight!
Friday, May 10 - McGrory's Pub in Culdaff, Inishowen. Another excellent instrumental session but again thinly attended.
Sunday, May 12 - Crane Bar in Galway. A good instrumental session; we missed the singing the night before.
Monday, May 13 - Singers Circle at O'Sullivan's in Kilea, County Tipperary. A fine singing session that lasted half the night. One attendee was Michael Smith, Ireland's Minister of Defence.
Tuesday, May 14 - Roadside Pub, Lisdoonvarna, County Clare. A so-so instrumental session; more tourists than people.
Wednesday, May 15 - Ennis Singers Club, Brandon's Bar, Ennis. Meeting cancelled due to the McNamara Clan gathering (the club leader is a McNamara). Went on to Linnane's Pub, also known as Kitty's Corner, Kilfenore, County Clare. The best instrumental session we have ever attended, with some members of the old Kilfenora Ceili Band.
Thursday, May 16 - Jim of the Mills Pub, about two miles west of Ballycahill in County Tipperary. Hard to find but a wonderful mixed session. Open only Thursday night; no sign, so the gardaí can't find it either. Lasts until dawn.
Sunday, May 18, Cork Traditional Singers, Spailpín Fanach Pub, Cork. A fine singing session with no instruments permitted; ended before midnight.
Tuesday, May 21 - Fingal Singers Club, O'Connors Pub, Ballyboughal, County Dublin. Despite its name, a mixed session, but both singing and playing were excellent.

There's still a lot of smoking, and this is Ireland, so nothing starts when they say it will and locations and times change at the drop of a Guinness. It takes time before and during your trip to find these places, but the rewards are great. —Bev and Jerry Praver back to top

Going to Ireland? Listen closely . . .
When I asked Faith Petric about good places to sing and hear music when I visited Dublin, she said, "Call Bill Whelan when you get there-if anyone knows, he will." She was right. Bill sent me to a Traditional Singers Club called "An Góilín," which meets every Friday night upstairs at a pub. No instruments, just heavenly voices taking turns when the spirit moved them, singing in Irish or English with gentle singing along from others. Since it was May 2nd, many songs spoke of summer (including "Summertime"); I couldn't understand the Irish words, but the sentiments came through clearly. And one powerful political ballad in English, updating the Irish quest for freedom with a rousing "No war for oil/Not in my name" finale, still haunts me.

The Singers Club announces at the opening its friendly creed, one we can all use: "There is no standard set for the singing here, but we set a very high standard in listening," the evening's host, Gerry O'Reilly, explained. The close attention and appreciation made each song special. So if you are heading to Ireland, check it out. There is a small (€2) fee, and the bar serves a great Guinness. The club has a website with all the information:

And check out, too, the Rough Deal String-band, a trio in which Bill Whelan plays a fine five string banjo on vintage tunes. Their email address is . Thanks to long distance SFFMC member Bill for this tip and his music. —Estelle Friedman back to top

Ed Miller's Folksong Tours of Scotland
I just returned from a two-week folk music tour of Scotland that I'd highly recommend to SFFMC members. The tours are led by Scottish singer Ed Miller, who now lives in Austin, Texas, and occasionally performs in the Bay Area. We sang our way across Scotland in a van, and most nights there was a private or semi-private concert by Scots or Gaelic singers, or a traditional "session" in a local pub. In Edinburgh Ed was the opening act at the Edinburgh Folk Club, which meets Wednesday nights.

Three of many memorable musical moments for me were: Ed leading us in "The Rolling Hills of the Border" and "The Broom of the Cowdenknowes" as we drove along the river Tweed in the Borders area, where Ed is from; Margaret Bennett singing a Gaelic song in a pub where you could hear a pin drop, and leading us in the "Skye Boat Song" as we drove on the bridge from the Highlands to the island of Skye (where Margaret was born); Adam McNaughton in Glasgow singing for us his moving song "Yellow in the Broom," which is sung from a Traveller's (or Tinker's) perspective.

During the days Ed, who has a doctorate in Scottish folklore, and our driver-guide shared their knowledge as we visited such historical sites as the battlefield of Culloden and Pictish sites and stones. We also encountered unusual museums like the Scottish Fisheries Museum and the Newtongrange Mining Museum, where Brian McNeill sang us his powerful song "The Prince of Darkness." The tour wasn't completely music-oriented; we had two free days and additional free time for hiking or the usual tourist activities. For more information on future tours--there is another one in September--contact Ed directly at — Peter Ross back to top

Hootenanny Night
The July and August Hoots are the last two before the Hoot takes a two-month vacation-Café International will be closed in September, and the October Hoot will be pre-empted by the wedding of impresario Richard Rice and Lisa Whitman.

On July 12 we have:

Homespun Rowdy: John Norwood and the gang's singular bluegrass harmonies and sharp picking (

Riggy Rackin: Riggy returns with songs from his extensive repertoire (

Art Peterson: One of our favorite accordion-slingers.

James Brown: James blows a mean harp and writes funny song parodies (

Ron Fielder: Ron is a staple at Bay Area jams with his rousing renditions of old favorites.

And on August 9:

Rick Dougherty: A lead singer for the Limeliters. Rick has graced stages for more than 30 years with his unforgettable voice and finger-picking guitar. (

Garrin Benfield: Garrin is known for his passionate performance style and heartfelt songwriting (

Jolie Holland: Her web site calls her music "spooky American fairytales" (

Jimmy Bruno: A Bay Area singer-songwriter whose songs have been recorded by Shawn Colvin, Mary Lou Lord and Cliff Eberhardt.

AJ Roach: A Hoot favorite returns! AJ will be joined by captivating vocalist Mia Thompson (

Hootenanny Night is presented monthly by the SFFMC at Café International, 508 Haight St. (at Fillmore), San Francisco, from 7:00 to 10:30 p.m. It starts with a performer showcase and ends with a folk music. For more information contact Richard Rice at (415) 775-0221, , or visit back to top

Freyda Epstein
Nov. 30, 1956 - May 17, 2003

On May 17, fiddler and singer Freyda Epstein died in an automobile accident on her way to Musicalia, a folk music gathering near Charlottesville, Virginia.

Freyda was known to many in the folk music community here as co-director of the World Harmony Chorus, and she traveled with them to Cuba in November 2001. Last winter, she also traveled to South Africa as part of a cultural exchange.

Freyda had a rich deep alto voice, and sang and fiddled with great passion. Besides her gifts as a musician, she was devoted to sharing her knowledge, both in her work with the World Harmony Chorus and as an Alexander Technique instructor. She is also remembered for her wry and wacky sense of humor, her sharp wit, and her warmth and friendliness.

A native of Boston, Freyda moved to Elkins, West Virginia, in the 1970s and joined the seminal folk group Trapezoid, performing and recording with them from 1980 to 1988. I was fortunate to meet and hear the "Zoids" frequently, and Freydas duet singing with soprano Lorraine Duisit was unbelievably beautiful. After leaving Trapezoid, Freyda formed her own group, Freyda and Acoustic AttaTude; their debut album "Midnight at Cabell Hall" won a silver medal from NAIRD. In the 90s, she recorded a highly regarded childrens CD, "Globalullabies", using melodies from around the world.

Survivors include a brother, Paul Epstein, and sister, Deborah Lakin. Daniel Steinberg has put up a page about Freyda with links to other sites: —Suzy Thompson back to top

Button Accordion Classes

Mitch Gordon, long-time club member, gives beginning classes in Irish button accordion, an instrument he proclaims as "the ideal Irish session instrument." Classes are held in Berkeley on the first Thursday evening of the month, and rental instruments are available. Contact Boaz Accordions at (510) 845-1429, or Mitch back to top

Santa Cruz Freedom Song Network

We meet to share songs with a socio-political message. Come sing for peace and justice every second Sunday at Louden Nelson Center Room 11, Santa Cruz from 2-4 pm. All are welcomed and everyone gets a chance. Please call (831) 338-7283 for more information. The next meeting is July 13. back to top

Mid-Atlantic Song Contest

The 20th Annual Mid-Atlantic Song Contest is now accepting entries; submission deadline August 11. Two winners in each of ten categories will be awarded prizes and inclusion on a Winners CD. Grand prize is $1,000.

Sponsored by Songwriters' Association of Washington (SAW), in conjunction with BMI, Oasis CD Manufacturing, TAXI, Omega Recording Studios and Songwriters' Market.

Songwriters Assoc. of WA website ( has rules and brochure (or request to be mailed one) or call (301) 654-8434 or write to SAW, PMB 106-137, 4200 Wisconsin Avenue, Washington, DC 20016 or contact the Contest Director, Jean Bayou, back to top

Free Family Concerts in Libraries

This summer, Laura Lind and Adam Miller will be performing a series of free family concerts of traditional folk music at Bay Area public libraries. Concerts start July 3 and run through August 23. Locations included are San Jose, Menlo Park, San Bruno, San Carlos, Mountain View, Stanford, Los Altos, Benicia and Palo Alto. Please contact Adam and Laura at autoharper@earthlink.netfor more information. back to top

Jams We Just Heard About...

These sessions take place at McGrath's Irish Pub at 1539 Lincoln Ave., at the corner of Stanton, on the lovely island of Alameda. McGrath's also hosts great acoustic music from all over and has several other sessions. For more information: (510) 522-6263,, or Sea Chanteys and Songs of the Waterways Jam: Tuesday nights 7:30 pm-12:00 or 12:30 am. Americana jam with some traditional American and a bit of British folk, too. Sundays, 7:30 pm-12:00 or 12:30 am back to top

Festivals 'n Such

High Sierra Music Festival; July 3-6
Plumas-Sierra Fairgrounds, Quincy, CA. Eclectic music & dance, camping. Info: (510) 420-1529,

2nd Annual Boonville Folk-Blues Festival; July 12
Mendocino County Fairgrounds, Boonville, CA. 12 noon-6 pm. Info: (707) 895-FRET,,

Hayward-Russell City Blues Festival July 12-13
777 B St., City Hall Plaza, Hayward, CA. Blues, swing, gospel. Info: (510) 836-2227,,

Humboldt Folklife Festival July 16-20
Blue Lake, CA. Info: (707) 822-5394,,

Vancouver Folk Music Festival July 18-20
Jericho Beach Park, Vancouver, Canada. Several stages, workshops. "Poly-traditional." Info: (800) 883-3655,,

Saw Players & Friends Picnic & Music Fest July 20
Roaring Camp, Felton (north of Santa Cruz), CA. Workshops, open mike, jamming, all instruments. Info: (510) 523-4649,,

Stockton Folk Dance Camp July 20-August 2
Univ. of the Pacific Campus, Stockton, CA. Two week-long sessions. Info: (560) 474-3231,,

Wolf Mountain Bluegrass Festival July 25-27
Grass Valley, CA. All the best bluegrass from the West Coast. Info: (831) 425-2270;,

Great American Bluegrass & Acoustic Music Festival July 25-27
Hesperia Lake, Hesperia, CA. Info: (909) 678-0831,,

Willowcreek Bluegrass Festival July 26-27
North Fork Recreation Center, between Fresno and Yosemite. Info: Reno McCormick (559) 683-2424, or Mike Knapp (559) 877-3474,

Puget Sound Guitar Workshop July 26-August 1
August 2-8, 9-15 (3 sessions). Bellingham, WA, near Seattle. Info: (360) 647-2979,;

Redwood Dulcimer Day August 2
Boomeria, Bonny Doon, CA. Appalachian dulcimer workshops & jam. Info: Janet Herman (831) 429-1691,,

Music Empowerment Summer Sing August 3-9
Montana. Music & creative arts camp for women. Limited reg. Info: Judy Fjell (406) 932-648,,

Rocky Mountain Fiddle Camp August 3-10 & 10-17
High Peaks Camp near Estes Park, CO. Teaching fiddle, banjo, guitar, piano, cello, harp, pipes, bodhran, dulcimer. Info: Bonnie Carol (303) 258-7763,,

Country Roads Folk Music Camp August 3-10
Mt. Madonna County Park, (near Gilroy) CA. Workshops, crafts, jams, nature hikes, games. Info: Anna or Ron Green, (408) 379-4090,

Twain Harte Arts & Wine Festival August 2-3
Twain Harte, CA (11 miles E. of Sonora). Free. (209) 533-3473,,

Petaluma Summer Music Festival August 2-23 Eclectic concerts and events all over Petaluma. Info: (707) 763-8920,

Barefield Ceili Band in Concert August 8
8 pm, United Irish Cultural Cntr, 2700 45th Ave, SF. S.F. Cooley-Keegan Branch of Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann, sponsors these 12-18 yr. old musicians, from Co. Clare, Ireland. Concert includes Boyle School of Irish Dance and Donegal vocalist, Louise Crossan. Info: (415) 664-6579 or (415) 681-4803.

Eisteddfod New York August 8-10
Polytechnic Univ., Brooklyn. TRAD. folk music of N. America, Gr. Britain & Ireland sponsored by Pinewoods Folk Music Club. Highly recommended! Info:

Dead on the Creek Festival August 8-10
Willits, CA. Bluegrass, Americana, Celtic, Jamband, and Grateful Dead. Limited tickets. Info: (707) 459-3015,

Sonora Blues Festival August 9
Mother Lode Fairgrounds, Sonora, CA. Music, workshops and more. Info: (209) 533-3473,

San Gregorio Music FestivalAugust 9-10
San Gregorio, CA (35 miles south of SF). Info: (650) 726-2499 or (415) 267-1866,

Kindred Gathering XXIX August 15-17
Cutter Scout Reservation, Boulder Creek, CA. Fretted dulcimers and their friends. SFFMC members cordially invited. Info: Jim Burrill (650) 366-8661,

Northwest Jam Camp August 17-22
Pilgrim Firs, Port Orchard, WA. Sponsored by Puget Sound Guitar Workshop. No classes, just music with friends. Info: (206) 365-5590,

Cotati Accordion Festival August 23-24
La Plaza Park, Cotati CA. Accordion in every culture, food, drink, dancing. Info: (707) 664-0444,

Scottish Gathering and Games August 30-31 Alameda County Fairgrounds, Pleasanton, CA. Info: (800) 713-3160,

5th Annual Delta Blues Festival September 13
Downtown Antioch, CA. Music, food, arts & crafts. Free, 12:00-7:00. Info: (925) 706-4270:

1st Annual Sonora Celtic FaireSeptember 13-14 Sonora, CA. Dervish, Teada, & Brother. Info:

Walnut Valley Festival September 18-21
Winfield, KS. Concerts, jams, Natl. Flatpickin' Championship, camping. Info: P.O. Box 245, Winfield KS 67156, (620) 221-3250,