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California Hopping to Bluegrass in May

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Parkfield Bluegrass Festival

The 12th Annual Parkfield Bluegrass Festival is in the heart of Parkfield down in Monterey County.

The bands this year are Don Rigsby and Midnight Call, Rarely Herd, Brombies, Whiskey Chimp, Dalton Mountain Gang, Bean Creek, Kitchen Help, LeRoy Mack and Bluegrass Gospel Band, Belle Monroe and Her Brewglass Boys, Black Crown Stringband, and Virtual Strangers.

There are musical workshops, an outstanding kids program, food and craft vendors, a special surprise for the ladies on Mother's Day, and all the jamming you can stand.

There are 65 acres for boondocks style camping, plenty of shade, shared electrical hook ups, and hot showers. 4-day adult tickets are $90 ($85 for seniors), and kids are FREE. Single day tickets are also available. For more info, check www.parkfieldbluegrass.com or call 805-725-3060.

Nanci Griffith, Grass Valley

With a career that spans more than two decades, 19 Albums, and an army of fans, Nanci Griffith will play in concert at The Center for the Arts, 314 W Main St, Grass Valley .

Whether performing her own poetically evocative material or the compositions of her influences, friends, and peers, Nanci Griffith possesses a powerful gift for inhabiting the songs she sings and for communicating unspoken intimacy and heartache through her tender voice and lilting, delicate phrasing. This special performance will feature all her best-known and best-loved classic songs plus tracks from her latest release The Loving Kind. Tickets are $50 general admission and $100 VIP seating. Order yours at 530-274-8384 or www.thecenterforthearts.org.

Dan Miller and Tim May, Sacramento

Dan Miller and Tim May will conduct a flatpicking guitar workshop followed by a concert at the Fifth String Music Store, Alhambra and J St, Sacramento .

Tim May is the kind of guy everyone likes. He's humorous, humble, easy-going, and fun to be around. He's also an accomplished guitar player, singer, and songwriter and one of Nashville's acoustic guitar go-to guys. While there are plenty of great guitar pickers in Nashville, Tim May adds great songwriting and singing to his list of many talents, which include being equally adept at resonator guitar, banjo, bass, and mandolin.

Dan Miller has been the publisher and editor of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine since 1996 and has also co-authored a number of flatpicking books. The workshop, 630 to 800 PM, is $20; the concert, 830 to 1000 PM, is $10. Sign up at dan@flatpick.com or the Fifth String Music Store, 916-442-8282.

Laurie Lewis and Nina Gerber plus Rita Hosking and Cousin Jack, Nevada City

The Miner's Foundry, 325 Spring St, Nevada City, will present a twin bill of two outstanding groups . What more can I say about Laurie Lewis and Nina Gerber? You can't measure Laurie Lewis's 30-year career with the usual commercial yardsticks.

She has won a Grammy True Life Blues: The Songs of Bill Monroe, and twice been named Female Vocalist of the Year by the IBMA. Nina Gerber, guitarist extraordinaire, has performed with virtually every California headliner.

Rita Hosking and Cousin Jack, an outstanding local group, brings to mind kitchen tables, springs, loss, miners, mountains, culture clash, trailers, stray dogs, loggers, hope, forest fires with Rita's always fierce and lovely delivery. Tickets are $20; order yours at 800-838-3006 or www.minersfoundry.org.

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