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January 18th, 2008
Archie Edwards Blues Jams to Move to New Venue
By Dale Roethlisberger

One of the best places to jam with ‘blues’ musicians is the Archie Edwards Blues Heritage Foundation ( located in Washington, DC. Unfortunately, the ‘barbershop’ where the jams take place every Saturday afternoon has been sold and the foundation is arranging for new space for the weekly jams to continue. We think it’s one of the best jams for any musician. One visit, and most musicians/singers are sure to add some ‘blues’ songs to their repetoire. Or, take one of the music workshops the foundation sponsors. Get the schedule of mini-concerts or arrange to play, perhaps, with some of the musicians and their groups in other public performances.
Although the foundation promotes the ‘piedmont blues’ style, many songs played in the jams crossover to rhythm and blues, country, old timey, or just about any other style on occasion. The jams are friendly and beginners are encouraged. Watch a downloadable Mpeg video of the Saturday Jam;

Blues Jammin’ at Archie Edwards

January 18th, 2008
Voice Jamming at the Metro Washington DC Pub Sings
By Dale Roethlisberger

We have been attending the Pub Sings on the first Tuesdays of each month at the Royal Mile Pub in Wheaton, Maryland for almost two years. If you like sea chanteys, Irish folk tunes, or acapella performance, you will enjoy these pub sings. In December of 2007, Ronna and I sang for the first time “The Pirate Song” – ‘Bein a pirate is all fun and games, till somebody loses an ear’.

We enjoyed ourselves immensely, and the folks attending are very supporting no matter what your singing skill level is. You can even learn from a repetoire of over 200 songs in a lyrics song book sold for a modest price at these events. Various members from many local performing groups like ‘Ship’s Company’, ‘Pyrates Royale’, and ‘Letter of Marque’ regularly attend and everyone usually joins in on the choruses of most songs with astounding harmonic results. Attend one of these events and you can learn about other regular Pub Sings in the Metro DC area.

January 9th, 2008
Philadelphia Folk Festival 2007 – Still a Jammers Paradise
By Dale Roethlisberger

I attended the Philadelphia Folk Festival for the first time in 1969 instead of going to Woodstock. My first acoustic guitar (a cheap 1958 Harmony blondie “f” hole, which I still have) went along with me. Much to my enjoyment, the campground brimmed with jam sessions, day and night, for the entire three day festival. Those jam sessions continue to this day nearly 40 years later. If you are an acoustic musician and enjoy jamming, you would do well to attend the Philadelphia Folk Festival.

The 2007 Philly Folk Fest was no exception to the past. Fortunately, we have graduated from ‘raw’ tent camping to rented recreational vehicles providing amenities such as kitchens, bathrooms, real beds, and more. Having an RV allows much more concentration on playing music and enjoying the culture. Don’t let the nomenclature of ‘folk’ make you believe that you won’t find a jam session for your style of music. You will find everything from 60’s folk, blues, rhythm and blues, classic early rock n’ roll, bluegrass, country, Irish, African, Eastern European, square dancing, and more.