artichoke music in february

i’m working on this series of concerts and workshops in portland, oregon for the month of february. all on sundays at artichoke music. workshop during the day and concert in the early evening. 

first off it would make sense to say a brief thing about portland itself. as far as the components of a “scene” {more accurately “scenes”}, things are popping pretty good down there. here are some various things that work well there:

  1. lots of good venues of various size.
  2. a community of folk that go hear shows and buy tickets and records.
  3. record stores.
  4. music stores.
  5. left of dial radio.
  6. lots of content creators.
  7. different types of art represented.
  8. public transport.


this is just a short list of course. portland has it going on pretty good for art stuff.


one of the workshops is called banjo basics. if you got a banjo for a gift and have no idea what to do with it or you’ve been messing with one for a short bit this class is for you. the idea is to build a good musical foundation to work from. the banjo is a little weird in terms of layout and pitch etc. so this is an endeavor to demystify some of that.


another workshop is called how to be a good side person. or how to make other people sound good. this subject is a little harder to codify as it deals with abstracts in a sense. it’s one thing to stand up on a stump and blow through your lines and go home, but it’s a little different task-wise to put flattering attention on another person. how do you make someone ELSE sound good? that’s what we’ll be talking about. 


another workshop will be on getting a good live sound with acoustic instruments. you know if you get good at a mandolin or banjo or something and you wind up playing somewhere with a PA, that whole thing can be a little wacky. or if you find yourself in a band or something struggling with sound systems, we will work on a bunch of stuff in this regard. we’ll have to look at everything, the room, crowd, PA, pedals, mics, instrument.


another workshop will be recording strategies for acoustic musicians. it sure is easy to make records these days. but how do you make good ones? there’s quite a few variables in the equation from format, software, studio vs.home, other players, outside producers/engineers, how much of the process should i learn myself, etc. it’s so easy to cheese off a bunch of dough and not get your goals met, i felt like this would be a really good thing to work on.


so those are the workshops. i trust you will find some valuable information therein. 


i have several concerts set up in the evenings each week. one is with my friend gideon freudmann. he lives in portland and is a cellist and composer. if you don’t know his music, you’ll be delighted. we both will play some together as well as some solo stuff. gideon is really funny and talented and has a sharp wit and kind heart. he’s one of the people that make portland such a groove. 


another concert will be with my friend jon neufeld. jon is likely the finest guitarist in portland. so we will be showcasing his fantastic playing and jamming some together as well. he has a very cool sound on the arch top acoustic guitar.


another concert will be with jesse withers. jesse is a great bassist and singer of the bluegrass music down in portland. his mom is the great blues musician mary flowers so he comes by music natural. 


i don’t live super close to portland i’ll be driving from ten hours back and forth each day. i look forward to hanging out with all the nice folks and working on this stuff and playing. i greatly appreciate having access to a great place to work like the artichoke venue and the city of portland in general. thanks to everybody for allowing me to do what i do, work on music. 


all the specific date/time information: