April Harmonica Festival in La Mesa, CA

Hi all,

   i've been asked to remind everyone of an upcoming
harp fest in warm, beautiful La Mesa Califronia.
here's the info: 
   The 5th annual Spring Harmonica Festival will be
held Saturday April 10, 2004 - from 11:30 a.m. - 6:30
p.m., at the Harry Griffen Park Amphitheater in lovely
La Mesa, California.
   List members can contact BluShouter@xxxxxxx for
more information.

    still not sure you wanna go? check out this
review, by our own Scorcher, of the 2003 fest to whet
your appetite:

Spring Harp Fest is a yearly event in La
Mesa, CA (near San Diego) to benefit the Girls Club
Music Program in San Diego. Here's a blurb from the

"There is no admission to our event and everyone is
invited to pack a picnic lunch (no alcohol please), a
frisbee or hula hoop for the kids, water, sunscreen,
blanket or beach chair, and be sure to bring your
smile. . . and join us because this is always a good
old fashioned afternoon in the park.

This is our 4th annual benefit show, in 2000 and 2001
we raised around 2,000 harmonicas to be distributed to
the kids in attendance at local BITS presentations.

In 2002 we started the Girls Club Music Program and
hope to complete our goal of purchasing one dozen
electronic keyboards and 200 harmonicas for the
program so they will be able to start offering
piano/music lessons to the children involved in
programs there at The Girls Club in South San Diego.
In so doing planting the seed of musical knowledge.

This event remains a first of it's kind for San Diego
County where everyone involved from set-up, to Sound
Man, to Musicians, to Clean up Crew, and MC volunteer
our time, talent and expertise, working together to
build a better future.

We like to think of Spring Harp Fest as a way for
musicians to stand together and really make a
difference in our community with what we do. . . our

While raising funds/pianos with this event we hope to
also increase the visibility of better harmonica
music, as well as the many other talented/local blues
and roots musicians that are available in and
around our area."

The core organizers for the event are Bud Willis,
Harmonica John
Fraser, and Chet Cannon. These guys bust hump to put
on a terrific
event, and they ALWAYS deliver.

I missed Laughing Lenny's set (sorry Lenny!), but
arrived in time to
see "Bar B Que Blues". These guys had a blazing set
with TWO harp
players - kinda like Bacon Fat. They even did a
"tribute to George
Smith" song in their set. Very Hot. HJ was the "Keeper
of Time" again
this year and took his responsibility very seriously
to keep the bands
on schedule & not let anyone go overtime. In this kind
of event,
having even one band go over their allotted set time
really cascades -
it can start looking like the Academy Awards Show real
quick. John
kept 'em on track.

Silk Stegner was up next. Silk's playing & singing is
smoooooooth. Nice set.

Then came the Unknown Players Jam. Everyone's invited
to come up and
jam. We had players from 6 to 76 come up and try thier
chops. In
previous years, the winner was selected by the
audience, but this
year, Chet Cannon had the sole privledge of selection.
The Winner "Joe
Mamma ____________" (sorry, I forgot his last name!)
go to have a set
with the band later in the show.

Chet Cannon took an unexpected set after the UP jam. I
really enjoy
listening to Chet sing & play - clean lines, & soulful
vocal phrasing.

Karl Cabbage, a popular local player was a no show
(had to travel out
of the country on a family emergency), so a very
popular local band,
The Freemonts was up next. The Freemonts vocalist,
Mighty Joe Milsap
was a real pleasure to listen to, and Troy "Pony Boy"
Sandow is a fine
harp player with SERIOUS TONE. You really ought to
catch The Freemonts
if you get a chance. (They were easily the Best
Dressed band, too!)

After the Unknown Player's set came Nelsen Adelard.
WOW. These guys
can BLOW. Nelsen's band includes a Sax player, and he
just tore it up,
y'all! Nelsen swaped chops with him in a little
call-and-reponse bit
during one tune that really had the audience jumpin'.
This band really
knows how to entertain a crowd.

Harmonica John's Blues Buddies played next. If you've
never seen /
heard HJ - well, you NEED to, that's all. John sings &
plays a VERY
mean harp that would be plenty impressive in any
setting. The amazing
The REALLY amazing thing is - HE HAS GREAT TIME!
Seriously, HJ always
gives it his best, and is a real player's player.

I hope someone can finish this - I had to leave early,
due to family
commitments, so I was unable to catch:
Lance Deikman - DJ & the Hitman
Billy Watson with Nathan James - The International
Submarine Band
Chris Micalek - Chris Micalek Trio

If you're within 300 miles of Southern California next
Easter Weekend,
you really ought to catch the Spring Harp Fest - it's
lots of fuun,
real entertaining, FREE, lots of raffle prizes, great
music, and a
real benefit to some great local charities.

Kudos to Chet, Bud, Harmonica John, and all the folks
who worked so
hard to give us this awesome local event.

Do you Yahoo!?
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