Category Archives: Community

Les Paul Estate Auction


 Les Paul’s “Black Beauty”.   Guernsey’s Auction

New York City’s Guernsey’s Auctioneers and Brokers have announced February 19, to be the date for the historic auction of Les Paul’s treasured Black Beauty guitar.  Tom Doyle, current owner and long time friend, guitar tech, and engineer to all things Les Paul, is parting with this iconic guitar………….. Continue reading Les Paul Estate Auction

SUNY PLattsburgh Bluegrass Club and BGNG


SUNY Plattsburgh Bluegrass Club  President Emily Mero

Bluegrass is alive and well at SUNY Plattsburgh these days!  With the implementation of private lessons and a bluegrass history class  provided by a grant from a generous, anonymous donor, there are now many options for learning about this unique American roots music form.

Along with individual instrument instruction and a bluegrass history class is the offering of a scholarship in Bluegrass. The  Bluegrass for the Next Generation Project was launched in the summer of 2011.  BGNG’s mission is to encourage a lifelong interest in acoustic music, in general, and bluegrass music specifically.


The Bluegrass Club hosts a jam, usually on Sundays, where individuals of any skill level can meet, play, and discuss all things bluegrass.  Those interested in learning more about the club can contact its president and resident mandolin player, Emily Mero at

Along the way the project has be helped along by dedicated individuals interested in promoting and preserving the music form.

Among these individuals are Dr. Stephen Light,  professor of sociology and associate VP for academic affairs,  and Tim Hartnett, associate librarian at the college.  Steve Light,  also a accomplished  banjo player, is currently performing with the Bluegrass Gospel Project. Tim Hartnett, also a veteran musician in the Plattsburgh music scene, plays with the group Oh! Betty.  Instructors for the individual music lessons are Hap Wheeler (dobro) and Skip Smithson (mandolin).

The multi-award winning and widely respected bluegrass group, The Gibson Brothers, have been enthusiastic donors, advocates, and promoters of BGNG since its inception.


Playing For Change and Founder Mark Johnson

Playing for Change Video, Stand by me. The first video in a great series.

I have to thank my good friend and fellow musician,  Andy Gorton , for reminding me about this great series of videos by Playing For Change. Co-founded by Mark Johnson, the foundation has grown into a  nonprofit organization dedicated to building music and art schools for children around the world.

Philanthropic reasons aside, it is also a great study in mobile multi-tracking and anyone interested in audio recording should watch   these videos and take notes. Why? Continue reading Playing For Change and Founder Mark Johnson

Mandolin Master Mike Marshall Live Mando Workshop From ArtistWorks


Mandolin Master Mike Marshall will be hosting a live presentation from his Online Mandolin School series.  There will be something for every mandolin enthusiast to enjoy. It’s a free fun-packed hour of mandolin magic with a special event membership discount, baseball caps for participants, and much more.

Those not familiar with Mike should check out his recordings with David Grisman,  Edgar Meyer, Bela Fleck, Chris Thile, Mark O’Conner and YoYo Ma.  That’s just naming a few!  This mando man has an amazing discography.

I really like his laid back approach to teaching all things mandolin, especially his tips on technic and good practicing habits. Hey, all you mandolin students out there, this is required viewing!

The live stream happens July 9th.  More info here..