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 How do you guys find new people to play with?

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TipTop

United States
17 posts
since 1/3/09

06/18/2017 18:02:53 View TipTop's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

I've been playing in a humble three person jam that's unfortunately on the verge of coming apart. Our bass player has a baby on the way and the guitar player is becoming increasingly interested in really unusual irish/punk/old time mash-ups. I'm not opposed to different sorts of music, but the strange fusion doesn't necessarily scratch my old-time and folk itch.

I'm sorry if this isn't in the right section but I'm super curious to know where you guys are meeting new people to play old-time music with? I've never really met anyone just to play tunes before. It makes me slightly nervous if I'm being honest.

George FlinkPlayers Union Member

United States
742 posts since 11/22/07

06/18/2017 18:27:59View George Flink's MP3 Archive View George Flink's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

Moving to a new community, I put an ad on Craigslist, "seeking ot fiddler to jam with." Didn't expect much but it worked.

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dorymanPlayers Union Member

United States
448 posts since 11/26/12

06/18/2017 18:50:16 View doryman's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

Attend the local-ish festivals (the Delaware Bluegrass Festival comes to mind).  Bring your RV, or pitch a tent, or sleep in the back of your vehicle. Stay the entire time and check out/particapte in all of the jams happening in the campsites.  Meet potentail jammers from around the area. 

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jswkingsfieldPlayers Union Member

United States
2361 posts since 10/13/11

06/18/2017 20:15:07View jswkingsfield's MP3 Archive View jswkingsfield's Photo Albums View jswkingsfield's Blog Reply with Quote

Any fiddle/banjo/guitar/bass/etc. teachers in your area?  Introduce yourself, and ask them to refer you to current & former students looking for someone to jam with.

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Jimbeaux

Germany
64 posts since 5/24/16

Online

06/19/2017 02:44:22View Jimbeaux's MP3 Archive Reply with Quote

I started a facebook group for my city and found a lot of people.

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Scott Barnbilly56

United States
158 posts since 10/16/11

06/19/2017 04:45:09 View Scott Barnbilly56's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

I am in what I call a music black out zone in rural area of Michigan . I had to meet other musicians by putting on senior center music events and had to find and organize events and community center stuff . Met a lot at music festivals and parking lot & camp site jams there . Some I searched out on Craig's list . Some at senior monthly dance where you play for them as group of walk in's .Other places I don't have here are music stores . So it might be the more you look the more you find .
My future is very much brighter with a move to the mountains of North Carolina in a few more weeks . Well hooked in there with musicians and the land of milk & honey for ole timey & blue grass so will be jack pot music future .
Good luck on your search for others and there are some out there so just matter of finding them .

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Jim Yates

Canada
6195 posts since 2/21/07

06/19/2017 07:01:14View Jim Yates's MP3 Archive View Jim Yates's Photo Albums View Jim Yates's Blog Reply with Quote

When I first moved to this area, it took a while to meet folks who played acoustic music.  I met a few folks while I was trying out a banjo in the local music store.  A carpenter who was doing drywall in our house saw a mandolin hanging on the wall and invited me to come to their Tuesday night jams. 
I've never done this, but I see notices on the bulletin board all the time at the music store where I teach.  They say things like "Wanted - Old time (or Rock or Punk or Country or Bluegrass. . .) musicians to jam on Monday (or Tuesday. . .) at. . ."  I'm not sure how well this works, but a lot of phone numbers get torn off the bottom.  I'd give it a try.  A lot of musicians hang out in music stores.
Ask the music store employees if they know of any old time musicians.


Edited by - Jim Yates on 06/19/2017 07:03:40

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TipTop

United States
17 posts since 1/3/09

06/19/2017 07:11:21 View TipTop's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

Thanks for all the ideas, everyone. I guess it's time to get slightly more outgoing and make something happen.

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sellis

180 posts since 4/4/13

06/19/2017 08:54:10 View sellis's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

I have been reluctant to do what is described above RE Craigslist because of all the creepy things that sometimes accompany CL..  I live near Flint  in SE Michigan, which like Houghton Lake where Scott Barnbilly lives, is not a hotbed for OT music.  If I wanted to play BG I could probably find some people, but not OT.  If I drive 50 miles west to Lansing there is a hotbed.  I have been looking particularly for an OT fiddler since I resumed playing after a 20 year hiatus.  I asked at Elderly and they told me about a weekly OT session that has been going for 25+ years.  I was able to go once and it was great, but for a number of reasons it is hard for me to get there.  Ask around at all the music stores.

I also joined a contraband through some intense serendipity.  A new colleague who had grown up in Flint asked me what I was going to do in retirement and I said my music and she said her dad and some other folks in the local contra dance scene had started their own contra band and that has been fun.  I am more into playing than singing or entertaining and it is fun to watch a bunch of dancers enjoy your playing not by clapping but by moving their feet.  The dancing also keeps the music from going at breakneck speed like a lot of BG bands do.  Problems are that almost no one except me plays by ear, and that the fiddler is more into Irish and BG than into OT music.  We do play mostly OT fiddle tunes,  but I do not like even a small number of  jigs.  Check the contra dance scene in your area (or square dances).

One place where I found out about a whole bunch of jams in the Grand Blanc MI area was through a site called folkjam.org .  The site has some problems and has not been maintained, so I cannot get a full login, but sometimes it will let you search an area code for jams and musicians it knows about.  It identified most of the active local jam, but none of them turned out to be exclusively OT.  However, today when I tried to search jor jams near Summit NJ it kept going back to Grand Blanc.  Also if it does list local players you cannot communicate with them by PM because of the login glitches.

I have also gone through the member lists of BHO and FHO to identify any members that might live nearby.  Didn't find any but your mieage may vary.

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dorymanPlayers Union Member

United States
448 posts since 11/26/12

06/19/2017 10:00:12 View doryman's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

quote:
Originally posted by gs650
 

Thanks for all the ideas, everyone. I guess it's time to get slightly more outgoing and make something happen.


Yes, this the thing. I'm an introvert by nature and my musical chops aren't such that folks are banging down my door to get me to play with them.  What I have found though, is that once you get a foot in the door, more jamming opportunities become availalbe as you meet and are introduced to more players. 

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Viper

United States
978 posts since 12/12/07

06/19/2017 10:06:51View Viper's MP3 Archive View Viper's Photo Albums View Viper's Blog Reply with Quote

quote:
Originally posted by sellis
 

I have been reluctant to do what is described above RE Craigslist because of all the creepy things that sometimes accompany CL..  I live near Flint  in SE Michigan, which like Houghton Lake where Scott Barnbilly lives, is not a hotbed for OT music.  If I wanted to play BG I could probably find some people, but not OT.  If I drive 50 miles west to Lansing there is a hotbed.  I have been looking particularly for an OT fiddler since I resumed playing after a 20 year hiatus.  I asked at Elderly and they told me about a weekly OT session that has been going for 25+ years.  I was able to go once and it was great, but for a number of reasons it is hard for me to get there.  Ask around at all the music stores.

I also joined a contraband through some intense serendipity.  A new colleague who had grown up in Flint asked me what I was going to do in retirement and I said my music and she said her dad and some other folks in the local contra dance scene had started their own contra band and that has been fun.  I am more into playing than singing or entertaining and it is fun to watch a bunch of dancers enjoy your playing not by clapping but by moving their feet.  The dancing also keeps the music from going at breakneck speed like a lot of BG bands do.  Problems are that almost no one except me plays by ear, and that the fiddler is more into Irish and BG than into OT music.  We do play mostly OT fiddle tunes,  but I do not like even a small number of  jigs.  Check the contra dance scene in your area (or square dances).

One place where I found out about a whole bunch of jams in the Grand Blanc MI area was through a site called folkjam.org .  The site has some problems and has not been maintained, so I cannot get a full login, but sometimes it will let you search an area code for jams and musicians it knows about.  It identified most of the active local jam, but none of them turned out to be exclusively OT.  However, today when I tried to search jor jams near Summit NJ it kept going back to Grand Blanc.  Also if it does list local players you cannot communicate with them by PM because of the login glitches.

I have also gone through the member lists of BHO and FHO to identify any members that might live nearby.  Didn't find any but your mieage may vary.


I'm having the same issue with the FolkJam website. I couldn't search outside my area. But it's how I first found people in my area. 

You could also try the other Hangout sites for people in your area. Good luck!

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mbuk06Players Union Member

England
5513 posts since 10/5/06

06/19/2017 16:37:47View mbuk06's MP3 Archive View mbuk06's Classified Ads View mbuk06's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

Music is one of those activities where it's impossible not to meet and talk to people.

Assuming that there are no sessions in your area my advice would be regularly play out somewhere - your local craft or farmer's market (that's an opportunity to raise money for a good cause too). When folks get to know you'll be there on a specific day and time they'll come find you, stop by and chat. And that contact widens into local word-of-mouth. You don't need to be an extrovert to do that, just approachable, genuinely interested and motivated. My guess is that before long you'll have musicians asking to join you for some tunes. Good musicians are by nature curious and adaptable, those who aren't already familiar with OT will catch on fast.

Do that for a while and you have the basis of a local session. Activity generates activity. smiley

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Paul R

Canada
9366 posts since 1/28/10

06/19/2017 19:30:21 View Paul R's Photo Albums View Paul R's Blog Reply with Quote

I got into a country open-mic/jam that billed itself as old time (not my idea of old time). There I learned about a BG jam, and then I learned about a folk jam. I was up to three jams a week at one point. Talk to the musicians you know, or to people at the local music store.


Edited by - Paul R on 06/19/2017 19:32:04

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TipTop

United States
17 posts since 1/3/09

06/19/2017 20:03:45 View TipTop's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

I really appreciate all the responses you guys have been providing. I just put up a CL ad and in the next few days I'm going to start hitting the music shops in the area and I'll poke around and maybe post a few flyers.

I'm feeling like I can do it.

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Jim Yates

Canada
6195 posts since 2/21/07

06/19/2017 22:34:54View Jim Yates's MP3 Archive View Jim Yates's Photo Albums View Jim Yates's Blog Reply with Quote

Have you tried doing a member search for BHO members in Summit, NJ?  They might be able to help you.

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Jimbeaux

Germany
64 posts since 5/24/16

Online

06/19/2017 23:35:52View Jimbeaux's MP3 Archive Reply with Quote

Wait a second, New Jersey? You can't tell me that you cannot find other musicians in America's most densely populated state. Plus the fact that you're so close to NYC. 

I really think the problem is that you are not looking hard enough :) 

 

Here is some stuff for you:

Bluegrass and Old Time Association of New Jersey: http://www.njbluegrass.org/

This jam is only a 30 minute drive from you:

http://www.diamondcut.com/oldtime/

 

That took me about 5 minutes of google witchcraft ;-)

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TipTop

United States
17 posts since 1/3/09

06/21/2017 20:11:24 View TipTop's Photo Albums Reply with Quote

I just wanted to thank everyone again for their responses and encouragement. I've gotten an overwhelming amount of responses from my craigslist ad. I can't believe all the people in the area who're actually interested in old-time music! I'm pretty pumped to get out there and start playing with some fresh blood.

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