Brewgrass! A Bluegrass and Microbrew Celebration, now in it’s 15th year, was originally the brainchild of Rockfish Grill and H2O owner Rick Star and his friend, Barry Brower.
Brower, a longtime resident of Anacortes, has been at the core of many fine bluegrass groups including The Friends of Sally Johnson, The Fossils and currently Pearly Blue. He is a bluegrass writer and historian and was a longtime emcee of KBCS Bluegrass Ramble.
Dreamed up over a couple of beers naturally, Brewgrass! brings top regional and national bluegrass talent to Skagit county every year and provides an opportunity to enjoy many fine locally brewed beers at the Rockfish and the Brown Lantern in downtown Anacortes.
The event which happens every November is scheduled for Friday and Saturday November 2nd and 3rd this year. Kicking off at 8PM each evening at The Rockfish Grill followed by a 9:30 start at The Brown Lantern, you’ll enjoy continuous music until well past midnight! (Note: Previous participant, H2O, will not be part of Brewgrass! this year as they are undergoing renovation.)
Stay and Play for Brewgrass! at the nearby Cap Sante Inn
and Marina Inn
are offering discounts on lodging with an advance reservation. Call the Cap Sante at (360) 293-0602 or the Marina Inn at (360) 293-1100 and tell 'em you're coming to town for Brewgrass!
Here’s the 2018 line-up:
Brown Lantern – Sweet Lou’s Sour Mash 9:30PM
Rockfish Grill – Roosevelt Road 8PM
Brown Lantern – Pickled Okra 9:30PM
Rockfish Grill – High Mountain String Band 8PM
Seattle based Sweet Lou’s Sour Mash
is a bluegrass band with punk rock energy. Started in March of 2013, they’ve been refining their sound and high-energy live show ever since. Mixing originals, punk covers, rock 'n roll covers, and their own twist on traditional bluegrass tunes, Sweet Lou's is a band for all occasions. They host a much-loved free folk jam every second Sunday of the month open to the public at the Poggie Tavern in West Seattle.
As a constantly evolving band, they’ve had a number of musicians from the local Seattle music community join us on stage. Sweet Lou’s current line-up includes Jimmy Hall on guitar, Meggie Rodgers on fiddle, Ryan Jochim on mandolin and Seth Jackson on bass. You can usually find one or more members at one of Seattle's numerous bluegrass jams.
is an entirely different category of Bluegrass band. They are a true cross-over, appealing to casual AND true bluegrass fans. Though their definitive sound spans a wide slice of Americana, it could also be described as “old-school, porch-settin’, singin' into a can-style bluegrass”. Devout practitioners of single mic performance, they never quite fit completely into a ‘generic’ bluegrass groove, they tend to skirt the edges of many different genres, infusing their sound with twinges of funk, reggae, pop and gypsy jazz and regularly offer up “pickled” versions of pop/rock tunes by the likes of Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin and Bob Marley, to name a few.
What really defines the band’s appeal however, is it’s members. Todd and Paisley Gray, who enjoy dressing in early Appalachian finery and weaving their intricate harmonies together with the high tones of the mandolin and low bellows of the bass. Todd manages to barely tolerate Paisley's bad jokes and remarkably they've not kilt each other even though they've been playing together since 2006.
Pickled Okra has gained some recognition for charming audiences throughout the Pacific Northwest, and their recordings have attracted the attention of music industry fixtures as far away as The UK. Expect the unexpected from these two creative powerhouses.
High Mountain String Band
The High Mountain String Band is a Bellingham based Band that has been playing together for 6 years. They play Traditional and Progressive Bluegrass with some Old Time Tunes and Country Songs mixed in.
With Kurt Gisclaire on Lead Vocals and Mandolin, Ian McLelland-Banjo, Andy Bunn Vocals and Guitar, Bryan Thurber-Fiddle, John Daughtrey Vocals and Bass, You're sure to enjoy some Toe Tapping Bluegrass Music.
Snohomish based, Roosevelt Road
, is made up of some mighty fine pickers: Jane McMahon sings lead and harmony vocals and play’s the Banjo, Long neck Banjo, Autoharp and Slack Key Guitar. Steve McMahon is an accomplished Bass player playing upright and harmonica and singing lead and harmony vocals.
MIke Janda is from Sedro-Woolley and has been involved in the NW music scene for many years. He played with Doug Bright and The Weary Hobo’s, a Seattle based Bluegrass band. His guitar style complements Bluegrass and Americana styles and his hometown vocal is unique in its soothing yet pronounced tone. People say he’s also a pretty nice guy.
Loren Postma is a veteran of the scene from Everett. It is not enough to say he is a great Dobro player, but “He is a great Dobro player”. His knowledge of bluegrass music is vast to say the least. Loren has played with countless bands in his career. He also adds smooth vocals to the band and he, like Mike, is just a real nice guy.
John Bennett sings lead, tenor, and baritone and has played the fiddle since he was 10 years old. He has honed his skills from years of playing with several different Northwest bands including Bunchgrass, Queens Bluegrass, 78RPM, Out’a Town Boys, Tall Timber Grass and the Combinations. He has also had the honor of playing as a guest in several of the best bands in the business, including Bill Monroe and Ralph Stanley.