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  • fretwear 8:39PM

Jam Incubator for Djangofest NW

I think Bob Holo had a great idea started here, originally posted under the "Death of the Gypsy Camp", so I'd like to start a new thread. (hope I am doing this correctly, going to post this quote and then comment)

Relevant part of Bob's post:

"IMHO There needs to be a new “jam-incubator”. It used to be the Edgecliff (the huge nightclub across the street from the venue which had half a dozen good little nooks in which jams would form) The big central jam would get to about 20 people and invariably some people would get fed up with waiting too long to take a solo and split off to go find somewhere to jam. That big central jam created all those little jams and hence the vibrant jam-scene. But without the Edgecliff, there’s no “Jam Central”. Primo Bistro does Saturday night and that’s really cool. There were three jams there Saturday — two intimate ones with local players and one big one with Samson & Antoine & Samuelito & Kliphuis to name a few… that was a h*** of a jam as you’d imagine. But Primo is too far away from the venue to be a true jam-incubator. The magic of the Edgecliff is that people would come out of the concert and hear music and walk over to see what was going on.

But since a developer razed the Edgecliff and put townhouses there, the link between hearing music at a concert and then hearing jams upon exiting the venue and going to investigate… that flow of people from concert to jam was what caused the vibrant jam scene which was lubricated by the good selection of local micro-beers and fairly impressive list of imported whiskeys at the Edgecliff. I don’t know the town well enough to offer a good solution, but that’s what’s needed - some kind of Biergarden within earshot of the venue. People need to walk out of the concert hall and hear jams and suddenly find themselves with a beer in one hand and a guitar in the other and no excuse not to lighten up and have some fun. That’s what ignited the jam scene. Otherwise, people just walk around asking each other if they know where a jam is happening and eventually give up and go to bed."


  • Could WICA itself do more as a jam incubator? There was/(still is?) a beer garden/tent outside with access to the bar - adding a fire table/heat source in there might provide the "attractive nuisance" factor. The lobby had a good jam going after the show Sunday. WICA grounds would be the right spot to catch folks leaving the concerts. Would run up against Langley's noise ordinance, but thats really whats held up as the underlying "problem" at the campground, so maybe its the same nut to crack. Langley does provide for special event permits, so maybe that could be explored. Sounds like the "incubator" would not have to last long, just be the initial meeting and jumping off spot?
  • pmgpmg ATHERTON, CANew Dupont
    edited September 2017
    I like the idea of encouraging more jams closer to where the shows take place. Edgecliff was terrific - although noisy and a bit raucous at times. BTW the Edgecliff was not razed and still exists as it has been for several sad empty years. The townhouses were built adjacent to it (and owners might be expected to complain if sound levels got out of hand). A rich GJ patron could buy the Edgecliff and return it back to us :-). The evening temperature this time of year can be quite chilly - so outdoor jamming without a fire or overhead heaters nearby can be very uncomfortable.
    I love the live concerts which seem to get better each year - but I go mainly for the jamming and the opportunity to play and hang with past acquaintances and meet new folks. A short hop from my home in the SF area as well!
    For those seeking an unparalleled jamming experience, I highly recommend Andrew Lawrence's amazing Django in June. Deep GJ immersion with incredible players, wide range of instruction on many instruments (not just guitar) including 1:1 time if desired, usually nice warm weather, relatively low cost, and no cars needed due to ample supply of decent close-by dorm rooms and food and drink.
    I'm always interested in jamming with experienced jazz and gypsy jazz players in the San Francisco - San Jose area. Drop me a line. Bass players welcome!
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