Jams, Open Mics & Dances in Northern CA

Regarding the use of the information on this website. While I don't mind the info to be used for publicity purposes, please use the following guidelines:

1) Please check this website for the VERY LATEST VERSION of the listing your are using. I am constantly updating my information, as changes often occur.
2) Please contact event organizers and participants for their permission and latest updates BEFORE including their event info in any printed matter. While I can easily make corrections/deletions to my website info, erroneous info that has been printed is PERMANENT!  Thank you!

FIRST FRIDAY: ARCATA - FOLK DANCES at Arcata Presbyterian Church (11th and G Streets) at 8pm. Presented by The Folkdancers, schedule usually includes the Club Band from 8-8:45 pm, followed by Chubritza until 10pm, with open mike/jamming to follow. Occasional guests bands include Musaic, Joe & Me, and the Ethniks. Requested donation of $4. If you would like to receive monthly reminders about Folkdance events, email Craig at Ckurumada@aol.com

MONTHLY: CHICO, CA - CONTRA DANCE at Chico Grange (2775 Nord Avenue, off East Avenue, at Rodeo Avenue.) at 6:30pm. Beginner's orientation at 6:30pm. Dance: 7-10pm. Live music by the Pub Scouts. All dances are taught in a walk-thru and then called to music. You do not have to bring a partner with you. Fingerfoods are always welcome. Admission: $8/adult, $4/teen or student with ID; $7/members; children free with supervising adult. More info: call Mark or Grace 530-877-2930 or Joy 530-891-8789. Second Saturday each month. There may be no dances during summer!

MONTHLY: ARCATA, CA - BARN AND CONTRA DANCES at Arcata Veteran's Hall (14th & J Streets) and other locations. Caller and live music. No need to bring a partner. All dances are taught. Beer and snacks will be sold. Ice water available - bring your own bottle or cup! Volunteers are welcome - work part of the night, dance the rest! Admission is $6/Humboldt Folklife Societymembers, students, and seniors; $7/general; free for children 12 & under, as are volunteers. More info, for time and date of next dance, or to volunteer: call HFS at 707-822-5394 or Larry Levine at 707-822-7190.




FIRST SUNDAY: REDDING - DAVE SHORT'S JAZZ CONCERT at Old City Hall (1313 Market Street) at 7pm. Dave Short's Jazz At Old City Hall is a monthly concert series dedicated to providing jazz musicians a friendly, intimate venue for them to perform their favorite music. Join them for concerts on first Sunday of each month. Tickets are $10 at door or at Bernie's Guitar (223-2040). They also provide support for The Sundial Saxophones, a summer jazz camp for young jazz musicians. Dave Short's Jazz at Old City Hall is an affiliate of The Shasta County Arts Council, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

CHICO - BLUEGRASS SLOW JAMS at Sid Lewis' Acoustic College (932 W. 8th Avenue) 7-9pm. Sid teaches Jamming 101 at Acoustic College, so these slow jams may be happening on a regular basis. 

RED BLUFF - BLACKTOP BLUES SOCIETY JAM. Group may be looking for a new venue to hold blues jams. More info: call 530-384-1109. 

GYPSY JAZZ MAILING LIST: Be notified of gypsy jazz and related events in Butte and Shasta County. Sign up at http://www.pianofun.com/gypsyjazz.

BLUEGRASS MUSIC: Love Bluegrass?? Find concerts, festivals, instructors, jam sessions, and more at California Bluegrass Association website. 

FOLK MUSIC: DATABASE OF FOLK JAM SESSIONS connected to Google maps. See Butte County events currently listed on folkjam.

REALLY OLD MUSIC: Cylinder recordings, the first commercially produced sound recordings, are a snapshot of musical and popular culture in the decades around the turn of the 20th century. With funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, UC Santa Barbara Libraries have created a digital collection of over 6,000 cylinder recordings held by Dep't of Special Collections. In an effort to bring these recordings to a wider audience, they can be freely downloaded or streamed online. On this website you can find out more about the cylinder format, listen to thousands of musical and spoken selections from late 19th and early 20th centuries, and discover a little-known era of recorded sound. Click search button to begin, or sample some of their favorite selections in the featured cylinder section or by listening to online streaming radio.

PUBLIC JAMS, OPEN MIKES, & SONG CIRCLES IN NORTHERN CA: Here are events that are roughly 3 or less hours driving time from Trinity County. Please email me or call 628-4579, if you are interested in jamming in the Hayfork area. Please support the public venues hosting the jams by purchasing food and refreshments!

BLUEGRASS JAMS IN CALIFORNIA: State of California bluegrass jams from Alameda to Ventura. You can submit your bluegrass jam for addition to website.

JUST ADDED! WEEKLY ON TUESDAYS: REDDING - REDDING BANJO GROUP MEETING at Redding Spray Service (2150 Airstrip Road). They cover bluegrass/3-finger style banjo theory and roll patterns 4-5:30pm. Jamming starts round 5:30pm. Come join them. Visit Redding CA Banjo Group on Facebook

WEEKLY ON THURSDAYS: REDDING - OPEN MIC at Barista's Roasting Company in evening. Performers get a 30-minute time slot. More info: call 221-7070. Facebook page.

WEEKLY ON THURSDAYS: REDDING - SHASTA BLUES SOCIETY BLUES JAM at Lulu's (Pine at Cypress Street) 7-10pm. Shasta Blues Society furnishes sound equipment, drums and keyboard. Public is invited and all ages are welcome. Jams are family oriented. Bring your own drum sticks, instruments and necessary cables. Arrive early and sign up with Jam Coordinator as jam slots fill up quickly. Setup from 5pm-6pm. 6-7pm Novice warm-up. Sets are 20 minutes and there are 6 or 7 sets per evening. You must be present to be added to sign-up sheet. You need to be a member to jam (non-members get two freebies). If you are in warm-up jam it doesn't prevent you from playing later. Help with set-up and breakdown.  


WEEKLY ON FRIDAYS: CHICO - FOLK FRIDAYS. Augie's Fine Coffee & Tea (230 Salem) hosts FolkFridays - free live music all afternoon, by local musicians. If you play and sing (and are any good), they are accepting auditions now. Peter Hansen is your host. Augies is an excellent place for you to get your chops down. Come by and see manager, Wayne Humbert, to audition. More info: call 530-894-7409 or 530-894-3764.

EVERY OTHER FRIDAY: HAYFORK - OPEN MIC at Northern Delights Coffeehouse starting around 7:30pm. More info: call 628-5246.

JUST ADDED! FIRST & THIRD MONDAY: SHINGLETOWN, CA - UKULELE GROUP at 6pm. Bring your ukulele and join them for music and singing. More info: call Nicki at 474-4427.

FIRST TUESDAY: CHICO - CHICO UKULELE GROUP at Trinity Methodist Church (Flume between 5th and 6th Streets). They start at 6:30pm and usually end at around 8:30 or 9pm. Everyone is welcome, even if you don't have an instrument. They have some extras. They love beginners and their emphasis is on fun! 

FIRST TUESDAY: ARCATA - SONG CIRCLE at Arcata Community Center at 7-9:30pm. Hosted by Joel Sonenshein and presented in association with Arcata Parks & Recreation. Participants are encouraged to bring copies of their favorite tunes to pass around. This is an anything goes gathering! Whether you are into traditional or contemporary folk, 60's rock or even the occasional show tune, this circle usually offers something for everyone and has been known to go places others have not dared. So bring your voice and come and join in on the fun. Admission is free. A Humboldt Folklife Society event.

FIRST WEDNESDAY: CHICO - MIDNIGHT BLUES SOCIETY OPEN BLUES JAM SESSION at Nash's Restaurant Bar Grill (1717 Esplanade) 7-10:30pm. More info: call 916-894-7540. 

FIRST, THIRD, & FOURTH WEDNESDAYS: CHICO - WILD OAK MUSIC GROUP SONGWRITERS GUILD MEETING & OPEN MIKE at Bustolini's Deli (corner of 8th Street & Broadway) 6:30-8:30pm. FIRST & THIRD Wednesdays feature an OPEN MIKE. FOURTH Wednesdays focus is on craft. Free.

SECOND WEDNESDAY: ARCATA - ARCATA BLUEGRASS JAM at Redwood Yogurt 6:30-8:30pm. All bluegrass instruments are welcome. Players should be able to play along with basic chord structures on bluegrass tunes. Jon Forsyth and Judy Hageman are the hosts!

THIRD WEDNESDAY: ARCATA - SONG CIRCLE WITH SEABURY GOULD at St. Alban's at 7:30pm (confirm!). Bring your voices and songs to this monthly gathering for singing together! Many of you know Seabury from his work with children - but this circle, while for people of all ages, is geared for adults. More info: call Seabury at 707-845-8167. More info: 707-845-8167  FREE

FIRST THURSDAY: REDDING - MUSIC NIGHT AT THE LOFT at The Bohemian Art Loft (3304B Bechelli Lane) at 7pm. Open invitation to all musicians - all genres, all instruments - to share their music and jam. No censorship. Audience welcome. Donations accepted. Refreshments. More info: call 229-7818.

FIRST THURSDAY: FRESHWATER - BLUEGRASS JAM at Freshwater Grange (49 Grange Road) at 7pm. First hour, from 7-8 pm, is open to any level of bluegrass player. After 8pm, jam progresses to an advanced player's circle. People who are still developing their playing and singing skills will be welcome to stay and listen (instead of participating) during later set. Freshwater Grange is located at 49 Grange Road, near Garfield School, just a few miles up Freshwater Road from 3 Corners. More info: call Judy at 707-443-4258. 

FIRST THURSDAY: CHICO - RISE UP SINGING CIRCLE at Chico Friends Meeting House (corner of 16th Street and Hemlock) 7-9pm. Like to sing for fun? Rise Up Singing is a compilation by Annie Patterson and Peter Blood of great songs for group singing - words only, tunes will be taught. They have some books to lend. If you have one, please bring it. More info or for directions: call Leslie Howard at 530-891-0750.

SECOND THURSDAY: REDDING - SPOKEN WORD NIGHT AT THE LOFT at The Bohemian Art Loft (3304B Bechelli Lane, Redding) at 7pm. An evening for serious poets, writers, playwrights, storytellers, comedians, and actors of all genres. No censorship. Audience welcome. Donations accepted. Refreshments. Second Wednesday each month. More info: call 530-229-7818.

SECOND THURSDAY: CHICO - OPEN MIKE BLUEGRASS JAM (sponsored by California Bluegrass Association) at Augie's Cafe (230 Salem, 530-894-7409) at 6:30pm. Come play or come listen. More info: call John Senior at 530-877-1768 or Sid Lewis at 530-894-2526. Confirm this event, since they have bluegrass jams on 2nd, 3rd and 4th Saturdays, as well.

SECOND THURSDAY: PARADISE - UKULELES OF PARADISE MEETING at Craig Memorial Congregational Church (5665 Scottwood) 6:30-8:15pm. Join local ukulele players (and wannabe ukulele players) at monthly meeting. Ukuleles play any kind of music--and ukulele players always have fun! A free 30-minute beginner's lesson starts the meeting and newbies will be able to play 3-chord songs (not necessarily right on tempo!) by the time the regular meeting and playing starts at 7pm. Ukuleles play any kind of music and ukulele players always have fun!

LAST THURSDAY: CHICO - CAFE FLO OPEN MIC at Cafe Flo (365 East 6th Street, 530-402-7121) 7-10pm. Sign-up starts at 6:30pm. All Ages. No cover. Bring your instrument and strut your stuff or just come for a listen. 

THIRD FRIDAY: CHICO - EDUCATIONAL ACOUSTIC JAM & SHOWCASE at 2750 Sierra Sunrise Terrace (off of Bruce Road) 10:30am-12noon. Play, sing, listen and learn about the music of our life. A short presentation about music history or information would be welcomed. Showcase performances are asked to be kept to 10 minutes. Open to residents of The Terraces, seniors, Butte Folk Music Society members and guests. More info: call Bernie or Bob at 530-894-6854.

FIRST SATURDAY: WEED - ROCK CREEK JAMS at Weed Mercantile (on Main Street) 2-5pm.

FIRST SATURDAY: CHICO - FOLK & AMERICANA ACOUSTIC JAM at Upper Crust Bakery (130 Main Street) 2-5pm. Sponsored byButte Folk Music Society. Everyone welcome (including children) to come play music, share songs, sing-along and get acquainted with others who love folk music and Americana. Everyone has fun, even the listeners!


Augie's Cafe (230 Salem, 530-894-7409) 

2-5pm. People who play mandolin, banjo, guitar, fiddle, dobro, bass, and bluegrass harmonica are encouraged to come and jam. People who like to sing bluegrass songs, or listen to bluegrass, or simply want to know what the heck bluegrass IS are encouraged to come. First hour is a SLOW JAM (for those who like to hear and/or play ALL the notes). Songs will be played at a slow to moderate tempo, and jam etiquette will be discussed. They encourage folks to bring songs and tunes of "founding fathers" of bluegrass - Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, Stanley Brothers, Osborne Brothers, Jim & Jesse - as well as "second generation" bands. Hosted by Lucy, 

California Bluegrass Association

 Northern CA Area Activities Vice President. More info: call 530-894-1449. 

SECOND SATURDAY: CHICO - MUSIC CIRCLE at Cafe Flo (365 East 6th Street, 530-402-7121) 3-6pm. Bring your instruments and musical energy to acoustic music circle. Folk, bluegrass, old time - all is welcome. Meet local musicians to play, sing or just enjoy. More info: call David Bilinski at 530-872-2084. 

SECOND SATURDAY: COHASSET - OPEN MIKE & JAM at Cohasset Community Building 7-10:30pm. All welcome to come participate and/or listen. Food & beverages for sale on site.

THIRD SATURDAY: CHICO - OLD TIME OR BLUEGRASS JAM at Augie's Cafe (230 Salem, 530-894-7409) 1-4m. Hosted by Michael Springer, old time fiddler. Encouraging those who play clawhammer banjo, fiddle, or guitar to come participate. Of course listeners are always welcome. FREE. For those who might want to "get a leg up" for Old Time jam repertoire, Michael has tunes posted at EZ Folk and Fiddle Hangout.

FOURTH SATURDAY: CHICO - BLUEGRASS JAM at Augie's Cafe (230 Salem, 530-894-7409) 2-5pm. People who play mandolin, banjo, guitar, fiddle, dobro, bass, and bluegrass harmonica are encouraged to come and jam. People who like to sing bluegrass songs, or listen to bluegrass, or simply want to know what the heck bluegrass IS are encouraged to come. First hour is a SLOW JAM (for those who like to hear and/or play ALL the notes). Songs will be played at a slow to moderate tempo, and jam etiquette will be discussed. They encourage folks to bring songs and tunes of "founding fathers" of bluegrass - Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, Stanley Brothers, Osborne Brothers, Jim & Jesse - as well as "second generation" bands. Hosted by Lucy, California Bluegrass Association Northern CA Area Activities Vice President. More info: call 530-894-1449. 

FIFTH SATURDAY: CHICO - FIFTH SATURDAY OF THE MONTH JAM at Augie's Cafe (230 Salem, 530-894-7409) 1-4pm. Hosted by Mike Albert. Come join in musicians. Listeners welcome. Note: These may be on hold!

NEW DAY! LAST SATURDAY: WEAVERVILLE - OPEN MIC at Mamma Llama Coffeehouse at 7pm. Free admission. Signups for open mike start at 6:30pm. Performances start at 7pm. They serve wine and micro brew beers. These open mikes are strictly all orginal or non-copyrighted / public domain music. Performers must play their own original music. They welcome musicians, poets, comics, dancers, puppeteers and anything else that makes for good family entertainment. Whether you come to play or listen, it will be a fun night! Show them and other like minded individuals what you've got. Last Friday each month. Open Mics go on hold for the summer, as the building heats up a lot. More info: call Steve or Donna at Mamma Llama at 623-6363.

FIRST SUNDAY (October - June; NO jams July - September): REDDING - DISTRICT 6 CA STATE OLD TIME FIDDLER'S ASSOCIATIONWORKSHOP & ACOUSTIC JAM SESSION at St. James Lutheran Church (2500 Shasta View Drive, just south of Highway 44). CSOFTA board meeting at 12noon. Workshop at 1pm. Jamming 2-5pm. First Sunday each month. Monthly jam sessions are all about fiddling (and picking) around with Old-time jigs, reels, hoedowns, waltzes and tunes of choice. Beginner, intermediate and advanced players of all ages are welcome to come and learn new songs, have fun with old friends and make new friends. Acoustic non-fiddlers also welcome. More info: call Lee Brushett: 243-4772. DIRECTIONS: Take Hwy 44 East; Shasta View is 2nd or 3rd exit; turn right and church is just ahead on right.

FIRST SUNDAY: CHICO - NORTHERN CA HARP RING meets at various homes in Chico. Anyone who plays any kind of stringed harp, or is interested in learning to play the harp, is welcome. More info: call Janice at 530-893-8026 or email or nchr@sbcglobal.net. Facebook page.

JUST ADDED! SECOND SUNDAY: ANDERSON - OLD TIME MUSIC CIRCLE at Anderson Church of Christ (3434 North Street, corner of North and Riverside). Playing begins at 12noon; potluck around 1pm; followed by more playing until about 3pm. Bring a potluck dish, your acoustic instrument/s and your favorite Oldtime songs. Second Sunday each month. 

SECOND SUNDAY: EUREKA /ARCATA AREA - CELTIC MUSIC SESSION at Mosgos / Cafe Veritas 3-6pm. Open session hosted bySeabury Gould. Admission is free. Younger players are enthusiastically welcome to attend! This is a session where songs and tunes are equally welcome. They will be playing mostly Irish, but feel free to bring in your songs and tunes from Scotland, Wales, Brittany, Galicia, and French-Canada as well. They'll start with "slow play" at 3pm - both by playing certain tunes at a slow tempo, and playing tunes that are inherently slow. The tempo will pick up at around 4pm. People are invited to bring instruments and voices (or just come and listen) for the sharing of Irish traditional/Celtic music of "mostly tunes and some songs. More info: call Seabury at 707-845-8167. A Humboldt Folklife Society event. Future months will be on 2nd Sundays, (except for December, when it will be first Sunday). FREE  

THIRD SUNDAY: MT. SHASTA - PANTHER CREEK JAMS at Stage Door (on Main Street) 2-4pm.

FOURTH SUNDAY: OROVILLE - DISTRICT 1 OLD TIME FIDDLERS ASSOCIATION OPEN MIKE & JAM at Oroville Municipal Auditorium 1-3:30pm. Membership encouraged but you don't have to be a member to join in or come listen. More info: call 530-589-5841 or Bob Hedrick at 530-589-4844.

In regards to musical learning, I try to follow the Three P's:
PRACTICE: By yourself
PLAY: With others at jams sessions
PERFORM: On stage alone or with others. 

I do all of the above and they all help in different ways. Practicing at home gives you time to slowly work out the correct way to play something, with no one there to make you nervous. You can play a sticky spot over and over until it get smooth, practice scales, etc. Playing with others teaches you to do more than one thing at once: play your part, listen to the other musicians, and learn the basics of performing without the pressure of the stage. It is a supportive place to improvise and try new licks and songs, yet you still have to keep playing if you mess up, so you learn to "think on your feet". Performing on stage has different functions for different people. For some it is the "gravy", finally being on stage. For others, like me, it is something I do to give back to the community. Plus, by scaring myself on stage, I am no longer nervous in most jam sessions, which is truly my favorite place to be! - Rachel

I. Thou Shalt Tune Thy Instrument.
~ Electronic tuners make this easy. 

II. Thou Shalt Keep Steady Rhythm.
~ Count beats if necessary.

III. Thou Shalt Take Turns Choosing Songs.
~Announce the key. Vocalists always choose their key.
~ Choose a song you can complete.

IV. Thou Shalt Not Speed.
~ Start songs at a reasonable tempo. Speed up according to abilities.

V. Thou Shalt Signal Who Has The Solo.
~ Follow a pattern when taking solo leads.

VI. Thou Shalt Listen To Others.
~ If you can't hear the lead, consider yourself too loud.

VII. Thou Shalt Welcome Others.
~ Include everyone in your jam. Help everyone sound as good as they can.

VIII. Thou Shalt Not Steal Other Musicians From An Active Jam.
~With time, players move around anyway.

IX. Thou Shalt Try New Material.
~ Original & different tunes are OK occasionally.

X. Thou Shalt Be Considerate Of Pickers.
~ Explain when you're rehearsing, not jamming. Help beginners.

© Rachel Anderson 2013