On Saturday, August 10th, Keystone will be performing at the Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival in Hollister, CA.
Contact Keystone Station here
Keystone Station is a traditional bluegrass band from Marin County, CA, whose members are all veterans on the Bay Area music scene. Formed in the winter of 2001, they made their grand debut at Sweetwater in Mill Valley in June of that year. The band has played the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival three times, Vern's Stage at the CBA Father's Day Bluegrass Festival, the SF Bluegrass & Old-Time Festival twice, the Great American Musical Hall in San Franscisco, the CBA Veterans Day Festival in Woodland, and they are regulars at Murphy's in Sonoma.
Keystone Station was built upon the duo Keystone Crossing -- Larry Carlin and Claudia Hampe. These two have been performing together since 1996, singing the songs of the brother duos from the early days of country and bluegrass music. They have shared the stage with Ralph Stanley, Peter Rowan, David Grisman, The Laurel Canyon Ramblers, and many others. In the winter of 2001 they started jamming informally with some local bluegrass pickers, and they decided to expand the duo to a five-piece band.Other Station members now include Kenny Blacklock on fiddle, Dave Earl on mandolin, and Dave Magram on banjo. The repertoire of Keystone Station is based on the songs of such notables as the late "Father of Bluegrass," Mr. Bill Monroe, as well as the Stanley Brothers, and Flatt & Scruggs. With haunting three-part harmonies, and hot instrumental picking on acoustic instruments, Keystone Station is steeped in the bluegrass tradition.
KEYSTONE STATION BAND MEMBERS
Larry Carlin -- one of the founders of the band, Larry is a performer, producer, and writer of bluegrass in the San Francisco Bay Area. Originally from King of Prussia, PA, he has been living in Sausalito for 25 years, and he plays standup bass. He performs in four bands (this one, Keystone Crossing, Dr. Elmo & Wild Blue, The Whutknotts), writes the Almost Daily News column three times a week for the California Bluegrass Association web site, a monthly column titled "The Bluegrass Muse" for Bluegrass By The Bay, writes a biweekly email music newsletter called Carltone's Corner, was the founder and host for ten years of the long-running Marin Bluegrass Jam, produced the bluegrass series called Bluegrass Gold at Sweetwater in Mill Valley for eight years, books the music for Murphy's Irish Pub in the town of Sonoma, and occasionally does movie reviews for the Movie Magazine International radio show. He is a member of the California Bluegrass Association and the Northern California Bluegrass Society. He plays a 1956 Kay M-1 bass.
Claudia Hampe -- the other founding member of the band, Claudia is from Radnor, PA, and has been living in and working as a realtor in Mill Valley for over 30 years. She sang in folk groups in high school, was in the Marin County band Rowdy & The Rivets many years back during the "Urban Cowboy Scare" of the early '80s, and she also warbles the high parts with The Warblers. Claudia plays rhythm guitar and sings the beautiful parts that make the rest of the Keystone Crossing/Station sound so good. Her guitar of choice is a 1997 Collings OM-2H.
Kenny Blacklock -- originally from Santa Rosa, CA, Kenny lived in Sausalito or Japan for many years before settling in Petaluma in 2009 with his fiddling wife Katy Bridges and two young daughters. Besides playing fiddle (he also plays tin whistle, keyboards, mandolin, musical saw, and viola)(but not in this band), Kenny is also a music teacher, a member of the bands Dr. Elmo & Wild Blue and Bluegrass Contraption, and he is the grandson of the legendary and late Bay Area saw player Charlie Blacklock. He plays a 1747 Schedelich violin, speaks, reads and writes Japanese, and he is ready to lead the band on a tour of Japan.
Dave Earl -- a lifelong musician and another native Californian, Dave proudly states that the singing of the Stanley Brothers and the intensity of Bill Monroe inspired him to take up bluegrass mandolin in 1998. In addition to Keystone Station, Dave performs his solo American Roots Music show at SF Fisherman's Wharf. He's also performed with Carolina Special, The Alhambra Valley Band, Cabin Fever, The Whiskey Brothers, The David Thom Band and The Earl Brothers. He's played onstage at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, Bluegrass By the River, Wolf Mountain, CBA Father's Day, Willow Creek, Plymouth, The Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival, Woodland, Scott's Valley and SFBOT. He plays a 1992 Flatiron F-5 mandolin, and he resides in the hollow of San Francisco with his wife Janet..
Dave Magram – the newest member of the band – also originally from the Keystone state – Dave grew up in western Pennsylvania, where he became interested in bluegrass and country music. Currently living in San Jose, before moving west he performed with some well-known bluegrass musicians such as Mac Martin, Charlie Monroe, Frank Wakefield, The Greenbrier Boys, David Nelson & The Good Old Boys, Jim Lauderdale, and Vassar Clements. Since moving to California, he’s played with several bands, including Generic Country, Hot Pursuit, Tall Timber, Highway One, and Diana Donnelly & the Yes Ma'ams.
Three decades of bluegrass in CA
One of our favorite venues
Formerly the Santa Cruz
This page updated 1/22/13