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Ash Grove Music


50th Anniversary Event at UCLA
April 18-20, 2008

The Ash Grove: Overview & Vision

The Film

History of  the Ash Grove

Press & Performers Comments

Reviews of the Anniversary Event

[L]ast weekend’s tribute to a classic Los Angeles performance venue – “The Ash Grove 50th Anniversary” – was exceptional, even by UCLA Live’s high standards.
....Cooder was there to celebrate; so was Taj Mahal, along with the likes of John Hammond, Barbara Dane, Bernie Pearl, Michelle Shocked and numerous others. But the real star was the memory of a place in which so much music, so many ideas, and so many attitudes had the opportunity to come to full fruition.
....It was an unswerving reminder of a time when music meant something more than fast-cut videos, repetitious rhythm loops, concerts saturated with special effects and amateur hour television contests. It was a recollection of the power of song to bring about change. Above all, and at the same time the most distressing of all, it provided a compelling perspective on how much that power has been missed over the past few decades and, especially, over the past five years.
Don Heckman: Notes From the Left Coast

The musical pinnacle came in the Cooder/Seeger/White set on a number in which Seeger played harmonica and fiddle simultaneously (a neat trick) on a mournful, haunting lick, singing lyrics about slaves being transported, with Cooder coming in for an electric slide solo that echoed Blind Willie Johnson's ghostly, despairing 'Dark Was the Night, Cold Was the Ground.' This performance at once captured that intersection of generations at the founding of the Ash Grove, that passing of rootless displacement into the realm of folklore roots,
Steve Hochman:

Elliott and Alvin were among a powerful lineup at a weekend-long musical celebration of the club's 50th anniversary, hosted by UCLA Live. On Friday, they shared the stage with Ry Cooder, Ben Harper and Holly Near, along with vivid eruptions of West African and Mediterranean folk music.
Steve Appleford: Los Angeles Times, April 21, 2008

...the first of two concerts -- the centerpiece of UCLA's three-day celebration/tribute of the club's 50th anniversary -- ran more than two hours over schedule, amounting to a full five hours of music that didn't let out until 1 a.m. But no one complained ...
Steven Mirkin: Variety

Photos of the Event will be posted soon! Check back again.