Sunday, May 12, 2013

More on the Tinner Hill Blues Festival

The Tinner Hill Blues Festival promises to be an amazing weekend of blues music, June 7-9. I previously have detailed the Friday, June 7 State Theater concert headlined by John Hammond along with Phil Wiggins and the Chesapeake Sheiks as well as the Saturday June 8 Cherry Hill Park Festival line-up headlined by Sista Monica and Big Bill Morganfield. These are not the only events taking place at this year’s Festival.

The Festival opens on Friday night, and prior to the start of the State Theatre show, the Festival starts as part of the First Friday of Falls Church, a monthly event held in downtown Falls Church. There will be free music performances from 6 to 8 PM including JackWagon Band at Art and Frame of Falls Church, 111 Park Ave  Falls Church; Blue Pop & the Plucker at Stifel & Capra, 260 W. Broad Street; and Lu & the Blues Crew at Famous Dave's BBQ at 370 W. Broad Street. Also taking place at Art and Frame will be Call it the Blues,” an art exhibition focusing on the meaning of the "blues" from an artist’s perspective. Meet the Artist reception at Art and Frame of Falls Church.  The show is being organized by artist and collector, Irena Chambers.

Saturday morning there will be Early Morning Blues, local musical blues performances at the weekly Fall Church Farmer’s Market at the Falls Church City Hall Parking Lot. 

Eleanor Ellis's film, Blues House Party is being
shownat this year's Tinner Hill Blues Festival.
She also is participating in a panel Virginia Blues Voices:
Performing, Preserving and Innovating

and performing as part of the Acoustic Blues Women.
Photo © Ron Weinstock
Also that morning at the Mary Riley Styles Library, 121 N Virginia Avenue, will be Sing Books with Emily - Singing story time with Singable Picture Books. Hear and Sing “Ruby Sings the Blues” “I Love a Blue Frog” and more! Emily combines music and illustrated songs in a fun, educational, interactive, and engaging performance for children, caregivers, educators, and anyone with a love of song. Additionally there will be an exhibit Old Dominion Songsters: Traditional Blues in Virginia. This is a panel exhibit on Piedmont blues and Virginia songsters, on loan from the Library of Virginia.

At the Falls Church Community Center, 223 Little Falls Street, there will be screening of three films where one can also meet the film makers: 

John Jackson: a Blues Treasure, Award winning documentary on the life and music of John Jackson. Meet the award winning producer and film maker Beverly Lindsay Johnson.

John ‘Uncle Homer’ Walker, The Banjo Man the last known African American Claw hammer style Banjo Player (1898-1980) presented by Tanya Gaskins-Hardy, Local genealogist & historian.

Blues House Party  Music, Dance and Stories by Masters of the Pie
dmont Blues, this 57-minute film provides a rare front-row seat to a private house party that is as down home and authentic as they come. Meet producer Eleanor Ellis who is also performing at the Festival.

Taking place at 10:00 am - 11:30 am in front of Cherry Hill Farm House is a panel discussion - Virginia’s Blues Voices: Performing, Preserving and Innovating, a intergenerational panel discussion with blues legends, music lovers and cutting edge next generation blues musicians.  The panel discussion will explore, document and share the history and evolution, present and future of blues music with a focus on Virginia Piedmont Blues styles. Participants in this panel include (but not limited to): Gregg Kimball; Eleanor Ellis; John Hammond; Roy Book Binder; Phil Wiggins; Rick Franklin; and David Cole.

Also, over the weekend there will be additional live musical performances at other businesses including Famous Dave’s BBQ, Clare and Don’s Beach Shack, Dogwood Tavern, Argia’s, Stifel & Capra, Creative Cauldron, Red, White & Blue, JVs, Wine and Gourmet shop plus more!
The Archie Edwards Jambassadors will be at the Mad Fox Brewing Company. Photo © Ron Weinstock
Sunday morning the feestival concludes with the Blues Brunch at the Mad Fox Brewing Company. The Blues Brunch will feature the Jambassadors of the Archie Edwards Blues Heritage Foundation. Mad Fox Brewing Company is at 444 West Broad Street, Suite I.

Accommodations Information

For those coming from outside the area and wishing to stay in falls Church over night, there are several economical convenient hotels and inns.

Marriott TownPlace Suites is within walking distance of all activities. It is located at 205 Hillwood Ave. 703-237-6172 

Inns of Virginia, within walking distance of all activities is at 421 W Braod Street. (703) 533-1100.

Marriott Fairview Inn, full service Marriott is a 5 minute drive from the activities. It is located at 3111 Fairview Park Drive. 703-849-9400.

The Festival site is several blocks from the East Falls Church Metro Station and there are Metro buses that can take you to the Festival site if one does not wish to walk.  The festival’s official web page is at

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