Jerry Johnston, King’s River Bluegrass Festival Promoter & Association Leader, NCBS Volunteer

Jerry Johnston, the longtime president of the King’s River Bluegrass Association and the organizer of the King’s River Bluegrass Festival during its prime, died on January 8, 2019 in Fresno, following complications from surgery. He was 83 years old.

Jerry and his companion Rose Marie Dick were volunteers at the NCBS Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival and helped run the NCBS Information Booth at various Central Valley festivals.

Jerry Johnston

Johnston was born in East Liverpool, Ohio, and served as an aerial photographer in the US Air Force. He came to California when he was stationed at Castle Air Force Base in the Central Valley area. After he left military service, he studied business and accounting at Arizona State University. After practicing as an accountant, he enjoyed a long career on the accounting faculty at Fresno State University.

As a young man, he loved classic fast cars, competitive roller skating, and photography. In later life he added a big love for bluegrass music and Fresno State football.

Johnston took over a small street-based bluegrass festival in downtown Sanger, southeast of Fresno, and moved it to nearby Hobb’s Grove on the banks of the King’s River. There, the King’s River Bluegrass Association event grew to a full 3-day festival held each September. It was an important driver of bluegrass music in the southern Central Valley and strongly backed area bluegrass groups and musicians. This festival later became the California Bluegrass Association Hobb’s Grove Bluegrass Festival.

Jerry also took great, public pride as a leader of the Friends of Bill W. in the Fresno area and in organizing area meetings over the years.

One of the joys during the last 5 years of his life was reconnecting with Rose Marie, who grew up near Jerry’s boyhood home, and later met him for the first time at a roller skate rink near Castle Air Force Base. After 55 years, the couple remet on Facebook.

Gerald Johnston is survived by two sons and a daughter. His ashes will be scattered in a beautiful area of West Virginia across the river from his Ohio hometown.

Memorial Service Information (1/19/19)

Jerry Johnston & Rose Marie Dick

 

 

 

 

 

NCBS Encourages Your Support Of The CBA Wildfire Victims Instrument Replacement Fund

The California Bluegrass Association has created a fund to help bluegrass musicians who are wildfire victims and need our help replacing lost instruments. The Northern California Bluegrass Society believes this is an important way to help our fellow musicians in a time of need and encourages your support.

Here are the details: Bluegrass Wildfire Victims Instrument Replacement Fund

One Week Reminder: Northern California Bluegrass Music Awards Final Ballots Due On January 14th

One Week Reminder: Final Ballots in the 2019 Northern California Bluegrass Awards are due on January 14 from the members of the Northern California Bluegrass Society.

The FREE 12th annual awards show and concert will be held on Saturday, January 26 in Redwood City, as part of the FREE NCBS Bluegrass On Broadway Festival.

Ten Day Reminder: Final Ballots In The 2019 Northern California Bluegrass Awards Due From NCBS Members On January 14

Ten Day Reminder: Final Ballots in the 2019 Northern California Bluegrass Awards are due on January 14 from all Northern California Bluegrass Society Members.

The FREE 12th annual awards show and concert will be held on Saturday, January 26 in Redwood City, as part of the FREE NCBS Bluegrass On Broadway Festival.

The Northern California Bluegrass Society Supports The CBA’s Wildfire Instrument Replacement Fund

Our sister organization, the California Bluegrass Association, has created a fund to help bluegrass musicians who are wildfire victims and need our help replacing lost instruments.

The Northern California Bluegrass Society supports this important effort and encourages your support. Here are the details:

CBA Bluegrass Fire Victims Instrument Fund

NCBS Announces The Finalists For The 2019 Northern California Bluegrass Awards

The Northern California Bluegrass Society has announced the Finalists for the 2019 Northern California Bluegrass Awards. They are:

  1. Bluegrass Band

Bean Creek

Blue Summit

Central Valley Boys

Goat Hill Girls

Snap Jackson & The Knock On Wood Players

Windy Hill

  1. Male Vocalist

Snap Jackson

John Kornhauser

Billy Pitrone

Yoseff Tucker

Sullivan Tuttle

  1. Female Vocalist

Sarah Eblen

AJ  Lee

Linda Maki

Louise Mintun

Nell Robinson

Ella Warde

  1. Guitar

Jesse Fichman

Jim Nunally

Yoseff Tucker

Sullivan Tuttle

Mike Wilhoyte

  1. Mandolin

Tom Bekeny

AJ Lee

Ed Neff

Teo Quale

Butch Waller

  1. Banjo

Larry Cohea

Robert Cornelius

Snap Jackson

Jesse Personeni

Sonia Shell

  1. Fiddle

Pete Hicks

Ed Neff

Paul Shelasky

Mark Wardenburg

Lee Anne Welch

  1. Dobro

Leslie Abbott

Kathy Barwick

Avram Frankel

Jim Mintun

Charlie Wallace

  1. Bass

Lisa Burns

Sarah Eblen

Paul Knight

Jerry Logan

Louise Mintun

Steve Pottier

There are more than five finalists in some categories due to ties.

Two Day Reminder: Monday, December 31 Is Final Day For 2018 Donations To The NCBS

Two Day Reminder: Monday, December 31 is the final day to make a 2018 Tax-Deductible Donation to the Northern California Bluegrass Society/Santa Cruz Bluegrass Society, an official 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization (Tax ID No. 94-2907716).

Your gift will support bluegrass music in our area. You can donate online or by mail:

Online NCBS Donations

Mailed NCBS Donations:

NCBS Treasurer
P.O. Box 390846
Mountain View, CA 94039-0846

Make checks payable to: Northern California Bluegrass Society/Santa Cruz Bluegrass Society. (Consult your tax advisor.)