“Pickin’ on Hate”: Benefit for the Southern Poverty Law Center with Thompsonia, the Town Howlers & Windy Hill

Doors at 7:30 pm; Show at 8:00 pm

Tickets are $10-$20 Sliding (Greater Donations Accepted)

“Pickin’ on Hate” is a benefit for a good cause that’s also a super bargain for those attending: not one, not two, but three bluegrass bands playing dance music. The night will feature the Town Howlers, Windy Hill, and Thompsonia (Eric, Suzy, and Allegra Thompson). The bands are donating all proceeds to the Southern Poverty Law Center. After the Inauguration, this is a great way to cut loose, dance the night away, and support tolerance! 

Prairie Home Companion star Joe Newberry says: “Thompsonia makes the listener feel like the guest of honor at a party!” The family band features two pillars of Bay Area Cajun, old-time, bluegrass, and blues: guitarist Eric Thompson and fiddler Suzy Thompson, husband and wife who often perform as a duo, plus their bass-playing daughter Allegra Thompson. In this band they mix up the genres in what could collectively be called Southern roots music, with emphasis on hot instrumental interplay, Eric’s occasional singing, Suzy’s lead vocals, and her duets with Allegra that Geoff Muldaur calls “the Everly Sisters sound.” 

Disciples of the godfathers of bluegrass, the Town Howlers deliver their high lonesome sound in traditional bluegrass music and original songs all over Northern California and beyond. The Town Howlers are guitarist-singer John McKelvy, singer-banjo player Michael Small, mandolinist-singer Rowan McCallister, fiddler-singer Matt Crimp, and upright bassist Mike Gubman. Their repertoire ranges from “Sally Goodin’” to “Got Away with Murder.” 

Somewhere in the wilds of the Peninsula’s Portola Valley is the area’s landmark: Windy Hill, the inspiration for the name of a bluegrass band that began in 2008 in Colorado when two former Menlo Park High School classmates with a love of bluegrass reconnected to play the music of their heroes. Moving back to the Peninsula and adding more friends, the current Windy Hill plays original West Coast bluegrass, with banjo player Ryan Breen, upright bassist Kyle McCabe, guitarist Thomas Willie, and fiddler Brandon Godman. With its third album just completed, Windy Hill plays frequently around Northern California and has recently done tributes to late bluegrass giants Bill Monroe and James King, as well as the group’s own music. 

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) is dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of our society. Using litigation, education, and other forms of advocacy, the SPLC works toward the day when the ideals of equal justice and equal opportunity will be a reality.

Eventbrite - Benefit for the Southern Poverty Law Center with Windy Hill, Thompsonia & The Town Howlers