MATT NOWAK: Check out these acoustic jam sessions – Opinion – The Leavenworth Times – Leavenworth, KS

One of the nice things about attending an awesome event like the recent annual Folk Alliance International Music Conference in Kansas City was making new friends and contacts. One such new contact is Steve Mason in Lawrence. 

Steve is a fine fiddler and operates a violin restoration shop in Lawrence. He also keeps a huge list of jam sessions and related musical opportunities for anyone interested in making more music with friends.

I asked for his permission to give out the email so that anyone may check out the long list of opportunities in this region. You can send email to

If you are in Lawrence, you can stop in at Steve Mason Luthiers and Violin Shop, 3809 W. 24th St. If you go there, look for the guy who looks like Santa Claus.

Generally speaking, Steve’s list is specific to acoustic musicians, so do not bother to bring an amp or your electric guitar or electric bass to these sessions. That actually makes this list even more amazing when you think that these are basically for acoustic musicians. How many other sessions are there for musicians that include electric hookups? My current list is 13 pages long.

Many of the old-time fiddle jam sessions apparently include a potluck dinner and are rotated from one person’s house to another throughout the year. For that reason, it is not practical to start listing every jam session that moves from place to place. You will have to get on the mailing list to get that information.

On the other hand, there are regular jam sessions that have set weekdays and times and I can list a few of them to get you started. For instance, there are first Fridays from October through May for the Kansas City Area Bluegrass Music Club. Go to or search for the full name on Facebook to get their specific location and times.

Would you like to go to Topeka? The Topeka Acoustic Jam is the first Saturday each month (not June or July) at the Live Music Institute from 2-4 p.m. Email…

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