The Ponkiesburg Pickin' Party
est. 2000

History

In the world of traditional acoustic music in the big city, the Ponkiesburg Pickin' Party is one of the longest running weekly jams. It was founded way back in October 2000 by Barbara Brousal, a Brooklyn native and wonderful songwriter/singer/guitarist/mandolinist. It was Barbara's idea for a few close friends to get together on Sundays and sit around and play traditional songs, with an emphasis on fun sing-a-long tunes that everyone can enjoy, regardless of skill level. After looking around the neighborhood and inquiring at some local taverns, she came up short. But then the Brazen Head opened, and they were receptive to the idea. Thus, on October 29, 2000, the first Pickin' Party was held.

Dan Zanes was a special guest at that first session and Barbara led a very small group of friends in a day of pickin' and grinnin'. Bagels were served. Beer was swigged. Everyone had fun. The second week featured Elena Skye and Boo Reiners and another VERY small group of pickers. Over the next few months the party really took off, especially once John Cleveland started lugging in his big bass fiddle each and every week. Over the last three years, the cast of "regulars" keeps changing as new pickers discover the jam. Each time someone new shows up, it adds a whole different texture to the proceedings. And it has become a great place for pickers to hone their talents. Dogs bark. Beer is spilled. It's a family atmosphere, no question. Bring the kids!

Barbara completed her tenure as weekly host in 2002, when Fran Leadon took it over. In 2006, the jam was taken over by Brad Einhorn, and in 2009, by Ken Ficara. We are now approaching a decade of Sunday afternoon picking! That's a lot of "nine-pound hammers"!

In 2004 we moved from the Brazen Head to several locations, and now the Pickin' Party can be found at Kili, on Hoyt between State and Atlantic.

So come down on Sunday and help excavate gems from the Great American Songbook. Every once in awhile we have special events, so check the "schedule" page for updates. See you there!

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Copyright © 2014 Ken Ficara