Sunday, June 23, 2019

A New Home for Live Oak

live oak nation in a new neighborhood
    The 31st Live Oak Music Festival opens a new chapter in a new home, El Chorro Regional Park in San Luis Obispo after almost 30 years at Lake Cachuma in the mountains outside of Santa Barbara.
     We've been "Oakies" for a mere12 years but veterans of many more also like the new venue and its proximity.
 Live Oak is a benefit for public radio KCBX serving the central coast from Ventura to Salinas and centered in San Luis Obispo. The new venue is closer for the audience of SLO, Paso Robles, Morro Bay, Cayucos, Atascadero, Cambria, Arroyo Grande, Pismo Beach, Avila and environs.
   There are generations of Oakies and it is increasingly a family event. We pitched "camp" under the great new sun shade and adjacent to the playground.
  Three days and nights of music with options to day camp or come to stay. The festival has a history of providing great acts and discovering new talent.
    Phil Salazar and the Kin Folk are beloved old pros.
   A new act the Shook Twins from Portland were a hit. Katelyn performs some vocals with a repurposed telephone microphone along with guitar, mandolin, banjo and glockenspiel. Laurie on the left uses beatboxing and looping playing banjo, guitar, bass, djembe, ocarina flute. Nico Slice on mandolin guitar and bass, drummer Barra Brown.
stage too

  Away from the Main Stage is Stage Too where True Zion a roots based reggae band was on when we were there.
    The Hot Licks stage for late night or early morning picking.
     The Beer Garden stage features acts like the Something Ridiculous Jugglers. 
      Live Oak is full of visuals.

   The new home features an excellent Children's area with a game zone for teens and learning stations, games and craft workshops for the little acorns. 

the vibe is like a sunny day in the park
  The new neighborhood is thoughtfully planned, provides camping options, is cooler and less dry than the old campground and there are plenty of convenient facilities.
   From the Main Stage area you see a decorated wall...
        ...and behind that wall...

         From most vantage points, one can look out and see some of the 7 Sister peaks that line the central coast.
     El Chorro has an infrastructure for RV or tent camping and the areas are neatly laid out.

   Musician Joe Craven, far left, is back as the congenial, poetic host and MC for the three days and nights, and, as always, constantly in a new costume.
  I also notice a tucked away work space that was the control room for the energy supply and network, solar powered!
  Long live LIVE OAK NATION!  Peace, Love and Dirt!

   See you down the trail.


  1. That's the place for me Tom. Back home and just announced, KC and the sunshine band will be at the Indiana State Fair.

    Though of using an exclamation mark but didn't feel right.

    1. That makes me laugh! I used your exclamation point.

  2. Tom, was there with Eleanor much of Sunday. Hadn't been to one in many years. Reminds me of Woodstock! In fact, an up and coming singer in the vein of Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie sang a "Woodstock baby" song. As you know I have a collection of photos and memorabilia I'm selling through Heritage July 20. I'm so glad we went and your pix pretty much tell it all. So glad it's local and in a cooler clime. Fantastically well organized and planned. P.S. I was interviewed on KPBX, will inform you when it airs.

    1. Thanks Bill. I'm looking forward to hearing the interview.

  3. That looks like an amazing event.

    1. Truly is. Talk about cross generational! And the music is wonderful and varied.