Albert Music Hall

Of the few musical forms that can call themselves uniquely American, Bluegrass and Country Western ride the top of that list. They exist in the backwoods and the big cities, and thanks to a couple of New Jersey brothers, whose names are not Jonas, they can be eNJoyed right in the heart of New Jersey. This is some down home country livin’.                 

 I know that when we think of music in New Jersey, we think Springsteen, Bonjovi and Hip Hop. Some of us go back and favor Sinatra, Frankie Valli and the Young Rascals (still one of the best home-grown groups that Jersey has ever produced), but there is a hard-core fan base that prefers a more, shall we say, organic listening experience. Songs like “Tennessee Stud,” “Let Me Go Home Whiskey” and “Rocky Top” are sacred to some folks. For these autoharp enthusiasts, these dulcimer divas, these, banjo babies, there is the Albert Music Hall in Waretown, New Jersey. Every Saturday night since November 1974, the “Sounds of the Jersey Pines” series has entertained thousands of residents of the “Guitar State.” From their humble beginnings in a deer cabin in the woods, when Joe and George Albert invited friends to come and pick a few tunes in what became known as the “Home Place,” the streak has gone on longer than Brett Farve’s consecutive game starts and Hilary Clinton’s pant suit appearances. Even after a devastating fire, which destroyed their temporary venue, they did not miss a performance, taking their songfest to the parking lot while a new home was reestablished. The Pinelands Cultural Society has dedicated itself to the preservation and stimulation of interest in pinelands musical heritage, and we are all the luckier for it. I have attended many shows there and have never been disappointed. Musicians are encouraged to bring their guitars, banjos, mandolins and fiddles and join in with other players on the porch or in the “Pickin’ Shed” for impromptu jam sessions. And if you’re not musically inclined don’t worry. You can always play the spoons or a washboard. Did I mention this was some down home country livin’?
(609) 971-1593

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