Who: Fourth of July Twang Fest and BBQ
When: Monday, noon to 5 p.m.
Where: Gold Hill Inn, Gold Hill
Cost: $15 music — BBQ is extra
The Gold Hill Inn’s not your typical concert venue.
The restaurant/concert venue’s located up a winding mountain road in nearby Gold Hill. The inn only features live music on Fridays, Sundays and holidays, but the nightspot brings in top-quality talent.
The Gold Hill Inn will be hosting a serious Fourth of July bash and BBQ on Monday. The event’s billed as the July Twang Fest and BBQ, and it features Halden Wofford & The Hi-Beams, Truckstop Honeymoon and Danny Shafer.
Brian Finn runs the front of the house and books the music for Gold Hill. His family has run the rustic venue for 49 years.
Finn chatted to the Daily about Gold Hill’s live music.
Q: When did the Gold Hill Inn start booking music?
A: We started the inn in 1962 and the music started right away.
All kinds of musicians would wander in and play. That started things rolling.
We really started growing music-wise when the Left Hand String Band started playing here. That’s when we started doing more with the stage and the setup of the music.
Q: What nights are you are you open for music?
A: We have two nights of music:
Friday is band night and Sunday is our early evening music series from 5 to 7 p.m. There’s always no cover for that, and it could be jazz, folk or bluegrass.
Q: What kinds of music do you bring to Gold Hill?
A: We do a lot of bluegrass, folk and blues, and we do some touring acts.
Some shows you want to sit down and listen to, but some will have you on your feet and everybody’s dancing.
We started doing later shows on Sundays with touring acts.
We’re doing new stuff all the time. On July 22, we’re bringing in Lake Street Drive. The group’s from Brooklyn and it’s a jazz pop band with a great singer-songwriter.
This year, we’ve gotten more calls from national acts. The more we do, the more people want to play here. I still book 60 percent local and 40 percent national. People appreciate the differences between local and national music.
We have music fans of all ages coming up here. Though, bluegrass tends to draw a younger crowd and we get some great young bluegrass musicians.
Q: How many people does the room hold and how long is the music season?
A: We hold 100 people for the indoor shows, and we can hold 400 people for the outside holiday shows and benefits.
We’ve expanded the season and we’re open through New Year’s Eve, but we’re already booked through October.
Q: What are the outdoor holiday shows like?
A: We do more electric blues type music on Memorial Day, the Fourth of July is always a twang fest. This year, we have Halden Wofford and Danny Shafer.
The last outdoor holiday show of the season is Labor Day. We always do a couple of zydeco and blues bands.
These shows are always fun. We have a great big yard and lawn. People lay down blankets, listen to some great music and eat some great food.
Q: Why should people come to the Gold Hill Inn?
A: We’re one of the most unique places to see live music.
The room’s intimate, we have a fantastic sound system and we’re in this old log building.
It’s like being in your living room.