Russ Haines is almost entirely a local boy. Growing up attending Menlo-Atherton High, He got to play at the North Sea and Montreux Jazz Festivals, literally bumping into Miles Davis at a musicians’ bar and being complimented by this weird vocalist nobody had heard of named Bobby McFerrin. He interned at The Music Annex Recording Studios when Windham Hill started, and got to work with some awesome musicians including Michael Hedges. Russ worked on a few gold albums for Los Huracanes Del Norte and Los Tigres, important Norteno bands. He got into mastering audio and editing video and created audio tracks for international ad campaigns for Coca Cola and Renault. He won an award (and a really expensive pair of headphones that his dog immediately ate) from Neumann/Sennheiser for his fairly offensive arrangement of Jingle Bells.
By the time he bought a house in La Honda twenty years ago, Russ was a member of the first band to be live on the internet, Severe Tire Damage. His band mates were coworker computer researchers from Apple, Digital Equipment Corporation, and Xerox. They got a lot of international press including New York Times, PBS, and Smithsonian Magazine.
His local music history includes playing Jazz, Rock, and Punk guitar at the local venues. Russ also plays drums, bass, and keyboards. Lately his passion is playing Jazz with locals Bundy Browne, and Dave Schorr.
Russ tells me there is no down side musically when the power goes out in La Honda, as it has always traditionally been the time when local musicians walk around with a six pack and instrument in hand listening for the nearest live music. That is how he met the Wings, Larry W, Banjomatic (Derrick) and others. Hopefully Russ will make an appearance at Jamfest this year!
As our summer winds down there is one more musical event here in La Honda to report on. Jamfest is an annual musical get together held at Playbowl. This year it will be held on Oct 8th starting around noonish and going until late afternoon or early evening. Many of the local musicians gather and do mostly jamming. It is a chance for busy musicians to play with others they don’t usually get to play with. We don’t really expect a huge audience but anyone wanting to come by and enjoy it with us is welcome. If people want to set up volleyball, play frisbee etc that is encouraged. The volume level is always kept at a minimum as our goal is to be a pleasant musical experience with a high quality level. Jamfest is meant to attract the local performing musicians and is not an open mic. The Cuesta Guild has been great in underwriting Jamfest and it has become a wonderful annual event. It is a bring your own everything and pack out what you bring event. If you are a new member of our community and play music at a semi or professional level please come down and introduce yourself and connect with the other local players. Hope to see a lot of music lovers at Playbowl. If weather looks to be bad (rain, snow, tornadoes) then we would cancel, but have never had to cancel one yet. Jam on!!