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Boonsboro's birthday jam

Boonsboro's birthday jam

BOONSBORO — Although Jeff Taulton grew up with his grandparents playing bluegrass on the radio, he credits Paul Beard for introducing him to the genre.

That was in the early ’80s, when Beard formed the group Paul Beard and the Long Meadow Mining Co. and brought on Taulton to play bass. The group plays contemporary and traditional bass. 

“On and off all these years, we do a couple jobs a year,” Taulton said during a telephone interview from his Hagerstown home. “Back the ’80s we were pretty do a lot of bluegrass stuff. We never recorded, but we did a lot of regional bluegrass festivals.”

Those who missed out on seeing the band perform can do so Sunday at South Mountain Jam at Shafer Park in Boonsboro. The event coincides of the Happy Birthday Boonsboro’s 225th anniversary event. The event kicks off at 2:25 p.m. Enjoy a piece of cake or listen to the band as well as music by Boonsboro High School. Bring lawn chairs and blankets. The event is free. 

Taulton has grown to have a special appreciation of when his family had introduced him to the music growing up.

“I probably had it innately in my back of my mind growing up, because my mom would take me to country and bluegrass shows as a child before I could even remember the details,” he said. “But my grandfather, he used to play Dixieland land music before bluegrass was even created back in the ‘30s. He used to play banjo for a Dixieland band.”

When Bill Monroe introduced the world to bluegrass, Taulton said his grandfather continued to listen to it. 

But it was Beard who Taulton said really started influencing his bluegrass tastes by turning him onto certain bands. One of which was bluegrass band Seldom Scene, which still performs locally today. 

“I guess just hanging out with my grandfather, and hanging out with Paul Beard, bluegrass just came natural to me,” Taulton said. 

The usual lineup of Long Meadow Mining Co. is made up of Matt Hickman, Brian Bonham Ronnie Webb and John Seburn. Although Seburn will not appear at the Sunday event.

“He’s just a fantastic person,”  Taulton said. “Not just a great musician, but just a great all-around human being. If there were more Paul Beards in the world, it would be a lot better.”

Taulton, who has worked as a geriatric social worker since 1986, can be seen in other bands too that have been playing around the area. He can be seen as part of Antietam General, Brandy Stills Band as well as his solo work playing a variety of genres — from rock to country to more. 

The Long Meadow Mining Co. does mix up their sound but the music they’ll be performing at South Mountain Jam will be bluegrass. 

Although South Mountain Jam has been going on for years, Taulton, who is a Boonsboro native, makes this event even more special. He said this event has always been part of their Sunday Concert Series at Shafer Park.

When he received the call asking if they would want to incorporate South Mountain Jam with the town’s 225th anniversary, Taulton said he didn’t have to think twice. He had already been volunteering with Boonsboro Independence Jam for 10 years.

“I just feel so fortunate being from Boonsboro and still having strong ties from Boonsboro to be part of this celebration,” he said.

If you go ...

WHAT: Happy Birthday Boonsboro 225th anniversary event and South Mountain Jam
WHEN: Sunday, Aug. 13 — celebration starts at 2:25 p.m., jam at 3 p.m.
WHERE: Shafer Memorial Park, 37 Park Drive, Boonsboro
COST: Free
MORE: Bring lawn chairs and blankets.

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