From the desk of Ed Pearl


From Ed Pearl,
Founder of the Ash Grove,
July 11, 1958 through November 11, 1973

The Ash Grove Tapes

During the 15+ year span of the original Ash Grove we not often enough taped performances, mostly of great traditional artists brought from whence the music was born and bred. Hundreds, from Bill Monroe and Lightning Hopkins to Johnny Cash and Muddy Waters.  The ‘kids’ who soaked in this steady outpouring include Ry Cooder, Bonny Raitt, Taj Mahal, Linda Ronstadt, et al – who themselves have become icons of great art and influence.  Most of the tapes somehow escaped the fires which devoured the club, and I’ve kept them closeted, literally.

Over the years record companies regularly wanted to cherry-pick the best-known, which I’ve resisted, always wanting to have the broadest possible public experience the history, the depth and vast variety of American music and cultures we presented.  Check our artist’s list at I remain in awe whenever I look at it.

Around one year ago I was introduced to Bill Sagan, of Wolfgang’s Vault. We hit it off on many levels, but especially on his and associates determination to do just what I always wanted, and with the technical expertise and capacity to reach an audience I’d only dreamed about. And so, it is coming to pass. I’m delighted and send my warmest wishes to all that you enjoy the experience much as I  will.


Ed Pearl

Published in: on April 28, 2009 at 10:38 pm  Leave a Comment  
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A Conversation With Ash Grove Founder Ed Pearl

Back in September Steve Rosenthal and I visited Ed in L.A. for a few days to learn more about his life and the Ash Grove.  We sat in his living room for hours talking about everything from his politically active childhood to the final fire that ultimately closed the club for good.
It was one of those experiences that I know I’ll remember for a long time. Thankfully, we recorded the entire thing and plan to start releasing portions of it on Concert Vault in the coming weeks. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy this clip of Ed and Steve discussing the Harry Smith Folk Anthology and how it helped shape Ed’s vision for the Ash Grove…
Published in: on April 17, 2009 at 3:17 pm  Comments (1)  
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