Band 'Jam' in Williams

    Local and regional bands fill the lineup at the Apple Jam Festival this weekend in Williams.

    It's the third year for the grass-roots festival organized by guitarist Blake Norris and other members of Ashland funk band Karrgo Bossajova.

    The three-day music fest will begin at 10 a.m. Friday, May 20, and continue to 2 p.m. Sunday, May 22. Tickets cost $25 for a weekend pass or $15 per day, and free camping is included.

    Along with Karrgo Bossajova, other Northwest bands to take the outdoor stage behind the Provolt Store include Water Tower Bucket Boys, a bluegrass band from Portland; Mars Retrieval Unit, a psychedelic funk band also from Portland; High Ceiling, a reggae band from Shelton, Wash.; Interstellar Grains, a psychedelic rock band from the San Francisco Bay Area; 100 Watt Mind, a rock and blues band from Ashland; The Illies, a reggae band from Grants Pass; and Achachay! from Austin, Texas.

    An open jam will be held Sunday.

    The Water Tower Bucket Boys have made a stir in the folk-music world with five years of touring, performances on National Public Radio and the British Broadcasting Corp. and four albums. The group's newest album, "Sole Kitchen," was released last year. Their music features three-part harmonies and instrumentals with a harder edge than most folk music, with an old-time ballad or bluegrass song thrown into the mix.

    Norris, a 21-year-old Southern Oregon University music student, and Karrgo Bossajova met the other bands while performing on the Oregon and Washington festival circuit. After playing at a community barbecue at the Provolt Store in Williams a few years ago, the band members built up a friendship with the store owners and started organizing their own festival.

    The musicians threw their first Apple Jam in October 2009 and have since worked to fine-tune the event and expand its audience. Last May's Apple Jam drew more than 400 visitors.

    Along with live music, the festival will offer fire-dancing and glassblowing, and a handful of vendors will sell souvenirs and crafts.

    Admission is free for children 10 and younger. Parking is $5 in the campground, free elsewhere. Ticket discounts are available for those who bring nonperishable foods for Ashland Emergency Food Bank.

    Festival tickets are available at or at the gate. See for more information.

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