Sam Pointer has been playing music since the age of 6. Best known as a guitarist (acoustic, electric, slide and 12 string), he also plays mandolin, bass, banjo, fiddle, bouzouki, and just about anything else you put in front of him. His rich baritone voice is equally at home on rockers and ballads, and is especially expressive on his many original songs.
He spent years touring nationally as the lead guitarist for groundbreaking jam band New Potato Caboose, performed regularly in the Mid-Atlantic as an acoustic solo artist, and was a member of the California bluegrass band Snakes in the Grass. He later led The Sam Pointer Band, a San Francisco roots rock ensemble, before returning to his native Birmingham, Alabama, where he currently performs solo acoustic, with The Sam Pointer Band, and on occasion with other acts.
Sam’s songwriting has received wide acclaim: his “Are You Ready” won first prize at the Chris Austin Songwriting Contest at Doc Watson’s legendary “MerleFest” in 1998 (other past winners include Gillian Welch and Tift Merritt), and his songs have been recorded by Naked Blue, Radio Mosaic, and Eric Beattie & The Party Ants.
Sam’s instrumental prowess has won prizes on guitar and mandolin at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival and has made him a sought-after session player and sideman. He also won the Ed Bell blues competition at the 2005 Sweet Gum Bottom Blues Festival.
He is working on a debut CD.
Sam Pointer has:
· jammed on stage with artists including Vince Welnick (of The Grateful Dead), David Grisman, John Popper (of Blues Traveler), Boyd Tinsley (of The Dave Matthews Band), David Gans, Eddie From Ohio, Dix Bruce & Jim Nunally, Lane & the Badass Chickenbones, Bob Brozman, and James Nash (of The Waybacks), as well as Alabama favorites such as Telluride, Blue Galaxy String Project, Rollin' in the Hay, Glenn Tolbert, Herb Trotman, Erin Mitchell Band, Carole Griffin (of the Sugar La La’s), Noble Freeland, and The Hurlers;
· shared shows with Widespread Panic, Blues Traveler, The Radiators, Hot Tuna, Dave Mason, Merl Saunders, Ray Manzarek (of The Doors), The Aquarium Rescue Unit, Zero, The Samples, The Byrds, The Georgia Satellites, Jupiter Coyote, Webb Wilder, The Tubes, and Southside Johnny & the Jukes;
· appeared on recordings by multiple Grammy winners The Temptations, Emmy winner and Grammy nominee Christopher Hedge, Gabriel Tajeu, Jason Bailey, George Scherer, Rebecca Frazier (née Hoggan) of Hit & Run Bluegrass, Paul Weber, Laughing Man, Eric Beattie, YNot?!, and his late 80's California bluegrass band, Snakes in the Grass;
· played top venues across the country, including Tipitina’s (New Orleans), The Fillmore (San Francisco), The Birchmere (Washington, D.C.), The Bottom Line (New York City), South by Southwest Festival (Austin), Slim’s (San Francisco), The Wetlands (New York City), The Georgia Theatre (Athens), The Masquerade (Atlanta), Chestnut Cabaret (Philadelphia), MerleFest (North Carolina), Freight & Salvage (Berkeley), and The Bayou (Washington, D.C);
· performed as a member of Birmingham bands including Black Jacket Symphony, Bonus Round, Rollin' in the Hay, George Scherer & the Headlights, Shillelagh Law, and Electric Monkeywrench.
· played numerous venues and events in Birmingham, including City Stages, Iron City, WorkPlay, Moonlight on the Mountain, The Acoustic Cafe, Sloss Furnace, the Moonlight Music Cafe, Do Dah Day, Five Points South Music Hall, Five Points Grill, Ciao Bar & Grill, Bailey's Pub, The Hippodrum, The Back Alley, Louie Louie, Innisfree, Killarney’s, Oak Hill, Tommy's Up Top, Highland Coffee Company, Wine Styles, The Club, The Grape, Otey’s, Marty's, Rucker Place, The Harbert Center, Ross Bridge Resort, Magic City Brewfest, Artwalk, Barber Motorsports Park, The J. Clyde, Wine'd Down, and Java & Jams.
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