What's a long-time folkie, a "pre-boomer" more at home with a century-old mandolin than an iMac, doing on the web? Well, I hope to give you an introduction to my music, a current performance calendar, a few bits of bio, an opportunity to write me or even book me, plus the odd morsel of miscellany. Oddly enough, one of the things I've always loved about folk music, in the 40-plus years I've been playing it, is its intimacy — the lack of distance between performer and audience. Here, in the paradoxical one-on-one closeness of our impersonal electronic community, we can talk directly.

I play folk music — American traditional, Celtic instrumental, a bit of Yiddish, blues, bluegrass, old timey, and contemporary. With varying degrees of expertise, I handle guitar, banjo, mandolins of all sizes, Autoharp, English concertina, harmonica, bass (acoustic and electric), Dobro, Appalachian dulcimer, ukulele, and other odd instruments from tiple to kalimba. I perform in a variety of groups, and coordinate performances by many of my musical friends. I've participated in over a dozen recordings, played many a concert, coffeehouse and regional festival. I put together theme programs, historical and contemporary, and work frequently with special audiences — kids, seniors, etc. I work mostly out of Rochester NY, occasionally elsewhere in the Northeast. I love choruses, sing-arounds, swapping songs, backing up singers, and late-night jams.

Here are some of the specific things I can offer:

Love and Knishes
A trio with award-winning singer-songwriter Bonnie Abrams and Eastman-trained violinist Glenna Chance, presenting music from the Jewish tradition in Yiddish and English, as well as Bonnie's original material. MP3's of the group's music included!
A quartet specializing in Celtic instrumental music on mandolin, accordian, hammered dulcimer, guitar, and concertina. MP3's of the group's music included!
Barbara Jablonski & Allen Hopkins
Performing programs of American traditional music in schools, libraries, museums and historical societies.
Special Programs
Musical programs from our past and our present; songs for special audiences — kids, seniors, et al.
Flint Hill Folk
Organized to provide folk music for Genesee Country Village, FHF perform 19th century music in period costume on restored instruments. MP3's of the group's music included!

For info, updates, and booking call (585) 482-6062 or e-mail

  • WEB SITE FEATURES include MP3 samples of Love & Knishes, Innisfree, and Flint Hill Folk on their pages; also there's a Booking Form if you'd like to set up a gig — thanx as always to Webmeister Fin Hopkins for first-rate expertise... Fall now, and a variety of musical events ahead; you can keep up with my comings and goings by clicking on the Booking Form page, and signing up for weekly e-mail updates, and even periodic USPS postcards with my gigs...
  • In the midst of teaching both beginner and intermediate ukulele classes for Brighton Recreation & Parks, through mid-November, with the probability of another class series next Spring...
  • Tunes By the Tracks is winding up its tenth hear of every-two-weeks Wednesday concerts at the Clifton Springs Library, in Ontario County; scheduled are local balladeer Dave North October 16, ace singer-songwriterMaria Gillard and her trio November 6, and my frequent collaborator Jim Clare and I November 20...
  • I'm also involved in running another concert series, Rochester Folkus, with Bill Destler and Rebecca Johnbson; October 23 I'll feature there with my long-time singing parter Bonnie Abrams, and November 13 brings the well-known DC songwriting and social justice duo, Magpie...
  • Halloween nears, bringing with it a couple of long-running gigs where I don a bit of costume and sing songs like Nonster Mash: October 18 I return — for the 20th year! — to the Penfield Town Halloween Party at the Baird Road Community Center, and the next morning, October 19, I'll be back at the Brighton Fall Harvest/Halloween Festival in the Town Hall auditorium on Elmwood Avenue...
  • Our local alternative weekly, City/Newspaper, did a story on "Rochester's Folk Community" last February issue; I was quoted — briefly — amd you can read the story here...
  • September kept me moving around Western NY, at events like the Angelica Civil War Weekend September 28, and my annual Saturday morning at the Perry Farmers' Market September 21; penciled in on my calendar is a trip to Bradford PA to join hillbilly guru Brett Howland for a workshop, potluck and concert at the Crook Farm November 16...
  • Sent in my workshop proposals for the 2020 New England Folk Festival (NEFFA), tentatively scheduled for April 24-26; the event has to relocate from its long-time Mansfield MA public school home, and location, and to some extent dates, aren't solid as yet — if it runs as planned, and I do my usual workshops, it'll be the 25th year I've played there...
  • One of my pleasant NEFFA memories comes from years ago — this 2012 "Both Sides Of the Pond" showcase concert, where I joined Lori Fassman, Jeff Keller, John Roberts and Lorraine Hammond; check out this YouTube vid of me backing Lori on Goin' Down This Road Feelin' Bad...
  • Continue to be active in Golden Link, our local folk club, helping to run actvities like the 2016 Holiday Hootenanny,); after a similar event in 2014, the local paper asked me to do a little write-up on the subject of hootenannies in general, for their November 30, 2014 issue — you can read my thoughts here ...
  • I've enjoyed doing some performing over the past couple years with my 25-year music partner Bonnie Abrams, — don't forget, you can catch us at Rochester Folkus October 23 — and a number of our collaborations have turned up on YouTube, from our gigs at Singer/Songwriters In the Side Room at Buffalo Bill's Family Restaurant in Shortsville, formerly hosted by Canandaigua troubadours Meyer & McGuire, who have graciously posted videos of our performances of Bonnie's songs, including Rainforest Crunch, Ruby's Knishes, I Have No Apps, Hillary & Susan B, and Old Folk Singers Never Die...
  • Since 1990, I've been a "folkie fixture" at reunions of my Harvard Class of 1965, hosting and coordinating sings every five years as we gather in Cambridge; at my 50th (!) in 2015, I led a "class hootenanny" after the feature concert by Tom Rush (Harvard '62, if you didn't know), and led the spiritual All My Trials at the class memorial service — my 55th comes up next year, and we'll see if I continue to have a role...
  • For years Mark Deprez, who plays with me in Innisfree, Rochester's longest-running Celtic band, has brought musical friends down to his part of the world (south of Rochester, in the Finger Lakes), for benefit concerts at local venues; we've played at St. Matthew Church in Livonia for their Eat For Heat benefit supper, including this January 27; we also played a "post-St. Pat's" dinner at St. Mary's Church in Honeoye several years ago, parts of which were picked up on YouTube here and here and here ...
  • Discoursed to the Rochester Guitar Club on Dobros, Nationals, and resonator instruments in general a couple years ago; thanx to Kinloch Nelson for hooking me up with them, and here's a little article about it...
  • Some more YouTube videos with my music: this one taken at First Fridays at the Seward House Museum in Auburn, features Jim Clare and me singing Folsom Prison Blues; this one features Bonnie Abrams' song Ruby's Knishes, as performed by Love and Knishes, and is dedicated to the Catskills' legendary Ruby the Knish Man; and this one documents me singing Bill Staines' song Place In the Choir at the Westside Farmers' Market couple years ago...
  • Still available in the wondrous world of cyberspace are some neat pictures of my June 28, 2008 performance for Historic Brighton, the town's historical society; you can click here to see me explaining the wonders of the Autoharp to a junior member of the audience at the reconstructed Fort Tryon trading post in Ellison Park...
  • I've listed several of my Special Programs at Performers And Programs, a website used by libraries in New York State to identify and schedule programs; as noted above, libraries have a need for themed programs of historical music, and I'm always glad to oblige...
  • I'm also listing my programs (when I remember to!) with the Rochester Music Coalition...
Updated October 15, 2019
Wednesday, October 16
Tunes By the Tracks
Clifton Springs Library, 4 Railroad Ave., Clifton Springs, 7-9 P.M., Dave North featured, also open mic
Friday, October 18
Penfield Town Halloween Party
Community Center, 1985 Baird Rd., 6-9 P.M., family Halloween music
Saturday, October 19
Brighton Harvest/Halloween Festival
Town Hall auditorium, 2300 Elmwood Ave., 10-11:30 A.M., family Halloween music
Monday, October 21*
Ukulele Classes
Brighton Recreation, 220 Idlewood Rd., beginners 6:30 P.M., Intermediate 7:30 P.M.
Wednesday, October 23
Rochester Folkus
Downstairs Cabaret Theater, 20 Windsor St., 7 P.M., Bonnie Abrams & I featured, also open mic
Sunday, October 27
St. Ann's Home
1500 Portland Ave., 2 P.M., lobby concert for residents and families
Monday, October 28*
Ukulele Classes
Brighton Recreation, 220 Idlewood Rd., beginners 6:30 P.M., Intermediate 7:30 P.M.
Thursday, October 31*
Seabury Woods
110 Dalaker Dr., 3 P.M., seniors' Halloween program
Monday, November 4*
Presbyterian Home
256 Thurston Rd., 2:30 P.M., seniors' program
Monday, November 4*
Ukulele Classes
Brighton Recreation, 220 Idlewood Rd., beginners 6:30 P.M., Intermediate 7:30 P.M.
Tuesday, November 5*
Unity St. Mary's Campus
79 Genesee St., 2 P.M., seniors' 2nd floor social hour
Wednesday, November 6
Tunes By the Tracks
Clifton Springs Library, 4 Railroad Ave., Clifton Springs, 7-9 P.M., Maria Gillard Trio featured, also open mic
Tuesday, November 12*
Brookdale Pittsford
159 Sully's Tr., Pittsford, 2:30 P.M., seniors' program
Wednesday, November 13
Rochester Folkus
Downstairs Cabaret Theater, 20 Windsor St., 7 P.M., Magpie featured, also open mic
Saturday, November 16
St. John's Meadows
4 Johnsarbor Dr., 10:30 A.M., seniors' program in Chestnut Court
Saturday, November 16
Crook Farm Old-Time Concert
476 Seaward Ave., Bradford PA, Hillbilly History workshop, pot-luck supper, concert w/Brett Howland, 5-9 P.M.
Monday, November 18*
Final Ukulele Classes
Brighton Recreation, 220 Idlewood Rd., beginners 6:30 P.M., Intermediate 7:30 P.M.
Tuesday, November 19*
Atria Penfield
2006 5-MIle Line Rd., Penfield, 7 P.M., seniors' Patriotic Songs program
Wednesday, November 20
Tunes By the Tracks
Clifton Springs Library, 4 Railroad Ave., Clifton Springs, 7-9 P.M., Jim Clare and I featured, also open mic
Thursday, November 21*
Heather Heights
160 West Jefferson Rd., Pittsford, 6:45 P.M., seniors' program in the lobby
Saturday, November 23*
Friendly Home/Linden Knoll
3146 East Ave., 2 P.M. seniors' program at Friendly Home; 81 Linden Ave., 3:30 P.M. seniors' program at Linden Knoll
Sunday, November 24
Old Time Music Night
Greece Baptist Church, 1230 Long Pond Rd., 7 P.M., also open sing-around
Monday, November 25*
St. Ann's Home
1500 Portland Ave., 10:30 A.M., seniors' program on 6th floor
Saturday, November 30*
Cottage Grove
44 Cottage Grove Cir., North Chili, 2:30 P.M., seniors' program in Mary's House
Monday, December 2*
Presbyterian Home
256 Thurston Rd., 2:30 P.M., seniors' program
Tuesday, December 3*
Unity St. Mary's Campus
79 Genesee St., 2 P.M., seniors' 2nd floor social hour
Addresses are Rochester, NY unless otherwise indicated.
* denotes a private function.
Also on
Musical Resume
Where I've been and what I've done
Comments & Clippings
A scrapbook of snapshots and snap judgments, views and reviews
Albums I'm on, and where to get 'em
Booking Form
If you're interested in booking me, go here