Jacksonville’s own Open Jam Tuesdays, hosted by bandleader T.J. Elton is celebrating its one-year anniversary. In the spirit of, “If you build it, they will come,” Elton approached J’ville Tavern’s owner, Andy Whitty Gough, to showcase the talent of local musicians. On February 2, 2016, Open Jam Tuesday debuted, and the players filled-up the sign-in sheets. Elton has a wonderful ability to match musicians up and allow everyone into the spotlight. “Tuesdays” has become the go-to jam for musicians and singers, drawing not only from its vast local community but from out of state, as well.
The year started strong with local favorites appearing: Bishop Mayfield, Jeff Kloetzel, Beth Henderson, Sandy Borden and Brian Swan. A house band soon formed with bassist Marc Tramonte and drummer Nick Hale. No cover charge brought in packed audiences. First-time artists and road-worthy players started bringing the house down. Holly Gleason, Jim Sitter, Richard Dozier, Seth Hansen, Verna Dodge, Shannon Jennings, Seth Charles to name a few. During the Britt’s concert series, touring musicians strolled in and played with the band. The highlight of the summer of 2016 brought in musicians touring with Diana Ross and Ronda Ross to jam with Elton. Word continues to spread as bluegrass, classical, indie rock, country artists came to join in on the fun.
Elton says, “Each week is a unique musical experience with great talent from the region and beyond. Musicians travel in to play from out of state and out of the country to play at this jam. The sound quality is excellent and the music is plentiful. Well worth an evening out… if you’re not a player, the dancing is great, too.”
With praise, the Tavern’s owner posted to TJ Elton’s FaceBook page, “We truly appreciate the fun and music you bring to the Tavern!” The J’ville Tavern has booked another year for the TJ Elton Open Jam Tuesday. Bring your musical skills and show them off or just relax and enjoy the music our lovely community has to offer.