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I Want to Be a Cowboy's Sweetheart

You're In Style when You're Wearing a Smile

Playing the Old time Music from The Gay 90s through the 30s

2016 Santa's Grotto with Way Back When

Get your toes tappin' and your smiles on when you hear the music of Way Back When. We're based in Shingle Springs, CA and will happily travel throughout El Dorado County, or the greater Sacramento area, to provide entertainment for your special occasions, senior care homes, or group events.

We bring the "Good Old Days" back to life with the popular music of those days, evoking memories of earlier, and simpler times. Some tunes are "Bill Bailey," "All of Me," "Bye Bye Blackbird," and "Runnin' Wild." Then we mix in a little Country with "San Antonio Rose," "Ragtime Cowboy Joe," or "Your Cheatin' Heart." We'll sometimes add "new" songs from the 40s or 50s, like "Bourbon Street Parade," & "Elmer's Tune," but we always keep that fun banjo music front and center.

The full band photos were taken when we played for the Placerville & Sacramento Valley Railroad Santa's Grotto excursions. This is an enjoyable excursion ride from Folsom to the El Dorado County line most weekends throughtout the summer. The photo at right is when 3 of us played for the Wine Train excursion.

Santa Train 2015 Way Back When Band                       3 on the wine train

Meet the Musicians:

TubaDave Sieber

Dave Sieber - Tuba: Dave started his music journey playing trumpet in high school, until he got kicked out of the band because he got caught playing football when he was supposed to be at band rehearsal. After trying 3 times to get back into band, the band leader finally let him in if he would switch to the only instrument left, the tuba. He’s never regretted the choice; although, he is also a great stand-up bass player.

Jim Matthews-Banjoist

Jim Matthews - Plectrum banjo, 5-string banjo, or bass guitar: A dedicated railroad buff, he's the one who got the band involved with playing regularly for the Placerville & Sacramento Valley Rail Road excursion trains out of Folsom, including the Nello Olivo Wine Train excursions, and the special trains to Santa's Grotto in December and the Great Pumpkin Patch in October. Jim got started playing banjo back in the 60s when everyone else seemed to play guitar, and he wanted to be different. He bought his first banjo for $15 in Mountain Home, Arkansas, while visiting his grandfather. He says he’s not sure whether buying that banjo, or learning to milk his grandfather's goat, was the most exciting happening that summer.

Phil Anderson

Phil Anderson - Tenor banjo: Phil has been playing banjo since 1962, when he played regularly in Bay Area Shakey’s, Straw Hats, as well as other pizza parlors. An accomplished self-trained musician, he played stand-up bass in The South Town Strummers, banjo in the Napa Valley Dixieland Band, and banjo in several other Greater Bay Area bands; currently at Straw Hat Pizza on Mather Rd. in Sacramento. He's also a darn good piano player.

Bev Ludlow Anderson

Bev Anderson - Vocals & Washboard: Singing the old songs was just part of growing up. She sang barbershop with the Sweet Adelines chorus, including a few years as baritone in a quartet, Renaissance Faire. After several years of musical hiatus, she started voice lessons, joined the El Dorado Hills Senior Funtime Band, and met Seiber, who encouraged her to sing with the Sacramento Jazz Society on their Second Sundays where she soon earned Gold Card Musician status. Dave was also instrumental in getting her to sing with the banjo band at Straw Hat Pizza, where she met these other musicians, and together with Phil, started the “Way Back When Band.”

Barbara Kampe

Barbara Kampe-Tenor banjo: Barbara, along with long-time friend, Peggy Lewis, established the Capitol Kids Banjo Band in 1988. For twelve years, they passed on their banjo playing skills and love of the banjo to 25 young musicians, including some who have gone on to be professional banjo players. Barbara's skill at playing single string melody is instrumental (pun intended) in rounding out the sound of our band.

Linda Mitchell

Linda Mitchell-Plectrum banjo: To Linda, banjo music sounds lively, happy, & unlike any other music. She associates the instrument with her grandfather who played plectrum banjo back in the 1930s and 40s in small gathering places in the Midwest. She wishes she had started playing long ago, but luckily for us, she did start after she retired! Playing the banjo is, for her, a connection to her grandfather. In fact, she carries a picture of him and his banjo in her banjo case.


Contact Information
Bev Ludlow Anderson: (530) 391-2489,       or Phil Anderson: (530) 903-4309
email to Bev at WayBackWhenBand.com