Old-Time Music in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Home Bands Jams Concerts Festivals Dances Events Resources Old-Time Music?


The Tractor Jam is on hiatus again, as of September 13, 2021

Open Old-Time Jam - Hosted by the Virginia Creepers

at Tractor Brewing
118 Tulane SE @ Central
Every Monday, 7:00-9:30 p.m.

Click here for • TUNE LISTS • from the weekly Tractor jams.

A few notes about the Tractor jam:

This is a hosted open jam, with primarily experienced players. Beginners are welcome to sit in, but we play at speed.

If you're unsure what the old-time genre is all about, see the Old-Time Music link above and/or read this 2015 Tractor blog post (page may be slow to load).

Acoustic instruments only, no amplifiers.
No drums. Tractor requests no drums at the Nob Hill Location.

Space issues and rules to address them:

• Space is limited. Occupy as little as possible. 
• Keep the jam circle clear of cases, etc. This is a safety issue, and non negotiable.*
  *Cases, coats, idle instruments, etc., can be placed under the benches, on the far end of the bench (if no one is sitting there), or over near the smaller patio entry door. If adequate space is not available, leave the extras in your car until you want to swap them out.

• Jam participants sit on chairs and benches arranged roughly in a circle.
• When you enter the jam, maintain this circular shape as best you can.
• When new participants arrive, make room for them in the circle.
• When the circle gets too big, start a second circle around (or inside) the first.
• Leave room between the jam circle and the bar for patrons and staff to walk.
• If you notice something that is problematic or unsafe, please let the jam hosts know, so we may address it. (Hosts by name: Jane (fiddle), Laurie (mandola), Marc (banjo), Michel (fiddle), Rick (guitar).
• The jam hosts reserve the right to correct problems relating to the physical space. Anyone refusing to abide by the jam rules, failing to be respectful of other participants, or being otherwise rude or unruly, will be asked to leave at the discretion of the jam hosts.


This jam uses the turn-taking approach, going around the circle. Everyone gets a turn to suggest tunes; no one is required to. As a hosted jam, when there is a lull in selecting tunes, the Creepers will likely jump in with one. We like to keep things moving, since it is a taproom full of patrons and everyone is happier when there's music.

The person who starts the tune (or requested it) is expected to let us know when to stop. We will keep playing until we hear a "last time" (or similar) or see a raised foot. (See hazard of not being told to stop: click here.) There is no standard number of times to play a tune at this jam; we play it until it's done, anywhere from about 6 to 20 times. [When I think we've about reached the time to stop, I play it two more times. Your mileage may vary.]

Fiddlers and banjo players use special tunings for different keys, so it's common to stay in one key for a while to minimize the retuning. ("A while" could mean 5 or 6 tunes, or 20, or all night, depending on the group or the evening.)

A little noodling between tunes is probably unavoidable, but loud and insistent noodling is generally frowned upon and is not Dale Carnegie approved.

Like many old-time musicians, the jam hosts wrestle with the issue of offensive and questionable content, lyrics, and titles of the older repertoire, in particular. While we acknowledge the historical perspectives of this material, we choose to apply our current sensibilities and will change titles and lyrics as we see fit. We encourage jam participants to do the same while in this setting.


Support our fabulous taproom home, Tractor Brewing. Buy a beverage! There are a million types of beer (more or less), plus ciders, and even some sodas. They don't serve food, but a food truck is often parked out front and several local eateries will deliver to the taproom (some menus are often available at the bar). You may BYO food from elsewhere.

Sign up for mailing list (link below) to get weekly Tractor jam reminders and notices of any cancelations.


ABQ-area Jams for Other Types of Music - All Likely On Hold During Pandemic

FolkMADS Megaband - open community contra-dance band, mixed genres
List of assorted jams (multiple genres) in ABQ and elsewhere in NM
Southwest Pickers for bluegrass jams

Traveling? Want to find a jam elsewhere on the planet?

Try this global map of open jams: Click here.


Mailing List Classifieds Contact Facebook