On April 17, 2010, Fiddlers Crossing held its opening concert in Tehachapi, CA, with local band, “Geezers on the Loose.” The owners, musicians Peter Cutler and his wife, Deborah Hand-Cutler, wanted a place where people could listen to the best in acoustic music without the clatter of dishes and the whirl of espresso machines. They wanted a place where people could get lost in the music and share a magical evening in an intimate setting. Peter is the engineer for the Folkscene radio program, and Debby is the owner of Mountain Music, the downtown Tehachapi music store.
Ten years later, Fiddlers Crossing has gained a world-wide reputation as a premier venue for acoustic music. This is due to the brilliant sound engineering of Peter Cutler, the cozy atmosphere, the snacks and special desserts, and also to the appreciative and enthusiastic Tehachapi audience. The audience members often become big fans of the musicians, who come from all over the world. It’s not uncommon for some to travel long distances to hear their favorites again, and to become friends.
The activities have included one or two concerts per month, weekly Wednesday night open mics, and free First Friday showcases featuring local area musicians as well as up-and-coming talents just starting to tour.
About Owners Peter and Debby
As owners of Fiddlers Crossing and Mountain Music, Peter Cutler and Deborah Hand-Cutler have become mainstays of the acoustic music scene in Tehachapi.
Peter Cutler, a singer and guitarist, has been the recording engineer for the syndicated radio program, “Folkscene,” for 47 years. As part of that work, he has recorded many of the best folk and Americana artists from all over the world. With the passing of the original hosts, Roz and Howard Larman, Peter and Debby have taken an even more active role in the program, joining the Larman’s son Allen, and daughter-in-law Kat. Peter is still engineering, while Debby is now doing some of the interviews. Fiddlers Crossing concerts have been used on the program for several years. Peter now produces, engineers and hosts an online version of the program over FolkMusicNotebook.com, giving Folkscene a world-wide audience.
Deborah Hand-Cutler has been a familiar face in the Tehachapi music scene since the early 1990s. As the owner of Mountain Music, she was responsible for starting two orchestras, the Tehachapi Symphony Orchestra and the Tehachapi POPS orchestra, aka TPOPS. She still plays cello and mountain dulcimer at the store, and also plays bass, tenor banjo, mandola and viola, as well. She was a member of the popular local Celtic band, Paint a Rose. Debby also served on the City Council for 8 years, including a year as Mayor.
Peter and Debby sometimes perform as a duo and played with the Scottish Fiddlers of Los Angeles for several years.
Folkscene is a music program established in 1970 featuring recorded music and in studio live performances on KPFK, 90.7 fm, Los Angeles on Sunday evenings from 6:00-8:00 PM. There is also an hour-long version of the program on Folk Music Notebook every Saturday, 6:00pm and 11:00pm Pacific time. Here are some highlights. Enjoy!
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Gallery of Artists
Musicians who have performed at Fiddlers Crossing - Click to see the full size picture