Archive for the ‘News’ Category

James King

Friday, May 20th, 2016
SpareTime is saddened by the news of the passing of James King at 57. He was a friend of ours for over fifteen years and we opened for him at the Copper Grid and Dudley’s. We were on the bill at Swamp n’ Grass and helped get his unique voice into a concert at the Roxbury Tavern.
James was called The Bluegrass Storyteller and excelled at poignant songs fraught with emotion and conviction. He was one of the most honest artists in traditional bluegrass—often moved to tears on stage by the lyrics he sang. One particular musical moment that comes to mind occurred at the Copper Grid when James, with only his guitar, sang “Dream of the Miner’s Child”. He imbued that hoary chestnut with utter sincerity and conviction. There were few dry eyes.
With James, what you saw was what you got (warts and all). And there were warts. At various times he lived hard. The road took a toll. He was in declining health for over a year.
Our thoughts go out to his loved ones.


Friday, May 20th, 2016

Schumacher Farm, just east of Waunakee, held Spring Bluegrass, its first bluegrass festival on May 14th. Truman’s Ridge, Northern Comfort, Milkhouse Radio, Kristy Larson’s Honky Tonk Trio, RF Kieffer, Down from the Hills, Soggy Prairie Boys, and SpareTime were on the bill.

We had a great time despite the exceedingly cold weather. The audience was warm and inviting, and the adaptability of all the groups to the conditions was marvelous. SpareTime has high hopes for the continuing festival. It’s in a great location, with fine facilities. We really need something like this in the area and want next year to be better than ever.

The next few weeks for SpareTime are filled with good events. We play Whole Foods on June 2nd, and journey to Tyranena Brewery in Lake Mills on Friday, June 3rd. This is always a good time. We get to see fans farther east from Madison and play outdoors in a relaxed garden setting. On June 9th we will be outside at the UW Memorial Union Terrace. They have been building on the Terrace, improving the stage and completing other structural additions. It just reopened and we are looking forward to a warm Spring evening with our backs to Lake Monona.

Summer is coming…

Friday, April 8th, 2016

We are currently working on our spring and summer schedules.  Check back for updates, but this is what we’ve got so far.  We’d love to see you!

  • Sunday, April 10, 4-5pm, Harmony Bar (2201 Atwood Ave, Madison)
  • Sunday, April 24, 4:30-5:30pm, BOS Meadery “Bees of Spring Bluegrass Festival” (Check out the full festival from 12-6pm) (849 E. Washington Ave, Madison)
  • Saturday, May 14, 1:20-2:20pm, Schumacher Farm Park “Spring Bluegrass” (Check out the full festival from 12-6pm) (5682 Highway 19 at Schumacher Rd, Waunakee)
  • Saturday, May 28, private event
  • Thursday, June 2, 5-7pm, Whole Foods “Burgers and Bluegrass” (3313 University Ave, Madison)
  • Friday, June 3, 6-9pm, Tyranena Brewery (1025 Owen St, Lake Mills)
  • Thursday, June 9, 5-7pm, UW Union Terrace (800 Langdon St, Madison)
  • Sunday, June 19, 4-6pm, Father’s Day at Roxbury Tavern (8901 County Rd Y, Roxbury)
  • Thursday, July 21, 11:30am-1pm, Out to Lunch (Iron Mountain, MI)
  • Thursday, July 28, 5-7pm, Whole Foods “Burgers and Bluegrass” (3313 University Ave, Madison)
  • Thursday, September 15, 6-8pm, High Noon Patio (701 E. Washington Ave, Madison)

The days are getting longer

Monday, February 22nd, 2016

SpareTime is busy booking for Spring and Summer.
Hope to see you at the Roxbury Tavern for the St Patricks day show from 7 to 9 on March 17th.
Check our Calendar for the gigs we already have booked and we will try and send out updates and Facebook posts.

Summer is here

Wednesday, May 20th, 2015

Here is the SpareTime Bluegrass 2015 Summer Schedule
Stop and have a beer with us.

May 30    Burgers and brews Capital brewery 4 -5
June 3     Whole Foods 5-7
June 27   Tyranena 6-9
July 8      Whole Foods 7-7
July 22    Whole Foods 4-6
July 30    UW Memorial Union Terrace 5-7
Aug 5      Whole Foods 5-7
Sept 24   High Noon 6-8

SpringTime for SpareTime

Monday, February 16th, 2015

It is not yet Spring, but we can see it from here. We have some new gigs and we’ve been nominated for the MAMA’s (Madison Area Music Awards). Please vote for us!!  It will cost you $5 to join and vote and the money is used to get musical instruments for kids.  Here is the link.  & a big thanks.

Here is what we are nominated for:

MAMAs Song of the Year

  • Category: Cover Song
    • You might think
  • Category: Folk/Americana
    • These Days
  • Category: Country/Bluegrass
    • Shackles and chains
  • Category: Unique
    • Riding the rapids
  • Category: Alternative
    • Vauxhall

MAMAs Album of the Year


  • Category: Country/Bluegrass
    • Vauxhall
  • Category: Folk/American
    • Vauxhall

MAMAs Artist of the Year

  • SpareTime Bluegrass

MAMAs Instrumentalist of the Year

  • Specialty Instrument
    • Jim Robarts banjo

MAMAs Vocalist of the Year

  • Category:Female Vocalist
    • Lisa Case Doro




Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

vauxhall2014It is here.
The new SpareTime CD is out. Vauxhall.
Our 9th recording and 1st with fiddler/singer Lisa Case Doro is dedicated to all of the musicians who have played as members of SpareTime or been SpareParts for a gig.
Thanks to Steve Gotcher at Audio for the Arts for his great recording/mixing and mastering and to Allyson Casey for the CD cover design.
Thanks also to the venues we have played these 20 years of SpareTime and to the many fans who have come out and supported the music.

Fall is here

Wednesday, October 15th, 2014

Hello Fall,
Summer just blew past us all. Lisa was out on Maternity Leave and now she is back. We have some shows lined up for the fall but we have been spending most of our energy on the new CD.
The CD titled Vauxhall (after Jim’s first car) is in final prep and will be ready for the Xmas gift-giving season. We like it and hope you will too. It is our first CD with Lisa singing and playing. Steve Gotcher from Audio for the Arts is again doing the recording and mixing.
Winter is coming on and that is wood shed din’ time when we learn some new tunes. Send me a note if you got a tune SpareTime ought to be doing.
So come out and see us when you can. I will try and keep the calendar up to date. We look forward to a milder winter than last year and some of your faces at our gigs.
Peace out

Oh My, Winter…Winter…Winter and then Summer

Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

We made it thru April and in May start playing outside gigs. Lisa is with us till mid June when she has asked for some time off. Till then we are playing all we can. So see us in the next weeks at Tyranena, Whole Foods, Capital Brewery and the Memorial Union Terrace with a mid summer appearance at the nearly historic Roxbury Tavern. Stop and have a beer or a cherry coke with the band. Cheers.

Winter 2014 When will this winter quit???

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Cold and more cold. it must be time for some hot Bluegrass.
SpareTime continues to play at the Frequency on the 3rd Thursdays of the month from 6 to 8.
$5 or 3 cans of food for the WilMar foodbank.

We are playing for the big United Way Bluegrass Benefit at the Barrymore Theatre on Sunday Feb. 9. A full afternoon of bluegrass for $10.
Please stop out to support this good cause.

February also brings studio time for SpareTime at Audio for the Arts. We hope to have a new CD out with Lisa singing and fiddling by this summer.

March brings our St Patrick’s gig at the legendary Roxbury Tavern. We are playing on Sunday to give us all Monday to chase the snakes out.

April SpareTime is playing for the Ladies of Bluegrass 7th Annual Music Festival at Watering Hole 2017 Velp Ave, Greenbay, Wisc.

& then comes Summer