Ladies and gentlemen, from Dixon California,

Matt & George and their Pleasant Valley Boys

Traditional bluegrass from Northern CA, since 2006.


What Matt & George and their Pleasant Valley Boys pick on.

A Gibson banjo leaning against a silky blue background

George’s 1929 Gibson TB3 “Fatboy”.


Instrument: 1929 Gibson TB3 “Fatboy” OPF double conversion from batch 9489. Huber conversion neck with leaves and bows inlay pattern, Gotah tuners with Keith D tuners on the 2nd and 3rd strings, Huber head and bridge, rim cut for a Huber HR-30 tone ring. Rim, resonator, all other metal components original to the banjo. Tailpiece punched by Jerry Keys.

Strings: Huber medium light

Picks: Showcase 41 fingerpicks and medium Golden Gate “clown barf” thumb pick

Tuner: TC Electronic Unitune clip-on

Case: Calton Cases of Canada double thickness 5-string banjo case

Other: Huber leather strap, gold McKinney 5-string banjo capo

Quote: “This is my final banjo. Tone is everything I would expect out of a pre war Gibson.”

Hutto F-5 custom mandolin

Matt’s 1997 Hutto F-5 custom mandolin.


Instrument: 1997 Hutto F-5 custom mandolin with fitted Cumberland Acoustic Tall Boy bridge and Stewart MacDonald customized clear pick guard.

Strings: D’Addario EJ74 medium phosphor bronze

Pick: Dunlop Primetone 1.3mm semi round

Tuner: Planet Waves Micro Headstock

Case: Calton Cases of Canada F mandolin shaped case

Other: Homemade rolled bootlaces leather strap.

Quote: “It’s the only mandolin I’ve ever owned.”

1951 Martin D-28 guitar

Jenny Lynn’s 1951 Martin D-28 guitar.

Jenny Lynn

Instrument: 1951 Martin D-28 guitar with Graph Tech Tusq PP-2122-00 black with white inlay man made (faux) ivory bridge pins.

Strings: D’Addario EJ17 medium phosphor bronze

Picks: John Pearse Hi-Rider fingerpick and Dunlop “clown barf” thumb pick

Tuner: Planet Waves Micro Headstock

Case: Calton Cases of Canada Martin dreadnought guitar shaped case

Other: Unbranded black leather mandolin strap with Planet Waves Acoustic Guitar Quick-Release System (guitar has no strap button), and Elliott guitar capo.

Jim’s Arnold Voight fiddle.

Fiddlin’ Jim

Instrument: (unknown date) Arnold Voight fiddle

Strings: Thomastik-Infeld Super Flexible Rope Core Aluminum and Chrome Wound 4/4 violin

Bow: Chadwick London violin bow

Tuner: A440 tuning fork

Case: Ifshin Violins violin case, with Colorado Case Company violin case cover.

Quote: “A friend found it in a thrift shop in San Francisco and it plays beautifully. Really a lucky find!”

Cousin Rainwater’s 1961 King Mortone bass.

Cousin Rainwater

Instrument: 1961 King Mortone ~7/8 scale upright bass

Strings: G–A Lenzner Supersolo gut strings, E Eurosonic medium guage

Pickup & Preamp: Vics Pickups Model C slap and bridge pickup, K&K Bass Master RB preamp

Tuner: Peterson StroboStomp HD

Case: Protec 3/4 Gold Series gig bag

Other: Custom 1-inch monther of toilet seat endpin cap, strings conditioned exclusively with Cobram Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Quote: “Actually, no. It’s a pleasure to bring with me everywhere I go. Same with my wife, and she’s just as tall.”