Peter Strauss Ranch - I See Hawks in LA, Sept 2007
Page 1 of 1

A young fiddler learning traditional music, part of the Topanga Banjo and Fiddle Contest.

On September 9th, the National Park Service and the Topanga Banjo and Fiddle Contest sponsored a concert at the Peter Strauss Ranch, a lovely area near Mulholland Highway and Kanan in the Santa Monica Mountains.

Peter Strauss Ranch.  Inhabited for thousands of years by the Chumash people, this area became part of Rancho Las Virgenes after Spanish colonization.

Actor Peter Strauss was deeply moved by the area’s natural beauty while filming the mini-series “Rich Man, Poor Man” at Malibou Lake in 1976. He purchased the property, living here until 1983. Strauss eventually sold the ranch to the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy for environmental preservation.

Outstretched branches catch the music drifting from the ampitheatre at the Peter Strauss Ranch.  Photo by professional coastal live oak photographer Lisa Kelly.

Guitar wizard Paul Lacques, one of my favorite guitarists, performing with I See Hawks in LA during their acoustic set at the Peter Strauss Ranch.  I love his guitar playing, and even more, the way he coaxes gorgeous notes of emotional poignancy from his lap steel playing.


Formed in 1999 by Rob Waller and brothers Paul and Anthony Lacques during a philosophical discussion and rock-throwing session on an East Mojave desert trek, I See Hawks in L.A. have established a signature sound of high-lonesome, three-part harmonies, twang guitar and unadorned acoustic arrangements, with lyrics musing on mortality, whales, and the geography of pre-apocalyptic L.A. The band has received rave reviews, a #1 spot on the F.A.R. Alternative Country Chart, and received the L.A. Weekly Best Country Artist of the Year Award for 2002 and 2003. You can visit them on their Web Site .
Topanga Fiddle and Banjo Contest website

Listening to the beautiful three-part harmonies of one of the best bands in Los Angeles.

Rob Laller of I See Hawks in LA.


"These freewheeling lords of California psych country approach their music as if it were a portal,an unseen threshold that, once crossed, promises a wholly unpredictable experience.The Hawks' singular style operates on an epic scale, with a sound as much traditional hillbilly as it is accelerated lysergic-rock spontaneity."
- Jonny Whiteside, L.A. WEEKLY

Paul Lacques.

"Their songs are rife with mournful social commentary, environmental tragedy, wily humor, outsider guile, and political undercurrent. Seldom has there been an album with such joyous music-making, such corrosive, acid-etched lyrics."
- WM Smith, No Depression

Anthony Lacques on bass.


"2006 was the year of Gram Parsons, for many strange reasons, and I See Hawks, a Byrds/Burritos blend of brainy talent, benefited from all the posthumous attention paid to Parsons. It’s also one of the best post-Byrds roots records since Gene Clark’s No Other."
-- Bob Gulla, Boston Phoenix Best of 2006

Legendary fiddler Brantley Kearns (Dwight Yoakam, Dave Alvin, Hazel Dickens).


Awarded Best Country Band in 2002 and 2003 by the prestigious L.A.Weekly

"I See Hawks In L.A. play the finest cosmic cowboy music since the Burrito Brothers."
--Michael Simmons, L.A. Weekly

Anthony, Rob, Paul, and Brantley conclude a beautiful set at the Peter Strauss Ranch.


"Seldom has there been an album with such joyous music-making, such corrosive, acid-etched lyrics. Way cosmic."
-- William Michael Smith

Kids playing, throwing leaves into a large pile at the Peter Strauss Ranch just after the I See Hawks in LA show.

Autumn comes early at the Peter Strauss Ranch.

Fascinating patterns of tree bark.

Peter Strauss Ranch - I See Hawks in LA, Sept 2007

Eleven Shadows Travel Page
Contact photographer/musician Ken Lee

eleven shadows eleven shadows