Former Gov’t Mule bass player Andy Hess spent most of November in Europe touring in Robben Ford’s band. He is now back in the States, where he will make a December 30 appearance in San Francisco at the Boom Boom Room. There he will join guitarist Avi Bortnick in a group that also will feature Liberty Ellman on second guitar, DJ Tiko on keys and drummer Max MacVeety. Hess and Bortnick are alums of John Scofield’s band and have gigged together in Cornpone (an “afro-country” quartet with Tony Mason on drums and Daniel Mintseris on keys).