musicreporterblog

Musings on folk, Americana, country, bluegrass and newgrass


Leave a comment

MerleFest announces 2020 festival lineup additions of John Prine, Colin Hay, Billy Strings, Kelsey Weldon and more

From the good folks over at MerleFest:
MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the next round of artist additions for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. John Prine, Billy Strings, Colin Hay, Kelsey Waldon, and Gangstagrass will be joining the annual homecoming of musicians and music fans on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Today’s lineup announcement adds five great artists to MerleFest’s already stacked lineup: Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss, The Jerry Douglas Band, Sam Bush, Jim Lauderdale, Kruger Brothers, The Waybacks, Scythian, Donna The Buffalo, Peter Rowan and the Free Mexican Airforce, Tommy Emmanuel, Shinyribs, Charley Crockett, Darrell Scott, The Steel Wheels, Robbie Fulks, Amythyst Kiah, Cordovas, Alison Brown, Andy May, “B” Townes, Banknotes, Bill & The Belles, Bryan Sutton, Carol Rifkin, Charles Welch, Chatham Rabbits, Che Apalache, The Cleverlys, Creole Stomp with Dennis Stroughmatt, David Holt, Fireside Collective, Flattop, Happy Traum, Hogslop String Band, InterACTive Theatre of Jef, Irish Mythen, Iron Horse Bluegrass, Jack Lawrence, Jeff Little Trio, Jody Carroll, Joe Smothers, Ken Crouse, Laura Boosinger, The Local Boys, Los Texmaniacs, Mark Bumgarner, Mary Flower, Mitch Greenhill, Pete & Joan Wernick, Piedmont Bluz, Presley Barker, Rev. Robert Jones, Roy Book Binder, Sierra Ferrell, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman, Tony Williamson, Wayne Henderson, The Moore Brothers, The Williams Brothers, and Wyld Fern.

Continue reading


Leave a comment

Willie Nelson, Alison Krauss among others return to MerleFest in 2020

From the good folks over at MerleFest:

Presented by Window World, MerleFest is proud to announce the initial lineup for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. The annual homecoming of musicians and music fans returns to the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

“For over 30 years, one of the major factors that has built and sustained MerleFest has been the quality of the artists and performances that our guests see over the four-day festival,” says Ted Hagaman, festival director. “People truly feel that the festival is a great value and that is why music fans and families return year after year. We feel that the 2020 lineup again reflects the diversity and quality of performers, and we look forward to another successful festival in April.”

The complete lineup for MerleFest 2020 will be announced over the next few months. For more information, visit www.MerleFest.org.

Today’s lineup announcement includes Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss, The Jerry Douglas Band, Sam Bush, Jim Lauderdale, Kruger Brothers, The Waybacks, Scythian, Donna The Buffalo, Peter Rowan and the Free Mexican Airforce, Tommy Emmanuel, Shinyribs, Charley Crockett, Darrell Scott, The Steel Wheels, Robbie Fulks, Amythyst Kiah, Cordovas, Alison Brown, Andy May, “B” Townes, Banknotes, Bill & The Belles, Bryan Sutton, Carol Rifkin, Charles Welch, Chatham Rabbits, Che Apalache, The Cleverlys, Creole Stomp with Dennis Stroughmatt, David Holt, Fireside Collective, Flattop, Happy Traum, Hogslop String Band, InterACTive Theatre of Jef, Irish Mythen, Iron Horse Bluegrass, Jack Lawrence, Jeff Little Trio, Jody Carroll, Joe Smothers, Ken Crouse, Laura Boosinger, The Local Boys, Los Texmaniacs, Mark Bumgarner, Mary Flower, Mitch Greenhill, Pete & Joan Wernick, Piedmont Bluz, Presley Barker, Rev. Robert Jones, Roy Book Binder, Sierra Ferrell, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman, Tony Williamson, Wayne Henderson, The Moore Brothers, The Williams Brothers, and Wyld Fern.

Tickets for next year’s festival go on sale today and may be purchased at http://www.MerleFest.org or by calling 1-800-343-7857. MerleFest offers a three-tiered pricing structure and encourages fans to take advantage of the extended early bird discount. Early Bird Tier 1 tickets may be purchased from November 12 to February 16, 2020; Early Bird Tier 2 tickets from February 17 to April 22. Remaining tickets will be sold at the gate during the festival.

Continue reading


Leave a comment

Violet Bell and Zoe & Cloyd to perform as part of Cary’s Marvelous Music Mainstage series on Friday, Nov. 8

Halloween may be over but fans of Americana music are in for a special treat as two talented duos — Violet Bell and Zoe & Cloyd — hit the stage at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 8, at the Cary Arts Center.

I first had the pleasure of hearing Violet Bell perform its original Americana tunes woven from threads of folk, soul, bluegrass, psychedelic and classical music at Rooster Walk Music and Arts Festival. On stage and in the studio, the energy and chemistry between Lizzy Ross and Omar Ruiz-Lopez is fiery, intimate and intuitive. Learn more at www.lizzy.net

636917938484400000

Zoe & Cloyd, who I first discovered at MerleFest, is made up of renowned fiddler and vocalist Natalya Zoe Weinstein and songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist John Cloyd Miller. Together, they delight audiences with soaring harmonies and heartfelt songwriting, seamlessly combining original folk, country, old-time and bluegrass with sincerity and zeal.

Zoe and Cloyd recently released their third album, “I Am Your Neighbor,” on Friday, Sept. 27, on Organic Records during the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) annual event in downtown Raleigh.

Learn more at www.zoeandcloyd.com

636917938493630000

Tickets start at $23 and can be purchased online at ETix.

For more information, call (919) 462-2055 or visit Marvelous Music Series.


Leave a comment

5 reasons to attend The Shindig 2019

If you’ve had trouble finding the schedule for The Shindig 2019 “Music For Your Beers” that kicks off at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 2,  in downtown Clayton, North Carolina, it’s below and you’re welcome.


Leave a comment

Shakori Hills Grassroots Festival of Music and Dance features Galactic, Donna the Buffalo, Roosevelt Collier, Tan and Sober Gentlemen, Shiloh Hill and many more Oct. 3-6

PITTSBORO, NORTH CAROLINA — The 16th Annual Shakori Hills GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance is set for Oct. 3–6 on an idyllic 72 acres in bucolic Chatham County, less than an hour’s drive from Raleigh, Durham and Greensboro.

More than 50 performers, including Galactic, Donna the Buffalo, Roosevelt Collier, Tan and Sober Gentlemen and Shiloh Hill, will appear on four stages over four days. Other activities include yoga, dance and sustainability workshops.

The festival site has been described as a “music lovers’ paradise” and offers affordable tent, vehicle and RV camping options. Four-day and single-day tickets are on sale now and children 12 and under are free with a paying adult. Learn more at  https://shakorihillsgrassroots.org/tickets-info/

The nonprofit festival benefits the Shakori Hills Community Arts Center. The Arts Center provides free, or greatly reduced, music and arts programming to Chatham, Orange and Durham counties.

The following ticket outlets will have four-day tickets:
Circle City Books (Pittsboro)
The Regulator Bookshop (Durham)
Townsend Bertram & Co (Carrboro)
Schoolkids Records (Raleigh & Chapel Hill)
Redix Store (Wilmington & Wrightsville Beach)
REI Co-op (Raleigh, Cary, Durham)

 


Leave a comment

Inaugural Earl Scruggs Music Festival set for Sept. 4-5, 2020 in Mill Spring, N.C.

RALEIGH — One of Grammy award-winning Dobro player Jerry Douglas’ earliest memories is hearing Earl Scruggs play banjo on the radio in his childhood Cleveland home.
“I doubt I would be a musician now if it hadn’t been for that sound,” Douglas told a group gathered at the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) annual conference and music festival in the Raleigh Convention Center on Friday, Sept. 27, for the announcement of the inaugural Earl Scruggs Music Festival set for Sept. 4-5, 2020, at the Tryon International Equestrian Center in Mill Spring, North Carolina.

Douglas continued, “Little did I know that later in life he would be my friend.A s far as I’m concerned this festival named in his honor is far overdue. But I also believe that’s the way Earl would want it to be. We can only hope that we can make him proud in how we perceive his legacy to the world.”

Douglas, who started his group the Earls of Leicester as a tribute to Scruggs, will act as musician in resident for the festival.

Scruggs, who has deep ties to North Carolina, popularized a three-finger banjo picking style that became a defining characteristic of bluegrass music.
The two-day event that will feature music from bluegrass, folk, blues, roots and Americana styles to celebrate Scruggs is a collaboration between the Earl Scruggs Center located in Shelby and WNCW radio station located on the campus of Isothermal Community College. The festival will benefit both the radio station and the college.
In addition to Douglas, the initial lineup includes Marty Stuart, Alison Brown, Dom Flemons, Radney Foster, Darin & Brooke Aldridge, The Po’ Ramblin’ Boys, The Barefoot Movement and Unspoken Tradition. Both Foster and Unspoken Tradition performed as part of the announcement that was made by festival director Steve Johnson, formerly of MerleFest.

Few other artists in American history have had such an impact as Scruggs, according to a festival press release. His work in 1946/47 with Bill Monroe & the Blue Grass Boys and later with Flatt and Scruggs helped create an entire genre of music. His banjo playing was so fresh and different for the time that it was christened the “Scruggs style” of banjo and is still the most prominent banjo performance style in the world.

“Earl was my uncle, so I knew him a long time,” says JT Scruggs, a board member of the Earl Scruggs Center. “The first Earl Scruggs Music Festival presents an opportunity to bring exposure and new visitors to the Earl Scruggs Center in Shelby, North Carolina. The proceeds from the festival will also help to keep the center in good financial shape. The festival will bring great music and many different groups to the region. And I hope that people will hear things about Earl that they may have never heard before as all the artists share their personal stories. I know that Earl would be proud of what we are doing and that we are remembering him through the festival.”

Noah Wall of The Barefoot Movement grew up in North Carolina.

“I feel so lucky to have that in common with legends like Earl Scruggs,” he said. “He was such a trailblazer, not just a pioneer of bluegrass, but he also pushed the boundaries of traditional music. I don’t think he set out to be different for the sake of standing out, I think he did it for sake of the music itself. He just sought after good music, music that moved him, and that is so inspiring to me.”

In October, two new acts — Acoustic Syndicate and Blue Highway– were announced. More artists, both national and North Carolina-based, will be added over the coming months. The festival will feature more than 20 artists and three stages in a beautiful setting at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains, according to organizers. Camping, lodging, restaurants and other amenities will be available onsite.
For tickets and more information, visit www.earlscruggsmusicfestival.com/ and


Leave a comment

Bluegrass music’s biggest night is 2019 International Bluegrass Music Awards

Tonight’s the night: the biggest night of the year for bluegrass musicians around the globe. All eyes and ears will be focused on the red carpet at the Duke Energy Performing Arts Center in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, as the industry’s biggest and brightest stars head to the 30th Annual International Bluegrass Music Awards.

Nominees for “Entertainer of the Year” are Balsam Range, Sam Bush Band, The Earls of Leicester, Del McCoury Band and first-time nominee Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers. The five nominees have a whopping 24 nominations among them this year. Multiple nominations for Sister Sadie, Carolina Blue, Mile Twelve, Molly Tuttle, Missy Raines and Rhonda Vincent are also notable on this year’s list of nominees.

Can’t make it the awards show in person? The show will be broadcast live on Sirius XM Satellite Radio (Bluegrass Junction) at 7:30 p.m. EDT, streamed via Facebook Live and will be made available for rebroadcast by radio stations worldwide, thanks to the sponsorship of Chiesi USA, Virginia Tourism, Deering Banjos, Compass Records, the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum, BMI, and Boston Bluegrass Union. A special red carpet live stream will be available on IBMA’s Instagram page as well. Continue reading