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Musings on folk, Americana, country, bluegrass and newgrass


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Balsam Range, First Ladies of Bluegrass on a roll at 2018 IBMA Awards

If bluegrass music was a sport, the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)’s annual awards night would be considered the industry’s All-Star game.

Held Thursday, Sept. 27, as part of IBMA’s 2018 annual weeklong business conference and Wide Open Bluegrass, the party celebrating the best in individual and band achievement for the year was hosted by Hot Rize, the first group to ever win the coveted entertainer of the year award. Continue reading


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Women poised to dominate 2018 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) awards

In 2017, Hazel Dickens and Alice Gerrard were inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Hall of Fame. With the exception of women who were part of a band, and usually a family band, ie. the famous Carter Family, who were inducted in 2001, only one other woman — Louise Scruggs in 2010 — has received solo recognition by the hall of fame organizers since 1991. And this week, songwriter Dixie Hall will be inducted as the fourth.

Let’s face it. Bluegrass has been a good old boys genre since Bill Monroe picked up a mandolin, Louise’s husband Earl Scruggs met Lester Flatt and the Stanley Brothers became the Clinch Mountain Boys. But as Bob Dylan once wrote, “the times they are a changin.'”

Fast forward to 2016, when Sierra Hull and Becky Buller became the first women to win Instrumental Performers of the Year awards for mandolin and fiddle, respectively. Hull came out on top in the same category in 2017, and Molly Tuttle, who appears poised to be among the next female superstars of bluegrass, won Instrumental Performer of the Year for her guitar picking prowess — the first woman to ever top that particular chart. Continue reading


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Fourth Groove in the Garden in downtown Raleigh, N.C., to feature Lydia Loveless, New Reveille on Sept. 22, 2018

The fourth annual Groove in the Garden music and arts festival returns on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2018, to the Stephenson Amphitheater and Rose Garden, 301 Pogue St., in downtown Raleigh.
The 2018 Groove in the Garden lineup includes: Lydia Loveless, Loamlands, Pie Face Girls, Kate Rhudy, ZenSoFly, Tres Chicas, New Reveille, Reese McHenry, Blue Cactus, Emily Musolino, Kamara Thomas and Luxe Posh.
According to organizers, “The annual music and arts festival shines the spotlight on the incredible talent we have in North Carolina.”
Gates open at 1:30 p.m. music starts at 2:15. Tickets are $10 advance and $15 at the gate.

In addition to live music, local food trucks, vendors and more will all be on hand.  Beer and wine will be available for purchase. Suitable for all ages.

Find more information here: https://raleighlittletheatre.org/events/groove-in-the-garden-18/


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Annual ‘Shout & Shine: A Celebration of Diversity in Bluegrass’ kicks off IBMA on Monday, Sept. 24, at N.C. History Museum

From the good folks over at The Press House:
The third annual “Shout & Shine: A Celebration of Diversity in Bluegrass” will honor the connection and cross-pollination between blues, bluegrass, and their offshoots and will take place on Monday, Sept. 24, at 7 p.m. at the North Carolina Museum of History Daniels Auditorium, at the very beginning of IBMA’s World of Bluegrass events in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina.

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IBMA announces lineup for free Wide Open Bluegrass Streetfest on Sept. 28-29, 2018, in downtown Raleigh, N.C.

8iuiyBluegrass fans listen up: The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)’s World of Bluegrass announced today an amazing lineup of more than 100 bands that will perform on seven stages set up throughout downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, and inside the Raleigh Convention Center on Sept. 25-29 as part of Wide Open Bluegrass StreetFest. Best of all for music lovers, all the performances are free!

There will also be a dance tent, local artisans, food trucks, youth performances, and the Master’s Workshop Stage inside Raleigh Convention Center.  And there’s always plenty of free jamming to stumble upon for your listening pleasure.

Among just a few of the acts I am looking forward to hearing are Cane Mill Road, Fireside Collective, Frank Solivan and the Dirty Kitchen, Darin and Brooke Aldridge, Alison Brown Band, Hank, Pattie and the Current, the Kruger Brothers, Zoe & Cloyd, Town Mountain, Balsam Range, Front Country, Love Canon, ShadowGrass, Jim Lauderdale, Tim O’Brien, Dori Freeman and Flatt Lonesome.

Who are you looking most forward to seeing?

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Scythian, David Childers to play benefit for Water For People at Lincoln Theatre in downtown Raleigh on Aug. 4

Celtic rock band Scythian and folk singer-songwriter David Childers have announced they will perform on Saturday, Aug. 4, in downtown Raleigh’s the Lincoln Theatre at a benefit concert for Water For People.
Doors for this all-ages show will open at 5 p.m. and the music starts at 8 p.m. Tickets range from $25 to $50.
Water for People is a non-profit dedicated to providing water and wastewater education, training, and service in an effort to protect public health and the environment.

“We are always excited to come back to North Carolina and Raleigh in particular hold a lot of great memories for us with IMBA and the First Night Raleigh show we’ve played,” explains one of Scythian’s frontmen Danylo Fedoryka (vocals, guitar, accordion).

“To link a return show to a great cause makes it twice and meaningful for us and we hope that people will come out and support a great cause.”

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Flashback Friday: Seven Questions with Tim O’Brien

In light of the fact that West Virginia native and Grammy-winning, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Tim O’Brien is bringing his prodigious talents to Asheville and Raleigh this weekend with “The Banjo Tramps,” today’s Flashback Friday is an interview I had the privilege of conducting at Rooster Walk Music and Arts Festival a few years ago. Continue reading