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C.F. Martin Sponsors VH1 Save The Music's “Thank a Music Teacher” Program

Wed, 11/22/2017 - 22:45

Nazareth, PA -- C.F. Martin & Co.® (Martin Guitar) continues to support music education by sponsoring the VH1 Save The Music Foundation. As part of a year-long celebration of 100 years of ukulele manufacturing, Martin Guitar has made a monetary donation and provided the Foundation with ten ukuleles to be used by music educators in schools throughout the country as part of VH1 Save The Music's "Thank a Music Teacher" program.

"I had the pleasure of meeting Henry Donahue, Vice President and Executive Director and Chiho Feindler, Senior Director of Programs and Policy of the VH1 Save The Music Foundation during our advocacy efforts as part of a NAMM Music Education Advocacy D.C. Fly-In," said Cindy McAllister, Director of Intellectual Property and Community Relations for C.F. Martin & Co. "We knew that by making the connection between Martin Guitar and VH1 Save The Music, we could do something really sensational to support music programs in America's public schools."

Beginning October 1st, 2017 and running through "World Teachers' Day" on October 5th, 2017 VH1 Save The Music shared thank you videos and photos from various schools that benefitted from Martin's contribution to the program, including Highland Park Elementary in Roanoke, VA, Duarte Unified School District in California, Charlotte Park Elementary in Nashville, TN, and John Marshall Elementary in Anaheim, CA.

"Music is so important and it can have a very profound impact on a young person's quality of life," said Chris Thomas, Director of Marketing for C.F. Martin & Co. "Every child should have access to music education and we are proud to sponsor VH1's Save The Music Foundation."

Founded in 1997, VH1 Save The Music was the first organization in existence dedicated to restoring music programs. Over the last 20 years, the Foundation has donated $53 million worth of new musical instruments to over 2,000 public schools in 257 school districts around the country-- impacting the lives of millions of public school students. This Fall, the Foundation delivered grants to 80 schools with plans to increase that number to 100 for the 2018-2019 school year. Get involved at www.vh1savethemusic.org and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat @vh1savethemusic using the hashtag #SaveTheMusic.

C.F. Martin & Co. ® (www.martinguitar.com) has been creating the finest instruments in the world for 184 years. They continue to innovate, introducing techniques and features that have become industry standards, while also remaining true to their legacy. Martin guitars and Martin strings are the choice for musicians around the world, from the icons of rock, pop, country, folk and bluegrass to those just beginning their careers. They can be seen across all segments of pop culture, from television to movies, Broadway, books, online, and gracing the covers of popular magazines on newsstands everywhere. Connect with Martin Guitars and Martin Strings on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube and via www.martinguitar.com and www.martinstrings.com.

Tags: C. F. Martin Guitar CompanySave The MusicThank a TeacherSponsorBusiness

The Hillbilly Gypsies Heat up Carter Fold Dec. 2

Tue, 11/21/2017 - 22:39

Saturday, December 2nd, 2017, at 7:30 p.m., the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, will present a concert by the Hillbilly Gypsies – an old time band. Hailing from the beautiful mountain state of West Virginia, the Hillbilly Gypsies have been making and performing their own brand of old time bluegrass and original mountain music for over a decade. Formed in 2001 from a chance meeting at the now infamous Wednesday night old time jam in Morgantown, West Virginia, the Hillbilly Gypsies have been pickin' and grinnin' and entertaining their loyal fans ever since.

The band is best known for their high-energy live performances, and they have become a crowd favorite at major festivals, fairs and concert venues all across the mid-Atlantic region and abroad. They perform in the old fashioned style, playing around a single vintage ribbon microphone. This "old timey" approach adds an authentic high-energy barn party atmosphere to their show. Watching the whole band work around the mic is like taking a trip back in time. It'll sure make you want to get up and dance!

And don't let the flash of their lively stage performance and choreography fool ya. These folks are highly skilled musicians and seasoned entertainers. Their lightning fast, award-winning picking skills and musical arrangements mixed with natural comedic wit and high lonesome, mountain vocal harmonies are sure to catch your ear right away. Combine that with a knack for original songwriting and a strong passion for old time and traditional music, and this makes for an authentic and exciting musical experience that you won't soon forget. One listen and you'll know that you are getting the real deal! The Gypsies are more than a band – they are a tight-knit family, mindful of tradition but bold explorers of new and authentic styles of acoustic music and entertainment.

Some notable highlights about the Hillbilly Gypsies include:

  • members since 2005 and a crowd favorite at many IBMA promoter showcases.
  • Featured on several nationally syndicated TV and radio shows such as Mountain Stage, Song of the Mountains, Woodsongs, Red Barn Radio, & the Wheeling Jamboree.
  • Listed as the most innovative musicians redefining mountain music in West Virginia by the West Virginia tourism website – http://gotowv.com/.
  • Voted West Virginia's best band by West Virginia Living Magazine – Best of West 2014 competition.
  • Voted the best band in Morgantown, West Virginia by Morgantown Magazine.
  • Winners of the DelFest Band Competition.
  • Featured regularly at the historic Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, and mentioned in the New York Times for lively appearances there.
  • Featured on BBC television in 2011.

The Gypsies have played many major bluegrass festival events around the country including the Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival, Poppy Mountain Bluegrass Festival, Delfest, Summersville Music in the Mountains Festival, the Outer Banks Bluegrass Festival, the OATS Bluegrass Festival, Mohican Bluegrass Festival, the Pickin' in Parsons Bluegrass Festival, Appalachian Uprising, the Rockahock Bluegrass Festival, the NEPA Bluegrass Festival, the Remington Ryde Bluegrass Festival, the Homegrown Bluegrass Festival at Snowshoe, Bluegrass in the Hills, Mandolin Farm Bluegrass Festival, Smoked Country Jam Bluegrass Festival, Hickory Fest, and many more.

Trae and Jamie Lynn Buckner, original founding members and lead singers for the band, are also husband and wife. In addition to playing all across the country for the last sixteen years together, the duo has performed internationally on multiple occasions. They have performed four times at the Al Ras Bluegrass and Old Time Music Festival in Barcelona, Spain – headlining the festival's ten year anniversary. In addition to their Barcelona performances, they have played in England, Prague, the Czech Republic, Italy and Ireland. They recently traveled to Asia to perform in Thailand. Trae and Jamie Lynn not only represent the Hillbilly Gypsies, they represent American mountain music and the heritage and culture of West Virginia and Appalachia while traveling abroad.

Current band members are:

  • Trae Buckner (guitar, clawhammer banjo, harmonica, lead & harmony vocals)
  • Jamie Lynn Buckner (lead & harmony vocals)
  • Ben Townsend (fiddle, banjo, & vocals)
  • Levi Houston Sanders (banjo, guitar, autoharp, mandolin, & vocals)
  • Ryan Cramer (upright bass & harmony vocals)

Through the years, a dozen members of the Hillbilly Gypsies have joined the band and later moved on. Some still pop in from time to time and join the Gypsies on stage. Once a Hillbilly Gypsy – always a Hillbilly Gypsy. The group has released six CDs over the years that represent some of the best Appalachian music you'll ever hear.

Admission to the concert is $10 for adults, $2 for children 6 to 11, under age 6 free. Tickets are available at the door. Doors open at 6 p.m. The Carter Family Museum and the Carter Birthplace Cabin are both open from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. - and they re-open at show intermission.For an evening of unforgettable old time, bluegrass, and traditional music - come out and see the Hillbilly Gypsies at the Carter Family Fold. Don't forget to bring along your dancing shoes. Their gospel tunes are reminiscent of the old time tent meetings, and there will be music to suit everyone's taste. Be prepared for an evening of high-energy, no holes barred family fun! The Gypsies have become a Carter Family Fold favorite. To learn more about the Hillbilly Gypsies, go to their site at: http://TheHillbillyGypsies.com/

Carter Family Memorial Music Center, Incorporated, is a nonprofit, rural arts organization established to preserve traditional, acoustic, mountain music staffed by a group of dedicated volunteers. The center is family-friendly, and an alcohol and drug free facility. For further information, go to http://www.carterfamilyfold.org. Shows from the Carter Fold can be accessed at http://www.carterfoldshow.com. Partial funding for programs at the center is provided by the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Virginia Tourism Corporation. To access recorded information on the week's upcoming show, call 276-386-6054. The Fold is on Facebook – page Carter Fold – and Twitter – @carterfoldinfo. To speak to a volunteer Fold staff member, call 276-594-0676. If we don't answer you right away, we'll get back to you in 24 hours.

Tags: Hillbilly GypsiesCarter Family FoldConcertEvent

New Christmas EP “Shine” Available from Nu-Blu

Mon, 11/20/2017 - 20:07
Christmas is our favorite time of the year! This year is extra special because we have the opportunity to share a few of our favorite Christmas songs, both sacred and secular on our first ever Christmas CD. Recording this project was an exciting, unique, and very emotional experience. The birth of our Savior is not only a time for quiet reflection, but also for great joy and celebration. That's what we have strived to convey for this wonderful season.

The lead single from the EP, Shine, was penned by award-winning songwriters Kristy Jackson (Take It Back – Reba McEntire) and Megan Conner (Rascal Flatts, Chris Young, The Swon Brothers). The title track tells a familiar story, with a clever spin, detailing the Saviors birth from the perspective of the star that marked his birthplace in Bethlehem.

Shine features five new recordings, all with a unique Bluegrass twist. Included on the project are Christmas classics like "Jingle Bells" and "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" as well as seasonal sacred tunes "Mary Did You Know" and "What Child Is This."

Shine is now available on iTunes, Amazon, and other popular digital retailers nationwide, or stream it on Spotify, Pandora or other major streaming services!

Nu-Blu is offering a Special Christmas Package for Shine that includes the physical CD AND a nice necklace. It's sure to make a great stocking-stuffer! Get your autographed copy of Shine along with a custom Shine Necklace. Complete with Certificate of Authenticity, the necklace and pendant are sterling silver with a genuine diamond. Limited number are available!

Tags: Nu-BluEPCD ReleaseChristmasShineNew Product

Hot Rize Celebrates 40 Years in 2018

Sun, 11/19/2017 - 20:54

Hot Rize, one of bluegrass music's most beloved and influential bands, will kick off their 40th anniversary year-long celebration with a run of special SOLD OUT shows featuring special guests at the Boulder Theater. Since the Boulder Theater run sold out so quickly, they have decided to add a third date at the venue, tickets are on sale today. The three-night stand will be recorded for video and audio to be released throughout the year. The band takes to the road in January and February, touring the west coast and the northeast, and looks forward to a year of reaching new listeners as well as revisiting fans nationwide from its forty-year history.

In 1978, when Tim O'Brien, Pete Wernick, Nick Forster and Charles Sawtelle came together as Hot Rize, their chemistry generated an exciting and soulful new style of bluegrass, showcasing their formidable talents as instrumentalists, songwriters, and innovators. Grounded in the bluegrass traditions of artists like Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, and the Stanley Brothers, their musical tastes embraced other American roots pathways as well. Honing their sound in Colorado bars and small concerts, they were soon appearing on A Prairie Home Companion, the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, the Grand Ole Opry, and European tours. The world was ready for Hot Rize -- and forty years later Hot Rize has left its unmistakable mark.

Their original songs are part of the bluegrass canon, their showmanship earned them the first-ever Entertainer of the Year award from the IBMA, and their "partnership" with Red Knuckles and the Trailblazers is...nearly indescribable. There is no other band like Hot Rize, and many bands that followed have cited them as a major influence.

Following Charles Sawtelle's untimely death in 1999, the band regrouped with bluegrass' reigning flat picker, North Carolinian Bryan Sutton on guitar. Since 2002, Hot Rize's unparalleled all-star lineup has held steady and continues to create new and inspired music.

Don't miss your chance this year to celebrate with one of America's most revered bands as they tour across the US.

  • January 12 - 13 - Boulder Theater - with Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Del McCoury, Stuart Duncan and more to be announced.
  • January 14 – Boulder Theater - with special guests to be announced. Tickets on sale Friday, Nov. 17th.
  • January 17 - Triple Door, Seattle, WA
  • January 18 - Aladdin Theater, Portland, OR
  • January 19 - Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA
  • January 20 - Freight & Salvage, Berkeley, CA
  • February 15 - The Colonial Theatre, Phoenixville, PA
  • February 16 - Barre Opera House, Barre, VT
  • February 17 - Swyer Theatre @ The Egg, Albany, NY
  • February 18 - Joe Val Bluegrass Festival, Framingham, MA
  • More dates to be announced soon.

For more information and to follow the growing tour schedule visit www.HotRize.com.

Tags: Hot Rize40th AnniversaryBand Announcement

Clay Hess Signs with Pinecastle

Thu, 11/16/2017 - 20:24

Clay Hess has signed with Pinecastle Records for an album to be released in 2018. The talented vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter won a Grammy award and was nominated for another during his time as a member of Ricky Skaggs and Kentucky Thunder. He has since done stints with Mark Newton, Mountain Heart, and Sierra Hull. This upcoming album will be the second release with the Clay Hess Band lineup and Hess's first for Pinecastle.

Hess's solo project Rain had the title track appearing at #1 on the Bluegrass Today airplay chart. In a review of the album John Lawless of Bluegrass Today said, "Since first hitting the national bluegrass scene with Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder in 1999, flatpick fans have recognized Clay as a superb soloist, especially at the ludicrous speeds Ricky took some of his numbers."

In a review in No Depression W.J. Hallock said, "Clay Hess is one of those triple threat musicians. He sings like no one else, he plays like no one else, and his songwriting can be deeply personal, but still universally appealing."

Hess endeavors as much as possible to make his albums represent what a fan would hear at a live show. This includes having his touring band on all his recordings. Band members are: Dustin Frame (mandolin), Brennan Hess (guitar/vocals), Brady Wallen (banjo/vocals), and Irl Hees (banjo/vocals).

Tags: Clay HessPinecastleLabel NewsBand Announcement

Kristy Cox Releases “I Still Pray” in time for Christmas

Wed, 11/15/2017 - 21:12

Willis, VA -- Mountain Fever Records is pleased to announce the release of I Still Pray from Kristy Cox. "I Still Pray" is a track from Kristy's upcoming album due for release in 2018 and is the perfect sentiment for this special time of year.

Written by Australian born songwriter, Kasey Chambers, "I Still Pray" is right at home in the very capable vocal arms of fellow Australian, Kristy Cox. Here, listeners will enjoy Kristy's powerful, yet tender treatment of what will likely be one of bluegrass music's new favorite a cappella gospel songs. Joined by Donna Ulisse, Jerry Salley, and Josh Swift, this quartet melds perfectly, sweetly reflecting the subject of which they sing.

I Still Pray is available to radio programmers just in time for the Christmas season and may be downloaded via Airplay Direct or by emailing a digital download request to radio@mountainfever.com. Consumers may purchase I Still Pray through various digital outlets. Kristy's debut album for Mountain Fever Records will be available in 2018. For more information on Kristy Cox, visit www.kristycox.com or www.mountainfever.com.

From a young age, Kristy Cox captured plenty of attention with her distinct singing style and positive nature, resulting in opportunities to open shows for major acts and making regular festival and television appearances across Australia, Europe, and the US. In 2015 she was selected as an official showcase artist for the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) where she began drawing the attention of music industry professionals.

With a string of #1 hits on radio and country music television in Australia, Kristy has also made headway on the US bluegrass charts in recent years. Her last two projects, produced by Grammy® winner Jerry Salley, were very well received, with the latest making strong appearances throughout 2016 on multiple album and songs charts. 2017 kicked into high gear when she won "Bluegrass Recording of the Year" from the Country Music Association of Australia, and she also made the IBMA Awards second ballot in several categories.

Tags: Kristy CoxCD ReleaseI Still PrayChristmas

Initial Lineup and Midnight Jam Announced for MerleFest 2018

Tue, 11/14/2017 - 20:27

Wilkesboro, NC -- MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the initial lineup for MerleFest 2018, which will be held April 26 - 29. 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. The complete lineup for MerleFest 2018 will be announced over the next few months. Today's lineup announcement includes legendary artist Kris Kristofferson, Jamey Johnson, Robert Earl Keen, The Devil Makes Three, Balsam Range and the Atlanta Pops Orchestra Ensemble, "Mission Temple Fireworks Revival" featuring Paul Thorn & Band, the Blind Boys of Alabama and the McCrary Sisters, and many more. The 2018 Midnight Jam presented by The Bluegrass Situation on Saturday, April 28th will start at 10:30 p.m. and run well past midnight, with special hosts Town Mountain and Jim Lauderdale. This very popular after-hours hootenanny gathers many performers from the festival for impromptu artistic collaborations and one-of-a-kind superstar jams that have become legendary in the festival’s history.

Kris Kristofferson – Kris Kristofferson is a three-time Grammy winner who has recorded 30 albums, including three with pals Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings as part of the Highwaymen. Kristofferson has spent three decades performing concerts all over the world and achieved remarkable success as a country songwriter at the start of the 1970s. His songs helped redefine country songwriting, and by 1987, it was estimated that more than 450 artists had recorded Kristofferson’s compositions. In 1977, he earned a Golden Globe for Best Actor and has acted in more than 70 films to date. Kristofferson is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame and has been recognized with the Songwriter Hall of Fame’s prestigious Johnny Mercer Award, the Johnny Cash Visionary Award, BMI’s Icon Award, the Francis Preston Music Industry Award, the PEN Song Lyrics of Literary Excellence Award, and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Kristofferson is scheduled to play on Thursday.

Jamey Johnson – Truth and tradition. These non-negotiable principles serve as the bedrock of the music of eleven-time Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Jamey Johnson, who is “one of the greatest country singers of our time,” according to The Washington Post. Indeed, the Alabama native has been acknowledged by many as country music’s north star, guiding us down a path of confession and conflict to a place of reflection and redemption. He has received tremendous praise from The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The Wall Street Journal and other publications, many of which have hailed his albums as masterpieces. His influential album, "That Lonesome Song", was certified platinum for 1 million in sales, and his innovative double album, "The Guitar Song", which debuted at No. 1 on the country album charts, received a gold certification. In 2012, he released a Grammy-nominated project honoring one of his heroes, Living for a Song: A Tribute to Hank Cochran. He is one of only a few people in the history of country music to win two Song of the Year Awards – for “Give It Away” and “In Color" – from the Academy of Country Music and the Country Music Association. He has written singles for George Strait, Trace Adkins, James Otto, Joe Nichols and others. Johnson is scheduled to play on Friday.

“Today, MerleFest is proud to announce more than 75 artists who are part of the festival’s 2018 lineup, commemorating the 31st year of the festival. MerleFest welcomes back five special artists that have played all 31 years: Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Peter Rowan, Joe Smothers, and Jack Lawrence. The initial lineup reflects the musical diversity and quality of performers who are the hallmark of the festival,” says Steve Johnson, MerleFest Artist Relations Manager. MerleFest is known for its unique mix of traditional, roots-oriented music from the Appalachian region, including bluegrass and old-time music, Americana, blues, country, Celtic, Cajun, cowboy, zydeco, rock and many other styles that the late Doc Watson referred to as “traditional plus.” The initial lineup includes:

Aaron Burdett, Alberti Flea Circus, Andrew Collins Trio, Andy May, Ari Eisinger, Ashley Heath and Her Heathens, Banknotes, Bill Mathis, Bob Hill, Bryan Sutton, Brynmor, Cane Mill Road, Cardboard Fox, Carol Rifkin, Jeanette Queen, Mark Queen, Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, Charles Welch, Cicada Rhythm, David Holt and Josh Goforth, Dead Horses, Donna the Buffalo, Doolin, Elephant Sessions, Erin Harpe, Flatland Harmony Experiment, Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen, Fireside Collective, Gunner & Smith, Hannah Shira Naiman, Happy Traum, Horsemen Let's Ride, Hubby Jenkins, Hummingbird Crossing, Jack Lawrence, Jayme Stone's Folklife, Jeanette Williams Band, Jeff Little Trio, Jeffrey Foucault, Jody Carroll, Joe Mullins and the Radio Ramblers, Joe Smothers, Junior Appalachian Musicians Band, Laura Boosinger & The Midnight Plowboys, Lauren and Lane, Lindsay Lou, Lillian Chase, The Lonesome Ace Stringband, Lori King and Junction 63, Mark Bumgarner, Mike Aiken Band, Mitch Greenhill, My Bubba, The Note Ropers, Nu-Blu, Pete & Joan Wernick, Peter Rowan, Piper Jones, The Po Ramblin’ Boys, Richard Ray Farrell, Richie and Rosie, Rob Ickes & Trey Hensley, Robin and Linda Williams, Rosie & the Riveters, Roy Book Binder, Sam Bush Band, Sarah Jane Scouten, Savannah Smith and Southern Soul, Scythian, Sideline, Smitty and the JumpStarters, Steve and Ruth Smith, String Madness, T. Michael Coleman Band, Ted Olson, Tennessee Jed Fisher, Terry Baucom's Dukes of Drive, The Barefoot Movement, The BattleAxe Band, The East Pointers, The Hackwells, The InterACTive Theatre of Jef, The Kruger Brothers, The Lang Sisters, The Local Boys, The Lonely Heartstring Band, The Mastersons, The Midatlantic, The New River Drifters, The Waybacks, The Wildmans, Susana and Timmy Abell, Tony Williamson Band, Unspoken Tradition, Virginia Hollow, The Way Down Wanderers, Wayland, Wayne Henderson, Wesley Bright & The Honeytones, and Whitewater Bluegrass Company.

Additional performers for MerleFest 2018 will be announced in the coming months. The lineup and performance schedule is accessible via http://MerleFest.org/lineup.

Tickets for next year’s festival, as well as the Midnight Jam, go on sale at noon (EST) November 14, 2017, and may be purchased at 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 14 to February 18, 2018 and Early Bird Tier 2 tickets from February 19 to April 25. Tickets will be sold using Tier 3 pricing at the gate during the festival.

MerleFest was founded in 1988 in memory of renowned guitarist Eddy Merle Watson, the son of the late American music legend Doc Watson. MerleFest is a celebration of "traditional plus" music, a unique mix of traditional, roots-oriented sounds of the Appalachian region, including old-time, classic country, bluegrass, folk, gospel, and blues, and expanded to include Americana, classic rock and many other styles. The festival hosts a diverse mix of artists on its 13 stages during the course of the four-day event. MerleFest has become the primary fundraiser for the WCC Foundation, funding scholarships, capital projects and other educational needs.

Tags: MerlefestLineupJamEventMusic Festival

Cindy Baucom to Join Bell Buckle Radio Programming

Mon, 11/13/2017 - 21:47

Bell Buckle Radio is very excited to announce that Cindy Baucom's, "Knee Deep in Bluegrass" has joined their program schedule at Bell Buckle Radio. Bell Buckle Radio is an online internet radio station broadcasting from historical Bell Buckle,TN. The station offers a large range of music in bluegrass, classic country, folk, gospel and Americana. Bell Buckle Radio believes in a unique and customized experience when listening to music.

Valerie Smith is owner of both Bell Buckle Records and Bell Buckle Radio. Valerie has developed a unique style and sound that has rocked the bluegrass world for almost two decades with a string of national and international tours, critically acclaimed recordings, and Grammy, IBMA and Dove Award nominations. Val's vocals are impressive. She has a staggeringly expansive range and the ability to portray an amazing array of emotion. As NPR radio host Dave Higgs, has noted, "She can be sassy, sultry, siren-like, sweet, smooth, soothing and smoldering---sometimes during the span of just one song!" Valerie Smith and her East Coast-based band, Liberty Pike featuring legendary Hall of Famer , Tom Gray on bass, are consistent audience pleasers and skilled musicians. When Valerie walks onstage with her fabulous band, expect to be inspired, amused and thoroughly entertained.

For more than thirty years, Cindy has pursued her passion for Bluegrass Music as an award winning broadcaster, producer, promoter, singer, musician, writer, photographer and MC. Her national radio show, "Knee-Deep In Bluegrass", went into syndication in 2003 with distribution by the John Boy & Billy Radio Network. Now heard weekly in nearly a hundred radio markets, Cindy uses her knowledge of the music and enthusiasm to entertain and educate the listeners of her show.

Cindy was elected to the Board of Directors of the International Bluegrass Music Association and served two, 3-year terms consecutively, including one year as the IBMA Board's vice-chair. She was producer of the 2008, 2009 and 2010 IBMA Awards Show at the Ryman Auditorium, Nashville, TN.

Cindy has been involved with Merlefest since its beginning in 1988 and started serving as MC in 1990. Her MC work has taken her to a variety of stages and venues over the years.

She was producer on the 2011 Bluegrass release, "In A Groove" by her husband, Terry Baucom, bringing together some of the top names in Bluegrass for these recording sessions. She also produced the recording, "Never Thought of Looking Back", which yielded the 2013 IBMA Recorded Event of the Year, "What'll I Do", featuring Terry Baucom with Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Steve Bryant, Wyatt Rice and Buddy Melton.

She credits her early love for Bluegrass 100% to her father who played banjo, fiddle, guitar and mandolin and built stringed instruments. As a teenager she performed in a band with her dad and went on to work in other regional bands, singing and playing bass and guitar. She feels fortunate to have been presented the opportunities to promote the music she has loved all her life.

Cindy's "Knee Deep in Bluegrass" can be heard Thursdays at 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM CST and again Mondays at 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM CST.

Tags: Cindy BaucomBell Buckle RadioKnee Deep in Bluegrass

Mountain Park Old Time Band Warms Carter Fold Nov 18th

Sun, 11/12/2017 - 20:45

Hiltons, VA -- Saturday, November 18th, 2017, at 7:30 p.m., the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, will present a concert by the Mountain Park Old Time Band. Mountain Park Old Time Band was formed ten years ago as a group of friends who happened to enjoy old time music got together to have a good time. Over the past several years, the Mountain Park Old Time Band has been creating a stir in old time music circles.

The group has five members, all of whom are very versatile and talented musicians. Nancy and Johnny Gentry played for years with the Whitetop Mountain Band. Johnny plays guitar, dobro, and fiddle as well as doing vocals for the band. Nancy drives the rhythm with her excellent bass playing. She and Johnny both teach music. Roger Stamper handles the fiddling for the group and he plays guitar and bass as well. C. T. Janney plays the washboard – an "instrument" rarely played today. C.T. also cuts a mean rug when he dances. Dr. Mark Handy plays banjo and does vocals – he's also a champion clogger. When he's not playing old time music, Dr. Handy practices medicine in Abingdon, Virginia, and helps to run his family's farm. Johnny also makes beautiful banjos. He made and donated a unique Carter Fold banjo that was given away at our 42nd annual festival in August to help raise funds for the Fold. It was truly a piece of art. A lucky gentleman in Austin, Texas won the banjo.

The Mountain Park Old Time Band has played at the Blue Ridge Music Center, the Alleghany Jubilee, the Rex Theater, and at Bristol's Rhythm and Roots Festival. They have also been featured on National Public Radio. The group has released two CDs – Fire on the Dance Floor and Dancing with Sally Goodin. Mountain Park Old Time has performed at many Carter Family Fold shows and at our annual festival. Their group has become a Carter Fold favorite. Dr. Handy now serves on the Board of Directors of the Carter Music Center. We are fortunate to have his help and support and appreciate all he does for us and for old time music.

Fans of groups like the Whiteop Mountain Band will love the Mountain Park Old Time Band. Be sure to bring your dancing shoes, and be ready for a night of down home fun. Nothing gets you out of your seat and on the dance floor faster than a rousing old time band. Don't miss the Mountain Park Old Time Band at the Carter Family Fold! For more information on the group, go to: http://www.mountainparkoldtimeband.com/.

Admission to the concert is $10 for adults, children 6 to 11 $2, under age 6 free. Tickets are available at the door. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Carter Family Memorial Music Center, Incorporated, is a nonprofit, rural arts organization established to preserve traditional, acoustic, mountain music. The center is family-friendly, and an alcohol and drug free facility. For further information, go to www.carterfamilyfold.org or our second site – www.carterfamilyfold.com. Shows from the Carter Family Fold can be accessed at www.carterfoldshow.com. Partial funding for programs at the center is provided by the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Virginia Tourism Corporation. For recorded information on shows coming up at the Fold, call 276-386-6054. The Fold is on Facebook – page Carter Fold – and Twitter – @carterfoldinfo. To speak to a volunteer Fold staff member, call 276-594-0676. If we don't answer you right away, we'll get back to you in 24 hours.

Tags: Mountain Park Old Time BandCarter Family FoldConcertEvent

The King James Boys Sign with Pinecastle for 2018 Album

Thu, 11/09/2017 - 20:30
Gospel bluegrass band The King James Boys have signed with Pinecastle Records for an upcoming album to be released in 2018. The group began riding the circuit over 20 years ago and have recently had two songs on the Singing News Bluegrass Gospel Chart.

Legendary bluegrass gospel artist Paul Williams said, "I believe The King James Boys are the real thing, sincere, dedicated and committed to praising God through song and testimony, so... get ready for it, inspiration is on it's way from the first song until the last!"

Many radio DJs are already well acquainted with the band. WMMT Radio DJ Big Al Weekley said, "I was able to see the Boys perform live the first time at SPBGMA in Nashville last year where I was pleasantly surprised to hear that they sound just as good in person as they do on their recording. That's a rare achievement in any genre, especially bluegrass. I look forward to their next project with Pinecastle Records."

The King James Boys recently stopped by Pinecastle Record's headquarters to meet with Ethan Burkhardt and recorded an a-cappella performance video in the lobby.

Tags: The King James BoysPinecastleLabel News

Upcoming Book of John's Original Fiddle Tunes, New CD Release

Wed, 11/08/2017 - 23:23

While going through John's archive, the family has discovered over 60 handwritten music journals he had been using to compose fiddle tunes since the early '80s. Katie Harford Hogue tell us, "There are hundreds of tunes in these journals; it's fascinating to look through them. Dad amassed a lot of research and he was a prolific creator. One of the interesting challenges we've had over the years is figuring out how to take his unfinished projects and ideas and develop them into 'new' material to continue his legacy. The fiddle book idea has been bouncing around ever since we discovered the journals."

These fiddle journals date from 1983 until early 2001, a few months before John passed away, and most of the tunes are original. They also contain arrangements on traditional fiddle tunes, tunes he learned from friends, and several he transcribed from his research on Ed Haley— but only his original tunes will appear in this book. Katie says the book will be "nice enough to display, accessible enough to carry to the coffee shop, and large enough to hold 150+ tunes plus narrative, interviews, photos, and John's own drawings". There's also a plan to offer a smaller, spiral-bound version of the tunes that will fit into a gig bag.

The anticipated release of John Hartford's Mammoth Collection of Fiddle Tunes is summer of 2018. It will be available to purchase at www.JohnHartford.com, and will also be available wholesale to booksellers and music stores. Follow the book's progress on Facebook: Hartford's Mammoth Collection; Instagram: @JohnHartfordFiddle, and Twitter: @HartfordFiddle

Headin' Down into the Mystery Below and Slumberin' On the Cumberland CD Re-release
We are excited to announce that on Tuesday, November 14th, we will re-release the never-before-on-CD albums Headin' Down Into The Mystery Below and Slumberin' On the Cumberland as a two-CD set. Producer Michael Melford, who also helmed Nobody Knows What You Do and the Grammy-award winning Mark Twang, spent a great deal of quality time with John back in the day; we were thrilled when Michael, now an attorney living in Boston, agreed to write the liner notes for the new compilation CD.

These notes add color and a mental visual into the life and times of John Hartford during the period in his life in which these two albums were recorded. "In a recording career spanning a third of a century, John Hartford released 35 studio albums of his own and numerous record projects with other artists. He experimented with a wide variety of album concepts, lyric themes, musical styles, and combinations of backup players and singers. During the years 1976 to 1981, I had the pleasure of producing around a dozen of those records. The two albums reissued here, originally released on Flying Fish Records as LPs and until now out of print, are each unique in their own way. Yet, taken together, they provide a snapshot of a time when John was completing a transition from his Hollywood years back to his roots in Middle America."

Originally recorded in 1978 at The Sound Shop in Nashville for Flying Fish Records, the eleven tracks on Heading Down Into The Mystery Below include: "The Mississippi Queen," "Mama Plays The Calliope," "See The Julia Belle Swain," "On Christmas Eve," "Natchez Whistle," "Kentucky Pool," "Miss Ferris," "Paducah," "Headin' Down Into The Mystery Below," "Beatty's Navy," and "In Plain View Of The Town."

Slumberin' On the Cumberland also has 11 tracks and was released in 1979 on Flying Fish. Besides Hartford, the album includes Pat Burton, Benny Martin, Buddy Emmons, Sam Bush, Roy Huskey, Jr., Henry Strzelecki, Hargus "Pig" Robbins, and Larrie Londin. The track list includes: "Slumberin' On the Cumberland," "Greenback Dollar"/"Careless Love," "Love In Vain," "If I Can Stay Away Long Enough," "Hillman," "Southern Moon," "I Can Read Between the Lines in Your Letter," "Blue Writin' On White Paper," "First Fall of Snow," "Fiddle Faddle," "Go Fall Asleep Now."

You can pre-order this two-CD set here.

Tags: John HartfordBookCD ReleaseFiddleHeading Down Into The Mystery BelowSlumberin' On the Cumberland

Luthier's Craft: Instrument Making Traditions of the Blue Ridge

Tue, 11/07/2017 - 19:34

Bristol, VA (November 3, 2017) — Luthiers—skilled makers of stringed musical instruments—are both keepers of tradition and innovators. They carry on the old ways of working wood and string to create beautiful and functional instruments, while also bringing new creativity and technology to the fore in their pieces. The Luthier's Craft: Instrument Making Traditions of the Blue Ridge is a new special exhibit at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum that explores and documents the traditional arts of fiddle, guitar, banjo, and dulcimer making in Southern Appalachia and the Blue Ridge Mountains. The special exhibit is on display now through March 4, 2018.

“The Luthier’s Craft offers an inside look at the work of master craftspeople, carrying on the instrument-making heritage while also bringing innovation to design and decoration and creating functional works of art,” says Jessica Turner, director of the Birthplace of Country Music Museum. “We are excited to be sharing this exhibit with our visitors—by partnering with cultural institutions like the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History and local luthiers, we are able to bring interesting and educational resources to our community, and it is a wonderful opportunity to learn more about local music and craft traditions.”

Featured craftspeople include guitar makers Wayne Henderson, fiddle makers Audrey Hash Ham and Chris Testerman, banjo maker Johnny Gentry, and dulcimer maker Ernest Combs. The exhibit offers visitors a hands-on, interactive exploration of the rich history of this traditional craft. The Birthplace of Country Music Museum will supplement the special exhibit with instruments from and panels about several local luthiers, including Jimmy Edmonds, Kevin Fore, Randal Eller, and Chuck Tipton. The Luthier's Craft highlights the deep connection between music and craft in the Southern Appalachias.

The Luthier's Craft was produced by the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History with financial support provided by The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area, Interlam, Hibco Plastics, and Dr. Mac and Becky Sumner.
For more information visit BirthplaceOfCountryMusic.org.

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution, explores the history of the 1927 Bristol Sessions and their lasting impact on our music heritage. From the Bristol Sessions and beyond, our region continues to influence music around the world.

The 24,000 square foot museum is located at 520 Birthplace of Country Music Way (corner of Moore & Cumberland Streets) in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia. Through multiple theater experiences, film and sound, and interactive, technology-infused displays—along with a variety of educational programs, music programs, and community events—the exciting story of this music and its far-reaching influence comes alive. Rotating exhibitions from guest curators and other institutions, including the Smithsonian, will be featured throughout the year in the Special Exhibits Gallery. The museum is also home to an extensive digital archive.

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. through 6:00 p.m. and Sunday, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. The museum is closed on Mondays and most major holidays; call ahead for clarification at 423-573-1927. Admission is $13.65 for adults, $11.55 for seniors, students, military, children ages 6—17, and groups of 20 or more. Children 5 and under are free. Admission prices include Virginia admission tax.

Tags: Birthplace of Country Music MuseumLuthierEducationWayne Henderson

Remington Ryde's “A Storyteller's Memory” Available

Sun, 11/05/2017 - 20:44

Remington Ryde's Pinecastle Records debut A Storyteller's Memory is available now. The James King tribute album includes the band's take on some of the late singer's most beloved songs including "Thirty Years of Farmin'," "Bed by the Window," "A Few Old Memories," "Leavin'," and a song bandleader Ryan Frankhouser wrote and dedicated to King's memory titled "Mr. King." The album also includes a bonus track "It's a Cold Cold World" sung by King in 1989.

A hard driving traditional bluegrass band. We offer superb musicianship, hauntingly tight harmonies, traditional sound, and comedy to round out the show! Remington Ryde performs over 100 shows each year. While bandleader Ryan Frankhouser is the founder of the Remington Ryde Bluegrass Festival held annually in the band's home state of Pennsylvania. Over the last two years, the band has received five SPBGMA award nominations. Personnel in Remington Ryde are: Ryan Frankhouser on guitar and lead vocals, Billy Lee Cox (played with the Country Gentlemen and Charlie Moore) on banjo, Warren Blair (played with the original Bluegrass Cardinals) on fiddle, Stanley Efaw on mandolin and Richard Egolf on bass.

Emerging as one of the hottest bluegrass bands from Central Pennsylvania is Remington Ryde. The band was formed in November of 2002 with the sole purpose of promoting bluegrass music throughout the state. They continue to grow in popularity, winning over crowds throughout the country. They have released four full length albums and one single, “I’ll Wait for You,” that has been played by bluegrass radio stations throughout the country including Sirius Bluegrass. They have successfully hosted the 3rd Annual Remington Ryde Bluegrass Festival and announced the date for the 4th festival on July 16-18, 2010 in Reedsville, Pennsylvania.

Their relentless touring schedule, consisting of over 100 shows per year, has earned them the reputation of one of the busiest bands in all of bluegrass music. The group was featured in the May issue of the Bluegrass Music Profiles Magazine and also featured in the August issue of the Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine in 2009. They are loved by festival-goers and bluegrass fans from all over the country. The band is exploding into the national scene.

Remington Ryde released their first professional project in 2007, produced by Green Valley Records in Hughesville, Pennsylvania. This album earned them a showcase in 2008 at Cabin Fever in Hampton, Virginia. The popularity of this album helped the group land contracts at some of the top bluegrass festivals in the country. This includes appearances at Bluegrass Festivals in Pennsylvania, New York, West Virginia, Ohio, North Carolina, Maine, Florida, Virginia, Maryland, Tennessee, New Hampshire, and Vermont. The group continues to expand and grow in popularity.

It is no mystery why this band is becoming so popular so quickly. They play a wide range of traditional and contemporary bluegrass while demonstrating superb showmanship, impressively tight harmonies, and original material. Each musician is as personable as they are talented; making sure the audience comes first. The band gives 110% on every performance, from their entertaining and energetic stage personalities to the lively interaction and conversation with any and all who visit after the show. It is really quite simple - Remington Ryde loves what they do and it shows!!!

Remington Ryde is endorsed by D'Addario Strings, BlueChip Picks, Wittner FineTune Pegs, Deering Banjos, and NS Bass Design.

A Storyteller's Memory is available here.

Tags: Remington RydeCD ReleaseA Storyteller's MemoryPinecastle

CMH Records Releases "Country Music Heritage" to Global Radio

Thu, 11/02/2017 - 20:49

Nashville, TN -- Toni Swann-Pardigno, CMH, Director of Sales announced, "We are so excited for the release of Country Music Heritage: The Legacy of CMH Records. This album is particularly special to us as it represents the amazing artists and rich bluegrass music that has become such an integral part of our history at the label."

Toni continued, "Many thanks to Robert and Lynda Weingartz at AirPlay Direct for making it possible for us to share these special recordings with global radio. In a short period of time, AirPlay Direct has proven to be a wonderful asset! Since working with them we have expanded our reach to radio and media markets, and significantly grown the CMH Records brand."

The album contains track performances by Merle Travis, Jim & Jesse, Curly Seckler & the Nashville Grass with Special Guest Johnny Cash, Eddie Adcock & Talk of the Town, Josh Graves, Don Reno & the Tennessee Cut Ups, The Bluegrass Cardinals, Jimmy Gaudreau, and more.

Encapsulating tracks from 1975-1992, Country Music Heritage: The Legacy of CMH Records tells a story about a little, independent country label tucked away in sunny Southern California.

Founded in 1975, CMH Records has put out albums from some of the most iconic artists and musicians in country, bluegrass, and roots music. This record is a collection of songs, many of which were early, important cuts for the label, while others have yet to see the light of day in the digital era.

AirPlay Direct is the premiere digital delivery / distribution company, brand and platform for engaging radio and airplay worldwide. AirPlay Direct is a professional B2B music business environment for artists, labels, publishing companies, radio promotion firms, PR / Media firms, etc.

AirPlay Direct currently has 11,000 radio station members in 90+ countries and serves over 42,000 artist / label members globally on a daily basis. AirPlay Direct currently operates and services the largest global independent radio distribution network in the world with respect to Americana, Bluegrass, Folk, Blues, Alt. Country, Roots Music, etc. AirPlayDirect.com

Tags: CMH RecordsCD ReleaseCountry Music HeritageAirPlay DirectLabel News

Sideline's Brad Hudson Releases Solo Project “Next New Heartbreak”

Wed, 11/01/2017 - 21:39

Longtime sideman Brad Hudson presents his first solo project Next New Heartbreak releasing this Friday, November 3rd on Pinecastle Records. In addition to showcasing Hudson's prolific vocal and instrumental talent, the album features a duet with The Queen of Country herself, Dolly Parton.

Hudson has toured with Grammy award winning artists Jeff and Sheri Easter who said, "Brad Hudson is one of the most talented individuals we have had the opportunity to work with. His sweet smooth vocals are an added blessing to his expert musicianship... and that's a fact."

Greg Tutwiler from Americana Music Profiles recently interviewed Hudson about his music background. Hudson's musical experience began in church as a child and soon became the central focus of his life. Initially beginning with guitar, Brad was quick to graduate to the Dobro, banjo and more (he plays Dobro, guitar, brushes, and bass on the album). Growing up in North Carolina meant lots of exposure to bluegrass. In addition to the Easters, Hudson went on to open for artists like Eric Church and Collin Raye, and to tour with praised performers like Dolly Parton and Lorraine Jordan & Carolina Road. During this time he was nominated for Dobro player and bass player of the year. Hudson currently tours with bluegrass band Sideline.

Personnel on Next New Heartbreak include: Brad Hudson, Steve Dilling, Skip Cherryholmes, Jason Moore, Aaron Ramsey, Ron Stewart, Clyde Mattocks, Brad's Grandma Betty, Jeff and Sheri Easter, and Dolly Parton. Next New Heartbreak can be ordered here.

Tags: Brad HudsonCD ReleaseNext New HeartbreakSideline

IBMA Guitar Player of the Year Molly Tuttle on WoodSongs

Tue, 10/31/2017 - 20:02
Molly Tuttle is the first woman in the 27-year history of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Awards to win Guitar Player of the Year. She’s a virtuoso multi-instrumentalist and award winning songwriter with a distinctive voice, appeared on A Prairie Home Companion and at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, was featured on the cover of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine, and won first place in the prestigious Chris Austin Songwriting Competition at Merlefest. She’s the newest artist to sign on to Compass Records roster and will be releasing her debut for the label sometime in 2018. www.MollyTuttleMusic.com

Mike Barnett has been building a career as a premier fiddler in bluegrass music. His current gig is a member of Kentucky Thunder, the traveling band of bluegrass legend, Ricky Skaggs as well as the Bryan Sutton Band. This Nashville native became a professional player at a young age as part of Jesse McReynolds’ band and soon became another breakout talent from the Boston roots music scene. In 2009, Mike joined the David Grisman Quintet. On his second solo effort, ‘Portraits in Fiddles,’ released on Compass Records, he takes a moment to reflect on the extraordinary blessings to celebrate his heroes, collaborators, and contemporarie www.MikeBarnettFiddler.com

WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour is an all volunteer live audience celebration of grassroots music and the artists who make it. The show airs on 515 radio stations from Australia to Boston to Dublin, Ireland. It also airs on American Forces Radio Network twice each weekend in 173 nations, every military base and US Naval ship in the world. The shows airs coast-to-coast in millions of TV homes as a public television series. Now Friday’s on RFD-TV

Tags: Molly TuttleMike BarnettWoodsongs

Tony Rice's “Guitar” Album Repackaged`

Mon, 10/30/2017 - 21:13
Rebel Records offers Tony Rice's landmark 1973 debut recording Tony Rice - Guitar once again on CD complete with updated artwork, previously unpublished photos and new notes by bluegrass historian and J.D. Crowe biographer Frank Godbey.

Guitar was Tony Rice's first album. At the time of its recording, no US label was interested enough to issue the record stateside, so a couple of duly impressed Japanese fans released the LP in Japan. Later, as a member of J. D. Crowe’s Kentucky Mountain Boys (along with his brother Larry Rice and Bobby Slone), Tony became a phenomenon in the States and the rights to the record were bought out by Rebel Records, where the album has remained a favorite over the years. With Tony in fine form vocally and his always amazing guitar work, this is where you will find his signature versions of "Freeborn Man," "Doin' My Time," "Nine Pound Hammer" and "John Hardy," plus his nine-minute tour-de-force rendition of closing track "Lonesome Reuben."

Tony Rice is an American guitarist and bluegrass musician. He is perhaps the most influential living acoustic guitar player in bluegrass, progressive bluegrass, newgrass and flattop acoustic jazz. He was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame in 2013. No guitarist in at least four decades has left such an indelible mark on bluegrass music and hard-driving guitar performances than Tony Rice. Rice is comfortable in a broad range of other musical styles also. As an American acoustic guitar master and legend, his style has been the benchmark that others have tried to emulate and achieve. Students and scholars alike have studied his style, technique, method and the dexterity of both hands as they evolve and mature in their own playing.

Rice's music spans the range of acoustic from traditional bluegrass to jazz-influenced New Acoustic music to songwriter-oriented folk. Over the course of his career, he has played alongside J. D. Crowe and the New South, David Grisman (during the formation of "Dawg Music") and Jerry Garcia, led his own Tony Rice Unit, collaborated with Norman Blake, recorded with his brothers Wyatt, Ron, and Larry, and co-founded the Bluegrass Album Band.

The critically-acclaimed authorized biography of bluegrass Hall of Fame member and living legend Tony Rice, titled Still Inside: The Tony Rice Story, has been completed by Tim Stafford and Hawaii-based journalist Caroline Wright, and was published by Word of Mouth Press in Kingsport, Tennessee, United States in 2010. This volume offers a great insight into the artist and his music.

Tony has been having health issues from losing his voice some years back to today's arthritus condition which makes it impossible for him to play.

The album is available at Rebel Records.

Tags: Tony RiceCD ReleaseGuitarRebel Records

Craig D. Ferguson on Tour with Sorensen Mandolins and Hot October

Sun, 10/29/2017 - 23:10
Los Angeles, CA -- Craig D. Ferguson hits the road this week with his new Sorensen Sprite Two-Point Mandolin and the west coast bluegrass band Hot October for a string of performances including the honorable "Freight & Salvage" in Berkeley, CA. The band will also perform at Redwood Curtain Brewing Co., the Mateel Annual Humboldt Hills Hoedown, and make a few live appearances on local radio favorites KHUM and KMUD.

The 2015 Arizona State Mandolin champion is thrilled to share the rich tone and gorgeous look of the master built mandolin by Steve Sorensen and his Santa Clarita, California-based Sorensen Mandolin & Guitar Co. At a casual meeting at Sorensen's booth at Father's Day Festival in Grass Valley, California, Craig played all the mandolins in the Sorensen line but says, "I kept coming back to the Two-Point. It's taken my playing to another level." In additional to performing live with the Two-Point, it will also be featured on Hot October's forthcoming full-length

Check out their most recent video release from the web series Chevy Van Sessions featuring the Sorensen Sprite, an original song by vocalist and fiddler Jesse Olema titled "If I Knew Your Name".

album.

Hot October Album Release Tour:
9/21 - Freight and Salvage - Berkeley - 7pm
9/22 - KHUM Radio Live - www.khum.com/player - 3pm
9/22 - Redwood Curtain Brewing - Arcata - 8pm
9/23 - KMUD Radio Live - www.kmud.org - 5pm
9/23 - Persimmons Cafe - Redway - 7pm
9/24 - Humboldt Hills Hoedown - Redway - All day
9/25 - House Concert - Mill Valley

Tags: Craig FergusonSorensen MandolinsHot OctoberTour

John McEuen Bids Adieu to Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

Fri, 10/27/2017 - 19:44

Nashville, TN -- John McEuen, one of the founding members of the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band (NGDB), has announced his immediate departure from the iconic group. Stating “enough is enough,” McEuen exits upon the conclusion of the NGDB 2017 tour in Fargo, ND - Sunday 10/22/17, marking the end of the band’s 50th year anniversary. McEuen’s decision to exit NGDB comes upon careful considerations and contemplation. “In assessing the situation surrounding our performances, business disagreements and ongoing difference of opinions, the timing is appropriate for my departure. As a catalyst to my decision, in December 2015, I received confirmation from Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Inc. that I was an ‘employee’-- no longer a member of the corporation that I helped to build,” stated McEuen.

McEuen was instrumental in the NGDB band formation in 1966 and has celebrated groundbreaking and historical success alongside his counterparts over the past 50 years for the group’s significant contributions to the expression and expansion of American music worldwide. McEuen is most-widely recognized for his signature talents as “an extraordinary, multi-instrumentalist;” he has recorded more than 30 NGDB albums and created a lasting legacy for his seminal work on the Will The Circle Be Unbroken album, which McEuen initiated in 1971. Circle has been noted as "the most important record to come out of Nashville" by Rolling Stone and "the most important record in country music" (ZAGAT Survey/2004).

“It has been a great privilege to work alongside the others; together, we made history. After 50 years, the time has come for me to bid adieu to the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band stage,” said John McEuen. “I will move forward with great pride in my personal and musical contributions to NGDB and now can fully concentrate on my independent endeavors. I have much to do and many more creative ideas to pursue. Because of this relationship, I have more stories than you can shake a pick at. (…That will come later!)”

McEuen commented, "I’m excited about my upcoming touring with my Deering Banjos which you can find on http://www.johnmceuen.com/calendar.html. A lot of beautiful Performing Arts Centers and festivals are already booked! Many concerts will be multi-media shows - music and stories with historic footage from Will the Circle Be Unbroken. We feature some of the music from my new highly acclaimed Made in Brooklyn album (Stereophile magazine Record of the Month!) – It is different every night. Some nights we will have special guests sitting in. Thank you all for your years of support and I’ll see you down the road."

McEuen has enjoys his successful solo career and has six albums to his credit; his most recent (Made In Brooklyn - named “Record of The Month” by Stereophile Magazine/2016) received rave reviews from fans and music critics alike (No Depression, Cybergrass, Elmore Magazine and numerous others). In continuation, McEuen has assembled an exquisite band of talented musicians to join him: Les Thompson (original founding NGDB member), John Cable (NGDB alumnus) and Matt Cartsonis. The foursome has created a multi-media show catering to some of the country’s most breath-taking Opera houses and performing arts centers. He was recently inducted in the American Banjo Museum Hall of Fame.

Over the course of his 50-year career, multi-instrumental "String Wizard," John McEuen has performed more than 9,500 concerts, covering more than three million miles globally with the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and as a solo performer. McEuen has recorded over 40 albums (six solo) --four platinum and five gold--garnering awards that include GRAMMYs, Emmy nominations, CMA and ACM awards and IBMA Record of the Year honors. John McEuen is a member of the American Banjo Museum Hall of Fame.

Beyond performing, McEuen has produced more than 300 concerts throughout his career (the first in 1965 in Long Beach Calif. with Bob Dylan). In 2010, his record production of THE CROW (Steve Martin) won a GRAMMY for “Best Bluegrass Album.”

McEuen has a rich history in creating, producing and preserving original, traditional folk and acoustic music and taking it to new audiences. McEuen's The Music of the Wild West was honored with the Western Heritage Award; he scored a GRAMMY nomination for String Wizards II and earned the Uncle Dave Macon Award for “excellence in preservation and performance of historic music.”

John is show host of the popular "Acoustic Traveller" radio show on Sirius/XM's The Bridge (now in its 8th year) and is the CEO of Syndicatednews.net, a music and political news website.

Visit www.JohnMcEuen.com for more information.

Tags: John McEuenNitty Gritty Dirt BandBand Announcement

Wilson Banjo Co. Releases “Spirits in the Hills”

Thu, 10/26/2017 - 20:53
Wilson Banjo Co. is releasing their album Spirits in the Hills on Bonfire Records today, Friday, October 27th. The first single from the album "Ain't No Grave" has already been playing on the radio and a music video for the track is available today (see below). Bonfire's mission is to develop American roots music artists.

"Wilson Banjo Co. is an ideal first artist for Bonfire Records," says Matt Hood from Bonfire, "the band's instrumental talent lives up to it's name with well known luthier Steve Wilson leading the charge. Sarah Logan's vocals haunt like a bird in the night and listeners might wonder why more bluegrass bands don't have alto lead singers. In addition, fans will appreciate the vocal variety on the album with four other band members also contributing on lead."

Radio is already getting behind the band's new single. PraiseFM's John Sentell said, "I have never before known of a band who can create a crisp sound, not only in the shop with their instruments, but also in the studio with their album. The Wilson Banjo Co. will give you traditional bluegrass with their Wilson Banjo instruments and their Wilson Banjo album. You'll want to add both to your collection!"

Wilson Banjo Co. is a hard driving Bluegrass band from South Carolina, founded by Steve Wilson, Banjo picker & Master Luthier. Steve not only picks the banjo but builds custom Wilson banjo's, performs vintage guitar repairs and restoration, is part of the team at Wilson Pickins Promotions, and is an engineer at Bonfire Recording Studio. The band was initially formed to promote Steve's custom banjos but has since expanded well beyond that role after the sudden and critical success of their previous extended play album. Personnel featured on Spirits in the Hills include Steve Wilson on banjo, Joey Newton on guitar, Sarah Logan on fiddle, Brandon Couch on Mandolin, Dylan Armour on Dobro, and Michael Branch on bass. Special guests on the album include Shannon Slaughter, Alan Bibey, Glen Crain, and Stephen Hudson.

Tags: Wilson Banjo Co.CD ReleaseSpirits in the HillsSingleVideo

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