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Steve Gulley & New Pinnacle Release “Time Won't Wait”

Tue, 09/19/2017 - 21:19

Nashville, TN -- Steve Gulley and New Pinnacle have hit the ground running since its first album in 2015. Their two previous Rural Rhythm Records albums have produced multiple hit #1 radio charted songs, including "Leaving CrazyTown", "Aim High", "Not Now", and critically acclaimed album reviews. Produced by Steve Gulley, Time Won't Wait, releasing on October 20th,is the group's third album and features the up-tempo hard drivin' single "Drowned In Sorrow" written by Steve Gulley and Tim Stafford.

Gulley wrote or co-wrote 5 of the songs including the first single, and the title cut, "Time Won't Wait", which was co-written with his chief writing partner, Tim Stafford of Blue Highway. Other key songs include the poignant ballad, "The Road Back To You", written by Grammy award winner, Carl Jackson and the straight-ahead, road song, "I'm Alright", written by Jon Weisberger and Swedish musician / songwriter Christoffer Olsson. Gulley revisits his traditional country roots with his version of the Ronnie Milsap classic, "I Can Almost See Houston From Here". Also included is an amazing break - neck paced instrumental, "G-Force", written by New Pinnacle mandolin player Gary Robinson, Jr.

"This is our third recording project as a band and I couldn't be happier with the way it turned out. I think the songs complement each other perfectly and, in turn, show the diversity and maturity of the band itself. I feel this album shows how much we've grown as a group while still staying true to the things that help define our sound - emotion, drive and intensity. I can't wait for everyone to hear this new collection of music." – Steve Gulley

Steve Gulley and New Pinnacle include Steve Gulley (guitar, vocals), Bryan Turner (bass, vocals), Gary Robinson, Jr. (mandolin), Matthew Cruby (banjo, vocals) and special guest Tim Crouch (Fiddle). Time Won't Wait builds on the band's heritage of strong roots in Bluegrass and Mountain Gospel music and at the same time provides a new and fresh sound that further accents the Steve Gulley and New Pinnacle signature sound.

Time Won't Wait Track List:

  1. “Drowned In Sorrow” (Tim Stafford, Steve Gulley)
  2. “Time Won't Wait” (Steve Gulley, Tim Stafford)
  3. “You'll Cry For Me” (Steve Gulley)
  4. “The Road Back To You” (Carl Jackson)
  5. “I'm Alright” (Christoffer Olsson, Jon Weisberger)
  6. “I Can Almost See Houston From Here” (Ray Willis)
  7. “Congratulations Anyway” (Jesse McReynolds, Jim McReynolds)
  8. “You Can't Help Who You Love” (Steve Gulley, Tim Stafford)
  9. “Leaving Sounds Pretty Good To Me” (Steve Gulley, Tim Stafford)
  10. “G – Force” (Gary Robinson, Jr.)
  11. “Safe In His Arms” (Gene Johnson, Val Johnson)
  12. “Hold Your Horses” (Carl Jackson, Pam Gadd)

Steve Gulley and New Pinnacle are currently on tour. For more information go to Stevegulley.com.
Time Won't Wait is exclusively distributed by the Orchard and will be available on iTunes, Amazon and where ever Bluegrass music is sold. D.J.'s can download the album on AirPlay Direct.

The Gulley family name enjoys a rich musical heritage that reaches across generations with strong roots in Bluegrass and Mountain Gospel music. It starts with long time radio personality Don Gulley who was a founding member of the Bluegrass group the Pinnacle Mountain Boys. Don's son, Steve Gulley, has carried on the family tradition performing for many years with Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, as a founding member of Bluegrass super groups Mountain Heart and Grasstowne, as a regular featured performer at Renfro Valley and with Steve's longtime friend and colleague Dale Ann Bradley.

Steve Gulley & New Pinnacle includes; Steve Gulley (guitar, vocals), Bryan Turner (bass, vocals),Gary Robinson, Jr. (mandolin) and Matthew Cruby (banjo, vocals). Steve Gulley certainly does not need any introduction to the Bluegrass community with accomplishments that include 16 years as a featured performer, staff musician, music director, studio manager and producer at Renfro Valley, KY. From 1994-96 Steve was a member of Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver and a founding member of Mountain Heart ('98 - '06), Grasstowne ('06 - '11) and with longtime friend Dale Ann Bradley through 2014. Steve is a winner of 4 IBMA Awards including Co-writer of the 2008 Song Of The Year, "Through The Window Of A Train", by Blue Highway and SPBGMA Multi award winner including 2008 Album Of The Year, "The Road Headin' Home", by Grasstowne.

Rural Rhythm Records and Steve Gulley have enjoyed a long and successful friendship and business relationship for many years yielding three Steve Gulley solo albums and eight Steve Gulley artist produced albums since 2010 beginning with the release of "Dogwood Winter" by Steve Gulley and Tim Stafford.

Over the past seven years this successful partnership has enjoyed many hit singles from a variety of exciting album projects including two Steve Gulley and New Pinnacle albums "Steve Gulley and New Pinnacle" and "Aim High"; Steve Gulley solo gospel album "Family, Friends and Fellowship"and an impressive list of artist produced albums including Claybank"Playing Hard To Forget"; Stuart Wyrick - "East Tennessee Sunrise"; Brand New Strings – "No Strings Attached"; Locust Ridge -"Healed"; Dave Atkins and Republik Steele - "That's Just The Way I Roll", Carrie Hassler – "The Distance"; Cumberland River – "The Life We Live"; Crosspoint – "We're Gonna Rise" and the gospel hit single "Dancing With Daddy" byDebby Gulley. In addition to the artist produced albums Steve Gulley produced two special album projects including the critically acclaimed Civil War themed album "God Didn't Choose Sides" and the TV Holiday Special "Christmas The Mountain Way" that aired on RFD-TV's Family.net and BlueHighwaysTVnetworks also available on DVD / CD.

Tags: Steve Gulley and New PinnacleCD ReleaseTime Won't Wait

Stoney Creek Releases Single and Music Video from Double Live Album

Mon, 09/18/2017 - 19:39
Martinsburg, WV - Stoney Creek Bluegrass Band has released a new single and music video for "The Traveling Song". The track is the first single from the band's new double live album, Live On Location. "The Traveling Song" is available to radio broadcasters through AirPlay Direct. The music video, featuring West Virginia's mountain scenery and a touch of vaudeville humor, can be viewed on Stoney Creek's Website, Facebook and YouTube pages.

Live On Location will be available from Calv'ry Music on Sept. 29. Stoney Creek will be premiering a live stream of the album as a Facebook Live Event on Sept. 24 at 4:00 p.m. (ET). The stream will be replayed on Oct. 1.

The album contains five original compositions, including the instrumental "Antietam Turnaround" by banjo player Troy Stangle. Guitarist Kenton Catlett contributes four original songs. In addition to "The Traveling Song," Catlett also wrote "Thirty Years," "When the Sun Goes Down," and "Fast Train"(co-written with late country artist Gib Sage). The rest of the album is rounded out by traditional and gospel bluegrass staples from the band's live shows, such as mandolin player Brett Smeltzer's take on "I'm Working on a Building," "Are You Washed in the Blood?" and many more.

"These CDs really turned out great," said Smeltzer. "I think this project will go over great with anyone who purchases or hears it on the air."

Stoney Creek will be celebrating the release of Live On Location with performances at Orr's Farm Market's Fall Festival in Martinsburg, W.Va. on Sept. 23 and 24, and at the Outer Banks Bluegrass Island Festival in Manteo, N.C. on Oct. 4.

Stoney Creek's live show and sound system have been entertaining audiences for years, prompting Around the Pandhandle magazine to name the band "West Virginia's classic bluegrass band." Stoney Creek features an updated and high energy approach to traditional bluegrass, which Bluegrass Unlimited praised as "mainstream bluegrass at its best."

The Live On Location concept developed in 2016. Stoney Creek had been recording two-track stereo mixes from the band's soundboard for several years, and band members expressed interest in making some of these available to fans. In late 2016 and early 2017, the band brought out a studio multi-track console to record a series of public and private shows, adding extra microphones to capture the audience as well. The double album features two complete sets from Stoney Creek's live performances. The project was recorded and mastered without compression, to preserve the full dynamic range of the performances. As a result, the album is a few decibels quieter than most recordings from the past few years (including Stoney Creek's previous albums), but the improved sound quality should be noticeable to careful listeners. Live On Location captures the band's long-standing commitment to bringing near-studio quality sound to live concert audiences.

"It almost sounds like a studio album," said bassist and founder Libby Files upon hearing the playback.

"It sounds live," said Catlett. "It is a live recording and I think it is just fine."

Live On Location also captures a recent phenomenon at Stoney Creek shows - the dancers. This trend began occurring on a regular basis in 2017 and has been encouraged by the band. One goal for this album was to include the audience, and the double album is ultimately a tribute to the fans.

"This might be the best Stoney Creek project yet," according to Stangle.

Live On Location will be available through most online digital music services, and as a two CD set from retailers such as Amazon, Walmart, Target and CD Baby. The project will be available to retailers through Alliance Entertainment. The album can be purchased directly from the band's website, www.stoneycreekbluegrass.net, which also features links to retailers and digital services.

Track list for Live On Location:

  • CD Disc 1
    1. “Ladies and Gentlemen” (Introduction)
    2. “Those Memories of You”
    3. “The Traveling Song”
    4. “Cold Sheets of Rain”
    5. “Thirty Years”
    6. “Beyond Those Gates”
    7. “Why Don't You Tell Me So?”
    8. “Just Like You”
    9. “Are You Washed in the Blood?”
    10. “Little Cabin Home on the Hill”
    11. “Antietam Turnaround”
    12. “I'm Working on a Building”
  • CD Disc 2
    1. “I'm Lost and I'll Never Find the Way”
    2. “Kentucky Borderline”
    3. “Fast Train”
    4. “When the Sun Goes Down”
    5. “Shadows in My Room”
    6. “Crying Holy”
    7. “Just Someone I Used to Know”
    8. “Blue Ridge Cabin Home”
    9. “High Lonesome Sound”
    10. “Nashville Skyline Rag”
    11. “Freeborn Man”
Tags: Stoney CreekCD ReleaseLive on LocationSingleVideoThe Traveling Song

Wilson Pickins Promotions Adds Wildfire to Bluegrass Roster

Sun, 09/17/2017 - 19:50

Wilson Pickins Promotions is proud to welcome Wildfire to it's distinguished stable of bluegrass bands. Wildfire is a powerful stage band and recording artist on the Pinecastle Records label that delivers music to please everyone from traditional bluegrass lovers to the contemporary fans of today. The current project out on Pinecastle Records, Rented Room on Broadway, has received stellar reviews from bluegrass radio and media, and the single "Bible and a Bus Ticket Home" recently went to number one on the Roots Music Report chart.

"Robert Hale's voice has an angst and flutter at times that makes it instantly recognizable and pulls you in. For that reason, along with the playing and arranging and good songs, this album deserves high praise." - Bluegrass Unlimited.

"Wildfire is a distinctive, contemporary bluegrass band, and they have an appealing approach to the music." - Country Standard Time

Wildfire was formed in 2000 and quickly became one of the most talked about groups in the bluegrass music industry. The band has many years of musical and performance experience, with Robert Hale on lead vocals and guitar, Curt Chapman on bass, and Johnny Lewis on banjo. Newest band member includes established dobro player, tenor and vocalist, Matt DeSpain along with accomplished fiddle player and vocalist, Greg Luck. By mixing their original songs and telling ballads, their complete dedication and love for their music, and their artistic spontaneity, Wildfire takes listeners on a journey that will spur emotion and excitement. They promise a powerful show that will please everyone from traditional bluegrass lovers to the contemporary young fans of today.

Wildfire is led by founding members Robert Hale on lead vocals and guitar and Curt Chapman on bass, and also includes stellar musicians Johnny Lewis on banjo, Chris Davis on Mandolin, Dobro player, tenor and vocalist, Matt DeSpain, and fiddle player and vocalist, Greg Luck. By mixing their original songs and telling ballads, their complete dedication and love for their music, and their artistic spontaneity, Wildfire takes listeners on a journey that will spur emotion and excitement.

Wilson Pickins Promotions is pleased to be working with Wildfire and proud to be a part of getting their music out globally both on stage and off.

Tags: WildfireWilson Pickins Bluegrass PromotionsBand Announcement

Rhonda Vincent Returns to the USA

Thu, 09/14/2017 - 20:52

Nashville, TN -- September 14, 2017 - The International “Queen of Bluegrass” returns from a week of traveling abroad. Rhonda Vincent kept a jet-setting pace, flying from New York City to Dublin, Prague, and Zurich, before returning on Sunday. The All American Bluegrass Girl, along with the Most Award Winning Band in Bluegrass Music History, “The Rage” performed amongst the breathtaking beauty of Prague, Czech Republic and Gstaad, Switzerland.

“The response was overwhelming,” Rhonda stated. “It is such an amazing feeling to know our music transcends beyond borders, languages, and cultures. Music is a universal language, and we certainly felt the love by the ovations received after every song. It was equivalent to a finale ending after every solo, and at the ending of each song. What an exhilarating experience to feel such response to our music!”

The first performance of this International Tour was in Prague, Czech Republic at the historic Rudolfinum, it is the current home to the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. Rhonda Vincent & The Rage are the first artists to perform bluegrass music at the Rudolfinum. Known for its excellent acoustics, this historic hall was the perfect setting for their pure form of acoustic music in tandem with the incredible architecture of Prague. www.rudolfinum.cz/

On Friday and Saturday, Rhonda Vincent set another historic landmark, being one of the few who have made triple performances at the most prestigious country music festival in Switzerland “Country Night Gstaad.” The festival is an annual event, spanning over 20 years, and hosted by entrepreneur Marcel Bach in the beauty of the Swiss Alps. Rhonda first performed at the Country Night Gstaad in 1997 with a country music band; next in 2007 with The Rage; and her third appearance another 10 years later in 2017 along with country music newbie Mo Pitney and the multi-charting Mark Chesnutt.

Rhonda Vincent & The Rage stole the night with their energetic performance. After an uproarious, demanding ovation, Rhonda returned to the stage with only her guitar to deliver what many felt was their favorite part of the night. She gave a solo performance of the title song, which she wrote from the #1 CD with Daryle Singletary, “American Grandstand.” In addition to their nightly performances, Rhonda & The Rage did a special meet and greet with fans who traveled from all parts of Europe, which included Slovakia, Italy, France, and Spain. On Saturday afternoon, they even hosted a special impromptu jam session at their sponsor booth D’addario.

"We love getting involved in every aspect of a festival,” Rhonda explains. "It’s more than just coming to a concert. We love getting to visit with our friends, and meeting new friends. With Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat, we can stay in touch well beyond the show. It’s important that I can shake each person’s hand, and look them in the eye to really make a connection you cannot make from the stage. They are lifelong friendships. We bring our heart and soul to every venue, and this is displayed in the amazing love we are shown in return.”

Beyond their performances, they were treated to luxury accommodations at The Alpina Gstaad. The Alpina Hotel is on the registry as one of the Best Hotels in the World! A 5-star hotel, nestled in the mountains of Gstaad Switzerland, and its features are nothing short of exquisite! Every aspect has been carefully selected, from the room design to restaurants, pools, and spa.

“Thank you Marcel and your entire staff for a once-in-a-lifetime experience!” Rhonda shares. “We love Country Night Gstaad, and staying at The Alpina was a most amazing addition to this already awesome festival.”

Although they are still soaring from their International experiences, this week finds Rhonda & The Rage at the Dumplin Valley Bluegrass Festival in Kodak, TN, Starvy Creek Bluegrass Festival in Conway, MO, and Pickin’ In The Pines Festival in Flagstaff, AZ.

Tags: Rhonda Vincent & the RageTour

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 17 Lineup Announced

Wed, 09/13/2017 - 21:25

Now in its 17th year, the free and large Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival held in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park has announced the lineup for this year's event. The free Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival is a gathering featuring over 90 acts on 7 stages performing over 3 days. This year's event is to honor Patricia Christina “Chris” Hellman – artist, ballerina, philanthropist and wife of Hardly Strictly Bluegrass founder Warren Hellman. Chris Hellman passed away on Saturday, February 4th of this year. Warren passed away December 18, 2011.

This 17th year of the free festival is a great tribute to Warren Hellman who passed away two years ago. Hellman presented the festival to San Francisco as a gift of thanks to the community and as a way of giving back. This year's grand event will take place October 6, 7, & 8, 2017. Hardly Strictly Bluegrass is a family-friendly festival. Children and on-leash dogs are welcome but they should be comfortable with large crowds and loud music.

Hardly Strictly Bluegrass has announced the lineup for their 17th festival:

FRIDAY OCT 6 (Noon - 7pm)
Chuck Prophet & The Mission Express, Molsky’s Mountain Drifters, Brandi Carlile, Tracy Blackman, Conor Brings Friends for Friday featuring: Mega Bog, Jesse Harris, Big Thief, The Felice Brothers, First Aid Kit, Conor Oberst, Billy Bragg, The Sam Chase & The Untraditional , Foy Vance, Drew Holcomb and The Neighbors, T Bone Burnett, Dry Branch Fire Squad, Terri Hendrix with Lloyd Maines , The Bo-Keys featuring Don Bryant and Percy Wiggins, Seun Kuti & Egypt 80, Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands
SATURDAY OCT 7 (11am - 7pm)
Hardly Strictly Silent Disco featuring Ren the Vinyl Archaeologist, Steve Fabus, Deejay Theory, Tom Thump, DJ Phleck, DJ Tobiwan, Motion Potion, U9lift, Peter Rowan Dharma Blues featuring Jack Casady, Justin Townes Earle, The Brothers Comatose, The Wood Brothers, Poncho Sanchez, Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn, Dan Auerbach, Nancy & The Lambchops, Buddy Miller's Cavacade of Stars featuring Gurf Morlix, Bill Anderson, Lillie Mae, Dan Penn, Buddy Miller with The War and Treaty, Tyler Childers, Patty Griffin, Alison Brown & the Compass Bluegrass Allstars featuring Bobby Osborne, HSB Blues Revue featuring Sugar Ray Norcia, Annie Sampson, Chris Cain, Steve Freund, Austin deLone, Ruth Davies and Tony Braunagel, Sturgill Simpson, Willie Watson, Midnight North, Robert Earl Keen, Robyn Hitchcock, Ozomatli, Henry Rollins, Gillian Welch, The Go To Hell Man Clan, The Nth Power, Sam Outlaw, Moonalice, Tim O'Brien Band, Rising Appalachia, Blackfoot Gypsies, Colter Wall, Reed Mathis & Electric Beethoven, Jamey Johnson, Steve Earle & The Dukes
SUNDAY OCT 8 (11am - 7pm)
Ornette's Prime Time Band Reunion featuring Jamaaladeen Tacuma, Al MacDowell, Charlie Ellerbe, Badal Roy, Denardo Coleman with Special Guests David Murray, Wallace Roney & Marc Ribot , Lampedusa featuring Steve Earle, Patty Griffin, Emmylou Harris, Buddy Miller, Lucinda Williams, Norbert Putnam and Friends, Dave Alvin & The Guilty Ones, Randy Newman, Ciaran Lavery, Kane Welch Kaplin, Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Bob Mould Band, Weyes Blood, The Flatlanders, Sisters Morales, Hot Tuna Electric, Jon Langford's Four Lost Souls, Hardly Strictly Silent Disco featuring 4NR, Gordo Cabeza, DJ Alarm, Mophono, DJ Tyme, King Most, Motion Potion, Jello Biafra, Emmylou Harris, The Well Known Strangers, Marco & The Polos, Cheap Trick, The Secret Sisters, John Prine, The Brothers Gibb, Poor Man's Whiskey, Aaron Lee Tasjan, Lila Blue, Jade Jackson, Tyler Childers, Courtney Barnett & Kurt Vile (and the Sea Lice), Shelby Lynne & Allison Moorer, Will Durst, The Sons Of The Soul Revivers, Lucinda Williams, Ghost of Paul Revere, Big Freedia, Junior Brown

Visit http://www.hardlystrictlybluegrass.com/2017/ for all the information about this outstanding festival.

Tags: Hardly Strictly BluegrassLineupMusic Festival

Bluegrass Museum Announces Fall Concert Series Lineup

Tue, 09/12/2017 - 20:09

Owensboro, KY – The International Bluegrass Music Museum announced the lineup for their Fall 2017 Benefit Concert series. The Museum will host six shows at their current location in downtown Owensboro beginning September 21 and running through December 1.

Kicking off the series on September 21 is the Kenny and Amanda Smith Band. Boasting two nominations for this year's International Bluegrass Music Association awards (Kenny: Guitar Player of the Year & Amanda: Female Vocalist of the Year), their instrumental talent is paired with strong vocals and thoughtfully written lyrics.

Two of the more progressive groups on the lineup will play the month of October: Nashville-based trio, The Stray Birds on October 5, and the high-spirited, old-time group, Bill and the Belles, on October 20.

Award-winning singer-songwriter, Donna Ulisse will play November 3, and the phenomenal guitarist and songwriter, Robbie Fulks is scheduled for November 16.

Rounding out the series on December 1 is the high-energy, traditional bluegrass sounds of The Po' Ramblin' Boys.

Series tickets are available for $120 each; passes include one ticket to each show in the series. Individual show tickets will be available for purchase if series tickets do not sell out. With a capacity of 120, these shows create an intimate atmosphere allowing audience members and artists to connect through the music.

All shows will begin at 7:00 pm with doors opening at 6:30 pm. Light food and a cash bar will be available.

Based on the Museum's transition to the new building next spring, this could be the last concert series at the current location.

IBMM's Fall Concert Series is proudly sponsored by the following community partners: Atmos Energy, Glenn Family Services, Hampton Inn & Suites Downtown, Republic Bank, and Gorman Recruiting

Money raised from this concert series helps the museum continue efforts to preserve and honor the legacy of bluegrass music including music educational programs, general museum operating expenses, the Video Oral History Project (VOHP) and artifact collection efforts.

For more information on artists, the museum or to purchase tickets, visit bluegrassmuseum.org or call 270-926-7891.

Tags: International Bluegrass Music MuseumFall Concert SeriesLineup

Cybergrass Celebrates 25 Years on the Web

Sun, 09/10/2017 - 09:02

On Friday, September 9th, Cybergrass celebrated 25 years of promoting bluegrass music on the world wide web. What started out as a learning and research project has evolved into one of the most popular bluegrass web sites in the world. Cybergrass, the world's oldest music and bluegrass music web site, changed over to a new format a few years ago. The site continues to grow even with all the thousands of other bluegrass sites on the web. What a wonderful way to celebrate a quarter century of bluegrass information on the web!

Bob Cherry, owner of Cybergrass, credits the site's popularity and growth because of the vision of the site. The site has a history of "firsts" on the web and certainly in bluegrass. He's actively been promoting bluegrass music for 25 years and that is a great achievement to Cybergrass and a wonderful service to the bluegrass community. Cybergrass has published over 45,000 articles on line, including reviews, artist profiles, events and other content since it was created.

Cherry notes that it was interesting that the small little genre of bluegrass music would be the first music site and the fact that it was some time before another music site of any kind appeared on the web. Of course, back in those days, the only people on the web were researchers and people with access as it was still the Research Internet and not yet really a public utility as we see today. Bluegrass was popular in regions of research such as the San Francisco area, Colorado, California and even New York -- all places that Cherry lived and worked in.

The site was one of the first 10 sites on the World Wide Web and has been in operation for a quarter century. Started on September 9, 1992 as a text only site, Cybergrass has matured over the years to an international award winning site. The site has had five major facelifts and many web addresses since it was created. Cherry also created the original IBMA and IBMM Web sites. As the web's growth was unfolding, He also helped many others get started on the web and many of those sites are still operating today.

His site was first hosted on a Xerox research server that ran on a DEC Vax running BSD Unix. The first content was text only and consisted primarily of the Digital Tradition song files which he had stored on 8 inch floppy discs in text format. Today, Cybergrass is hosted on a service that provides connections to all major backbone internet providers and provides 24x7 support. In 25 years, his site has only been down a few times and never for more than a few hours.

Cherry wanted to put music cuts online with his reviews. After many calls and conversations, he set out to get an Internet music license. ASCAP flat out refused him but BMI put him in touch with a VP in the New York office. Thus, he had the first limited music license on the web. After a bit of back and forth, Bob and Cybergrass received a BMI license for Internet music. He carried music on Cybergrass until DMCA was written and the terms of that license were not agreeable so all music was removed from his site.

In a fluke of circumstances, while his site was as Infonet Services Corporation on a Sun server, another web pioneer was committed to running the Grammy Awardss online. At the last minute a snag happened and he called Bob. Bob had a spare server, an 1-800 rotary ISDN capability to handle 32 simultaneous inbound connections and high bandwith to the internet. Bob installed the software and ran that first awards show webcast on his backup server. The following year, he started carrying the IBMA Awards Show and was the only site to do so for almost a decade.

Just a few of the accomplishments and achievements of the site are:

  • The first music web site (September 9, 1992)
  • The first bluegrass web site (September 9, 1992)
  • The first web site to carry a music awards show (Grammys)
  • The first web site to carry the IBMA awards show
  • The first web site licensed (BMI) to carry music on the net
  • The first web site to have a free, event calendar online
  • The first web site to carry artist profiles
  • The first web site to carry daily bluegrass music news
  • The first web site to syndicate bluegrass content
  • The first web site to carry bluegrass news from others
  • The first bluegrass blog
  • The first bluegrass News Network online - BMNN

Over the past years, his Cybergrass site has received awards including the New York Times best bluegrass site, SoftQuad's International Metalworker's finalist three years in a row, Main Street Earth Award, Sound Bits and Bytes site, Select site for Omega, Whole Internet Catalog, Magellan Review and Excite.

Cherry said the years on the web has been exciting and rewarding. He's not sure what will be around the next bend but he's sure that once again, the future will be fun and exciting. Cherry has over 40 years of information technology experience in research and engineering and holds patents on the Optical Mouse, Satellite Broadcasting System, and Low-Noise Active VLSI Testing. He has been published by the International Symposium on Test & Failure Analysis, Library Journal, EDGE and other professional publications.

Cybergrass has grown and evolved based largely on reader input. It has exceeded all of the initial expectations for the site. Cherry would like to see more forum activity and comments on the articles but when its a hot article or subject, people do respond and almost always favorably. The future should be just as exciting as the world of the Internet is still unfolding.

So today, Cybergrass celebrates its Silver Anniversary and begins its journey towards more years on the Internet.

Tags: Cybergrasstechnology25th AnniversaryBob Cherry

Bela Fleck & Abigail Washburn Announce New LP “Echo in the Valley”

Thu, 09/07/2017 - 15:39

Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn are excited to announce Echo in the Valley (October 20 / Rounder), a deep exploration of the complexities of the banjo duet and the follow up to their acclaimed, self-titled debut that earned them the 2016 Grammy for Best Folk Album.

“The banjo is a great example of how the world can combine things and create surprising hybrids,” reflects Béla, a fifteen-time Grammy award winner who is often considered the world’s premier banjo player. “The story of this African instrument and its music coming to the Americas during slavery years, mixing with the other cultures that were here, constantly evolving through the centuries is absolutely fascinating! Without the banjo we wouldn’t have blues, jazz or bluegrass music, to name just a few.”

Co-written by Fleck and Washburn with wild re-imaginings of Appalachian music, Echo in the Valley is a reflection of the times, from the emphatic mantra “Don’t Let It Bring You Down” to “Come All You Coal Miners,” written from the point of view of coal miner advocate Sarah Ogan Gunning.

“That song came from a very emotional, mother-driven, daughter-driven, wife-driven place, and there are not many songs throughout history from that perspective, so I am incredibly moved by her,” says Washburn, a fluent Mandarin speaker and activist known for blending the ancient sounds of America and Far East cultures.

Other highlights on Echo in the Valley include the rural blues “My Home’s Across the Blue Ridge Mountains” by Clarence Ashley and a version of Béla’s well-known piece, “Big Country,” framed by the traditional Appalachian tunes “Sally in the Garden” and “Molly Put the Kettle On.”

As the story goes, Béla and Abigail met at a square dance, started a family and have been touring the world together since 2013. Whether at home, on stage or on record, their deep bond, on top of the way their distinct musical personalities and banjo styles interact, makes theirs a partnership unlike any other on the planet.

The duo’s front-porch, minimalist aesthetic includes seven banjos between them, from Béla’s 1937 Gibson Mastertone to a banjo ukulele and a restored 1905 upright banjo bass. The intense, intimate collaboration on Echo in the Valley required “a spirit of staying strong,” says Abigail, “but also a willingness to release into the other’s ideas to create something new.”

Béla Fleck has the virtuosic, jazz-to-classical ingenuity of an iconic instrumentalist and composer with Bluegrass roots, and the distinction of being nominated in more categories than any other instrumentalist in Grammy history. He has brought the banjo to his standard-setting ensemble Béla Fleck & the Flecktones and a staggeringly broad array of musical experiments, from writing two banjo concerts (The Impostor and Juno Concerto), to exploring the banjo’s African roots with Throw Down Your Heart to duos with Chick Corea and Chris Thile.

Abigail Washburn has the earthy sophistication of a postmodern, old-time singer-songwriter who has drawn critical acclaim for her solo albums. She has also done fascinating work in folk musical diplomacy in China, presented an original theatrical production Post-American Girl, performs in a duo with guzheng master, Wu Fei and is a member of Uncle Earl and The Wu-Force.

Tags: Béla Fleck & Abigail WashburnCD ReleaseEcho in the Valley

The Churchmen Release Latest Album “God Holds Tomorrow”

Tue, 09/05/2017 - 19:51

Willis, VA -- Mountain Fever Records is pleased to announce the release of God Holds Tomorrow, the latest album from beloved bluegrass gospel group, The Churchmen. The band's third project for Mountain Fever Records, God Holds Tomorrow, includes four songs written by band member Carroll Arnn, that sit nicely alongside those penned by well-known song-smiths such as Pete Goble, Rick Lang, Thomm Jutz, Donna Ulisse and others. When one looks at the list of writer credits on this project, it's made perfectly clear The Churchmen not only deliver a great song, but they know where to find them, too.

The Churchmen have made a career of performing bluegrass gospel music and have created their own niche since they formed in 1989 when they first began singing in local churches. Their southern gospel style, four part harmony, and bluegrass instrumentation, gives them a unique sound that has gained attention all across the country and abroad. The five-member group consists of Keith Clark (bass), Gerald Harbour (mandolin), Carroll Arnn (banjo), Avery Welter (guitar) and Daniel Greeson (fiddle) and all of them lend vocal talents. For fans of bluegrass gospel, The Churchmen keep it straight down the middle, giving reverence to God and spreading his message of salvation. God Holds Tomorrow firmly keeps the band's mission in tact.

Consumers may purchase God Holds Tomorrow from popular digital services such as iTunes, Amazon Music, Google Play, or Apple Music. Radio programmers may access the entire album via AirplayDirect or by emailing radio@mountainfever.com for a digital download. For more information on The Churchmen, please visit www.thechurchmen.com. For more information on Mountain Fever Records, visit www.MountainFever.com.

God Holds Tomorrow Track List

  1. “God Holds Tomorrow”
  2. “It Works For Me”
  3. “The Good Samaritan”
  4. “Bad News For The Devil”
  5. “All Over Me”
  6. “Time To Give Our Community Back To God”
  7. “He Would Have Loved You Anyway”
  8. “Follow Me”
  9. “No Tears In Heaven”
  10. “Who You Need To Know”
  11. “Living Waters”
Tags: The ChurchmenCD ReleaseGod Holds Tomorrow

The Gibson Brothers Team Up with Norman Adams for 10 Festivals

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 20:03

Nashville, TN -- The world of bluegrass music has lost more than a double handful of its emblematic festivals in the past year, but with decades of family-friendly events from Florida to Virginia under his belt, one event producer is still going strong. Norman Adams has produced over 200 events during 43 years as a bluegrass festival promoter, including one stretch where he presented Bill Monroe, the Father of Bluegrass, for 25 years in a row—and today, he's still giving a platform to the top acts in bluegrass on a regular basis, averaging 10 festivals a year. By our count, he is the top employer in Bluegrass.

That's a track record unequalled by any other promoter, and to Eric and Leigh, the music's renowned Gibson Brothers, it's something to be celebrated. And so, in recognition of Adams' commitment and the value of Adams Bluegrass, the twice-recognized International Bluegrass Music Association's Entertainers of the Year will appear at every one of Adams' events over an entire year, starting in November 2017.

As part of the effort, the Brothers will spend multiple days at many of the events, offering not only their signature sounds, but special sets and collaborations, too. They'll even suggest a few added family events to help engage new fans and bring an even stronger sense of community to bluegrass, and the festivals that have become family reunions for so many.

Additionally, Rainmaker Music Management is offering the company's services to help brand, market, and expand the reach of these events, with the goal of keeping them going for another 40 years and more. Says Rainmaker's Chris Harris, "Bluegrass music needs Adams Bluegrass's events just as much as Adams Bluegrass events need Bluegrass music."

"We've worked with Norman for years," says Leigh Gibson. "And there's one thing for sure: he knows how to put on a quality festival. You're always going to have good sound, good people, and a fan-friendly event. We always spend a lot of time in the crowd at his festivals, talking with folks and having a good time. We are honored to have the chance to come alongside of him and help usher in a new generation of fans to keep these festivals going strong for many more years to come."

When asked about the Gibson Brothers, Norman said, "The Gibson Brothers are super entertainers and Adams Bluegrass, LLC is honored to team up with these guys in promoting bluegrass music"

Here are eight of the Adams Bluegrass events starting with the Fall Palatka Festival:

Fall Palatka Bluegrass Festival
November 9, 10 & 11, 2017
Rodeheaver Boys' Ranch
380 Boys Ranch Road
Palatka, FL 32177
48th Annual South Carolina State Bluegrass Festival
Convention Center--Myrtle Beach, SC 29577
2101 North Oak Street
Thanksgiving Weekend
November 23, 24 & 25, 2017
42nd Annual New Year's Bluegrass Festival
Jekyll Island Convention Center
Jekyll Island, GA 31527
January 4, 5 & 6, 2018
6th Annual Little Roy & Lizzy Music Festival
May 3, 4 & 5, 2018
Elijah Clark State Park
2959 McCormick Hwy
Lincolnton, GA 30817
Cherokee Bluegrass Festival
​June 7, 8 & 9, 2018
Happy Holiday RV Village
1553 Wolfetown Rd
Cherokee, North Carolina 28719
38th Annual Music in the Mountains Bluegrass Festival
June 20, 21, 22 & 23, 2018
Summersville Music Park
7441 Webster Road
Summersville, WV 26651​
44th Annual North Carolina State Bluegrass Festival
August 16, 17 & 18, 2018
Tom Johnson's Camping Center
1885 US 70 West
Marion, NC 28752
Anderson Bluegrass Festival
October 25, 26 & 27, 2018
In the Civic Center of Anderson, SC
3027 Martin Luther King Jr., Blvd.
Anderson, SC 29625
Tags: Gibson BrothersThe Gibson BrothersBluegrass FestivalNorman AdamsBusiness

Feller and Hill Release New Album “Brothers and Heroes”

Wed, 08/30/2017 - 20:51

Nashville, TN -- Rural Rhythm Records is pleased to announce the September 29th release of Brothers And Heroes the debut album by Feller and Hill for the label. Since the formation of Feller and Hill in 2010, Tom Feller and Chris Hill have established themselves among the top vocal groups in the bluegrass community. Combining their love for traditional bluegrass and classic country music, their music falls somewhere between Buck Owens and the Osborne Brothers. Hallmarked by tight harmonies and great songs, Feller and Hill have had some of the biggest bluegrass radio hits over the past few years with "Big Blue Roses" and "Government Blues."

Produced by Feller and Hill, Brothers And Heroes includes 13 handpicked songs by Tom and Chris containing a strong mix of original and classic songs with guest performances from a strong list of top talent including Tony Holt, Aubrey Holt, Jerry Holt, Bobby Osborne, Larry Stephenson, Junior Sisk, Lizzy Long, Heather Berry-Mabe, Michael Cleveland, Glen Duncan, Steve Thomas and many more.

The first single "The Bugler" was written by Tom Holt, formerly of The Boys From Indiana, and features the lead and harmony vocals of Tom Feller and Chris Hill. "The Bugler" is a Civil War story about a bugle boy, who left home at a young age to join the Army as a bugler, in search of his father, who never returned from battle. Young Willie disappeared, himself, and never returned and his mother has searched endlessly to find him. They finally do reunite at a camp on one of the many battlegrounds his mother searched. The songwriter leaves it up to the listener as to whether Willie lived on...or his ghost still haunts the battlegrounds of the Great Smokey Mountains. The name "Willie" may have been inspired by a family member, Uncle Willie Gabbard, who served in the military during World War II. Tom indicated he wrote the song to sound like something very old, even though the song is brand-new and previously unrecorded.

Brothers And Heroes kicks off with the up-tempo "Hammer Down", written by Gerald Evans, Jr., and never stops hard drivin' and cruisin' until crossing the finish line. Other songs featured on the album includes "Childish Love" written by Ira and Charlie Louvin; "Atlanta Is Burning" a popular Civil War song by The Boys From Indiana written by Aubrey Holt with vocals by Tom Feller, Chris Hill, Tony, Aubrey and Jerry Holt; two Felice and Boudleaux Bryant classics "Wake Up Little Susie" popularized by The Everly Brothers and "Tennessee Hound Dog" with guest vocals by Bobby Osborne; Patsy Cline classic "Back In Baby's Arms" written by Bob Montgomery; "Love Is A Stranger" written by Bill Harrell with guest vocals by Larry Stephenson; "Duncan And Brady" traditional murder ballad about the shooting of a policeman by a bartender with vocals by Junior Sisk and the Chet Atkins & Jerry Reed instrumental classic "Jerry's Breakdown" written by Jerry Reed.

Brothers And Heroes contains some of the best traditional bluegrass and classic country music from today and yesterday and combines the tight harmonies and strong lead vocals of Feller And Hill to create a fresh sounding album that will truly delight Bluegrass music lovers...It's Fresh Grass with a Traditional Blend and Strong Roots.

The single "The Bugler" is available for DJ downloads on AirPlay Direct. In addition, "The Bugler" is included on the new Rural Rhythm "Fresh Cut's & Key Tracks" No. 1 -2017 radio CD sent to D.J.'s earlier this month.

It is no secret that one of Feller and Hill's greatest influences is the music of The Boys from Indiana. A nationally touring act, The Boys from Indiana was the absolute kings of bluegrass in the Ohio-Kentucky-Indiana area, during the '70s and '80s. They were a hit at bluegrass festivals across the country, due to their robust stage presence and original songs. Their influence on Feller and Hill's music should come as no surprise, as 60% of the classic lineup of "The Boys" (Aubrey Holt, Jerry Holt, Harley Gabbard, Paul Mullins, and Noah Crase) are related to Tom Feller (Aubrey and Jerry Holt are Tom's uncles, and the late, Harley Gabbard was Tom's great uncle).

Feller and Hill's stage show is very reminiscent of the Boys From Indiana, which include that same robust stage presence, their dry brand of humor and a very fast-paced show that proves time and time again to be a crowd-favorite everywhere they go.

In addition to his family's musical heritage, Tom has worked with Jerry Williamson and Redwing, The Larry Stephenson Band, Rhonda Vincent and the Rage, and Three Fox Drive, during his 30-year career. Chris has worked with The Wildwood Valley Boys, Gerald Evans and Paradise, The Karl Shifflet and Big Country Show, and The James King Band. In the past year, both Tom and Chris have made separate appearances on the Grand Ole Opry filling guest spots with Bobby Osborne and Rocky Top Express.

Feller and Hill will continue using their deep-rooted pedigrees in bluegrass and traditional music to grow their audience and deliver a high-energy show with rich vocals and smooth instrumentation at some of the largest festivals in the country. If you love traditional bluegrass, classic country, and southern bluegrass gospel music, then you'll love Feller and Hill and the Bluegrass Buckaroos.

Feller and Hill are currently on tour. For more information go to www.FellerAndHill.com.

Tags: Feller & HillCD ReleaseBrothers and Heroes

Pine Mountain Railsplitters at Carter Fold Saturday

Tue, 08/29/2017 - 20:15

Hiltons, VA -- Saturday, September 2nd, 2017, at 7:30 p.m., the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, will present a concert by the Pine Mountain Railsplitters old time string band. Admission to the concert is $10 for adults, $2 for children 6 to 11, under age 6 free.

The Pine Mountain Railsplitters is an old time string band from Kentucky playing hard driving fiddle tunes and featuring Adrian and Julie Shepherd-Powell, Brett Ratliff, and Stephanie Jeter. Formed at an impromptu performance at the Portland Old Time Gathering in 2009, the Pine Mountain Railsplitters play at various festivals and venues across the southeast. The band and its' members have won multiple ribbons at fiddlers conventions all over the southeast, taking first place in the old time band contest at the Morehead Old Time Festival in July 2014 and then second place in the band contest at the Johnson County Old Time Fiddlers Convention in Laurel Bloomery, Tennessee, in August 2014.

Adrian Shepherd-Powell, a native of Crimora, Virginia, has won contests at fiddlers' conventions all over the southeast. His fiddle style is straight forward with a hard drivin' bow. Adrian has played with many old time bands including the Pea Ridge Ramblers, Matt Kinman's Old Time Serenaders, and the Cabin Creek Boys. One of his most recent awards includes second place in the old time fiddle competition at the Johnson County Fiddlers Convention in 2014 and third place at the Upper East Tennessee Fiddlers Convention in 2017.

Julie Shephard-Powell is an award-winning clawhammer banjo player and flatfoot dancer originally from North Carolina. Julie previously taught beginning and advanced old time banjo at Mountain Empire Community College in Big Stone Gap, Virginia. She has also played with the Letcher County band Rich and the Poor Folks. Julie currently competes in flatfoot dance competitions at fiddlers' conventions all over the southeast and calls square dances anywhere from Knoxville to New York City. She has won numerous awards for her flatfoot dancing, including most recently a second place finish at the Fiddlers Convention in Galax, Virginia, in August of 2014 and first place in dance at the Johnson County Fiddlers Convention in 2016.

Brett Ratliff is a native of Van Lear, Kentucky, and is a well-known banjo player and ballad singer. He's played everywhere from Portland, Oregon, to New York City and England. Brett's played with numerous bands including the Clack Mountain String Band, and Blind Tiger String Band, the Dirk Powell Band, Rich and the Poor Folks, and the Giant Rooster Side Show. His ballad singing won him second place in the folk song competition at the Surry County Old Time Fiddlers Convention in 2010 and 2013. Brett recently released a solo album entitled Gone Boy in 2017. He joins the band on vocals, guitar, banjo, and fiddle.

Stephanie Jeter makes her home in Lexington, Kentucky, and is the newest addition to the band, joining them in 2014. Stephanie also plays with the Empty Bottle String Band and teaches old time music at the Kentucky Center for Traditional Music at Morehead State University. She brings her rocking bass, smooth vocals, and sweet harmonies to the band. She has taken home multiple ribbons in flatfoot dance, singing, old time band, and autoharp from the Morehead Old Time Festival, the Johnson County Old Time Fiddlers Convention, and the Upper East Tennessee Fiddlers Convention.

Some of the Pine Mountain Railsplitters' other accolades include first place in old time band at the Grayson County Fiddlers Convention in Elk Creek, Virginia, in 2012; first place in the Crooked Road Music Festival Band Contest in 2012; first place at the Morehead Old Time Music Festival in 2009, 2010, and 2011 – with second place in 2012 and third place in 2013; third place in the band contest at the Great Southern Old Time Fiddlers Convention in 2010 in Chattanooga, Tennessee; and placing in old time band at the Fiddlers Convention in Galax, Virginia, in 2014.

For more information, check out the Pine Mountain Railsplitters on the internet and You Tube. Be prepared for foot stomping and hollering when you listen to the Railsplitters. You'll find it hard to stay in your seat. At the Carter Family Fold, the only thing better than one fiddler is two fidldlers. Bring along all your family and friends – and be sure you bring your dancing shoes. All the members of the Railsplitters have played the Fold, with several of them playing multiple times. Stephanie has performed on our stage from the time she was a student at East Tennessee State University when Raymond McLain oversaw the program. They all know just how to please audiences at the Fold. For an unforgettable evening, come on out to the Carter Family Fold to experience some of the best old time music you'll ever hear.

Carter Family Memorial Music Center, Inc., is a nonprofit, rural arts organization that was established in 1979 to preserve traditional, acoustic, mountain music. Saturday concerts have been held since 1974. The center is family-friendly, and an alcohol and drug free facility. For more info, go to http://www.carterfamilyfold.org or http://www.carterfamilyfold.com/. Shows from the Carter Family 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. For recorded show information on the upcoming Saturday show at the Fold, call 276-386-6054. The Fold is on Facebook – page Carter Fold – and Twitter – @carterfoldinfo.

Tags: Pine Mountain RailsplittersCarter Family FoldConcertEvent

EmiSunshine's Newest Album “Ragged Dreams” Released

Mon, 08/28/2017 - 18:28

Nashville, TN -- EmiSunshine, the captivating songstress and extraordinary vocalist, is pleased to release her fourth recording project, Ragged Dreams, via all major digital retail outlets (iTunes/Amazon/Spotify). Live or in studio, EmiSunshine, best-described as "a young Janis Joplin meets the Carter Family Fold," fearlessly delivers an artistry far beyond her youth.

Addressing dramatic and mature subject matter, the 15-original tracks (written/co-written and produced by EmiSunshine) touch on topics encompassing close-to-home tragedies (the Gatlinburg fires and Virginia floods) and imaginative, homespun stories portraying murder, deceit, vengeful spirits and incarceration. Ragged Dreams also features the poignant track "Ninety Miles"--a personal interpretive perspective on Autism. The corresponding, live-performance "Ninety Miles" music video is slated to premiere on September 6 at 8AM Central/9AM Eastern on TheBoot.com.

In just over four short years, thirteen year-old EmiSunshine has blossomed into a career recording artist and sought-after entertainer. As a headlining act, she performs more than 150 dates per year on some of the world's biggest stages including the Grand Ole Opry (more than a dozen times), Ryman Auditorium, Stagecoach Fest, MerleFest and Woodsongs. Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale welcomed Emi to their radio show; her special guest appearance on The Buddy & Jim Show is slated to run this Saturday evening, August 26 on Outlaw Country (Sirius XM).

Emi will kick-off her California tour next week; she is slated to perform at some of the west coast's most famous venues (including Sweetwater Music Halland Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse). This October, she will emcee The Festy Experience(a 4-day festival featuring performances by award-winning entertainers) to be held at Infinity Downs Farm in Nelson County, VA.

EmiSunshine's talents have been recognized with placement in film, television and books. Her songs, "I Am Able" and "Little Blackbird," are spotlighted in the "More Than Words" documentary (produced by Grammy winner and founder of the Documentary Channel, Suzanne Holmes); "I Am Able" also appears in the Amazon/Barnes & Noble Bestseller "The Ables." In May, Emi performed at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival in France for the premiere of Eugene Jarecki's "Promised Land." Emi and her family band (The Rain) make a cameo appearance; the film also features her performance of "Danny Ray" from the Ragged Dreams album.

Tags: EmiSunshineCD ReleaseRagged Dreams

Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver Release “Life is a Story”

Fri, 08/25/2017 - 20:05

Nashville, TN -- Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver find their newest album, Life is a Story, greeted with early chart action, exclusive features, television appearances and laudatory reviews. The disc entered The Roots Music Report's Top 50 Bluegrass Album Chart at #31 last week, and the album's first single, "Life To My Days," debuts today on the Bluegrass Today Weekly Airplay Chart at #23. Fans can purchase the new music HERE now, and radio can access the band's current single, "Life To My Days," via AirPlay Direct.

Various features, exclusive premieres and television appearances are set: Beginning August 28, Doyle will host four weekly episodes of Heartland TV's hit show Bluegrass Ridge. A multi-format, genre-specific endeavor, the program airs on The Family Channel, Angel Two (Dish-TV), Keep It Country TV-UK / Ireland, Country TV (New Zealand) and cable systems (check local listings). Earlier this week, three popular websites featured exclusive song premieres: Nashville.com ("Guitar Case"), Roughstock ("Little Girl") and Bluegrass Today ("Life Of A Hardworkin' Man"). The Bluegrass Situation is offering listeners a special stream of the entire album.

A broad range of media outlets are sharing their enthusiasm for the 12-track Life is a Story (Mountain Home Music Company) with glowing reviews and exciting features. Sports & Entertainment Nashville, ParcBench, Country Standard Time, The Alternate Root, Stacy's Music Row Report, Bluegrass Notes, Midwest Record Review, Country Jukebox, Country Music News International, Fervor Coulee, Music Matters Magazine, The Boot, Digital Journal, and Rambles.net offer Bluegrass lovers engaging coverage from single and album reviews to full feature articles.

Life is a Story exemplifies musical excellence - and proves yet again why DLQ remains such an influential force in today's Bluegrass world. Reviewers are not shy in sharing the love:

Country Jukebox -
"DLQ has recorded an all-encompassing album in which the connection between tradition and modernity has succeeded. Fans will be happy that the Bluegrass veterans sound fresh as ever."

Fervor Coulee -
"Without question, DLQ remains one of Bluegrass music's most highly considered outfits."

Midwest Record Report -
"Venerable ... gives it to you right in the gut with one 'whoa' moment after another."

Music Matters Magazine -
"One of the best Bluegrass albums I've listened to past and present and will be difficult for Doyle Lawson or any other artist to top."

The band's last two albums (In Session, Burden Bearer) received Grammy nominations in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Doyle was inducted into the Bluegrass Hall of Fame in 2012 and received the National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship award in 2006 for his trailblazing contributions to cultural heritage.

Previously honored with seven International Bluegrass Music Association Awards for Vocal Group of the Year, the band is nominated in three categories for the upcoming 28th Annual IBMA Awards: Entertainer of the Year, Vocal Group of the Year and Josh Swift for Instrumental Performer of the Year - Dobro. Winners will be announced September 28 at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh, NC.

Doyle's signature Lead and Baritone vocals, Mandolin and Mandola make him the shining sun at the center of this legendary group. The other stars in the DLQ galaxy are Josh Swift (Resophonic Guitar, Acoustic Lead Guitar and Percussion); Joe Dean (Banjo and Guitar);Dustin Pyrtle (Lead and Tenor vocals, Guitar); Eli Johnston (Lead and Baritone vocals, Bass) and Stephen Burwell (Fiddles).

Tags: Doyle Lawson & QuicksilverCD ReleaseLife Is A Story

Bluegrass Music's Pete Kuykendall Passes

Thu, 08/24/2017 - 20:06

Bluegrass contributor and co-founder of Bluegrass Unlimited magazine, Pete Kuykendall has passed away. He was 79 years old. Pete passed away in his sleep Wednesday night in his sleep at a nursing care home where he has been for a while. Born January 15th, 1938 in Washington, D.C., Pete was a significant figure in the Bluegrass Music Community. Beyond his recognition with his magazine, he was also an instrumentalist, archivist, songwriter, radio announcer, band mate, recording engineer, producer, businessman, festival producer, and a major influence in bringing Bluegrass into the public's view in a positive manner. He was also instrumental in the creation of both the International Bluegrass Music Association and the International Bluegrass Music Museum.

Pete was partially responsible for bringing Bluegrass to the Washington D.C. music scene for two decades. He performed with The Country Gentlemen, Red Allen, Frank Wakefield & the Kentuckians. In the early to mid '50s, he also performed with the Log Cabin Boys and Benny & Vallie Cain & the Country Clan. Inducted into the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame in 1996, his contributions to the music were highlighted including his abilities with the banjo as well as other instruments.

Pete was an driven innovator who started Bluegrass Unlimited in 1966 as nothing more than a newsletter. Joining him to get this project off the ground were Pete, Vince & Dianne Sims, Dick Freeland, Dick Sopottswood, Gary Henderson. After devoting four decades of his life to the magazine, he also became on of the music's biggest historians. He was involved in virtually every aspect of Bluegrass Music from the '50s until his passing. His contributions span over a half century of dedication, love, passion and drive for the music. It was not just in his blood, it was his blood. His entire professional life was centered around Bluegrass.

Through his early work in the music, through the radio years and his library years, Pete managed to build an extensive library of the music. Not only did he collect the music, he helped with its production and promotion. His basement studio was instrumental in the Rebel Record's release of a 4 record set of 70 songs. Others recorded there and his studio was active for many years covering Bluegrass, country blues and more.

One would be hard pressed to find any other single individual who contributed so much, over such a broad scope as Pete did in the past 60 some years. He left an indelible mark on the Bluegrass Music landscape that is immeasurable in value and importance. We lost more than just a man in his passing -- we lost a lot of the history that he held within his vast memories and contributions. He will be missed by those that knew him as well as many who never heard of him. His contributions were just that great.

We share our condolences with Kitsy and the entire Kuykendall family. May he rest in peace.

Tags: Pete KuykendallBluegrass UnlimitedSilent StringsObituary

Donna Ulisse to Release “Breakin’ Easy”

Wed, 08/23/2017 - 20:01

Nashville, TN -- The reigning IBMA Songwriter of the Year, Donna Ulisse, recently signed with Mountain Home Music Company, and is now poised to release the first project on her new label.

Breakin’ Easy is set for release on September 22nd. The album was produced by label-mate and Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame member, Doyle Lawson.

Breakin’ Easy is replete with the skillful songwriting that has garnered so many honors for Ulisse, including the 2016 IBMA Songwriter of the Year Award. Every song is delivered with perfect emotion by her distinctive voice. The title comes from a song lyric, but is also an intentional nod to this new phase of Donna’s career.

"Breakin’ Easy represents a gentle shift in a new direction," Donna says. "With a new label and team, and with the amazing in-studio collaboration with Doyle, I feel free to take a fresh look at my music and career."

Ulisse brings a blend of traditional and contemporary bluegrass, gospel and country flavors to everything she records and performs. With a voice that is rich, warm and commanding, she has a well-deserved reputation for bringing a song home with both style and musical integrity. On this new album, Donna indeed makes a shift, almost imperceptible, but with the clear new vision of an artist free to focus on her artistry.

"Working in the studio with Doyle is a dream, plain and simple," Donna says. "With his command of absolute perfection in instrumentation and arranging, I felt refreshingly free. I can give my attention to lyrics in a meaningful new way."

Lawson shares his own praise for the experience, saying, "Producing Donna’s CD was a pure joy. She came to the studio well prepared and with a willingness to take direction. The beautiful thing is that she needs very little directing. Donna is a dynamic vocalist with what I call ’that sparkle’ one listens for, and it matches her personality perfectly."

The many facets of Donna’s dynamic voice are showcased brilliantly on Breakin’ Easy, along with the rock solid writing that is a hallmark of Ulisse’s career. Opening with the hopeful "Without Trouble Please" and closing with the up-tempo "We’ve Got The Love Thing Figured Out," the new CD weaves loneliness into optimism, and heartbreak into exuberance. "A Little Past Lonely" has both the pain of lost love and an optimistic outlook, while "We Are Strong" celebrates an unwavering love. Her vocals shine on a cover of "Here Comes My Baby Back Again," which is sure to become a fan favorite. Other tunes carry the listener through self-reflection, memories, happiness and exhilaration; all wrapped up in musical precision.

"At the Crossroads studio, I have always worked with ace engineer, Van Atkins," Lawson says. "Our goal is to have a relaxed, no-pressure atmosphere. My theory on producing is to let the artist be themselves with a little guidance, when needed." The resulting Breakin’ Easy clearly reflects the experience and ease shared by seasoned professionals in the studio.

Fans worldwide will be able to enjoy a very special CD release event when Donna hosts a live streaming mini-concert on Tuesday, September 19th. Details will be available at www.donnaulisse.com and through Donna’s social media sites.

Whether singing her own songs or those written by others, Donna Ulisse continues to make her mark as a uniquely gifted artist. She has incorporated a wide range of influences into a style and sound that is distinctively Donna. With the release of Breakin’ Easy, Donna is poised for the next facet of her already shining career as a recording artist, songwriter and performer.

Tags: Donna UlisseCD ReleaseBreakin' Easy

Mike Mitchell is Excited to Announce Single Release of “Lightning Jack”

Tue, 08/22/2017 - 19:41

Without a doubt, Mike Mitchell's best recording to date, Dead Center follows a traditional bluegrass album model and has some of the finest pickers in the business. Produced and banjo-ed by Sammy Shelor (of Lonesome River Band) with Wyatt Rice on guitar, Jacob Eller on bass (Sierra Hull, Church Sisters), Jeff Midkiff on mandolin, and Will Farmer (Blue Moonshine) on harmonies.

The CD also features Buddy Pendleton (an early Bill Monroe fiddler) on twin-fiddle tunes. Recorded at Mountain Fever studios and mixed/mastered at Blackwater Recording, in the heart of southwest VA's Blue Ridge Mountains.

Mike Mitchell makes his home in Floyd, Virginia where he is founder and director of The Floyd Music School. Playing regional and mid-atlantic bluegrass festivals in 2017 with his Bluegrass Trio.

Mike lives and works in one of our country’s richest musical areas, Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains, where he is the founder and director of Floyd Music School. He is fortunate to perform, record, and teach alongside some of the country’s very best players and educators.

His critically acclaimed recordings and performances have earned him a respected name within the regional industry and a fan base of discriminating listeners throughout the U.S and Canada.

“Mitchell’s command of the instrument is evident and his tone is righteous” – Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine

“Mike Mitchell is another one of those multi­talented, self-produced artists who’s a pure joy to uncover…” – Bluegrass Now Magazine

“Mitchell is a smooth and talented fiddler and also sings smoothly in a contemporary style. His ‘Jerusalem Ridge’ is more ethereal than hard-edged, more laid­back than ominous. ‘Music In Our Souls’ is about the life of a musician. ‘Eat My Dust’ is a more ethereal piece, and Mitchell’s fiddling is just right.” – Bluegrass Unlimited

Tags: Mike MitchellSingleCD ReleaseDead Center

Bluegrass Underground Moving To New and Permanent Venue

Mon, 08/21/2017 - 20:23

Nashville, TN -- Bluegrass Underground, the international concert destination and 13-time EMMY award-winning PBS music series, has found a permanent home in The Caverns, located within the base of Monteagle Mountain in Tennessee's beautiful Cumberland Plateau. The announcement was made today by Bluegrass Underground Creator and Executive Producer, Todd Mayo.

The new venue, The Caverns, boasts singular natural acoustics and will accommodate many more subterranean music lovers in response to increasing demand for tickets to Bluegrass Underground and for other live music concerts across expanding genres.

"This is a dream come true to find a cave system that expands and improves the live and televised musical experiences of underground performances we have been curating since 2008," Mayo said. "Our new home at The Caverns will enable us to add infrastructure with permanent power, professional audio and lighting with enhanced food and beverage concessions that have never before been possible, including a longtime request from our patrons: cold beer."

The Caverns' enhancements will greatly benefit the Bluegrass Underground PBS series as well, says television producer Todd Jarrell. "In the past, we taped the entire 12-episode season over one weekend due to the difficulty and expense of bringing literally tons of cabling and show gear a quarter mile into the cave," explains Jarrell. "But The Caverns' permanent infrastructure presents us the flexibility to match calendars with some of the world's greatest performers, enticing them underground to offer our fans a 'deep down' lifetime experience throughout the year."

With a more fluid taping schedule, Bluegrass Underground producers promise to shine a broader and even brighter light on America's deep and wide musical culture through their partnership with WCTE Upper Cumberland PBS and the 300+ stations of the national PBS system.

The Caverns, located in Grundy County near Pelham, TN, at the base of Monteagle Mountain, is just 10 minutes off Interstate 24's Exit 127. The Caverns is 30 minutes closer to two of its major markets: Nashville and Chattanooga. Only 75 minutes from Nashville and 45 minutes from Chattanooga, the location is also a 2.5-hour drive from the major population centers of Atlanta and Birmingham, 45 minutes closer than ever before.

"Bluegrass Underground is now far more easily accessible to the vast majority of our regional patrons as well as our national and international fly-in fans," adds Joe Lurgio, General Manager and Associate Producer of Bluegrass Underground. "And for the first time, Bluegrass Underground will be more easily accessible for patrons with physical disabilities."

Mayo projects as many as 50 performances for 2018, expanding the "underground experience" to span more musical genres including symphonic music, comedy shows and some truly unexpected underground surprises.

The Caverns actually adjoin a number of connected cave systems, known to spelunkers for their beautiful formations, vast rooms, winding underground rivers and pristine natural condition. Most of the cave systems on the property are slated to remain accessible to qualified cavers. "In time we'd like to sustainably develop and share portions of these amazing caves for both educational and recreational purposes, allowing a wider audience to enjoy and learn from the underground beauty of Tennessee," Mayo added.

Executive Producer Mayo says securing a permanent home with full production infrastructure will provide stability and long-term security for Bluegrass Underground, which celebrates its 10th Anniversary in 2018. He adds, "We are so excited to present music in our own magical space for an experience that truly represents the Bluegrass Underground family and brand."

Bluegrass Underground was "discovered" by Todd Mayo in the summer of 2008 when he proposed the simple idea of producing live performances in a cave. The inaugural show featured The SteelDrivers with Chris Stapleton on lead vocals and since that serendipitous August day the event has grown into a worldwide phenomenon, drawing music fans, media attention and cave buffs from around the globe.

Bluegrass Underground will soon be premiering on WMOT Roots Radio 89.5 and is premiering its 7th season of national distribution this year on the national PBS system via presenting station WCTE Upper Cumberland PBS. The show has won 13 Regional Emmy awards for Entertainment, Technical Achievement, Lighting, Audio and Directing. The series has aired in over 95% of the United States television markets and across southern Canada.

In this majestic setting, Bluegrass Underground celebrates the power of music to bring people together. The show prides itself in offering fans a wide variety of genres and has featured such artists as Vince Gill, Del McCoury, Widespread Panic, Jason Isbell, Rhonda Vincent, Amos Lee, Lucinda Williams, Steve Earle, David Grisman, Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros, Doyle Lawson, Lee Ann Womack, Leon Russell and Old Crow Medicine Show. Bluegrass Underground has welcomed patrons from all 50 states and more than 50 foreign countries.

With its move to the base of Monteagle Mountain, Bluegrass Underground will join an array of historic and popular Tennessee attractions, including the landmark University of the South in Sewanee and the Monteagle Assembly. For those who love the great outdoors, there is much to see and do and all within 30 miles of The Caverns. South Cumberland State Park, Tim's Ford Lake, The Stone Door and Fiery Gizzard Trail are but a few of the uniquely Tennessee experiences awaiting day-trippers as well as the fan traveling from afar.

For more information visit www.bluegrassunderground.com and the www.thecaverns.com.

Tags: Bluegrass UndergroundThe CavernsBusiness

Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers Release “The Story We Tell”

Sun, 08/20/2017 - 19:41

Xenia, OH—If any one album summed up one of the most successful bands in bluegrass, any genre really, it would be The Story We Tell by Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers. Released today on Rebel Records, this latest project is the band's sixth in seven years for bluegrass music's most historic record label, and brings together a vibrant collection of songs that when heard, work together like chapters from a well-worn literary classic.
The Story We Tell flows through the speakers like tuning in to your favorite radio broadcast — a claim only befitting of the reigning IBMA Broadcaster of the Year, Joe Mullins.

First Single, "Long Gone Out West Blues," on Top 20 Songs Chart Five Consecutive Weeks

"We gathered a very diverse set of songs, heavy on new material from great writers, allowing us to tell several types of stories -- tales of fun, family, fiddlers, faith, felons, and one funeral ... real bluegrass," said band leader and banjo player Joe Mullins. And if the lead off track and first single, "Long Gone Out West Blues," is any indication, the album is poised to do well with radio programmers. Released the latter part of June, "Long Gone Out West Blues" debuted on Bluegrass Today's Top 20 Songs chart, maintaining a strong presence five consecutive weeks.

Featuring Mullins alongside bluegrass veterans Mike Terry (mandolin), Jason Barie (fiddle), Randy Barnes (bass), and Duane Sparks (guitar), The Story We Tell showcases the band's most inventive and innovative arrangements to date, both vocally and instrumentally on 12 tracks. With an approach to the music that rings with authenticity, the band secures a rightful place among the traditional guard of bluegrass while standing comfortably shoulder to shoulder with more progressive type artists who find themselves drawn to not only JMRR's music, but their down-home, likable nature.

In the album's liner notes, journalist Craig Havighurst brings The Story We Tell and its authors to one solid conclusion: "Joe and his superb band with its diverse strengths and multiple lead vocalists have patiently carved out a special place in the national scene. They've won some awards that you can look up, though fewer than they deserve and fewer than they will over time. What matters more is that Joe's steady contributions and excellent performances are accumulating, year in and out. So is a larger story of an artist who'll tend to traditional music for decades, something we very much need as the genre widens. Just remember that Joe and his band mates are standing sentinel over something even more profound than the cultural creation we cherish as bluegrass. They're giving us all tuneful, truthful reasons to have faith in the future of the country."

The Story We Tell is available to radio programmers via AirplayDirect and to consumers for digital download at iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon. Consumers may also order The Story We Tell direct from Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers at www.radioramblers.com.

The Story We Tell Track Listing:

  1. “Long Gone Out West Blues”
  2. “The Last Old Shovel”
  3. “Songs That Will Get 'Em”
  4. “I Could Have Gone Right”
  5. “If I'd Have Wrote That Song”
  6. “Neighbors”
  7. “I Heard That Train”
  8. “In The Short Rows Now”
  9. “I'm Nowhere Bound”
  10. “Would You Care”
  11. “The Fiddle Man's Delight”
  12. “When God's In It”

With a presenting sponsor in Rue Farms Rustic Potato Chips™, Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers (JMRR) will find themselves on nearly 100 stages across the country and into Canada in 2017, delivering first class entertainment and being deemed one of the busiest bands in bluegrass. They've consistently delivered authentic, chart-topping and crowd-pleasing music, as evidenced by multiple International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) awards and Grand Ole Opry appearances on their resume, and will enjoy a feature in Bluegrass Unlimited magazine this fall. Fronted by the IBMA's 2016 Broadcaster of the Year, Joe Mullins "could be termed a double-threat in the music business," writes Chuck Dauphin for Billboard magazine. "Musically, he is one of the top bluegrass acts in the business along with his band, but he also is one of the top radio personalities in the genre. Spend any amount of time with him, and you'll be in amazement at his vocal chops -- whether singing or announcing." And with personalities that match their music, the entire band is beloved by long-time fans and those just learning of the group's music. "Mullins and the Radio Ramblers do not rollick to a style that mimics first generation bluegrassers from Bill Monroe to the Stanley Brothers," stated journalist Tom Netherland in a recent concert review. "Mullins forges his own musical way. He found a theater full of believers in Bristol. His music brought them in, nailed them to their seats and prompted thunders of applause from song to song. So goes the music of substance."

Tags: Joe Mullins & The Radio RamblersCD ReleaseThe Story We Tell

Dolly Parton to Release First Children's Album “I Believe In You”

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 19:44

Nashville, TN -- At a recent press conference before media reps and their children as special guests, world renowned entertainer Dolly Parton announced the release of I Believe In You, her first album written and recorded for kids and those young at heart. A digital release of the new album on Dolly Records/RCA Nashville will be available September 29, whereas the physical album will street worldwide on October 13. All 14 tracks on I Believe In You were written and performed by Dolly Parton.

“My first album was released 50 years ago and it's been an amazing 50 years since then. I am very excited that now I'm coming out with my first children's album in all of those 50 years. I'm proudest of all that all of the proceeds from this CD will go to the Imagination Library,” Dolly said. “It's been 20 years since the Imagination Library was launched. We've seen 100 million books get into the hands of children and hopefully there will be many more.”

Since its beginning in 1996 in Dolly’s hometown of Sevierville, Tennessee, the Imagination Library has expanded into four countries serving more than one-million children by providing a brand new, age-appropriate book each month. In North America, every child’s first book is the classic Little Engine that Could.

With children seated around her in front of the fireside living room set that was built for the Smoky Mountains Rise Telethon last December, Dolly Parton revealed her I Believe In You album cover (above) and track listing (below).

I Believe In You Track Listing:

  1. “I Believe in You”
  2. “Coat of Many Colors” (new recording)
  3. “Together Forever”
  4. “I Am a Rainbow”
  5. “I’m Here”
  6. “A Friend Like You”
  7. “Imagination”
  8. “You Can Do It”
  9. “Responsibility”
  10. “You Gotta Be”
  11. “Makin’ Fun Ain’t Funny”
  12. “Chemo Hero”
  13. “Brave Little Soldier”
  14. Bonus track spoken audio: “Coat of Many Colors” (book read by Dolly Parton)

Tracks 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 were produced by Tom McBryde and executive produced by Paul T. Couch. Tracks 2, 11, 12, and 13 were produced by Tom Rutledge and Richard Dennison and executive produced by Dolly Parton.

Before and after reading her “Coat Of Many Colors” book, she treated the kids and media to a performance of three songs featured on the new album, “I Believe in You,” “Makin’ Fun Ain’t Funny” and “Brave Little Soldier.” The press conference ended with Dolly answering questions and taking family photos with all the guests.

Dolly Parton is the most honored female country performer of all time. Achieving 25 RIAA certified gold, platinum and multi-platinum awards, she has had 25 songs reach #1 on the Billboard Country charts, a record for a female artist. She has 41 career top 10 country albums, a record for any artist, and she has 110 career-charted singles over the past 40 years. All-inclusive sales of singles, albums, hits collections, paid digital downloads and compilation usage during her Hall of Fame career have reportedly topped a staggering 100 million records – which includes sales of her 2016 chart-topping disc Pure & Simple, her first number one album on the Billboard Country Album charts in twenty-five years. She has garnered eight Grammy Awards – including a 2017 win with Pentatonix in the Country Duo/Group Performance category for their collaboration on her iconic 1973 hit “Jolene” - 10 Country Music Association Awards, five Academy of Country Music Awards, three American Music Awards and is one of only five female artists to win the Country Music Association’s Entertainer of the Year Award. In 1999 Parton was inducted as a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame. She has her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and became a member of the National Academy of Popular Music Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2001. Broadcast Music Inc. honored Parton with their Icon Award in 2003, and in 2004 the U.S. Library of Congress presented her with their Living Legend Award for her contribution to the cultural heritage of the United States. This was followed in 2005 with the National Medal of Arts, the highest honor given by the U.S. government for excellence in the arts. The honors keep coming. The 2016 made for television movie, Dolly Parton’s Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love is nominated in the “Television Movie” category for the 69th Annual Emmy Awards. The film also won in the TV and Cable category at the 68th Annual Christopher Awards, which also includes the Movieguide Epiphany Prize for Television. The film served as the follow-up to her highly rated 2015 film Coat Of Many Colors, also broadcast on NBC, which won the Academy of Country Music's Tex Ritter Award. In 2017, Dolly will release I Believe In You, a collection of children's songs on Dolly Records through her partnership with Sony Music Nashville.

Founded in 1995, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a book gifting organization that has, to date, mailed more than 100 million books to children in Australia, Belize, Canada, United Kingdom and the United States. Each month, the program currently mails more than one million specially selected, high-quality, age-appropriate books to registered children from birth until they start Kindergarten in participating communities. Dolly envisioned creating a lifelong love of reading in children, preparing them for school and inspiring them to dream. Recent studies suggest participation in the Imagination Library is positively and significantly associated with higher measures of early language and math development. Penguin Random House is the exclusive publisher for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.

Tags: Dolly PartonCD ReleaseI Believe In You

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