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Garrett Newton Releases Single from Debut Album

Thu, 02/02/2017 - 21:37

Pinecastle Records is happy to introduce Garrett Newton to the wider bluegrass community with the release of the first single from his new album. Newton’s debut album Young Heart Old Soul, to be released March 10th, 2017, is a real quality production that is sure to be well respected in the bluegrass world.

When one considers that Newton is not even 18 years old, the project is an even more impressive feat. The first single from the album “Country Poor and Country Proud” is now available to radio. The single is also available for purchase and the full album available for preorder on iTunes.

Newton is a gifted young banjo player from Eastern North Carolina. At a young age, he began attending local bluegrass picking sessions and quickly became enamored with the traditional bluegrass sound. He has devoted significant time to learning the history and absorbing the recordings of the first generation of bluegrass artists and it clearly shows in the style and drive of his banjo playing.

Several years ago, Newton approached Lorraine Jordan at a performance and asked to play banjo for her. Jordan was so impressed with the young man that she took him under her wing and began to feature him on Lorraine Jordan and Carolina Road tour dates. Jordan also helped Newton to form his own touring outfit The Garrett Newton Band.

Tags: Garrett NewtonCD ReleaseYoung Heart Old SoulBanjoDebut

New Single as Kim Robins Signs with Pinecastle

Wed, 02/01/2017 - 23:08

Pinecastle Records is pleased to announce the signing of bluegrass artist, Kim Robins to the label, and is releasing to radio the first single "Eye For An Eye", from her upcoming album Raining in Baltimore. Kim Robins couldn't be more proud than to have joined forces with Pinecastle, or excited about her first release with her new album.

The album follows Kim's popular 2013 release, 40 Years Late, which ultimately earned her an IBMA nomination for Momentum Vocalist of the Year in 2015, as well as garnering a high volume of airplay on bluegrass radio. Though Robins took a brief reprieve for personal reasons, her fan base continued to grow as a result of her first album's success along with her many appearances on high profile stages across the country while promoting it.

"I am grateful to Pinecastle Records for giving me the opportunity to finally live out my dream. It is such an honor to be on an outstanding label with such amazing artists. I am so humbled by everyone who has helped me achieve this goal. I hope you all enjoy this project as much as I have enjoyed making it. When I first heard "Eye For An Eye", I knew it was a song I wanted to record. I loved the melody and it gave me the ability to show off my vocal range. I tend to gravitate toward songs with a darker subject and this song was right up my alley."
 ~ Kim Robins

With Raining in Baltimore (Produced and Engineered by Ron Stewart and Rickey Wasson), Kim continues down her path of songwriting discovery as she delivers even more great original and personal, storytelling songs. Also included are songs brought to her by some of bluegrass music's most prolific songwriters, plus a few familiar tunes the audience may recognize. A very well thought out project with diverse song choices and something to offer everyone, this record will be one to watch in 2017.

Appearing with Kim on the new single, "Eye For An Eye", written by Kim Fox, are Ron Stewart, Adam Steffey, Harold Nixon, Shannon Slaughter and Alicia Wasson. Shannon Slaughter, who appears as a guest vocalist throughout much of the project had this to say:

"Kim has really delivered the goods with her latest project! I'm so proud to be a part of it. A-plus singing and A-list picking make this a record you'll want to add to your collection for 2017. It'll definitely be in mine!"
 - Shannon Slaughter

Kim and her band, 40 Years late, will be making appearances during the SPBGMA festivities this coming weekend where you can see her energetic show and get the chance to meet her in person and hear the new single live. Check her out at the Troubadour Bluegrass Sessions at the Texas Troubadour Theatre in Nashville on Friday, February 3rd, at 8:30 PM and the Norwalk Music & Marshall Bluegrass Festivals Showcase at the Music City Sheraton, Suite #2081, at 11:00 PM.

Tags: Kim RobinsPinecastleCD ReleaseRaining in BaltimoreSingleEye For An Eye

Jeff Brown and Still Lonesome at Carter Fold Saturday

Wed, 02/01/2017 - 23:00

On Saturday, February 4th, 2017, at 7:30 p.m. the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, will present a concert of bluegrass music by Jeff Brown and Still Lonesome. Jeff Brown and Still Lonesome consist of Jeff Brown, Austin Brown, Kyle Murphy, Nick Goad and Mitch Walker. Jeff Brown is a name that is very well known to musicians on today's bluegrass circuit, and has been steadily gaining in popularity with fans, DJ'S and promoters alike. He began playing at the very young age of nine, and hasn't slowed down since. He and his brother formed the Richlands Bluegrass Boys, where he played alongside Blue Highway's Wayne Taylor.

In 1993, Jeff went to work for the legendary Larry Sparks as bass player and tenor singer, where he was a Lonesome Rambler from 1993 to 1996. Jeff has performed on many famous stages such as: the Grand Ole Opry at the world famous Ryman Auditorium in Nashville Tennessee, along with the television shows Austin City Limits in Austin Texas and Song of the Mountains on PBS.

One notable, while performing with Sparks at the Carter Fold in Hiltons Virginia, Jeff was ask to play bass for Johnny Cash along with his wife June Carter Cash. He continued playing various dates and helping out on multiple recording projects before stepping out to front his current band, Jeff Brown and Still Lonesome. Jeff also toured with The Charlie Sizemore Band, and has pulled fill-in duties with Blue Highway, Dr. Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys, and Jesse McReynolds, just to name a few.

He has served on many boards and committees throughout his career, and continues to be very active in promoting and furthering bluegrass music. Jeff has proven, in a very short time, he's more than capable to stand on his own two feet as a singer, player and band leader. Being from Southwest Virginia, Jeff continues to respect his musical roots, but had the unique ability to make any song his own, and is certain to continue winning over bluegrass music fans wherever he goes.

Austin Brown now 18 years old has been playing guitar and bass since the age 3. In addition to music, he loves football and fishing. Austin's music influences are Ralph Stanley, Tony Rice, Wyatt Rice, Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out, Blue Highway, Larry Sparks, Barry Bales, D. Sparks, and many others.

Kyle Murphy is very talented fiddle player, mandolin player and song writer originally from Culver City, California. He grew up around bluegrass music, playing with his dad and sister in The Murphy Family Band from a very young age. Since then he has gone on to play with the ETSU Bluegrass Pride Band and has been with Jeff Brown & Still Lonesome since August 2014.

Nick Goad is a native of Stuart Virginia and is presently studying business administration. He began playing guitar at the age of 9 and mandolin at 12. During which time he has been recognized as Best All- Around Performer and 1st Place Mandolin at Galax Old Time Fiddler's Convention in Galax VA. Mitch Walker from Raleigh, North Carolina is currently a student at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tennessee. He is presently working on two Bachelor of Arts degrees, one in Bluegrass and the other in Economics.

Mitch has been playing banjo since he was 13. He grew up in a musical family with both his grandfather and uncle both playing bluegrass music. Mitch took lessons from long-time IIIrd Tyme Out's former banjoist, Steve Dilling. Steve left an impression and he discovered how much he wanted to play bluegrass. Mitch spent some time touring with The James King Band and most recently with Audie Blaylock and Redline.

For some of the best traditional bluegrass the region has to offer, be sure to come out and see Jeff Brown and Still Lonesome at the Carter Fold. There will be lots of fiddle tunes, unbelievable vocals, great instrumentals, and amazing harmony. Admission to the concert is $10 for adults, $2 for children 6 to 11, under age 6 free.

For more information on the band, go to You'll also find them on Facebook and YouTube. Carter Family Memorial Music Center, Incorporated, is a nonprofit, rural arts organization established to preserve traditional, acoustic, mountain music.

For further information on the center, go to Shows from the Carter Family Fold can be accessed on the internet at Carter Music Center is part of the Crooked Road: Virginia's Heritage Music Trail. You can visit the Crooked Road Music Trail site at Partial funding for programs at the center is provided by the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Tags: Jeff Brown & Still LonesomeCarter Family FoldConcertEvent

The SteelDrivers' 2008 Debut Album Now on Vinyl

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 21:27

Nashville, TN - Rounder Records, a division of Concord Bicycle Music, is proud to announce the release of critically acclaimed album The SteelDrivers on vinyl. The 2008 self-titled record marked the debut of Nashville five-piece The SteelDrivers, and firmly established the Bluegrass band as a force to be reckoned with. The vinyl LP will be released on February 17th.

With singer-songwriter Chris Stapleton at the helm - who has gone on to be a star in his own right - The SteelDrivers was praised for its contemporary mix of blues, Americana and country. When originally released, the album peaked at #57 on the Billboard Country Albums chart, and garnered a GRAMMY® nomination for Best Country Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals for "Blue Side of the Mountain." The SteelDrivers also found a fan in singer Adele, who covered the song "If It Hadn't Been for Love" on her 2010 album 21. Earlier this month, the title crossed the 100,000 mark in album sales, proving its enduring appeal nearly a decade after its release.

Since 2008, the innovative, soulful bluegrass band- now consisting of frontman Gary Nichols, fiddler Tammy Rogers, bassist Mike Fleming, mandolinist Brent Truitt, and banjoist Richard Bailey - has released three more albums, including, most recently, The Muscle Shoals Recordings. The 2015 title reached #1 on Billboard's Bluegrass Chart and achieved the highest first-week sales in The SteelDrivers' history. 2016 was a record year for the band, who not only took home the 2016 GRAMMY® Award for Best Bluegrass Album, but also received IBMA nominations for Album of the Year and Song of the Year ("Long Way Down," which also reached #1 on the Bluegrass Today monthly chart). In July, the band came home to a sold-out, headline performance at the historic Ryman Auditorium.

In addition to celebrating the vinyl release of The SteelDrivers, the band will be on tour throughout the winter and spring. For tickets, please visit

The SteelDrivers will be available February 17th on vinyl. Pre-order on Amazon:

The SteelDrivers Track List:

  • Side A:
    1. "Blue Side of the Mountain"
    2. "Drinkin' Dark Whiskey"
    3. "Midnight Train to Memphis"
    4. "Midnight Tears"
    5. "If You Can't Be Good, Be Gone"
    6. "If It Hadn't Been for Love"
  • Side B:
    1. "Hear the Willow Cry"
    2. "Sticks That Made Thunder"
    3. "East Kentucky Home"
    4. "To Be With You Again"
    5. "Heaven"
Tags: The SteelDriversVinylDebut

First Single, “Little Annie”, from Breaking Grass' New Album Released

Tue, 01/31/2017 - 21:22

Willis, VA -- Mountain Fever Records is proud to announce the release of new music from fan and radio favorites, Breaking Grass. "Annie" is the first single, released today, from the upcoming album, Warning Signs, available March 17th. With their fresh sound, original material, strong vocals and innovative musicianship, Breaking Grass is doing exactly what their name implies. Although not quite traditional, the music they present is without a doubt steeped in the timeless genre they grew up listening to. Comprised of Cody Farrar on guitar; Tyler White on fiddle; Jody Elmore on banjo; Zach Wooten on mandolin; and Britt Sheffield on bass; this innovative band formed with one goal in mind - to make music that all ages could enjoy.

Throughout history, Mississippi has been a mecca of fantastic music. From Delta Blues artists B.B. King and Muddy Waters, to country crooners Tammy Wynette and Conway Twitty, and those who've bridged the gap between country and bluegrass, Marty Stuart and Carl Jackson, it would seem there's something in the water down south that just breeds great talent. Such is the case with Booneville-based Breaking Grass. Consisting of Cody Farrar (guitar, lead vocals), Tyler White (fiddle), Britt Sheffield (bass, vocals), Zach Wooten (mandolin, vocals), and Jody Elmore (banjo, vocals), the band is uniquely different in that they comfortably fit within all the sub-genres of bluegrass, offering a wide range of original material, but with one foot planted firmly in tradition.

"Annie," the first single from the band's upcoming album, Warning Signs, was written by Farrar, and tells the story of a modern day cowgirl who ties up with a gambling and drinking man who shows less-than-model behavior, but is put in his place by the gun-toting Annie. The lyrics, accompanied by the subtlety of the music, makes for an unexpected listening experience—almost as if one has been transported in time to Dodge City, Kansas, back when outlaws were common place.

Annie, take your fingers off those triggers
Honey, won't you ease those pistols down
Whatever I have done to make you bitter
Well there ain't no need to shoot me for it now

"Annie" is now available to consumers who may purchase the single via iTunes, Amazon, and Google Play or will receive the download instantly upon pre-ordering Warning Signs, which will be released March 17th. For more information on Breaking Grass and Warning Signs, please visit or

Tags: Breaking GrassSingleAnnieCD ReleaseWarning SignsMountain Fever Records

Noam Pikelny & Danny Paisley Highlight IBMM Spring Concert Series

Mon, 01/30/2017 - 20:48

Owensboro, KY -- The International Bluegrass Music Museum announced the lineup for their spring 2017 benefit concert series. The series includes six shows beginning February 17 and running through April 28. This season’s lineup includes award-winning and nationally recognized artists. The series kicks-off February 17 with Lexington, KY based group, The Wooks, who will also make their first ROMP festival debut this June.

Three shows will take place throughout the month of March beginning with the duo, Compton/Newberry, masters of old-time mandolin and banjo/guitar. High Fidelity, a young group with a sound rooted strongly in the foundation of bluegrass, will play on March 17, and rounding out the month’s lineup on March 23, will be the reigning IBMA Male Vocalist of the year, Danny Paisley & The Southern Grass.

April boasts two young musicians focused on breakout solo careers from their perspective bands. Jenni Lyn Gardner of the Grammy-award winning group, Della Mae, brings her soulful voice and mandolin skills to the Museum on April 14, and the Punch Brother’s, Noam Pikelny will showcase his award-winning banjo prowess on April 28.

Series tickets are available for $125 each beginning Monday January 30; 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.

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 or call 270-926-7891.

Spring 2017 lineup:

  • 2/17 – The Wooks
  • 3/2 – Compton/ Newberry
  • 3/17 – High Fidelity
  • 3/23 – Danny Paisley & The Southern Grass
  • 4/14 – Jenni Lyn Gardner
  • 4/28 – Noam Pikelny

The International Bluegrass Music Museum is a 501c3 non-profit located in Owensboro, Kentucky focused on gathering, preserving, exhibiting and disseminating the artifacts, history, collection and performance art of the global history of bluegrass music through an educational experience.

Formed in 1991, the IBMM is currently constructing a new building in downtown Owensboro, KY along the Ohio River. Just three blocks west of the current location, this new facility will double the museum’s exhibit space and incorporate a 450 seat theater, an outdoor performance area, expanded research library, rooftop restaurant and much more.

Tags: International Bluegrass Music MuseumIBMMConcert SeriesNoam PikelnyDanny Paisley

The Bankesters Release “Nightbird”

Sun, 01/29/2017 - 21:44
In addition to a spirited and sultry cover of "Seven Nation Army", Nightbird also includes a cover of Collective Soul's monster 90s radio hit, "Shine" as well as two tracks written by eldest sister Melissa and songwriter Rick Lang, who also wrote the title track. The album coincides with another happy occasion for this family-first outfit: the January birth of baby Evelyne to first time parents, Emily Bankester and country singer, Mo Pitney.

Nightbird is the sixth full length recording from bluegrass darlings, The Bankesters, a family band anchored by the immediately powerful sound of sisters harmonizing and elevated by their clever song choices, a humble and approachable style, and subtle musicianship. Sisters Alysha (mandolin, fiddle), Emily (fiddle, banjo), and Melissa (bass) are further supported by some of the men in their lives: their father, Phil on guitar, and Kyle, husband to Melissa, on banjo and additional guitar.

In addition to a spirited and sultry cover of The White Stripes' “Seven Nation Army”, Nightbird also includes a cover of Collective Soul’s monster 90s radio hit, “Shine” as well as two tracks written by eldest sister Melissa and songwriter Rick Lang, who also wrote the title track. Nightbird is the follow up to their Independent Music Award winning album, Love Has Wheels, which contained their cover of “The Cups Song” featuring Sierra Hull that became a surprise hit on bluegrass radio.

Tags: The BankestersCD ReleaseNightbird

Smithsonian Folkways Rolls Out Woody Guthrie’s “Roll Columbia”

Fri, 01/27/2017 - 21:21

We’re proud to present our new release, the two-disc Roll Columbia: Woody Guthrie’s 26 Northwest Songs, which marks the latest chapter in Smithsonian Folkways’ rich history with the iconic songwriter.

Roll Columbia: Woody Guthrie’s 26 Northwest Songs is a trove of new discoveries, and a celebration of Guthrie’s genius and lasting contributions to both the history and musical traditions of the Pacific Northwest. 75 years after Woody’s stint with the Bonneville Power Administration, present-day Pacific Northwest artists influenced by this fruitful time in Guthrie’s career have gathered together to record their own interpretations. Roll Columbia is the first and only complete collection of these 26 songs, including nine that had never before been recorded.

Roll Columbia: Woody Guthrie’s 26 Northwest Songs is a trove of new discoveries, and a celebration of Guthrie’s genius and lasting contributions to both the history and musical traditions of the Pacific Northwest. In 1941, the Bonneville Power Administration commissioned Guthrie to write songs to help promote to the public the construction of dams along the Columbia River.

75 years later, present-day artists with ties to the Pacific Northwest who have been influenced by this fruitful time in Guthrie’s career have gathered together to record their own interpretations. Roll Columbia is the first and only complete collection of these 26 songs, including nine that had never before been recorded, such as “Eleckatricity and All” and “Portland Town to Klamath Falls,” as well as classic Guthrie tunes “Pastures of Plenty” and “Hard Travelin’.” 2 discs, 104 minutes, 44-page booklet.

Carl Allen, Kristin Andreassen, Peter Buck, Darrin Craig, Steve Einhorn, Chris Funk, Tony Furtado, David Grisman, Tracy Grisman, Ben Hunter, Michael Hurley, Al James, Orville Johnson, Scott McCaughey, John Moen, Cahalen Morrison, Bill Murlin and Fine Company, Jon Neufeld, Kate Power, George Rezendes, Pharis and Jason Romero, Caitlin Belem Romtvedt, David Romtvedt, Joe Seamons, Martha Scanlan, Timberbound, and Annalisa Tornfelt and the Tornfelt Sisters.

Roll Columbia: Woody Guthrie’s 26 Northwest Songs is available now here.

Tags: Woody GuthrieCD ReleaseRoll Columbia: Woody Guthrie’s 26 Northwest SongsSmithsonian Folkways

Bluegrass Legend Jesse McReynolds on Farm and Fun Time Feb. 9

Thu, 01/26/2017 - 22:00

Radio Bristol Presents: Farm & Fun Time, a live radio show at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum featuring bluegrass legend Jesse McReynolds and Asheville, NC hokum blues favorites the Fly By Night Rounders on Thursday, February 9. Hosted by Kris Truelsen and featuring musical breaks by house band Bill and the Belles, the program also features the Appalachian Sustainable Development Farm Report with Corbin Hayslett, a recipe segment, and much more!

Radio Bristol Presents: Farm & Fun Time is a revival of WCYB radio’s Farm & Fun Time show which broadcast live from a studio inside the General Shelby Hotel in downtown Bristol. In the 1940s and the 1950s, Farm & Fun Time was an important program in the history of early bluegrass music and helped to establish the careers of legendary performers including Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs, the Stanley Brothers, the Osborne Brothers, Mac Wiseman, The Sauceman Brothers, and Curly King & The Tennessee Hilltoppers.

A member of the Grand Ole Opry since 1964, Jesse McReynolds is carrying on the bluegrass tradition of Southwest Virginia that he helped shape with his late brother Jim. In the 55 years the brothers performed together they received multiple Grammy nominations and numerous honors including inductions into the Country Music Hall of Fame’s Walkway of Stars, the Virginia Country Music Hall of Fame, the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Hall of Honor, and Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Hall of Fame. They also received the National Heritage Fellowship Award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Based in Asheville, North Carolina the Fly By Night Rounders can often be found performing on street corners, busking in their 1920’s hokum blues style. Featuring magnetic percussionist Abby The Spoon Lady on bells and spoons, they are an electrifying trio of performers to witness live. Their debut album “This Ain’t Bluegrass” is an energetic and dynamic representation of their live show, but shouldn’t substitute. The kinetic energy of the Fly By Night Rounders is one best experienced in person.

Tickets to be part of the studio audience are $25 with open seating; doors open at 6:30 p.m.

Tags: Jesse McReynoldsFarm & Fun TimeBirthplace of Country Music MuseumEvent

“The Dailey & Vincent Show” Returns to RFD-TV

Wed, 01/25/2017 - 22:27

Nashville, TN -- Critically-acclaimed bluegrass duo and newly announced Grand Ole Opry inductees, Dailey & Vincent, are back on RFD-TV with season one and season two of their variety series “The Dailey & Vincent Show.” After overwhelming success and back by popular demand, “The Dailey & Vincent Show” will return Jan. 20 and continue airing on Fridays at 7:30pm ET, throughout all of 2017. Click here for RFD-TV listings.

Featuring a stacked guest artist lineup including Vince Gill, Tanya Tucker, Lee Greenwood, Jimmy Fortune (of the Statler Brothers), among others, “The Dailey & Vincent Show” provides a fresh and modern musical style to the Music Row entertainment mix. The repackaged episodes start on January 20 at 7:30pm ET.

Momentum for Dailey & Vincent continues this year with another career first - an exhibit opening celebrating their success at the world-renowned International Bluegrass Hall of Fame and Museum. “A Decade of Dailey & Vincent: An American Music Journey” features artifacts and memorabilia from the IBMA award-winners decorated career as a duo and beyond, including instruments, clothing, awards and pictures. The International Bluegrass Hall of Fame and Museum is located in Owensboro, Kentucky.

SiriusXM’s Bluegrass Junction (Ch. 62) will also rebroadcast Dailey & Vincent's 10th anniversary celebration from the International Bluegrass Hall of Fame and Museum on Saturday, January 21 at 12:00pm CT and Sunday, January 22 at 5:00pm ET. In addition to a show-stopping performance, 100 lucky fans in attendance also got the opportunity to witness a live intimate concert + Q & A with the Grammy®-nominated band.

So far, 2017 has proven to be a career-defining year for the superstar duo, who will be formally inducted as the newest members of the Grand Ole Opry on March 11. The announcement came on Dailey & Vincent’s 10th anniversary as a duo, where they originally made their debut on the Opry at the Ryman in 2007. The rest of the year includes a jam-packed tour schedule including Dailey & Vincent’s third performance at the historic Carnegie Hall, a return at the legendary Ryman Auditorium, along with their annual headlining music festival Dailey & Vincent LandFest in the Mountains presented by Springer Mountain Farms in Hiawassee, Georgia September 14-16 (tickets available HERE).

Five-time Grammy award winners individually, three-time Grammy award nominees collectively, four-time DOVE Award winners, and winners of 35 IBMA Awards altogether (including 3-time IBMA Entertainer of the Year Award winners and 3-Time Vocal Group of the Year Award winners), Jamie Dailey and Darrin Vincent, backed by one of the best bands on tour today, are some of the most reputable and elite entertainers in American music; bluegrass, traditional country and gospel music. The concoction of the fantastically instinctive vocal blends of Dailey’s tenor and Vincent’s reedy harmonies, has gained them well-deserved praise for their own distinctive style and worldwide recognition as American Music gold. Dailey & Vincent has garnered world-wide attention with their first national, top-rated television series, “The Dailey & Vincent Show,” on RFD TV and over 500 airings of their PBS special “Dailey & Vincent ALIVE - In Concert.” Their most recent CD, Dailey & Vincent ALIVE, debuted at No.1 on the Billboard Bluegrass charts and remained at the top position for over 15 weeks. For more information, visit

Rural Media Group, Inc. is the world’s leading provider of multimedia content dedicated to the rural and Western lifestyle. With a mission of reconnecting “city with country,” RMG is the parent company of RFD-TV, RURAL RADIO, FamilyNet, and RFD-TV The Magazine. RMG networks are distributed to more than 100 million homes worldwide by DBS, telco and cable systems including DISH Network, DIRECTV®, Comcast, AT&T U-Verse, Mediacom, Charter Spectrum, Suddenlink, Cox, and more than 600 independent rural cable systems. Corporate headquarters and broadcast operations are in Nashville, Tennessee.

RFD-TV is the flagship network for Rural Media Group. Launched in December 2000, RFD-TV is the nation’s first 24-hour television network featuring programming focused on the agribusiness, equine and the rural lifestyle, along with traditional country music and entertainment. RFD-TV produces six hours of live news each weekday in support of rural America and is a leading independent cable channel available in more than 50 million homes.

Tags: Dailey & Vincent ShowRFD-TV

Hillbilly Gypsies' Jamie Lynn Buckner Diagnosed with Cancer

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 22:39

Jamie Lynn Buckner of the Hillbilly Gypsies announced that she has been diagnosed with breast cancer. Since her announcement, both the band's website and her own have been receiving good wishes and prayers for her. She will under go surgery today and will know more about her situation after further tests.

The following is her announcement...

I have gone back and forth a lot over the past few months trying to decide if I should go public with some news and, after much thought, I feel it is only fair to my husband, band mates, as well as all of you to be upfront and honest in regards to my situation as it will impede my ability to tour and perform with the Gypsies for an unknown duration of time (among other things). I hate to do it, but Facebook is going to be the best way for me to get the news out there. I've been so blessed to have met and made so many wonderful friends in my thirty-eight years on this planet... What a lucky girl I am. Really.
I'll try to keep this short and sweet.
In early October of last year, Trae and I discovered a lump in my right breast. After many mammograms, x-rays, and MRIs they also discovered many calcifications scattered throughout my breast, in addition to the mass. I underwent a double biopsy at the end of that month and received a call from my doctor whilst in Spain in November stating that the calcifications had come back as precancerous and that the mass was positive for cancer.
After meeting with the surgeons, we've decided that the best and most effective treatment in my case will be to have a simple mastectomy (with a sentinel node biopsy to ensure that none of the cancer has spread to my lymph nodes) - which I will be undergoing this Wednesday, January 25th. My doctors seem very hopeful that by removing my breast completely that they'll be removing all of the cancer from my body and that I will not require any radiation or chemotherapy. This isn't a guarantee at all, mind you. I won't know exactly what I am looking at until the test results come back after my surgery. I will have to cross that bridge when I get to it.
So... that's that then. If you know me at all, then you must know that I am still smiling. I am staying my happy, positive self. I won't let this get me down. Hardships and pain give us experience, and experience helps us to grow. No one wants to get this kind of news. All we can do is face what fate throws at you and give it the best fighting spirit you can... I just feel it is so much better to try to find the good in any situation we may find ourselves in. It certainly can't hurt, right? So I'm going to keep smiling.
I promise, I will be back on stage singing and dancing and smiling again as soon as I am physically and mentally able to do so. Right now though, I need to do something I have trouble with... focus on myself for a while. And I intend to do just that. This will be an adventure, I'm certain.
Thank you all. I'll still be around. No worries

Trae and Jamie Lynhn Buckner, original founding members and lead singers for The Hillbilly Gypsies as well as husband and wife, have also performed internationally on multiple occasions. Jamie Lynn Buckner provides the lead & harmony vocals for the group. The Hillbilly Gypsies have performed three times at the Al Ras Bluegrass and Old Time Music Festival in Barcelona, Spain – headlining the festival’s ten year anniversary. In addition to Barcelona, they have performed in Prague, the Czech Republic. They have travelled to Ireland where they made several appearances and lots of new friends. 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.

Tags: Jamie Lynhn BucknerHillbilly GypsiesCancerMedical

NewTown at Kentucky Bluegrass Music Kick-Off

Mon, 01/23/2017 - 22:07

Kentucky’s own NewTown will perform numerous times during the upcoming Kentucky Bluegrass Music Kick-Off along with hosting a Bluegrass in the Schools Program and conducting workshops. The event takes place February 27 and 28 at the Marion County High School in Lebanon, KY.

On Friday, February 27, NewTown’s Bluegrass in the Schools Program will take place at 1:00 pm. Later that evening the band will perform at 9:00 pm followed by a Jam with 4-time National Banjo Player of the Year “Biscuit Davis.” On Saturday, February 28, band members Hayes Griffin and Mitchell Cannon will be hosting workshops, at 1:00 pm Travis Anderson will judge the Youth Competition, 2:00 pm Jr. Williams and Kati Penn-Williams will judge the Songwriting competition, and at 8:15 pm NewTown will perform. All events will take place on the AG Credit Music Stage.

NewTown is celebrating their critically acclaimed album, Harlan Road that also continues to receive tremendous radio support. The album was produced by multi-Grammy Award winner Barry Bales and was released on the Mountain Home Music Company label. The Lexington-based band is fronted by award-winning fiddler Kati Penn Williams and her husband, Jr. Williams, a respected banjo player – both outstanding vocalists. They are joined by Travis Anderson on bass, Mitchell Cannon on mandolin, and Hayes Griffin on guitar.

Various ticket options for the Kentucky Bluegrass Music Kick-Off are available including multi-day passes, dinner show and more choices. Ticket information can be found at

Music fans can join NewTown at,, and

Tags: NewTownBluegrass in the SchoolsEducationKentucky Bluegrass Music Kick-Off

Jonah Riddle & Carolina Express Play Carter Fold Saturday

Mon, 01/23/2017 - 22:02

Hiltons, VA -- Saturday, January 28th, 2017, at 7:30 p.m. the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia will present a concert by Jonah Riddle and Carolina Express. Carolina Express was formed by brothers Jonah and Grayson Riddle. Jonah, age 17, has been playing the banjo since the age of 4. From the first time he picked up the instrument he fell in the love and began playing in church three times a week. He enjoyed playing bluegrass and gospel so much he decided to form his own band and asked his brother Grayson to play guitar. Grayson, age 12, has been playing guitar for 3 years and loves the Jimmy Martin style of bluegrass. Their dad Benjie Riddle plays upright bass and grandad Butch rounds out the band on dobro.

Jonah and Grayson have had the privilege of picking on stage with many great artists – Doyle Lawson, Darin & Brooke Aldridge, Balsam Range, Ralph Stanley II, Nu Blue, Ricky Skaggs, J.D. Crowe, and Kody Norris – just to name a few. They have performed many concerts all across the U.S. The Ryman Auditorium Courtyard, the North Carolina State Fair in Raleigh, Woodsongs, the Lyric Theatre in Kentucky, Houstonfest, the Orchard at Altapass, the North Carolina State Bluegrass Festival, Bluegrass First Class in Asheville, North Carolina, the Earl Scruggs Center, the Pickin' Porch, and the Museum of Appalachia are just a few of the events and venues they have played.

Members of Tomorrow's Bluegrass Start, they have performed at IBMA Kids on Bluegrass in Raleigh, North Carolina. They have won several awards during the time they have been performing such as Best of Show and individual awards for playing their instruments.

Joining Carolina Express on fiddle will be Tom Isaacs. Tom is a well-known musician at the Fold and has played with many various bands including Ralph Stanley and Ralph Stanley II. He also performed through the years with a local friend, Kody Norris, and as the banjo player for Larry Efaw and Lonesome Will Mullins.

For some of the finest bluegrass music the southeast has to offer, don't miss Jonah Riddle and Carolina Express at the Fold. There will be traditional bluegrass tunes, lively fiddle tunes and instrumentals and gospel tunes. Don't forget your dancing shoes, and be sure to bring along all your family and friends.

Carter Family Memorial Music Center, Incorporated, is a nonprofit, rural arts organization established to preserve traditional, acoustic, mountain music. For further information on the center, go to our web sites http://www.carterfamilyfold.orgor Shows from the Carter Family Fold can be accessed on the internet at Partial funding for programs at the center is provided by the Virginia Commission for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. For recorded information on shows coming up at the Fold, call 276-386-6054. The Fold is on Facebook – page Carter Fold – and Twitter – Twitter @carterfoldinfo.

Tags: Jonah Riddle and Carolina ExpressCarter Family FoldConcertEvent

Joe Val, New England’s Premier Winter Roots Music Festival, Feb 17-19

Sat, 01/21/2017 - 22:06

Boston, MA -- A unique, all-encompassing experience for music lovers of all ages – set to a rollicking, first-rate soundtrack – the 32nd Joe Val Bluegrass Festival, presented by the Boston Bluegrass Union (BBU), takes place over Presidents’ Day Weekend, February 17-19, 2017, at the Sheraton Framingham Hotel, Framingham, MA. Year after year, this nationally acclaimed celebration of bluegrass music continues to win new converts while delighting seasoned fans.

The region’s top wintertime roots music festival features three days of national and regional artists on the Main Stage, the next generation of rising stars on the Showcase Stage, and an extensive lineup of educational programs including over sixty Master Classes, Workshops, instructor-led Jam Sessions, and the renowned Joe Val Bluegrass Academy for Kids. The Festival includes all this, plus instrument vendors, luthiers, and of course, picking around the clock. If you love roots music, then this is the place to be on Presidents Day Weekend.

The Main Stage features a venerable who’s who in bluegrass, led by Jerry Douglas and the Earls of Leicester, the reigning International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Entertainers of the Year. Other IBMA award winners performing include Becky Buller, Female Vocalist and Fiddle Player of the Year, Danny Paisley, Male Vocalist of the Year, and Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen, Instrumental Group of the Year. They’ll be joined by a host of great bands, as well as Bluegrass Hall of Fame member Doyle Lawson. And, that’s just a sampling of the many Main Stage artists on tap this year.

The Showcase Stage features over twenty regional favorites and up and coming bands. Closing out the festival activities on Sunday night, the Showcase Stage also hosts the Joe Val Wind-Up Hoe-Down, our wrap up dance party.

Dedicated to preserving the past and nurturing the future, the BBU continues its commitment to education with daylong Master Classes kicking off the festival on Friday. During the weekend, over sixty Workshops and Directed Jams for patrons of all ages will examine the instrumental and vocal techniques unique to bluegrass, the music’s history and culture. The BBU helps train the next generation of musicians with the Joe Val Bluegrass Academy for Kids, a free, intensive three-day program that teaches children (ages 5 - 17) how to play, sing, and perform bluegrass music. Visit the festival website for further details on the extensive education offerings, schedules and registration details at

Established in 1985, the Joe Val Bluegrass Festival celebrates the legacy of the late Joe Val, a pioneering Massachusetts-based vocalist, musician, and bandleader, whose riveting performances, recordings, and generous nature did so much to spread the popularity of bluegrass in the Northeast. From its humble beginnings as a local tribute to Joe and the regional bluegrass scene, the festival has grown to become one of the most celebrated bluegrass events in the country. In 2006, the Joe Val Bluegrass Festival won the prestigious Event of the Year award from the IBMA. And in 2012, the festival was listed by USA TODAY as one of the Ten Great Places to Go to Bluegrass Festivals.

The Boston Bluegrass Union is a 501(c)3 non-profit, all volunteer organization, dedicated to preserving and promoting this original American music genre. Celebrating our 40th season, the BBU is the premier source for events, education, and information on bluegrass music in the Northeast. And, in 2016, the BBU received the prestigious Distinguished Achievement Award from the IBMA in recognition of its education mission and bluegrass performance events.

The Sheraton Framingham is located just 18 miles west of Boston, directly adjacent to the Mass Pike (Rt. 90, Exit 12) and Rt. 9. At this time, all hotel rooms are sold out at the Sheraton, but rooms are available nearby at the Marriott Residence Inn (508-370-0001), the Double Tree Hilton (800-222-Tree) and the Natick Courtyard Marriott (508-655-6100). Weekend and single day tickets are now on sale. We strongly encourage early weekend ticket purchases. The festival has sold out in past years.

Tags: Joe Val Bluegrass FestivalBoston Bluegrass UnionBecky BullerEarls of LeicesterDanny PaisleyFrank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen

Nu-Blu Releasing "Still Small Voice" on Voxhall Records

Fri, 01/20/2017 - 22:02

Nashville, TN -- The wait is over for Nu-Blu's new single, "Still Small Voice," Available now on iTunes, Amazon and Spotify. The upbeat track serves as the first single for the band's sixth studio project, slated for release this spring. Country Music Hall of Famer and Gospel Music Hall of Famer Jimmy Fortune is also featured on "Still Small Voice." Nu-Blu is also pleased to announce that they will be teaming up with Voxhall Records after recently inking a deal for highly-anticipated project.

"When we first heard this song, it instantly spoke to us. That still small voice can be that fleeting thought just before you speak, that internal angst that you battle within yourself over the most important or simple choice," said Nu-Blu's Carolyn Routh. "Be it a thought from you own soul, or from a higher power, that voice is always the one that gives you 20/20 hindsight while illuminating your path forward at the same time, if we listen to it. So next time don't suppress that thought, instead let that still small voice scream!"

The upcoming project marks Nu-Blu's first album launch since their 2014 project, All The Way. The first offering from the project, "Still Small Voice," is a lively bluegrass track featuring Nu-Blu's powerhouse vocalist Carolyn Routh and Country Music Hall of Fame singer Jimmy Fortune singing together on the inspirational song. A third harmonizing vocalist includes Ben Isaacs of the popular Gospel group The Isaacs. The track was written by Fortune, along with Devin Belle and Tony Lopacinski.

"Every now and then a group will come along and capture the attention of your heart and soul with the uniqueness of the music. I was so honored to have them record a song I co-wrote with two friends, Devin Bell and Tony Lopacinski. 'Still Small Voice' was a proud work of ours and I must say the song found it's voice and Nu-Blu recorded it."
  ~ Jimmy Fortune

Nu-Blu On Tour:

  • Jan. 20-22 - Anaheim, Calif. - NAMM
  • Jan. 28 - Santa Clarita, Calif. - House Concert
  • Feb. 3 - Victorville, Calif. - Bluegrass in the Schools Fundraiser - West Palms Conservatory
  • Feb. 4 - Los Angeles, Calif. - Metal Shop Concert Series
  • Feb. 12 - Julian, Calif. - Julian Station
  • Feb. 16 - Cottonwood, Calif. - Evergreen School Fundraiser- Evergreen Elementary School
  • Feb. 18 - Sutter Creek, Calif. - Sutter Creek Theater
  • Feb. 24 - Albuquerque, N.M. - Southwest Pickers Concert Series
  • Mar. 3 - Valdese, N.C. - Bluegrass At The Rock - Old Rock School

Nu-Blu, based in Siler City in central North Carolina, is comprised of Carolyn Routh, who handles bass and vocals; Clint White, on mandolin and fiddle; T.G. Honaker on banjo & vocals and Daniel Routh, who is the band's Renaissance Man - guitarist, singer, manager, and tour coordinator, among many other roles. The group brings its lively and entertaining version of Americana-bluegrass music to audiences across the nation year-round. Their sound acknowledges the traditional institutions that have shaped it, yet is innovative and daring enough to bring a fresh sparkle to contemporary acoustic music that lands them squarely in the forefront of bands blazing the trail in acoustic entertainment. Influences range from the sounds of original bluegrass pioneers like Earl Scruggs, Jimmy Martin and Lester Flatt to rock bands of the 1980's, and modern contemporary sounds such as Alison Krauss and Union Station. Carolyn's soprano vocal approach might be described as similar to Ms. Krauss, except she carries a phrasing and emotional elegance that shows a clear originality. Daniel and T.J. provide inventive singing to fill out the vocal sound, while all four members present instrumental prowess to impress.

Tags: Nu-BluSingleStill Small VoiceVoxhall Recordds

Larry Cordle and Collective Evolution Strike Consulting Deal

Thu, 01/19/2017 - 22:10

Nashville, TN -- AirPlay Direct's Collective Evolution is pleased to announce the signing of a long-term, strategic, career consulting deal with award winning artist and songwriter Larry Cordle. Larry's personal releases and catalogue are amazing, and are continuing to reach new global audiences every day. This has appropriately positioned him in the "Top 50 All-Time" of several AirPlay Direct Global Radio Indicator Charts for his recordings.

"Larry's award winning, chart-topping songwriting successes and 'true to life' live performances have put him in a very elite class of artists. His 'forward thinking' dedication to his domestic and global radio station supporters, and artist fan-base via AirPlay Direct has been very successfully demonstrated over the years by his position in the APD 'All-Time' Charts," states Robert Weingartz, Chairman - AirPlay Direct / Collective Evolution. "I am in a creative business sense inspired, but more importantly driven to be working with Larry. An artist at this level of self-relevance in 2017, and a desire to really share his art is rare. At this point in his career, Larry just tells it how it is... like it or not. For me, it is truly an honor to be able to work with one of my heroes!"

At last count, Cordle's songs had appeared on projects that had to date sold a combined total of more than 55 million records, by artists such as Skaggs, Alison Krauss, Rhonda Vincent, Garth Brooks, George Strait, Trisha Yearwood, Reba McEntire, Diamond Rio, Alan Jackson, Trace Adkins and many others.

"I am so happy to be working in concert with Robert & Lynda Weingartz at AirPlay Direct and Collective Evolution in this new chapter of my career," says Larry Cordle. "When it comes to global branding, marketing and distribution, Robert has created a company, that is the "Cadillac" of the music business, and Lynda is the straw that stirs the drink."

Tags: Larry CordleCollective EvolutionAirPlay DirectBusiness

10th Annual Delfest Initial Lineup Announced

Wed, 01/18/2017 - 20:24

Trey Anastasio Band, Gov’t Mule, Bela Fleck, Leftover Salmon, Hot Rize, and The Infamous Stringdusters are just a few of the fantastic acts coming to the family reunion in Cumberland for the 10th Annual DelFest. Teen, Kids, On-site RV, Dry RV, Vehicle, and DELuxe packages went on sale Tuesday, January 10th so hurry while they're still available. This 10th Anniversary event takes place May 25-28 in Cumberland, Marylannd.

The Del McCoury Band and The Travelin' McCourys will be be there and the event will feature Dierks Bendly as their special guest. Other start performances will include Trey Anastasio Band, Gov't Mule, Bela Fleck & Chris Thile, Sierra Hull, Jeff Austin Band, Cabinet, Leftover Salmon, Hot Rize, The Infamous Stringdusters, Steep Canyon Rangers, Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives, Donna the Buffalo, Fruition, Sara Watkins, Noam Pikelny, Billy Strings, Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice, Joe Craven & The Sometimers and even more.

DelFest is held at the beautiful Allegany County Fairgrounds in Cumberland, MD (2.5 hrs from Baltimore and DC). The festival originated from the desire to create a family-friendly music festival celebrating the rich legacy of McCoury Music while creating a forum for world-class musical collaborations and to showcase fresh new talent with a down-home feeling. The 10th Annual DelFest will again offer a quality festival experience stamped with the unique McCoury touch. Personally chosen by Del, the Allegany County Fairgrounds in Cumberland, MD served as the perfect location for DelFest–nestled along the Potomac River in the scenic Appalachian Mountains, the Fairgrounds are convenient to four major airports and easily reached by rail or road. The city of Cumberland is also a great host offering multiple hotel options, a charming downtown and great amenities including biking, a steam train engine and museum, and some top notch dining.

In addition to traditional stage sets by world-class artists, attendees can again expect to see one-of-a-kind collaborations, special guest sit-ins, various tributes to Del McCoury and his musical legacy, intimate appearances, both at unique “playshops”—informal workshops where the emphasis will be on performance rather than instruction—and in late night indoor performances and picking sessions.

DelFest Academy takes place the Sunday through Wednesday prior to the festival. The Academy is a friendly, encouraging, and intensive four-day learning experience with some of the finest musicians in bluegrass serving as instructors for students of all levels. The Academy currently offers instruction for guitar, banjo, fiddle, mandolin, and bass. The all-star instructors provide lessons to students which target their individual needs and leave ample time for plenty of one-on-one interaction.

Please visit for ticketing, updates, academy applications and other information.

Tags: DelFestDelFest AcademyMusic FestivalDel McCoury BandThe Travelin' McCourys

Paul Brown’s “Across The Blue Ridge” to Air on Radio Bristol

Wed, 01/18/2017 - 20:20

Bristol, VA/TN -- Beginning February 1, 2017, Radio Bristol will air "Across the Blue Ridge," a revival of the popular show first created by former National Public Radio (NPR) newscaster Paul Brown in the late 1980s and through the 1990s. "Radio Bristol is thrilled to add Paul Brown's program 'Across the Blue Ridge' to our Wednesday afternoon lineup," said Radio Bristol Producer Kris Truelsen. "Promoting and celebrating our region's culture and music is core to the mission of Radio Bristol, and 'Across the Blue Ridge' embodies that very idea. Paul Brown's expertise as both a musician and historian will offer a welcome perspective into the music we love and support here at Radio Bristol. We envision a long running partnership with Paul and look forward to carrying the program."

"Across the Blue Ridge" is an entertaining exploration of the music traditions of the southern Blue Ridge, the center of the universe for old-time and traditional American music. For decades Brown spent time searching out and making field recordings in order to preserve this music for future generations.

O. Henry Magazine's Ogi Overman writes: "Brown's strong suit is listening to and explaining music through the prism of culture, socio-economics and geography so that others appreciate its rich history."

The "Across the Blue Ridge" of today not only focuses on the past, but it also highlights the traditional music of today and its future. The show returned to the airwaves on January 2, 2016.

Brown originated "Across the Blue Ridge" in the late 1980s on Wake Forest University public radio station WFDD (88.5 FM) in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The show's final broadcast was in 1999, prior to Brown's move to NPR where he was an executive editor, producer, and reporter. Brown left NPR in 2013 and returned to North Carolina. The well-known personality from NPR's "Morning Edition" and "Talk of the Nation" is also an accomplished musician; Brown is an award-winning banjoist, vocalist, fiddle player, and storyteller.

The show will air weekly on Radio Bristol's WBCM-LP channel on Wednesday afternoons at 1:00 p.m. and rebroadcast on Saturdays at 3:00 p.m. Radio Bristol can be accessed in the Bristol area on 100.1 FM and nationally and internationally online and through a free mobile app. To listen to Radio Bristol online or to receive more information, visit

Paul Brown learned his first songs and tunes as a kid from his mother, who carried them from her own childhood days in Virginia. As much as he loves to play and sing, Paul has also produced numerous recordings from his own fieldwork and other sources, and reported on the lives of significant traditional musicians while working at NPR in Washington. Paul started his radio career at WPAQ in Mount Airy, North Carolina. He created "Across the Blue Ridge" at WFDD Public Radio in Winston-Salem in the late 1980s. He spent years learning from and playing with master fiddlers, banjoists, and singers including Benton Flippen, Paul Sutphin, Luther Davis, Robert Sykes, Matokie Slaughter, and Tommy and Benny Jarrell. He has won the banjo prize several times at the Appalachian String Band Music Festival, where he?s also won the senior fiddle prize and was named a master artist in 2013. Over the years he has played with Benton Flippen in the Smokey Valley Boys; with fiddler Robert Sykes in the Surry County Boys; with his wife Terri McMurray as the Mountain Birch Duo; and with Verlen Clifton, Frank Bode, Ginger Bode, and Terri McMurray in the Toast String Stretchers. Paul is now a retired NPR world news journalist, once again producing "Across the Blue Ridge" in collaboration with WFDD Public Radio. The show is available worldwide online and airs on radio stations in North Carolina, Kentucky, West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, and Florida.

Presented by the nonprofit Birthplace of Country Music, Radio Bristol is a network of channels that showcase the diversity of American roots music from the early recording era to today. Reaching the world through their online media center, Radio Bristol produces original programming through recordings and live sessions from the Birthplace of Country Music Museum and the Bristol, Virginia/Tennessee region. Radio Bristol broadcasts on 100.1 FM in the Bristol area, online at, and through the station's free mobile app. The Birthplace of Country Music is the parent organization of the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, the annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, and Radio Bristol. For more information about the organization and its programming, visit

Tags: Paul BrownAcross the Blue RidgeWBCM Radio Bristol

High Test Grass Pickin' at Carter Family Fold Saturday

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 21:50

Hiltons, VA -- Saturday, January 21st, 2017, at 7:30 p.m., the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, will present a concert of bluegrass music by High Test Grass. Admission to the concert is $10 for adults, $2 for children 6 to 11, under age 6 free.

Formed in the summer of 2015, High Test Grass is a band that prides itself on delivering a high-octane bluegrass sound. The band draws heavily on material from both first and second generation classic bluegrass bands and mixes in a measure of contemporary bluegrass material.

Eric McMurray is featured on the mandolin and fiddle. Mitch Bentley plays the upright bass. They met each other at the 2015 Galax Old Time Fiddlers’ Convention when both were asked to be members of a competing bluegrass band. Shortly after, Mitch contacted Eric to fill in for a few shows with a band he and Jeff Osborne were in together at the time for which Jeff was playing guitar. Eric knew Jeff through the local bluegrass community.

Eric, Mitch, and Jeff quickly recognized the vocal harmony stacking potential of the trio, so they began attending local jam sessions and scheduling practice sessions. When the three of them were ready to make the band official, Jeff recommended Kris Rasnake to play banjo, and Kris accepted the invitation. Eric is well-known to Fold audiences. A versatile and accomplished musician, he can pretty much play anything he picks up.

If you love bluegrass music, High Test Grass is a group you won’t want to miss. Solid and strong instrumentally, the group will also deliver with their tight and beautiful harmony. Check them out on the web. For further information, go to For an evening of great bluegrass music, join us at the Fold for their special concert.

Tags: High Test GrassCarter Family FoldConcertEvent

IBMA Showcase Application Opens Tuesday

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 21:46

Nashville, TN -- The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) has announced that applications are now open for bluegrass and bluegrass-related artists to apply to be an Official Showcase Selection performer at the IBMA's annual Bluegrass Ramble during World of Bluegrass week. The 2017 Bluegrass Ramble will take place September 26 - 28, once again in beautiful downtown Raleigh, NC during IBMA's World of Bluegrass. All emerging bands plus established bands with new music or new personnel are encouraged to apply. The application process opens today, Tuesday, January 17th at 10 AM Central.

Official showcase performances at the IBMA's annual Bluegrass Ramble during World of Bluegrass week form the premier platform for introducing talent to the bluegrass community. All emerging bluegrass bands, as well as established bands with new music or new personnel, are encouraged to apply. Each showcase band will perform at least twice during World of Bluegrass Week—once on a convention center stage and once on a local Bluegrass Ramble venue.

Once selected, each showcase band will perform at least twice during World of Bluegrass Week—once on a convention center stage and once at a local Bluegrass Ramble venue. In addition to the two performance opportunities, the IBMA showcase package includes:

  • Full conference registration package for performing members of group (value $1000+)
  • Complimentary booth space during business conference (value $600+)
  • One organizational membership for group (value $205)
  • Featured profile in conference program and on the WOB smart phone app
  • Inclusion of one mp3 on the 2017 IBMA Bluegrass Ramble Mixtape via Noisetrade. (Download mixtapes from prior years for free.)
  • Inclusion in the Bluegrass Ramble Spotify playlist, promoted on social media by IBMA
  • Priority access to “Gig Fair” appointments
  • Scheduled consultation in advance of events on maximizing showcase opportunities
Application Process

Showcase applications can be made online.* Applicant does not have to be an IBMA member. In addition to general application information, the following materials will be needed to complete the application:

  • Name, email, and role (i.e. banjo, fiddle) of each member of the applying act
  • One studio recording (mp3 format only)
  • One Hi-Res artist photo
  • An artist bio with artist location, names/roles of band members (if known at time of application), description of the artist's sound, and note of any recently released recordings
  • A stage plot (PDF or JPEG) indicating locations of instruments, instrument mics, vocal mics, and any other equipment (i.e. amp, pre-amp)

Up to 30 showcase artists will be invited in 2017, depending on the number of applicants and the qualifications of groups that apply. IBMA showcase artists are chosen in a juried selection process that takes into consideration every applicant’s entertainment value, level of professionalism, potential appeal and quality of work. There are generally more than 150 acts who apply every year.

Official IBMA showcase acts from the 2016 Bluegrass Ramble are NOT eligible for 2017. Official acts from 2015 are eligible. HOWEVER, preference is typically given to acts who have not been selected as an Official IBMA Showcase Act within two years.

Application Deadlines & Fees

Online application for IBMA showcases must be submitted by February 28, 2017. All applicants are required to submit a $25 fee to defray selection process costs. If invited to participate as an official showcase artist, there is an additional fee of $500 to offset costs of services and showcase production. Apply through

For the latest news and content, follow the IBMA conversation on social: Facebook: Twitter: @intlbluegrass

Tags: IBMAInternational Bluegrass Music AssociationShowcaseBluegrass RambleWorld of Bluegrass