Saturday evening, after Josh closed out the show and the sound crew had already shut down the audio system, the crowd was insistent on hearing some more music – so Josh and his fine band strode to the front edge of the stage and delivered a flawless presentation of the Jimmy Martin classic, Mary Ann.
That’s Nick Keen on mandolin, Randy Barnes on bass and Jason McKendree on banjo. Well done, boys!
John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.
Last week in this space I discussed various counterintuitive business ideas, both good and bad, from giving music away, to touring exclusively in northern climates in the winter. The subject generated both interesting comments and some spirited emails and social media response. Yes, there was […]
Despite the textual paradox, 15 year old Victor Furtado is indeed a master of old time, or clawhammer banjo. He has the various trophies from instrumental competitions within reach of his northern Virginia home to prove it. And if you may infer that contests don’t always […]
I have to declare upfront that I had a peek at an early draft of this book. Also, over the years (from about 1981), I have watched Reid gather together the building materials that have gone towards the writing of The Music of the Stanley Brothers. […]
Blue Mafia really caught my attention with their 2013 debut CD, My Cold Heart. It boasted of three strong lead singers, and a powerful new songwriting voice, plus the sort of dynamic guitar playing that sets the tracks on fire. Over the past two years, the […]
In debates surrounding regional chauvinism in the roots of bluegrass music, New York’s Gibson Brothers are often posited as modern exemplars of a sound that isn’t dominated by cultural and musical conventions of the American south. It’s true that their music is based on a brother […]
Larry Sparks is noted for his unique soulful, bluesy style of bluegrass that from a distance appears to be effortless. But clearly, there is no doubt that he works hard to keep his audience entertained. His voice and guitar could not be better matched, bluesy […]
Church in the Wildwood isn’t a recently written song. It was actually composed in 1857 by a young music teacher named William S Pitts as a result of a June visit to Bradford, Iowa. Pitts was on a stagecoach ride that stopped at the town. […]
Blue Highway’s Wayne Taylor started playing guitar when he was 13. Due to some health problems he spent a couple years in a wheelchair. Taylor had a cousin who played and he showed him a couple chords and he took it from there. After recovering […]
This year, I promise not to fire my bandmate, Pete. Don’t laugh. Okay, laugh. Every couple of years I terminate him. It’s because we are such good friends, know each other inside-out, and love each other like the closest of siblings – and when we […]
It’s hard to keep a good man down in bluegrass music (although we all do like to be lonesome now and then), and radio broadcaster Larry Roberts is a prime example of that. Roberts has been a DJ for almost thirty years, and for the […]
Bluegrass is sometimes viewed as music for old fogies. The emphasis on tradition, the lack of electric instruments, the sheer lonesomeness of it all – it’s not Katy Perry or Justin Beiber, that’s for sure. In the past several years, however, it seems like more […]
When we think of “radio voices,” smooth, rich, polished tones come to mind – think Casey Kasem. Broadcaster Jim Fisher was a little surprised when, years ago, someone told him that his voice was well-suited for the radio. As he tells it, he was emceeing […]