UPDATE 12/2/2006: Turns out the “new band” will be called Grasstowne after all.
I had a chance to speak with Alan Bibey yesterday about his decision to leave BlueRidge and embark on the
Grasstowne “new band” adventure with Steve Gulley and Phil Leadbetter which Brance just detailed. Alan had been agonizing over this for several days, and expressed a range of thoughts and emotions about the change.
On the one hand, leaving something he had help start (with Terry Baucom) in BlueRidge was an odd feeling, Alan had been more than just a founding member, as he was deeply involved in all their business arrangements and musical direction as well. Of course, he had also become very close with the members of the band over the years.
“It has been a great experience these last ten years with Blueridge. I want to thank all the musicians and life long friends that I’ve had the opportunity to play with during this time. I wish them all the best!”
Alan said that he isn’t sure yet what the guys in BlueRidge will do, but suggested that folks keep an eye on the band’s website for more announcements as they settle on a plan.
Most of our conversation, however, centered on how much he was looking forward to working with the new group, tentatively described on their MySpace page as Gulley/Ledbetter/Bibey.
“I’m very excited about this new and exciting adventure with Steve and Phil, two extraordinary musicians and people. I have been fortunate to have been friends with these two gentlemen for quite sometime, and have respected their work for many years.
I especially admire their dedication to the professional side of the business, and think that the three of us can go further together than we might on our own.”
Alan said that they are already in discussions with a major bluegrass label, and hope to start recording soon. We’ll update with more details as we learn them.
UPDATE 9:55: We just heard that the new band will not be called Grasstowne, as they had initially planned. Not sure yet what the name will be. We have edited the text/headlines of a couple of this morning’s post to reflect this change.