• From Song Circle to Carnegie Hall

    One of the best parts about IBMA’s World of Bluegrass conference is you never know who you’ll meet around the next corner, or who will show up playing in a throw-together band. Two years ago, I dropped by an after-hours showcase

  • Slidin’ around at IBMA

    This evening, World of Bluegrass featured a special event for slide players, billed as a Slidegrass Extravaganza. David Morris happened upon Chad Graves from The Hillbenders warming up before the show.  

  • A Tag-Team Call for Diversity

    Get over it, already. Missy Raines and Chris Jones didn’t say it quite so bluntly, but that was the underlying message of their keynote address to kick off IBMA’s World of Bluegrass Conference Monday in Nashville. Using humor, a bit of self-deprecation

  • A New Frontier for Missy Raines

    There’s a lot going on in Missy Raines’ life these days. She’s in the studio with her band, The New Hip, working on a new album called New Frontier. Plus, she’s in the middle of a Kickstarter campaign to help pay

  • Leave the Bottle – Town Mountain

    I’m not sure what the definition of bluegrass would be in words alone, but if that definition was set to music, it would probably sound something like Town Mountain’s new Pinecastle Records release, Leave the Bottle. The dozen songs here are

  • Pure & Simple From Robert Hale

    My friend Stacy Grubb, a West Virginia singer-songwriter, sometimes muses that her music is too bluegrass for country and too country for bluegrass. That’s a perfect description for Pure & Simple, the first solo release from Robert Hale, the former

  • A New Boss with Big Plans

    Registration numbers for IBMA’s final World of Bluegrass week in Nashville are down slightly from last year, but Executive Director Nancy Cardwell is pulling out all the stops to try to finish on a high note before next year’s move

  • Catching up with Ben Eldridge

    When Ben Eldridge and his bandmates in the Seldom Scene followed J.D. Crowe and The New South to the stage at the Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival on Saturday, fans got to hear more than 100 years of five-string banjo experience back

  • Crowe Ready to Roost

    With about a half dozen shows left before he retires, one of the best banjo players to ever slide on the finger picks is too busy looking forward to look back on his bluegrass career. “I’m going to play golf. I’m

  • Ricky Skaggs makes Music to My Ears

    Ricky Skaggs has long resided at the crossroads of traditional and experimental, from picking with Bill Monroe at the age of 6 and Flatt & Scruggs one year later, to his recent work with rock keyboard whiz Bruce Hornsby and