At last year’s World of Bluegrass, the unofficial theme of inclusion and diversity, which provided performance and presentation opportunities for a number of women, people of color, and members of the LGBTQ community, among other minorities in the traditional and roots music world, got lots of people thinking about how to make bluegrass music more welcoming and accessible to those other than its typical audience. In an effort to do just that, the California Bluegrass Association has announced its plans to participate in this year’s San Francisco Pride Parade on Sunday, June 25.
According to a GoFundMe page set up by the organization (www.gofundme.com/BluegrassPride), the CBA hopes to have a float in the parade featuring several live bands, as well as bluegrass musicians and fans marching alongside. They hope “to spread the gospel of bluegrass and celebrate our community’s commitment to diversity and inclusivity” while also having a good time jamming and listening to bluegrass.
Their fundraising goal is $10,000, which will help cover the costs of creating a float (rental of a truck, trailer, and sound system) and printing banners, t-shirts, stickers, flyers, and other promotional items. If they exceed their goal, they will be able to rent a larger trailer and more powerful sound system. The San Francisco Pride Parade attracts quite a crowd – close to 100,000 spectators watched 30 floats and over 30,000 marchers last year – so the louder, the better!
The CBA asks that musicians and fans who would like to march sign up via this Google form, as a way of keeping track of and communicating with participants. They invite everyone, regardless of gender, orientation, or musical ability, to participate. Those who would like to donate can do so through the GoFundMe page. All donations are tax-deductible.
More information, as well as the link to sign up to march, can be found on the Bluegrass Pride Facebook page.