FestivaLink, the online purveyor of live show downloads, has released a special package of sets from Merlefest 2010, with a portion of the sales proceeds going to benefit the Bluegrass Trust Fund.
The fund is administered by the International Bluegrass Music Association, and exists to provide emergency assistance to bluegrass artists and industry professionals in need. The proximate need that inspired this benefit set was the severe flooding that submerged much of Nashville in May – just as Merlefest was occurring in North Carolina.
All of the artists whose music is offered in this FestivaLink package have agreed to donate their royalties to the trust fund. This includes Sam Bush, Doc Watson, Steve Martin with Steep Canyon Rangers, and The Kruger Brothers on the Roots volume. Two other volumes, Rocks and Folks, cover those aspects of Merlefest’s diverse entertainment.
These live shows, professionally mixed and mastered, can be purchased as downloads (MP3 or FLAC), or as audio CDs. Downloads include CD face art and booklets for printing.
You can see the complete tracklist – and listen to audio samples – on the FestivaLink site.
The Bluegrass Trust Fund is a fine effort, and I am aware of Nashville-based bluegrass artists who have been assisted by the fund in rehabilitating flood damaged property from this spring. These funds are dispersed anonymously, and to recipients based on need.
This Merlefest package looks like a great way to live (or relive) the festival experience, and contribute to a very worthy cause in one fell swoop.