Glenville State bluegrass at SPBGMA 2020

Glenville State students, faculty, family, and friends at The Grand Ole Opry in Nashville 

As we mentioned last week, program director of bluegrass at Glenville State College, Megan Darby, took a group of students, alumni, and friends with her to SPBGMA last weekend, and recorded a number of impressions of their time in Nashville. The students in the program, which leads to a Bachelor of Arts degree in bluegrass, got to attend the Grand Ole Opry, enjoy jamming at the Sheraton Music City hotel where all the action is, and were even invited to showcase their talents at one of the late night events.

Here are a few of her comments, along with photos and videos.

Our folks had a free schedule most of Friday to attend showcases, network, and more. We really were so grateful that the President of the GSC Board of Governors Greg Smith and Shelly Morris flew in to support the program, and treated our participants, students and recruits with great food!

Family friends Larry (Pokey) Chunn and his wife, Cheryl, are members of the Opry Square Dancers, and always greet our program. They again gave a nice shout out at the Opry

A real treat afterwards was to come back to the lobby and jam with stars like Wayne Lewis until 2:00 a.m.

Although bluegrass music is our main focus, part of the curriculum is to specifically preserve traditional bluegrass music, from roughly 1945-’65. We try to impart the culture of that era as well, especially as regards West Virginia.

Part of my teaching philosophy is that you have to take these students where the music and traditions are, and the SPBGMA visits are a big part of that.

Then, thanks to C.J. Lewandowski, we were invited to perform on the Vine Grove Bluegrass Festival showcase. Students and recruits involved included Isaac Putnam, Nick Blake, Lincoln mash, Silas Powell, Jake Stover, and Sammy Murphy.

Here’s some video of them on stage.

Megan has promised a few more reports from the students who came on the trip with their personal experiences from SPBGMA 2020. Look for those in the days to come.