Last chance for Song Of The Mountains?

We have written in the past about the fundraising difficulties experienced by Song Of The Mountains, the popular live performance bluegrass show broadcast on dozens of PBS television affiliates across the US. The show is a hit with fans of bluegrass, old time and Americana music, and also with programmers who value offering this tradition-based art form to their viewers.

But with the current economic downturn, much of the financial support the show had been receiving from corporate underwriting has diminished, if not completely dried up.

Host Tim White has spent much of the past six months seeking alternative funding for the weekly program, and has turned to the show’s loyal viewers to keep it on the air. He is currently circulating this open letter, invoking a dire circumstance absent some immediate donations.

Bluegrass & Americana Music Friends,

We are still struggling tremendously to keep Song of the Mountains funded and on the air on public television. I am disappointed in the response to our pleas presented to our fan base up to this point for help with donations. Everywhere I go people tell me how much they look forward to seeing SOTM on television each week. When I tell them we need financial support and even a small donation will add up to help if enough fans in bluegrass and old time music will step up and help us then this would be our salvation to our funding problems.

Our potential reach across America in 146 million people per year. We have a quality bluegrass and Americana program that serves our fan base like no other….ever. I know our bluegrass fans and family love our show, but if they continue to sit on their hands and do nothing, we have no choice but to end production.

I have made phone calls, produced a video which is at our Facebook page and Song of the Mountains website homepage and put our pleas for donations on my radio shows but our bluegrass family and friends are not responding very much. I don’t want them to sit idly by and let this show “pass away” and then realize they could have made a difference (after it is too late).

I love our music…we have a fantastic television show that showcases our beloved music like it should be presented. I spend endless hours every week working to make it better.

I know that our bluegrass and Americana fans truly enjoy Song of the Mountains but I do not know how to stress our sense of urgency to you. Without funding our show will end, and end soon. We receive no money from PBS. We depend entirely on generous support from our fans and underwriters. In this economy corporate dollars are not there for underwriting like it was just a few years ago so we must turn to our fans and supporters of our music.

With that said…IT IS NOT TOO LATE! But people must react now. I hope you will.

Thanks so much for your concern and willingness to help.

If you have any ideas or ways to get word out for us it will be most appreciated. We must act now. Please don’t wait! Pass this along to all of your bluegrass, old time music and Americana fans.

Donations can be sent to:

Song of the Mountains
117 East Main Street
Marion, Virginia 24354

Donations are easily accepted at our website. On our homepage look at the upper right-hand corner for the “Free Gift” banner.


Tim White
Executive Coordinator & Host
Song of the Mountains

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.