Prague Post: Pickin’ and grinnin’

Monogram on stage at IBMAThe Prague Post ran an article yesterday about the popularity of bluegrass music on the European Continent.

The hook for the piece is a show taking place in Prague tomorrow featuring Czech band Monogram. It’s a well written article discussing the European interest in a distinctly American music style.

Filtering the spirit of the times through the use of acoustic instruments enabled bluegrass to travel from its Southern birthplace to anywhere a guitar, mandolin, banjo and bass (or, in a pinch, a washtub) could be found.

I think Darrell J??nsson, the author, hit on something of importance there. If bluegrass is to stay healthy, we must not abandon our traditional roots, but we must seek to filter “the spirit of the times through the use of acoustic instruments.”

Monogram guitarist Jakub Racek is quoted extensively in the article. If you’re an American traveling abroad and would like to experience the European bluegrass scene. Here’s a bit of good news.

“In every European country there are fans running similar bluegrass festivals, and everywhere it’s more of an extended family."

"In concert, we generally do more songs in English than in Czech," he continues.

Be sure to look up a show if you’re traveling and enjoy a bit of home away from home, and meet some extended family members.

While none of these artists can claim ancestry in Kentucky or the Carolinas, they do have something in common with their American counterparts. As Racek says, "The roots are the same when the music comes from the heart."

Here’s the blog SauerkrautCowboys mentioned in the article.