Sierra Hull on Blue Plate Special

Sierra Hull - photo by Flickr user armadilo60Young mandolin prodigy Sierra Hull has started classes at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, but is still touring with her band, Highway 111. She is adapting to having to fly to make the dates, but mixing school work and band work is something she has been doing for the past two years.

They have a show tonight near the Tennessee/Kentucky border, and will be stopping off at The Square Room in Knoxville at noon for a live broadcast on WDVX’s Blue Plate Special. You can listen over the air at 102.9, or via live streaming from

Sierra also shared a few words about her move to Boston and studying at Berklee.

“So far, Boston has been treating me great! I just had my first week of classes at Berklee and really enjoyed them. I’m starting to know my way around pretty well now and have met so many really talented musicians already. It’s really neat to be in an environment that is totally merged in music, and I really feel like I’m going to learn a lot there. The faculty and staff have been so good to me, and I really feel supported here in regards to keeping a busy tour schedule, which makes me very happy!

I’ve been up there for almost two weeks now, and this is my second weekend out gigging since being there. Last weekend we were in North Carolina and New Jersey. One thing I quickly realized is that I shouldn’t be afraid of being exposed to so many different types of music. Part of me sometimes worries that being around so many things can really have an effect on what you think you love or what your dreams truly are. It was a cool experience for me to leave Berklee after being there for a week surrounded by so many diverse styles of music and go to a bluegrass festival. Upon pulling unto the festival grounds and hearing a band on stage in the background it was like I became so excited and just full of contentment. It was nice to get that special feeling of… this is what I love and who I am, and I’m happy to be that.

We are in Tennessee this weekend, which is wonderful. That’s the fun thing about being able to still tour some… I’m lucky enough to be home more often. We will be playing in Knoxville early on Friday for WDVX’s Blue Plate Special. Then we’ll be at the Wings Over Big South Fork air show in Oneida, TN later that night, and then Saturday brings us to my hometown – Byrdstown, TN – for the Sierra Hull Festival that they put on every year. It’ll be great to go home and see all my friends and family!! It’s been a busy summer, so I’m looking forward to that.”

Del Rey and Will Hoge will also appear on today’s Blue Plate Special.

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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.