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The Warren G. Hardings Get a Life!

Warren G. HardingsOut in the Pacific Northwest they brew their bluegrass a little differently! Sure, the mandolin, fiddle, and banjo are all there, but they’re not afraid to toss in influences from raggedy pop songwriting to punk instrumental aggression. High-energy Seattle stringband The Warren G. Hardings pour a long tall pint of this Cascadian brewgrass on their new album, Get A Life. Inspired by the greats of American roots music, they’re all hardcore pickers on their instruments, casually tossing solos back and forth on stage. Though the music they create has obvious nods to a rural American past, the songwriting here owes more to the fierce politics of the Northwest than any kind of old-timey nostalgia. Or maybe more to the helter-skelter lifestyle of young men trying to make their names in an overloaded city, for many of the songs here speak to the stresses of building a life and a job on your own.

Bristol's Border Bash Artist Lineup Announced

Bristol Border BashBristol, VA/TN -- At Wednesday’s press conference, Believe in Bristol, alongside community partners Birthplace of Country Music®, revealed plans for a summer packed with free live music and family fun on State Street and beyond. Border Bash, the twice-monthly free concert series held annually May through August, celebrates its 15th anniversary as a roving mini-fest that has grown to include children’s activities and vendors in addition to live music and much more. Border Bash will take place on the first and third Fridays, May through August.

Berklee Hosts its First American Roots Weekend June 20-22

Berklee American Roots WeekendBoston, MA, April 16, 2014. Berklee College of Music hosts its first American Roots Weekend, June 20-22, for acoustic musicians who perform bluegrass, blues, folk, country, acoustic jazz, and swing on instruments such as violin, viola, cello, bass, mandolin, guitar, and harp. Berklee string instructor Joe Walsh, a mandolin player who has performed with Ricky Skaggs, Emmylou Harris, Bela Fleck and others, will lead the weekend.

Jim VanCleve Announces Mountain Heart Departure

Jim VanCleveFiddler Jim VanCleve has announced that he will be leaving Mountain Heart, a group he helpd establish almost 16 years ago. Jim has certainly made his mark with this outstanding group of bluegrass music artists and he and the group are seperating on good terms. Jim will keep his fans posted through his Facebook page. Mountain Heart has not announced any possible replacements and Jim will continue to fulfil his existing committments as best he can.

Dolly Parton to Celebrate Record Store Day with Blue Smoke

Blue SmokeNew York, NY -- Sony Masterworks and internationally-renowned superstar Dolly Parton celebrate Record Store Day on Saturday, April 19, with the release of a limited 7-inch vinyl. The blue vinyl features two tracks from Parton’s upcoming album Blue Smoke - “Blue Smoke” and “Home.” Blue Smoke will be released by Sony Masterworks and Dolly Records on May 13, 2014. It is available for pre-order now. The album includes 12 bluegrass and country songs including covers of Bob Dylan and Bon Jovi classics, and duets with Willie Nelson and Kenny Rogers. Blue Smoke marks the first release of new music from Parton since 2011.

2014 FreshGrass Award Open for Submissions

MASS MoCANorth Adams, MA -- The FreshGrass Award, a highlight of the eponymous three-day bluegrass and roots music festival held each fall at MASS MoCA, crowns up-and-coming musicians who offer a fresh take on the genre. Now in its second year, the Award expands from one category to three - giving unsigned bands, duos, and banjo players a chance to compete for cash prizes totaling $15,000, recording time at Compass Records' studio in Nashville, and a main stage slot at FreshGrass 2015. The competition, judged by a panel of industry professionals, is held concurrently with the festival on September 19-21, 2014, and contest performances are open to the festival audience.

Stevens Family Releases New Album 'Down on the Farm'

The Stevens Family BandWillis, VA -- Mountain Fever Records is proud to announce today's release of Down on the Farm by West Virginia traditional bluegrass group The Stevens Family. The first single also titled “Down on the Farm,” was released earlier this year.

IBMA's World of Bluegrass 2014 Tickets, Registration Now Available

World of Bluegrass 2014Nashville, TN -- The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA)’s World of Bluegrass 2014 event, September 30 – October 4 in Raleigh, North Carolina, is now open for conference registration, hotel reservations, Wide Open Bluegrass festival tickets, the IBMA Awards Show, and Bluegrass Ramble Showcase passes. Additional details about World of Bluegrass 2014 will be announced on May 7 at a press conference in Raleigh.

Bluegrass Master Richard Bennett Drops 'In The Wind Somewhere' May 27

In The Wind Somewhere It’s one thing for an artist to feel like his latest musical endeavor is his best, but when you’re a music veteran with a mile-long resume, decades of recording and performing experience, critical acclaim, and more recordings than one can count, it’s quite a statement to say, “This is my favorite record I’ve ever done.” Such is the case with bluegrass music star Richard Bennett of his forthcoming new release, In The Wind Somewhere, which is due May 27 via Kentucky-based Lonesome Day Records. “It just feels good,” says Bennett of his fifth solo release.

Crooked Road Leads Appalachian Trail to Carter Family Fold

Appalachian Trail BandAppalachian Trail is a union of seasoned and innovative singers, songwriters, and musicians who are breaking new ground in the bluegrass music arena. Ireland, Scotland, England, Russia, Sweden, Canada, Holland, and Switzerland are some of the countries that have hosted the talents of the individuals in this band, as well as coast-to-coast here at home. Formed in 1984, the band combines strong lead vocals, tight harmonies, and distinctive picking. Saturday, April 19th, 2014, at 7:30 p.m. the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, will present a concert of traditional bluegrass music by Appalachian Trail. Adult admission to the concert is $10, $1 for children 6 to 11, and under age 6 free.

Enter the Ancient Dreams of Red June April 15th

Red JuneArden, NC -- Red June, purveyors of original music created in a traditional style, will release its third album in April. Ancient Dreams is set for release on Organic Records April 15. A powerful acoustic trio from Asheville, North Carolina, Red June performs beautifully distilled original American music. The band is known for a dynamic, yet refined sound that features striking three-part harmonies, tasteful instrumental work, and honest, soulful songwriting that seamlessly blends bluegrass, old-time, country and American roots music.

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Earns Mayors' Award of Distinction

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion 2014Bristol, TN/VA -- Birthplace of Country Music® is proud to announce Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion annual music festival has achieved the esteemed Mayors' Award of Distinction from the cities of Bristol. The call was received from the judges’ committee chairman, Gary McGeough, Thursday afternoon.

Advance Tickets Ends 4/30 for Graves Mountain Festival

Graves Mountain FestivalSave $$ and get early bird discounted tickets by April 30 for the 22nd Annual Graves Mountain Festival of Music taking place May 29-31, 2014. Advance tickets are only $75 for 3-Days. Order now by phone at 540-923-4231, the Graves Mountain website or by sending a check or money order to Graves Mountain, Syria, VA 22743 by April 30.

Roger Williams & the All Mixed-Up Quartet at Carter Fold Friday

Roger Williams & the All Mixed-Up QuartetFriday, April 18th, 2014, at 7:00 p.m. the Carter Family Fold in Hiltons, Virginia, and Mount Vernon United Methodist Church will present a concert of praise music with Roger Williams & the All Mixed-Up Quartet. Entitled Praise in the Valley, this concert marks our second annual gospel youth rally. Last year’s rally was very well-attended and enjoyed by people of all ages. Admission to the concert is free. In lieu of admission, a donation of canned goods is requested to benefit local food banks.

A Gift for Fans of the Great George Shuffler

Buddy MeltonNashville, TN -- Fiddle and vocal virtuoso, Buddy Melton, and equally gifted pal, Milan Miller, have released a special recording of “The Boy From Valdese" as a tribute to Bluegrass giant, George Shuffler, who passed away earlier this week. "We couldn't think of a better way to honor George Shuffler than through the music he loved and so greatly influenced,” Melton says. “That was our intention in releasing this tribute."

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