Thursday, 17 April 2014

Danilo Cartia news 17.4.2014

You're in Rome, Italy, right now and don't know what to do? Here's somewhere to go!

Danilo Cartia
Phone/Fax: +39 068273332
Mobile: +39 3396908450

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

George Shuffler

George Shuffler (11 April 1925 - 7 April 2014) was buried on Thursday, 10 April in his hometown of Valdese, North Carolina. A full account by broadcaster Becky Johnson of the funeral - 'George Shuffler laid to rest', with many photos - was published on Friday on Bluegrass Today.
For those who are not yet familiar with his contributions to bluegrass music, a comprehensive outline by Richard Thompson was also published on Friday on Bluegrass Today, under the title 'George Shuffler: a career overview'. At the end of this feature is a link to where you can find tributes paid to him by such acclaimed musicians as Jack Lawrence, Tom Gray, and James Alan Shelton.

Source: The Bluegrass Ireland Blog

DELLA MAE - touring Europe 29 April - 13 May 2014

Della Mae
Thanks to Glenn Blackman for sharing tour details of the upcoming Della Mae European Tour:
Della Mae -
Della Mae - "Empire"(Official Video)
In a relatively short period of time, Rounder Records recording artist, Grammy Nominee Della Mae has become a sensation in the music world. Commanding a powerful collective chemistry with vocal, instrumental, and songwriting talent to spare, the Boston-based combo mines time-honored elements to create music that's unmistakably fresh and contemporary. Make sure to catch one of their amazing shows.

The Borderline
United Kingdom
De RomaAntwerpBelgium
Muehle HunzikenRubigenSwitzerland
International Buehler Bluegrass Festival
Bluegrass in Basel - JUFABaselSwitzerland
Musikhuset PostenOdense CDenmark
Musikhuset AarhusAarhus CDenmark
Blues Garage
Hannover / Isernhagen
Savoy TheatreHelsinkiFinland

Contact Glen for more information:
Glenn Blackman
WBA Entertainment, Inc.
PH: +1-615-278-965
PH: +44-20-8133-0152

Monday, 14 April 2014

Radio playlist - Peelgrass - 6 April 2014

2nd Bluegrass Meeting in Sarzana, Italy scheduled for Friday, May 30th, 2014

Thanks to Danilo Cartia for keeping us up to date with his various activities. In particular this information about the 2nd BLUEGRASS MEETING as part of the 17th Acoustic Guitar Meeting, in Sarzana, Italy.
Danilo is very happy because this year he has a lot of requests from local bands in Italy and plus there are various workshops on offer. One with Tim O'Brien, one on banjo, guitar and dobro, too. So, if you're not going north to the EWOB Festival and Tradeshow in the Netherlands, consider travelling to beautiful Italy.  
Sarzana (Italian pronunciation: [sarˈdzaːna]) is a town and comune in the Province of La Spezia, of Liguria, Italy, 15 km east of Spezia, on the railway to Pisa, at the point where the railway to Parma diverges to the north.

Danilo Cartia
Phone/Fax: +39 068273332
Mobile: +39 3396908450

US banjoist in Europe

Thanks to John Lawless of Bluegrass Today for this interesting news:

Dan in Spain, source:
After 22 years as a firefighter in Washington state, when he got retired, Dan Monte Calvo’s ambitious scheme was, “to play my banjo in as many different countries as possible, meet as many people as I can and spread the love of bluegrass music and the banjo around the world.” He flew to London in December 2013 and began his banjo pilgrimage, writing and playing songs along the way. His two daughters are taking turns traveling along, and one, Emma, a film school grad, is helping him chronicle this adventure.
Here's the report on Bluegrass Today and here is a direct link to Dan's travelogue, The Dan Project. Enjoy travelling along!

More on Los Hermanos Cubero (Spain)

Thanks again to John Lawless, fearless journalist specialised on international news at Bluegrass Today, for this cool piece of information: The Cubero Brothers (Los Hermanos Cubero) appeared on Mapa Sonoro, aired on Spanish public television on Sunday, 6th April. The show, which translates roughly as Sound Map, also is available internationally on Spanish language cable channels. Read full article on Bluegrass Today.
And here's the link to the video online at RTVE. Enjoy!

Bluegrass trip organized by Belgian travel agency

Valère Dekens informs that, following the success of the movie "Broken Circle Breakdown", the Belgian travel agency Joker offers a bluegrass journey from 23 September through 5 October. To our regret the plans don't include a visit to Raleigh, NC, where at the same time (29 September through 4 October) IBMA's World of Bluegrass (Conference & Tradeshow, Award Show and Bluegrass Ramble) is held. However, here's the information:

Reisorganisatie Joker organiseert voor het eerst een bluegrassreis naar de bakermat van dit muziekgenre: de Amerikaanse staten Kentucky, Tennessee en Virginia. Deze reis is bedoeld voor Vlaamse en Nederlandse bluegrassliefhebbers en vindt plaats van 23 september tot en met 5 oktober 2014. Gedetailleerde info vind je op or on Facebook.

Bluegrass Europe #91 to focus on European bluegrass festivals

Angelika Torrie, BE chief editor, together with Michael Zumstein, BE art director, are currently in the hot phase of production of the upcoming printed 40 page magazine published by EBMA. It will contain artist profiles and as well as reports on the recent European Bluegrass Summit, and will focus on promoting European bluegrass festivals. This can be used as guide to bluegrass festivals (and larger workshops) happening around Europe during the entire year.
If all goes well, EBMA members and BE subscribers will find their copy of BLUEGRASS EUROPE in their letter boxes before the end of April.
Interested and not yet a member/subscriber? Visit BE here to join EBMA membership or get your subscription NOW.

Beppe Gambetta Acoustic Night 14

Thanks to Beppe Gambetta for the news about the Beppe Gambetta Acoustic Night 14

Since Tuesday April 8th, Beppe Gambetta Acoustic Night 14 tickets are available on line on:[evento]&id_evento=1171548 and on

Thursday May 8, 8:30pm
Friday May 9, 8:30pm
Saturday May 10, 8:30pm

Piazza Borgo Pila 42, tel. +39 010 5342300

ACOUSTIC NIGHT 14 - The New Generations


The 14th edition of the Beppe Gambetta Acoustic Night is dedicated to "The new generations". Young emerging musicians will be Beppe Gambetta's guests in the traditional Genovese appointment with the independent world of acoustic music. The theme comes from the desire to investigate the new vibrations coming from a generation that grew up in the context of a "globalized" world, characterized by the ease of traveling and meet (even if only virtually) with artists from other cultures.
In an era characterized by great dynamism and technical communication is important to even ask this question: has the music of the younger generation the power to make positive changes as has happened many times in the past? Acoustic Night 14 is fed to this question and goes in search of opportunities to go beyond the cultural void of "talent shows", in which the appearance is more important than passion and poetry.
On the stage of the Teatro della Corte, in his usual role of artist, conductor and producer, Beppe Gambetta will open a window on an International group of young independent artists who have established themselves in a world far removed from that of the pure show business. It will be an itinerary intended to highlight new talent and new trends, through a dialogue that promises to be exciting and engaging: the Californian Rushad Eggleston is a great virtuoso on the cello, he explored the expressiveness of the instrument bringing it up to the extreme limits in technique and repertoire. An eclectic and eccentric artist, he has a compelling energy and an extraordinary ability to connect with the audience. The singer Aoife O'Donovan comes from a family of artists from the Boston folk scene. She is a charming artist with a refined voice, she has a strong charisma on stage and has to his credit already stellar collaborations and International awards. Mike Witcher from San Francisco is the rising star of the Dobro guitar (resonator guitar), constantly on the road with different bands, he is bringing his instrument to new levels of excellence.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Arthur 'Guitar Boogie' Smith (1921 ~ 2014)

Arthur Smith died on Thursday, April 3, 2014 at his home. The 93 year-old entertainer was born in Clinton, South Carolina, USA.  He grew up in Kershaw, S.C., where his father worked in a cotton mill and was the leader of his own “brass band”. Brass bands were common throughout the USA in the 1800’s – early 1900s.

As a child, Smith played trumpet in his father’s cotton mill group and absorbed all kinds of music - from the Big Bands to rhythm and blues, Gospel and jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt. 

Around the age of 6, Smith started writing his own songs – more than 500 songs in his lifetime. He played in a Dixieland group with his brothers Ralph and Sonny, and later mastered the mandolin, fiddle, guitar and other instruments.

Smith was 15 when he cut records for RCA’s budget Bluebird label at the Andrew Jackson Hotel in Rock Hill. The band’s name was ‘Smith’s Carolina Crackerjacks’. The session produced no hits. However, when Smith was 24, he did have a hit song with “Guitar Boogie”. The kid with the hot guitar licks had then made a name for himself around the world.
Smith, June Carter and Johnny Cash

Nashville, Tenn., producer and musician Tim Smith remembers mentioning his famous uncle to Paul McCartney in London around 1982: “I told him my father was a great musician and that my uncle was Arthur ‘Guitar Boogie’ Smith,” Tim Smith recalled. “He (McCartney) didn’t say a word. He just walked over to a road case in his studio and opened it up. It had slots like an old record store counter and was full of 45s. He thumbed through and pulled out a 45 of ‘Guitar Boogie’ from the ’50s and told me it was one of his very favorite records. He wanted to know all about Arthur. It was a great moment.”

“Guitar Boogie” was recorded on acoustic guitar with help from Don Reno on rhythm guitar and Roy Lear on bass. That song would go on to influence generations of musicians including Tom Petty, Eric Clapton, Glen Campbell and Roy Clark to name but a few. A young Paul McCartney played the “Guitar Boogie” in his audition for a Liverpool, England band that later became ‘The Beatles’.

Smith’s hit record single helped inspire a 'country-boogie' trend and led to Smith’s contract with the MGM record label in 1947. Such country stars as Vince Gill, Glen Campbell and Roy Clark all stated that Arthur Smith influenced their interest in the guitar.

Smith was a music innovator, TV pioneer, radio personality, successful businessman and Sunday School teacher: He was important on many levels. His radio career had begun in 1941, hosting live shows on WSPA in Spartanburg. In 1943, he moved to Charlotte as a radio personality at WBT. He began appearing on WBTV in 1951. The success of Smith’s daily and weekly programs enabled him to promote his traveling country and gospel music package shows which made personal appearances across the South.

In 1955, Arthur Smith recorded “Feuding Banjos,” which featured Smith’s tenor banjo with Don Reno’s 5-string banjo. The instrumental became a popular bluegrass tune that was featured as the theme song for the 1972 film “Deliverance” -- but giving no credit to Smith.

The mild-mannered Sunday School teacher showed a he was no “easy mark” and took on Warner Brothers movie company after his novelty song “Feuding Banjos” was used in the movie “Deliverance without credit or royalty payments.” Smith filed a lawsuit and won a substantial settlement.

In 1992, “Dueling Banjos” was used in a commercial for Mitsubishi automobiles. Smith said this experience was much more pleasant than the one he had with Warner Brothers. Although he never disclosed how much money he made from the lawsuit, Smith pointed to a picture of a 42-foot yacht on the wall of his office and noted, “Warner Bros. bought that boat for me.”

Smith’s hobbies were boating and sports fishing. He founded ‘Arthur Smith Sportfishing Tournaments’ which ran for almost 20 years on the Carolina coast, Florida, New York and the Great Lakes.

Smith’s business interests also included the first recording studio in the Carolinas. Founded in 1957, the Charlotte studio not only recorded Smith’s records, but national artists such as Johnny Cash, Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, the Statler Brothers and many more.
Smith, with Earl & Louise Scruggs at Johnny Cash's home

In 1965, the “Godfather of Soul” James Brown rented the studio for three hours and cut “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag,” which later ranked No. 72 in Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 greatest songs of all time.

For 25 years, Smith produced, marketed and syndicated national radio programs hosted by Chet Atkins, Johnny Cash and others. Smith’s own show, “Top of the Day,” ran for 30 years – and with one sponsor.

Grand Ole Opry star Roy Acuff often said that he was surprised Smith could make it in the country music business without living in Nashville. “Arthur never wanted to move out of Charlotte; Arthur did it his way.”

Whether it was radio, TV, personal appearances or through recordings, Smith told an interviewer in 2007: “I was always thankful to have an audience. We stood for the people.”

Note: All photos courtesy of the Smith Family Collection. 

[ED: This piece was written using several sources, including personal recollections and recent newspaper tributes to Arthur Smith.]

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Didmarton Bluegrass Festival 2014

29-31 August 2014

Thank you, Camilla, for sharing these interesting news !

We'd be very grateful for any support you are able to offer in mentioning the Festival in news items or social media - we are relaunching the Festival this year and hope to support the UK bluegrass scene by making it a brilliant success! Many thanks. 
Earlybird tickets are now on sale [April 1st] for one of the UK's premier bluegrass music events at one of the quirkiest of Festival sites.
Held on the weekend of 29-31 August 2014, on a vibrant, operating airfield in the heart of Gloucestershire, UK, Didmarton Bluegrass Festival once again promises three days of outstanding music and entertainment, real ale and brilliant late-night bonfires, all with the hum of propeller planes and if you're lucky - the odd Spitfire flying overhead! 
Now in its 26th year, the Festival is proud to host another stellar line-up of bluegrass, old-time and Americana artists. You can expect everything from banjo-led, red-hot instrumental tunes, to songs from the American gospel and country traditions, brought to stage by some of the country's greatest musicians and reputedly the best live sound on the UK acoustic Festival circuit. 
There's much more than the Main Stage on offer too, with a host of entertainment that includes the open mic sessions, craft stalls, traditional dance displays, an ale and cider bar, and instrumental workshops for every ability, all in a fun and friendly environment. 
EarlyBird tickets (Fri-Sun), which includes camping, are now on sale at just £45 (under 14s go free). 
Didmarton Bluegrass Festival, 29-31 August, Kemble Airfield, nr Cirencester, Gloucestershire, UK.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

The NASHVILLE BLUEGRASS BAND in the Czech Republic, 22-25 May 2014

Thanks to Petr Kuklík, recent recipient of an EBMA Pioneer Award, for this exciting information:

It's our great pleasure to introduce and welcome a famous legendary bluegrass group from the USA, the one and only NASHVILLE BLUEGRASS BAND at the JAMBOREE 2014 Festival in Strakonice city at the southwest of the Czech Republic, which will be held on May 23rd - 25th.
This is definitely a unique occasion to see a legend of bluegrass music on our continent, at one of only three exclusive concerts in the Czech Republic only. Well, if you want to see a bluegrass legend you have to come to the Czech Republic – JAMBOREE 2014 Festival. For more information go to our web site:

Also thanks to Ivana Loukova for the additional information, where the only other place to enjoy the NBB will be: in the OREA Pyramida Hotel in Prague. The poster design is by IBMA distinguished achievement award winner 2007 Marko Čermák:
graphic design by: Marko Čermák

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Sawmill Sessions - Old Time & Bluegrass Jam / Thursday, 3rd April 2014

Thanks to Sarah Novaro of the Sawmill Sessions - Old Time & Bluegrass Jam for the information about the upcoming Jam Session, with a concert by Emilie Vidrine & Tee Franglais in the first half, in Paris:

Bonjour, Jeudi 3 avril prochain sera notre prochain rendez-vous à la péniche Anako (toujours face au 61 quai de Seine 75019 Paris) ! En préambule de notre habituelle rencontre mensuelle autour de différents répertoires Old Time & Bluegrass, vous dégusterez cette fois-ci du Cajun avec Emilie Vidrine & Tee Franglais. N'oubliez pas vos instruments!
L'équipe des Sawmill Sessions

Monday, 31 March 2014

Dolly Parton: new CD and European tour

Thanks to Brian McNeal of the Prescription Bluegrass Blog (USA) for this news: the iconic Dolly Parton announces that her new album, Blue smoke on Dolly Records, is to be released in the USA by Sony Masterworks on 13 May 2014, and later in other countries. It is already available in Australia and New Zealand.

The release will be followed by a tour extending to Europe, where the first show will be in Liverpool, England, on 8 June. Three concerts in Ireland will be followed by twelve in Britain, two in Germany, and one each in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and Switzerland, the final show being on 14 July. Full details of the schedule can be seen here.

Ms Parton - once described by old-time music scholar Tony Russell as 'the old-time music enthusiast's favourite country singer' - has already recorded a bluegrass album, and Blue smoke comprises music from several genres, including old-time and bluegrass. Tracks can be heard on the 'Music' page of her website.

Ondra Kozák releases debut CD Ataman

Ondra Kozák (CZ) released his debut CD Ataman recently. It contains eleven original compositions by Ondra, in which he is featured on acoustic and electric guitars, mandolin, violin, bass, percussion, drums programming, and vocals. Special guests include Ondra's wife Marta on piano, Karel Začal on dobro, Vít Hanulík on mandolin, and Filip Baťo on banjo.

Ondra's new record can be heard and purchased, both as digital album and compact disc, from his Bandcamp site. It will also be available at his live shows (see his online schedule) with East-West, G-runs 'n Roses, or Fragment.

Radio playlists

Kabel 87.5 MHz - Omroep Venray - Ether 90.2 MHz:
The programme supports the European World of Bluegrass Festival, which will be held next on 29-31 May 2014.

Radio Vrolek, 107.7 MHz; local cable 105.5 MHz; Information TV-channel 2:
Countrymusic Round Up, Tues. 19.00-20.00, Sat. 12.00-13.00

Radio Free FM Ulm, UKW 102.6:
Antistatic Country Time, 24 Feb. 2014
* Programmes in this series are broadcast live on Radio Free FM and and are repeated on on Saturdays at 1:00 p.m. (European Continental time).
Antistatic Country Time can be heard on Radio Free FM's live streaming Digital Audio Lounge.

Alive Community Radio (107.3 FM), Dumfries, Scotland: 'Criffel Creek' playlist, 30 Mar. 2014 (10.00 a.m.-12 noon on alternate Sundays; available on 'Listen Again' for seven days after the initial broadcast)

Playlists and links to streaming radio for the Swiss Bluegrass Music Association's radio show are on the SBMA website.

PopStop: 'Americana Club' playlist, 26 Mar. 2014, presented by Walter Fuchs (Wednesdays 22:00–24:00; frequent repeats, times variable: see PopStop schedule)

Friday, 28 March 2014

Moniaive Michaelmas Bluegrass Festival: tickets now on sale

C. Paul 'Dobroman' Lyttle and the organising committee of the Moniaive Michaelmas Bluegrass Festival (MMBF) in Scotland announce that tickets are now on sale for this year's event (26-8 Sept.). Tickets can, for preference, be bought through this page on the website. Non-online purchases can be made by e-mail. In September (subject to availability) it will be possible to buy tickets for single events. Tickets can only be reserved if bought in advance; early booking is advised, as a few would-be attenders had to be turned away last year.

The MMBF website header (above) shows the Broken Strings band from Northern Ireland on stage; this year, as it happens, is one of the rare times the Festival has not had at least one band from Ireland on the bill.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Press conference (14 Apr.) for 12th International Bühl Bluegrass Festival

Wolfgang Mark, of the press office of the City of Bühl, invites media representatives to a press conference on the forthcoming 12th International Bühl Bluegrass Festival (2-3 May 2014), which will have the Grammy-nominated all-women band Della Mae (USA) at the top of the bill.

The conference will be held at 11.00 a.m. on Monday 14 April in the Bürgerhaus Neuer Markt (the main festival concert venue), Europaplatz, 77815 Bühl. Information on the festival, the performing artists, and the sponsorship will be available. Anyone wishing to attend should please contact

Wolfgang Mark
Stadt Bühl, Leiter Presse- und Öffentlichkeitsarbeit
Tel. (0 72 23) 9 35-2 80, fax -2 89
Street address: Rathaus I, Hauptstraße 47, 77815 Bühl
Postal address: Postfach 1665, 77806 Bühl

IBMA and the new World of Bluegrass 2014

Yesterday (26 March 2014) the International Bluegrass Music Association announced that booking of registration, hotels, and tickets for this year's World Of Bluegrass (WOB) will soon be open - on 31 March for IBMA members, and 14 April for the general public.

The World Of Bluegrass - IBMA's annual bluegrass music homecoming comprising business conference, trade fair, awards show, and festival - is scheduled for 30 September–4 October in Raleigh, North Carolina, and will build upon last year's tremendous success with new activities, seminars, and opportunities for attenders.

WOB was held at Raleigh for the first time in 2013, and proved to be an amazing rejuvenation of the events and the bluegrass community, with total attendance for the week estimated at 146,000, exceeding all expectations. This year's event will incorporate many further improvements, based on feedback from those who attended WOB in 2013. 

Full details are on IBMA's online press release.

Corn Potato String Band in Europe, May-July 2014

The Corn Potato String Band: (l-r) Aaron Jonah Lewis, Lindsay McCaw, Ben Belcher

Thanks to the FOAOTMAD weekly news blog for the news that the Corn Potato String Band (USA) will be on tour in Europe from 23 May to 5 July. After ten shows in England, Wales, and Scotland, they will cross to Ireland for ten further dates beginning with the Westport Folk and Bluegrass Festival in Co. Mayo and including the Open House Festival in Belfast. They will conclude the tour in Sweden, at the Vinterviken Bluegrass Festival (3 July) and the Torsåker Bluegrass Festival (5 July).

All members of the band are multi-instrumentalists with distinguished careers on the old-time scene. More details, together with full tour dates and tracks of their music, are on their website.

Also visiting Europe in this spring are Cahalen Morrison and Eli West. They took part in Rainer Zellner's Bluegrass Jamboree! in 2011, along with the Deadly Gentlemen, who were on the International Bühl Bluegrass Festival last year, and Della Mae, who will be on this year's Bühl festival.

Cahalen Morrison and Eli West will be in Britain and Ireland from 30 Apr. to 17 May. Tracks from their new CD, I'll swing my hammer with both my hands, together with YouTube videos, and more of their music can be heard on their website.

Danilo Cartia Band shows, 28, 29 Mar. 2014

Banjoist, guitarist, singer, and bandleader Danilo Cartia (I) announces that the Danilo Cartia Band will be performing bluegrass, blues, and other acoustic music in two shows in or near Rome in the next few days:

Friday 28 Mar., 22:00, at 'Underdog's', Via die Sabelli 17, Rome

Saturday 29 Mar., 22:00, at 'Goodfellas', Via Casale Agostinelli 149, Morena (RM)

Admission to both shows is free.

Danilo Cartia
Phone/fax: +39 068273332
Mobile: +39 3396908450