Friday, 27 August 2010

Bluegrass has a long reach

The Grascals at the Albisgütli festival, Switzerland, Feb. 2010 (photo: Lilly Pavlak)

The Grascals (USA) ask: 'What is the definition of IBMA Entertainer of the Year? To expand the greater audience of bluegrass music by continually exposing new fans to the bluegrass genre.' They can claim to have played for a total of 450,000 people this year, including 10,000 at the Craponne Country Rendez-Vous Festival in France (23 July 2010) 'plus thousands more in Switzerland, Belgium, and Canada'. See the figures on their website or their latest e-newsletter.

Fiddle star Megan Lynch (USA) has recently been playing in Denmark and Sweden with country music star Pam Tillis. In addition, her online webcam lessons go out to students in Sweden, Britain, and Ireland, as well as North America. Megan writes:

This is a great way to keep up with your fiddling even when you live in the woods, or possibly in a town where public fiddling has been banned. All you need is a computer and a camera and a burning desire to get some fiddle lessons beamed right into your own living room. Check it out here.

Megan Lynch is one of the stellar group of pickers who present the latest release from Acutab Publications: the two-and-a-half-hour DVD Bluegrass jamming essentials, which can be recommended for pickers at any level. She is also joining forces with Ned Luberecki and Stephen Mougin to form the Nashville Music Workshop, which aims to make webcam lessons for fiddle, banjo, guitar, and mandolin accessible to the whole world.