Wednesday, 30 December 2015

The Sons of Navarone - The last gig with Eugene O'Brien

As you may know by now, Eugene O’Brien has decided to depart from The Sons of Navarone.
Your last chance to see him shine with them will be on Friday, February 5th at the Toogenblik in Haren (Brussels), at 08:30pm. Since the number of seats is limited, this concert will be on reservation only. If you are interested, please send an e-mail to for your reservation.

Tickets are only 10€ if reserved before January 15th, 13€ if reserved after.

Zoals je misschien hebt vernomen, heeft Eugene O’Brien besloten The Sons of Navarone te verlaten.
Een laatste kans om Eugene met de Sons te zien schitteren, is op vrijdag 5 februari in Toogenblik.  Aangezien het aantal plaatsen beperkt is, kan je enkel op reservatie aanwezig zijn.  Voor reservatie stuur je een mail naar

Tickets zijn slechts 10€ bij reservatie voor 15 januari, daarna 13€.

Vous l’aviez peut-être déjà appris, Eugene O’Brien a décidé de quitter The Sons of Navarone.
Une dernière chance de le voire briller avec eux sera le vendredi 5 février au Toogenblik en Haren (Bruxelles), à 20h30. Comme le nombre places est limité, l’entrée n'est prévuee que sur réservation.  Pour réserver, envoyez un mail à

L’entrée est de seulement 10€ pour les réservations avant le 15 janvier, 13€ après.

Rue Kortenbachstraat 11
1130 Haren (Brussels)

Friday, 18 December 2015

14th International Buehl Bluegrass Festival 2016 - Detailed information

Dear Bluegrass Lovers,

you may have seen the posts for the 14th International Buehl Bluegrass Festival 2016. Here is more about it. As you know, it will take place from Friday May 13 to Saturday May 14, 2016 and the line up will be the following:

Friday May 13, 07:00pm - 11:15pm:
  • Thomm Jutz & Milan Miller (from USA)
  • Ruben & Matt and the Truffle Valley Boys (from Italy)
  • Monroe Crossing (from USA) 
Saturday May 14, 02:00pm - 05:00pm:
  • Thomm Jutz & Milan Miller (from USA)
  • Flats & Sharps (from Great Britain)
  • The Dead South (from Canada) 
Saturday May 14, 07:00pm - 11.30pm:
  • Flats & Sharps (from Great Britain)
  • The Dead South (from Canada)
  • Claire Lynch Band (from USA)

Thomm Jutz & Milan Miller
Thomm Jutz - Guitar, Vocals
Milan Miller - Guitar, Vocals

Thomm Jutz
The musical career of Thomm Jutz began in Buehl but his path led him to the Musikhochschule in Stuttgart, and later throughout Europe as guitarist and producer of numerous bands. In 2003 he moved to Nashville, Tennessee, where he still successfully works as guitarist, producer and songwriter.  He produced Volumes 1 & 2 of “The 1861 Project”, a collection of new songs about the American Civil War. Artists like Marty Stuart, John Anderson, Jerry Douglas, Maura O’Connell, Connie Smith, Chris Jones, Sierra Hull and many more are featured on these records. Jutz cowrote all the songs on these albums. “The 1861 Project” has received praise from historians, critics, music lovers and Civil War enthusiasts alike. Jutz, who cowrote all the songs on these albums, has received praise from historians, critics, music lovers and Civil War enthusiasts alike.

Milan Miller
Multi-instrumentalist Milan Miller comes from Waynesville, North Carolina, and is now one of the most prolific songwriters in American bluegrass. With career successes ranging from Song of the Year nominations from the IBMA 2012 and 2013, a feature in Guitar Player magazine, and a 2012 Multimedia Award from the North Carolina Society of Historians, it’s clear that Miller’s songs resonate far beyond the city limits and the packaged stereotypes of his adopted hometown. His songs are, among others, picked up by bands like Balsam Range, 3rd Tyme Out, and Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice. To date, five of his songs reached the top of bluegrass charts. With light speed picking and his trusty tenor voice, Miller is a first call sideman and collaborator.
Thomm Jutz and Milan Miller have built a close friendship and love for bluegrass music. For the first time, at the International Bühler Bluegrass Festival 2016 they will perform as a duo.

Ruben & Matt and the Truffle Valley Boys
Ruben & Matt and the Truffle Valley Boys 
Ruben Minuto - Guitar, Vocals
Matteo Ringressi - Mandolin, Fiddle, Vocals
Germano Ciavone - Banjo, Vocals
Denny Rocchio - Dobro, Vocals
Emanuele Valente - Bass

The five musicians coming from Italy, with their "retro Bluegrass" lead back to the wild, rough and energetic sound of the 50s. Ruben Minuto and Matteo Ringressi, seasoned musicians in the blue grass and roots music scene worldwide, team up with a crew of the finest old-school musicians in Italy to bring back a sound that's often overlooked and forgotten nowadays: the raw, powerful and genuine sound of the early years of blue grass music. The band draws its repertoire and sound from some of the more obscure artists and recordings of the early-to-mid 50s, with a predilection for what is known as "Baltimore blue grass"... Just think a 1954 Starday Custom blue grass single and you'll get a pretty faithful idea of what the Truffle Valley Boys sound like! For the first time, they will be among the guests in Buehl.

Monroe Crossing
Monroe Crossing

David Robinson - Banjo
Derek Johnson - Guitar, Vocals
Lisa Fuglie - Mandolin, Fiddle Guitar, Vocals
Mark Anderson - Bass, Vocals
Matt Thompson - Mandolin, Fiddle, Vocals

Monroe Crossing dazzles audiences with an electrifying blend of classic bluegrass, bluegrass gospel, and heartfelt originals. Their superb musicianship and on-stage rapport have entertained audiences across the United States, Canada and Europe. Among their many honors, Monroe Crossing was awarded "Bluegrass Album of the Year" by the Minnesota Music Academy in 2003. In 2007, they were inducted into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame. They have twice been selected to showcase at the annual “World of Bluegrass” convention hosted by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) and they have appeared twice at Carnegie Hall in New York City. In 2016, Monroe Crossing will have the honour of being the first Minnesota bluegrass band to ever perform in South Korea. After the brilliant performance at the International Bühler Bluegrass Festival 2013, Monroe Crossing will be again in Buehl by popular demand for the next edition of the Festival. 

Flats & Sharps 
Flats & Sharps

Kirk Bowman - Banjo, Vocals
Liam Fitzharris - Bass, Vocals
Josh Warner - Guitar, Vocals
Mikey Ponsford - Mandolin, Vocals
Danny Hart - Fiddle, Vocals

Hailing from Cornwall, in the South West of England, Flats and Sharps blur the lines between Bluegrass, Folk, Country & Pop, gaining recognition for performing their own highly original songs as well as their renditions of Bluegrass classics. Performing with classic Bluegrass instrumentation (fiddle, banjo, mandolin, guitar, bass) these five incredible young musicians honed their skills in 350 live performances over nearly five years charming and wowing audiences along the way.
Their five track 'Always There' EP, released in June 2015, drew critical acclaim with R2 (Rock 'n' Reel) Magazine saying that they were "destined for great things" and 'Boat' and 'It's OK My Love' both picking up specialist and daytime UK radio play with the videos for these songs gaining traction on YouTube. They recorded a new album in summer 2015 which will be released in early 2016.

The Dead South
The Dead South

Nathaniel Hilts - Guitar, Vocals
Scott Pringle - Mandolin, Guitar, Vocals
Daniel Kenyon - Cello, Vocals
Colton Crawford - Banjo

The Dead South is a four-piece acoustic ensemble based in Regina, Saskatchewan. With Nate Hilts' gritty vocals and aggressive guitar strumming, Scott Pringle's soaring harmonies and mandolin chops, Colton Crawford's blazing banjo licks and steady kick drum, and Danny Kenyon's prominent cello melodies, The Dead South blends elements of folk, bluegrass, classical, and rock which results in a unique, modern, and authentic blend of boot-stompin' acoustic music.
With several club tours through Germany and celebrated festival appearances (including Reeperbahn Festival 2014, Orange Blossom Festival 2015), the four Canadians have already gained a solid fan base.They released an EP in June 2013 titled The Ocean Went Mad and We Were to Blame, and following the success of their debut release, returned to the studio and recorded their first full-length album, titled Good Company, which was released in April 2014. For spring 2016, the band announced a new album. 

Claire Lynch
Claire Lynch Band

Claire Lynch - Guitar, Vocals
Jarrod Walker - Mandolin, Guitar, backing vocals
Bryan McDowell - Mandolin, Fiddle, Guitar, backing vocals
Mark Schatz - Bass

Long recognized and praised as a creative force in acoustic music, Claire Lynch is a pioneer who continually pushes the boundaries of the bluegrass genre. She was the 2013 Female Vocalist of the Year for the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) and a 2012 recipient of the United States Artists Walker Fellowship. Her career has been decorated with many other accolades including two GRAMMY nominations and three International Bluegrass Music Association Female Vocalist awards in 2010 and 1997.  Recently, at the 2014 IBMA Awards, she received two trophies: "Song of the Year" for Dear Sister, a co-write with Louisa Branscomb and title cut of her latest Compass Records release; and "Recorded Event of the Year" for a guest vocal appearance with Special Consensus on Country Boy; A Bluegrass Tribute to John Denver  (Wild Montana Skies).

The current Claire Lynch Band is a powerful juggernaut, a quartet that has the innate ability to perfectly interpret the beauty, subtlety, and genre-defying sophistication of Claire’s music. The Claire Lynch Band features like-minded musicians blending tradition and innovation - two-time IBMA-winning bassist-clawhammer banjo player-dancer-percussionist Mark Schatz, soulful mandolinist-guitarist Jarrod Walker, and young string wizard Bryan McDowell, who at 18, won an unprecedented triple win at the Winfield, Kansas National Flatpicking Championship. 

What's new at Buehl Bluegrass Festival 2016?
  • 3 Bands playing on the open-air stage at Johannesplatz (10:30 -13:00)
  • Songwriting and flatpicking guitar workshop at the community centre with Milan Miller and Thomm Jutz on Saturday morning, May 14. By the way, if you are interested to get more information, call: 0 72 23-935406.
  • Numbered seats at the main venue (Buergerhaus Neuer Markt)

Tickets are on sale now! 
Friday, May 13, 2016
  • Presale: 21,00€
  • Box office: 25,00€
Saturday, May 14, 2016
  • Day ticket
    • Presale: 35,00€
    • Box office: 39,00€
  • Evening ticket (from 07:00pm)
    • Presale: 25,00€
    • Box office: 29,00€
Festival ticket
  • presale: 53,00€
  • box office: 58,00€
The box office will open an hour before the event begins, while the Hall opening will be half an hour before the event begins. Reservix will manage the online ticket sale. For pre sales contact:

Bürgerhaus Neuer Markt
Daily 10-13 clock / 15-18 clock
Saturdays 10-12 clock
Phone: +49 (0) 7223 - 93 16 16

Tuesday, 15 December 2015

2015 Hazel Dickens Song Contest is open for submissions...

Second Annual Hazel Dickens Song Contest Accepting Entries

The second annual Hazel Dickens Song Contest is now open for entries. The contest pays tribute to one of bluegrass music's most beloved songwriters.
From hardscrabble beginnings in West Virginia coal country in 1935, Dickens moved to Baltimore, MD, as a young woman to find factory work and quickly connected with local musicians. She started performing throughout the Baltimore/Washington region and was soon recognized for her singular mountain singing style and her gift with a lyric. Hazel wrote of coal miners, unionization, hard times, feminism and much more. She died in 2011.
The contest category is bluegrass, including gospel. Entry fee is $30 per song and all entries must be received by January 15, 2016. First, second and third-place winners receive cash prizes and will be announced on March 10, 2015. Entry rules, judging and prize information can be found at
All proceeds from the Hazel Dickens Song Contest help fund the DC Bluegrass Union. DCBU is a 501(c)3 nonprofit membership organization with a mission to promote bluegrass music in the greater Washington region through education and performance.

  • The Hazel Dickens Song Contest is open to those whose primary source of income (50 percent or more) is not derived from songwriting or publishing. Income from performing gigs is not songwriting income.
  • All entries must be the original work of contestant and shall not infringe on any copyright or any other rights of any third party. Contestant may enter as many songs as desired.
  • Each song submitted must have both instrumentation and lyrics. Lyrics should also be written and recorded in English. Categories: Bluegrass (includes gospel). No instrumentals, please.
Good luck!

For more information, contact Randy Barrett via email or at +1 703-405-6230.

Saturday, 12 December 2015

THE MANDOLIN: A History -- now available

You may have seen or heard about the announcement regarding this amazing music history project in August? Well, word came down to us last night that the first shipment of the book is on its way to author and publisher, Graham McDonald. It is now available for purchase at his website.

The next issue of "Bluegrass Europe" magazine will include an in-depth article and review of the new book, including photos. The new issue needed some corrections, therefor is a bit late in printing. It should be arriving in your mail soon. 

Until then, here is a link to the original European Bluegrass Blog announcement and description in August of author McDonald's most definitive history on the mandolin and its large stringed instrument family:

author: Graham McDonald
High Quality Soft-cover; 400+  pages; 450+  illustrations and Hi-resolution photographs
22 Chapters
8” x 10” (20cm x 25cm)
ISBN  9780980476279
Retail Price:  $45 (USD) Postage is free in USA only.
NOTE: Contact author for actual price or distributor in your country
Delivery Date:  available now!

Contact the author directly: 
Graham McDonald
P.O. Box 365
Jamison ACT 2614