Blueberry Bluegrass, 2018- in review

The 32nd Blueberry Bluegrass Festival delivered. While featuring several acts well-familiar in Alberta due to regular appearances over the last several years—Slocan Ramblers, Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, Jeff Scroggins & Colorado—these groups brought their expected ‘A’ game while other, less-frequently encountered performers including quality area  and regional artists  also quickly enamoured themselves to the… Continue reading Blueberry Bluegrass, 2018- in review

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Blueberry Bluegrass, 2018: Day 1

The first day of the 32nd Blueberry Bluegrass Festival in Stony Plain, Alberta was as successful as anticipated. All acts were well-received, but it wasn’t acutely apparent which of two acts was the fan favourite. With an emphasis on show,The Kody Norris Show, a four-piece making their Canadian debut, performed a Jimmy Martin-inspired set of… Continue reading Blueberry Bluegrass, 2018: Day 1

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The Albums That Shaped Me, August 2018

Over at Fervor Coulee Twitter  I am spending August exploring my music roots with Thirty-Two Albums That Shaped Me/Thirty-One Days Inspired by a summer of sorting (not that you would notice) and tidying (again, obvious only if you knew what it looked like before) I am going to try to explain my music journey in… Continue reading The Albums That Shaped Me, August 2018

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Curly Seckler, a bluegrass legend, remembered

I don’t know when I first fully noticed Curly Seckler, but it may have been early in 2005 when he quipped, “Come here, you money-making thing!” to kick-off his penultimate album, Down In Caroline. I had, of course, heard Curly Seckler prior to that. As a keen listener of bluegrass for more than a dozen… Continue reading Curly Seckler, a bluegrass legend, remembered

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A ballad of three Alberta bluegrass DJs

This is the brief tale of three Alberta bluegrass radio hosts, one failed, one successful, and one nearing status reserved for legends. About six weeks ago, I received a call out of the blue: would I be interested in auditioning as host of CKUA’s long-running bluegrass program? My immediate reaction was, Yes. Years ago I… Continue reading A ballad of three Alberta bluegrass DJs

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IBMA Awards 2017- Live results & reactions

Well, I got the stream going just a couple minutes late- looks like Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver had the honour of starting things off. Hosts Bela Fleck and spouse Abigail Washburn are now attempting humour. Sigh. Funny that the screen has a big black box on the right side. Maybe just me. Namechecking every banjo… Continue reading IBMA Awards 2017- Live results & reactions

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Do we need more negative bluegrass reviews?

Over at No Depression, thoughtful bluegrass prognosticator Ted Lehmann recently reflected on the overwhelmingly number of ‘positive’ bluegrass reviews against a wider view that there seems to be fewer reviewers willing to write challenging criticisms of albums. So as not to misrepresent anything Ted expresses, I refer you to his published piece. While I don’t… Continue reading Do we need more negative bluegrass reviews?

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