Dispatch From Grey Fox: Thursday comes with Strings attached

You know those tap takeovers that are so popular in craft beer bars these days? It was like a musical version of that Thursday at the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, with artist in residence Billy Strings taking over the Walsh Farm festival grounds as the four day festival got started in earnest. Strings appeared on all three stages Thursday, starting the day off by sitting in with emerging artists Cane Mill Road on the Creekside[…]

Read more

Beautiful Venue, Solid Lineup. Much to Like About NEPA Bluegrass Festival

Editor’s Note: This festival “review” thing is an evolving notion. The “Brewskis” awards idea we trotted out at Gettysburg doesn’t work at places where you cannot see every act. We did sort of a “notebook” with our favorite sets after DelFest. We’re just going to sort of write about our impressions from NEPA Bluegrass Festival here. Eventually we will decide on a preferred style for festival recaps. Or not. If there is such a thing[…]

Read more

Gimme Shelter, or Why the Progressive Stage Was the Place To Be Friday at the NEPA Bluegrass Festival

We never made it past the Progressive Stage Friday at the NEPA Bluegrass Festival. That was not the plan. It just happened that way. Blame promoter Danny Stewart. He’s the guy that booked all the fine bands who played the Progressive Stage. And blame it, in no small part, on the thunderstorm that rolled through the Endless Mountains region of Pennsylvania early in the evening. Truth be told, the weather was the major culprit in[…]

Read more

Bluegrass Congress Lives Up to Hype, Highlighting a Great Weekend of Music at DelFest 11

Somewhere around 10:43 p.m. Sunday night, Del McCoury walked off the grandstand stage at DelFest 11, and what was an amazing weekend of eclectic music shifted into neutral. Yeah, Old Crow Medicine Show would play for another hour or so, but after they gathered around a single mic with the host of the party for a singing lesson on “Lost Highway,” Del left that stage, and we could coast. It was all downhill from there.[…]

Read more

Call It What You Want, DelFest fans went nuts for Del McCoury’s “Soundcheck

“This is not a show. It’s just the soundcheck.” Del McCoury kept telling the fans that Thursday afternoon as he and his band opened the 11th Annual DelFest with what has become a tradition along the banks of the Potomac. And yes, technically it is labeled on the festival schedule as “The Del McCoury Band Soundcheck.” That mattered not to the DelFestarians who flocked the infield of the Allegany County Fairgrounds racetrack, aka the Music[…]

Read more

And the winner is . . . handing out Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival honors

Thought we’d try a different way of reviewing a festival by handing out some awards following this weekend’s 76th Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival. The idea is pretty simple — after each festival we cover, we will hand out our best of show honors and at the end of festival season we will bestow Brewskis (or maybe we will come up with a better name) to the bests we experience during festival season. Or maybe we will[…]

Read more

Gettysburg Day Two — Stretching Out in the Rain

It was stretch day Friday at the 76th Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival. The bi-annual festival, which has been happening since 1979, has a reputation as one of the top traditional bluegrass festivals in the country.The McCoury brothers tell stories about chasing girls there when they were teenagers tagging along to their dad’s gigs. All the greats have played there, including Bill himself. The promoters are not afraid to push the envelope now and again, though. A[…]

Read more

Recapping Day One of the 76th Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival

It rained most of the day, but that hardly dampened the spirits of the bluegrass fans gathered at the Granite Hill Camping Resort near Gettysburg for Day One of the 76th Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival. Of course with an opening day lineup filled with IBMA award winners and a couple of fine emerging acts, who was about to let rain dampen their spirits. Eric Avey, of local favorites Mountain Ride, talks about the thrill of playing[…]

Read more