And The Winner Is… Alan Bibey

Bibey insideAnd The Winner Is… Alan Bibey
By Alan Niederland

The anticipation was indeed palpable. Music awards shows can be dry affairs, with either a ho-hum sense in the offing or with foregone conclusions having deadened any sort of spontaneity presiding over the winner’s circle. The 2019 IBMA Awards night, hosted in Raleigh, N.C., at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts on October 1, 2019 was of a different hue, however. This year, a name was being bandied about in the final cut for Mandolin Player Of The Year, a name for which any serious fan of bluegrass music and of the particular instrument itself would immediately elicit an “Of course!” After all, the mandolin is so integral a part of bluegrass, due to its provenance tied to the Father of Bluegrass, that one can hardly imagine a band not having one. And the group of nominees for the award itself read like a who’s who of prominent pickers that everyone knew. Up for consideration for the coveted award were no less impressive artists than Sierra Hull, Ronnie McCoury, Sam Bush, Frank Solivan, and Alan Bibey.

As the presenter was unfolding the envelope, there was a buzz in the crowd. Would it be a repeat winner? Would the name be a complete newcomer to wear the crown? Then the reading: “The winner for the 2019 International Bluegrass Music Association’s Mandolin Player Of The Year award is Alan Bibey!” Read entire article »

And The Winner Is… Alan Bibey
By Alan Niederland

Dede Wyland 
Singer, Vocalist, Educator
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Stepping Back In Time With Jamie Dailey
By Bill Conger

Professor Dan Boner
By Derek Halsey

Ronnie Reno Retires From The Road
By Bill Conger

The Miller Brothers
By Hank Edenborn and Tricia Miller McQueen

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September 2020 Reviews

Dan Boner

PROF. DAN BONER WEST OF WEST VIRGINIA No Label No Number Professor Dan Boner is the Director of Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Studies at East Tennessee State University in Johnson City, Tenn. This is Boner’s third self-produced project and includes a number of familiar selections and a few originals. Boner plays guitar and fiddle and […]

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APPALACHIAN ROAD SHOW TRIBULATION Billy Blue Records BBR1323 Appalachian Road Show’s sophomore album is an ambitious concept brilliantly executed. The 16 tracks on Tribulation, including a series of meditative spoken passages linking the songs into an overall theme, capture the celebration and sorrow, loss and regeneration, faith and perseverance of that unique and often troubled region […]

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Thomm Jutz

THOMM JUTZ TO LIVE IN TWO WORLDS, VOLUME I Mountain Home MH18592    Nashville-based singer/guitarist Thomm Jutz presents the first of two all-original albums on the Mountain Home Music label. Originally from Germany, Jutz has become captivated by the music and history of the American South. Fourteen originals are presented here, co-written with Mark Milan, Trey […]

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Steve Thomas and the Time Machine

STEVE THOMAS AND THE TIME MACHINE ALL OF THESE YEARS Bonfire Recording Company BRC-5015 Thomas and company have made a strong recording of modern bluegrass. Part country-rock, a splash of classic country, and even some straight-up old-school bluegrass fill the tracks on this album. Thomas is in great form with his vocals and on fiddle, […]

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FLASHBACK BLUES AROUND MY CABIN Pinecastle Records PRC 1236 Flashback is a super group with band members who are all long-time veterans of bluegrass music. These veteran musicians are Stuart Wyrick (banjo), Don Rigsby (mandolin, fiddle, guitar, percussion), Curt Chapman (bass), and Richard Bennett (guitar). While the individuals had many of their own solo projects […]

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High Fidelity

HIGH FIDELITY BANJO PLAYER’S BLUES Rebel Records REB-CD-1874    Remember the first time you heard bluegrass? The thrill in that banjo sound? The plaintiff vocals over the rapid paced music? The searing edge of the fiddle as it glides in and out of the proceedings and the cut of that mandolin as it jumped to the […]

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THE VW BOYS ACTING OUR AGE Fat Dog FD1119 In these times of coronavirus, Saharan dust, killer hornets, social unrest, and Lord knows what else, we can give thanks for silliness and the VW Boys. Tim White (banjo, five-string resonator banjo and jaw harp), Dave Vaught (guitar), and Fat Albert Blackburn (bass) bring their sense […]

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Buncombe Turnpike

BUNCOMBE TURNPIKE THESE WALLS WOULD SING No Label BT-07242 Lead singer and bass player Tom Godleski began Buncombe Turnpike in the fall of 1997. Since then, the band has recorded eight albums. They hail from western North Carolina and their music represents the region nicely. Bluegrass with a touch of folk and old-time make their […]

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Fireside Collective

FIRESIDE COLLECTIVE ELEMENTS Mountain Home MH18952    If you’re a fan of energetic and innovative bluegrass sounds, keep reading. If you’re also a fan of bands like the early New Grass Revival, Crucial Smith, or the Farewell Drifters, you should enjoy this debut from Fireside Collective. If all three of these bands had come of age […]

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THE FAMILY SOWELL SAME KIND OF DIFFERENT No Label No Number This is the latest project from the Knoxville, Tenn.-based Family Sowell, previously known as the Sowell Family Pickers. The family members are Abigail Sowell (mandolin), Jacob Sowell (banjo, guitar), John-Mark Sowell (fiddle), Joshua Sowell (guitar, mandolin), Justus Sowell (resonator guitar), Naomi Sowell (bass), and […]

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