Category Archives: music

Merlefest: Bitten By The Bluegrass Bug

The music was enthralling, but my lasting memory of my first festival was the community around the campfire jam. Being so close that you could almost touch the music, seeing how the musicians who may have only just met each other seemed to easily draw from a common pool of music, seeing the faces of the crowd while they enjoyed the music and outdoors together. That is what really compelled me to learn an instrument and become a part of this community of traditions. Continue reading

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Show Review: The Hackensaw Boys w/ The Founding Fathers

It’s not every day that one looks forward to the opening act more than the headliner, but that was me on Friday, July 8 at the State Theater in Falls Church, VA where The Founding Fathers warmed up the crowd … Continue reading

Posted in Americana, bluegrass, music | 1 Comment

CD Review: The Woodshedders “O Dig”

The Woodshedders latest release and second studio album “O Dig” presents a carousel of songs, moving from Americana to gypsy jazz, through island breezes and acoustic funk. Dwayne Brooke has written a bevy of fine songs for this album, and … Continue reading

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Little Birdie: Twitter 101 For Bluegrass Bands

Why might Twitter matter to bluegrass bands, musicians, festivals, labels and promoters? At its core, Twitter is a communication platform that is both intimate and public at the same time – not unlike a live music performance, except that it … Continue reading

Posted in bluegrass, communication, music, twitter | 5 Comments

Bluegrass Traditions Share The Stage in Lucketts, VA

Bluegrass music fans in the northern tip of Virginia were treated to a double bill of the high, lonesome sound on Saturday, April 23 when the long running Lucketts Bluegrass series presented Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers and the … Continue reading

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Bluegrass Capital: D.C. Area Jump Starts Festival Season

I left the event feeling energized for the upcoming summer festivals and wanting to pick even more tunes. Two upcoming events where I will have a chance are D.C.B.U Pick-nic in Falls Church on May 1 and the Loudoun Bluegrass Festival in Leesburg, VA on May 7. Maybe I will see you there, too? Keep on picking! Continue reading

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A Short Story of The Long Tail

Getting a better understanding of The Long Tail has helped inspire me to seek my own place in the niche market economy, and since I know many of you are also small business owners and supporters, I hope this summary will help you as well. The Long Tail by Chris Anderson describes how internet, database and search engine technologies have combined with human power to access niche markets in a way that was impossible previously, where mega-hit driven products competed for limited, expensive shelf space. Using Amazon, iTunes, Netflix and Zappos as the main exhibits, Anderson describes how each has profited in niche markets by using a combination of technology and community. Continue reading

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Roots to Branches: Tips for Growing a Festival Community

How can you create such loyalty to an annual event that folks will trek many miles through melting sun and pouring rain just to be there? What makes them want to schedule it in their vacation plans, returning every year and bringing more friends? For music festivals, great entertainment is the focus, but it’s the festival community that generates such a powerful draw of participants. As I prepare to head out to one of my favorites – Watermelon Park Festival in Berryville, VA – I’m thinking about some of the things that turn a music festival into a community. Continue reading

Posted in community building, music | 8 Comments

Spotlight On: Andrew McKnight

Pulling inspiration from the very ground of his Shenandoah Valley home, Andrew McKnight infuses his music with deep respect for the land and the simple joys of life.  I first heard Andrew in concert at Notaviva Vineyards in Purcellville, VA, … Continue reading

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Spotlight: The Polka Dots

There are a lot of creative, talented, inspirational and happy people around me here at South Mountain – so many that I think I could write about them for a long time to come. Each Friday I’ll shine my spotlight on some of the people in my life, and hope to make some new connections for you all. Continue reading

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