The Bluegrass Truth



The Bluegrass Truth
The Bluegrass Truth
with Hamish & Lachlan Davidson
Let us start by tipping our hat to the late
Earl Scruggs (1924-2012), possibly the
most imitated musician in the world.
In 1945, Scruggs’ banjo playing was the
catalyst that transformed what Bill Monroe
was doing into the full blown genre of
music that we know as Bluegrass music.
on a new studio album. They are busy
writing furiously and have been getting a
lot of interest from some internationally
renowned producers. Good news is, ahead
our continent this year. They will be
performing at the Melbourne Recital
Centre August 6th and the Adelaide
International Guitar Festival on August
of the album release they will be revealing
a single and video for the tune ‘Madeline’.
By the time you read this you will be
able to visit YouTube and check it out or
request it on CMC.
Long time bluegrass supporter Mike Kear
reached a milestone on the 4th of May
when he broadcasted his 500th Music
From Foggy Hollow radio show for the
legendary WAMU’s Bluegrass Country.
WAMU is a mainstay of bluegrass
broadcasting and has a very large audience
from across the globe. Mike has a strong
following in the US and around the world.
Mike says that he was asked about 10
years ago to produce a show for them for
3 months, but after the first month, they
asked him to continue on an ongoing
basis, and the show is still going strong.
Tune in to
Three time Golden Guitar winners the
Davidson Brothers and the legendary
Hamilton County Bluegrass Band from
New Zealand will be headlining the 18th
annual Redlands Bluegrass Festival this
year. The festival will run 13-15 July, just
outside of Brisbane in Queensland.
New York’s Punch Brothers featuring
Chris Thile and his band of elite bluegrass
musicians will make their first trip to
The 4th Gold Coast Acoustic Music
Festival will be held at Broadwater
Parklands on the Gold Coast in
Queensland on 22-23 September. Berkley
graduate and fiddle champion Hanneke
Cassel (USA) will headline this event
before teaming up with Chris Stone,
George Jackson, Karen and Jacko
Jackson to host the Sunshine Coast
Fiddle Camp in Alexandra Headlands,
Queensland on September 28th to
October 1st. The advanced class will focus
on performance, composition, arranging
and improvisation and a separate class will
be run for those who wish to learn at a
slower pace. There will also be a kids’ class
and a beginners’ class.
The 24th Harrietville Bluegrass
Convention will run 15-18 November.
Set in the beautiful high country of
Victoria, this year’s featured US bluegrass
act is Audie Blaylock and Redline who
first appeared at the festival in 2006.
Audie hit the road at the age of 19,
spending nine years learning the craft with
first-generation bluegrass great, Jimmy
Martin and The Sunny Mountain Boys.
He has toured with Rhonda Vincent &
The Rage as well as Michael Cleveland
Bellyache Ben & the Steamgrass Boys
Earl Scruggs & Hamish
Davidson - 1997
The most exciting thing we’ve heard about
lately, is that a Hollywood film is being
made based on the life of Bill Monroe
called ‘Blue Moon of Kentucky’. With
an all-star cast boasting names such as
Michael Shannon (playing Bill Monroe),
Olivia Wilde, Tim Blake Nelson (playing
Lester Flatt), Ed Helms (playing Earl
Scruggs), John C. Reilly (playing Charlie
Monroe), Sam Shepherd and Ashley
Judd, the world is set to receive another
huge bluegrass music wave similar to ‘O
Brother’. The film is based on Richard
Smith’s biography on Monroe, ‘Can’t
You Hear Me Calling’. Writer/director
Finn Taylor and Academy Award winner
Callie Khouri co-wrote the screenplay.
The soundtrack is being produced by
Ronnie McCoury and T Bone Burnett and
features some of our favourite bluegrassers:
Earl Scruggs, Ralph Stanley, Vince Gill,
Ricky Skaggs, Keb Mo, Dierks Bentley,
Del McCoury, Old Crow Medicine
Show, Chris Thile, Jim Lauderdale, Pam
Tillis, Patty Loveless, Peter Rowan and
Back in Australia, Sydney based string
band, Bellyache Ben & The Steamgrass
Boys sold out two ‘Oh Brother Where Art
Thou?’ tribute shows at The Vanguard in
April. They released a self titled EP back
in November 2011, showcasing Bellyache’s
brand of original Australian folk music,
tales of hard livin’, sour women’, pickin’
and singin’ with banjo’s ringin’. Hailing
from the Blue Mountains, Bellyache Ben
takes country, Appalachian, bluegrass,
twisted gospel and junkyard folk forging
them together to create the musical road
train that they call ‘Steamgrass’.
The Mid North hail from Bellingen NSW
and play mostly original Bluegrass and
Americana music.
They have just
released their
debut album,
You Were Right
About the Stars.
It features Mick
Albeck on fiddle,
Jenny Shimmin
on banjo, Pete
Fidler on Dobro,
Nick Dear on
mandolin, Kat
Mear on fiddle,
Ross Nickerson,
Mark Miracle,
Peter McLaughlin
The Company featuring
and more.
George Jackson
Members of The
Mid North ran a successful bluegrass
workshop in Bellingen back in April,
running through things like what bluegrass
is, where it came from, the rules, the
rhythms and the harmonies. They split
up attendees into instrument groups and
broke things down into chords, licks,
passing notes and instrument specific
backup techniques. It sounds like the event
was a success and they have intentions of
doing it again in the near future.
The latest on the 2012 Australian Youth
Bluegrass Scholarship winner George
Jackson is that he is off to the Grey Fox
Bluegrass Festival in New York. He has
also been in Pacific International Music’s
Hervey Bay studio recording an album
with his progressive band, The Company.
Melbourne based ‘neo-bluegrass’ band
Mustered Courage are currently working
& Flamekeeper when they were awarded
2007 IBMA Instrumental Group of the
Peter Nahuysen is putting on the 5th
Australian Bluegrass
Mustered Courage Conference and
Banjo Conference
at the Tranquil Park
Resort in Maleny 6-9
December. The event
started humbly, but
has grown into a major
undertaking that this
year will attempt to cater
to a range of bluegrass
instruments guitar,
mandolin, fiddle, bass
and the 5-string banjo.
Further ahead, 19 Feb
to 9 Mar 2013, John
Howie and Travelrite
International are hosting
the first ever Bluegrass
Music Cruise of New
Zealand and Southern
Australia. The luxurious
Voyager of the Seas will
depart from Sydney and cruise around
New Zealand, Tasmania, and along
Australia’s spectacular southern coast, and
make a number of stops along the way.
You can expect concerts and workshops
featuring artists such as the Hamilton
County Bluegrass Band (NZ), Bluegrass
Parkway, Mike Compton (US), Karen
Lynne, Coolgrass, Hardrive and Trev
Audie Blaylock & Redline