Bluegrass Alert!

By Berk Bryant

The Country Gentleman

This is a Bluegrass Alert!

All bluegrass fans, "the big one" is coming, actually rushing, this way. The IBMA World of Bluegrass 1990 is set for September 25-28 in Owensboro, Ky. IBMA (Intemational Bluegrass Music Association) is an organization developed to promote bluegrass music and to establish a trust fund to provide assistance to bluegrass performers in time of emergencies. Fans may join IBMA as well as folks who are in bluegrass.

Enough of that for now, as this is not about IBMA as an organization, but rather the big upcoming Fan Fest. An excellent place for this sort of thing is English Park in Owensboro. Right on the bank of the Ohio, a relaxing atmosphere, a good view of the river and the traffic up and down it and, best of all, best of all, bluegrass music fills the air from the likes of Jim & Jesse, Dry Branch Fire Squad, The New Coon Creek Girls, Tony Rice, Bill Harrell and so many others. It is somewhat difficult to be exact about who will be there because all of the stars that appear at the Fan Fest shows donate their time and efforts. Why? Well, it's just a way of supporting bluegrass, showing mutual support for a common goal, another opportunity to meet the fans and – let's face it – good PR for everyone involved. I'm glad this goes on as it does.

This year, for the first time, IBMA will have its initial awards program on Thursday night, the 27th. Who will win in the varied categories? As a voting member, I really don't know. At the time of this writing the final ballot has not been cast. Even if it were I still wouldn't know. I can't remember all of the nominees but I can tell you a couple of my picks: Wanda Barnett, female vocalist; Tony Rice, guitar; Little Roy Lewis, entertainer of the year; Glen Duncan, fiddle; and Raymond Fairchild, banjo.

Folks, the IBMA Fan Fest at Owensboro promises to be another bluegrass lover's delight again this year. I plan to be there – I think I'm gonna MC some again – and I hope you will be there, too. If you are and you see us, say hello.

I can hardly wait to see how the awards turn out, see friends again, make some new ones – one of which could be you – and one of the quickest and best ways is to be there. Remember, it's for us, the true- blue bluegrass fans.

Got all cranked up about IBMA, just looked up at my calendar (actually it was a page in Bluegrass Unlimited) and realized that there is also an exciting weekend of bluegrass September 21-23.

It's Bean Blossom time. That's right – Bill Monroe's Autumn Bluegrass Festival at Brown County Jamboree Park, Bean Blossom, Ind. The man himself, Mr. Bill, will of course be there all three days. Also former Bluegrass Boy for thirteen years, Wayne Lewis and his band. Wayne will get my vote anytime as being one of the best in bluegrass music today.

Dana Cupp & the Detroit Bluegrass Band from, where else, Detroit, Mich., will also be there. Having known Dana for several years now, I can promise you an excellent performance from this fine young musician. I am glad to see him getting into this part of the country. I have had good response to Dana's albums played on my program ("Sunday Bluegrass," Sundays at 8 p.m. on WFPL 89.3 FM, Louisville, Ky.) since June. Speaking of my program, the fellow that plays our theme, Raymond Fairchild, & the Crowe Bros., will be there Saturday. Among others, the Reno Brothers, sons of the great Don Reno, will be making an appearance on Friday.

Looks good for bluegrass fans in the coming weeks. Let's get out there and show our support for our kind of music.

If you don't mind, tell them you read about them in the Louisville Music News and heard 'em on WFPL 89.3~FM in Louisville, Ky. .

Bluegrass Bonus

(You missed this one, Berk. -Editor.)

The Rosine (Ky.) Fall Bluegrass Festival is scheduled for Friday and Saturday, September 7-8, at the community park, located one block off Hwy. 62 at Rosine, Ky., home of Bill Monroe.

Featured entertainers will be Jim Simpson and the Ky. Mountain Grass, Delmer Sexton and the Rone Co. Boys, the Western Ky. Bluegrass Gang, Kirk Brandenburger and Gang, Clyde and