Berk Bryant

Bluegrass Beat
By Berk Bryant

September fades to October and puts us on notice that Fall is here, or almost. Although I prefer Summer and Spring, much can be said for Fall, Winter is left out in the cold, or a term not used like it used to be, Autumn. Both conjure up visions that are similar and yet different. In part, one seems a bit more gentle than the other. Either way, it is clear that Winter is on the way and soon. This all boils down to the clear observation: Roll with the flow; there's nothing we can do about it anyhow.

Strictly Bluegrass

September had some interesting events for me. Gary Brewer had his Strictly Bluegrass Festival at Iroquois Park. A good show and Gary has been able to keep it FREE. The attendance was off a bit this year and my guess is that it was due to a combination of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that we are no longer burning gasoline in our cars. Apparently it is liquid gold! Still the folks that showed up had a good show with some very good acts.

Bluegrass on the Tube

Gary number two. Brewer has started "This Week In Bluegrass," a TV program taped at Music Ranch USA at West Point, Ky. Taping is done on Thursday afternoons at 4:30, with different guests - both local and national - each week, Guests on the first show were the Baker Boys, two youngsters 11 and 14. They proved themselves worthy.

Gary's purpose is to help preserve the old-time music and in part to give exposure to some of the young pickers who are coming on. There is a charge for the concert show that follows the taping.

Magic Tidbit

Just an aside with an interesting tidbit, the sort you pick up in brief conversations, that I learned last month: The Louisville Magic Club had its annual public show at Iroquois Park in September. As a member, I did my usual backstage assisting. The feature act and MC was Master Magician Lance Burton. Lance was home - he is from Louisville - on vacation from his regular show in Las Vegas and the timing was right for him to participate. In a brief conservation I mentioned my show on WFPK. Lance then said, "Twenty-five years ago, I opened the show at Tombstone Junction for Bill Monroe."

You just never know what's going to come out of a bit of chit-chat.

Vine Grove 'Grass

I can't say much about the Vine Grove festival, as it takes place after this writing, but before you read this month's column. I do, however, have every reason to believe it will be a success. I'm sure they will have a bang-up Friday night with Sassafras, The Warrior River Boys and Cherryholmes Family.

Looking Ahead

That's a little of what's been; now let's see what's coming.

_ At WEST POINT, Music Ranch USA, Gary Brewer will be doing a TV taping every Thursday, 4:30. Guests will be: October 6, Dean Osborne & The Moron Bros. October 13, Vernon McIntyre. Sunday October 30, 2 p.m., Music Ranch will have Sassafras opening for LEROY TROY and Johnny Berry.

_ SHEPHERDSVILLE Music Place: C.R. Wilson starts on the14th, with Wayne Lewis Band and Clarence Kelly Band. October 21, Vince Combs and Shade Tree Grass. October 28, Sammy Adkins & The Sandy Hook Mountain Boys. November 4, David Parmley & Continental Divide.

_ THE MUSEUM of APPALACHIA, Norris, Tennessee: Tennessee Fall Homecoming. October 6-9, featuring Rhonda Vincent, Dr. Ralph Stanley, Leroy Troy, Doyle Lawson, Mac Wiseman, Raymond Fairchild and hundreds of other musicians. It's all Appalachian. Music on 4 stages all day, arts and crafts (must be Appalachian crafts), demonstrations of the old ways and much, much more. As I heard one fellow comment, "They have the best food of any festival I have been to."

_ IBMA Fan Fest, October 28-30, Nashville Convention Center, Nashville, Tenn. The Awards Show will be at the Ryman Auditorium October 29.

Fall Fund Drive

The WFPK Fall Fund Drive will be October 7-15. This season has brought us a lot of need for helping hands all over the country. I, for one, feel confident that the many faithful and dedicated listeners and supporters of WFPK and Public Radio Partnership stations will again come through with the support that shows your appreciation for our efforts. Programming of a variety and specialization that you find uniquely only on public radio. Help keep it going.

Till Next Month

Well friends, fans and bluegrass music lovers, that's about all I can squeeze out for this time. I hope to see you somewhere; I've listed enough places and events for you to show up somewhere and come by and say howdy. I know you can come by (by way of your radio) every Sunday night, WFPK, 91.9 FM, 8-11 And remember, we are streaming audio from our Website - WFPK.org. Click on "listen live," and bless you, there we are. Let me hear now, will you? And maybe sometime we can have a doughnut together.