Review: Summertown Road

Last October while attending the IBMA's annual convention in Nashville, TN, I heard a group of musicians picking and singing in a lounge area of the second floor of the Renaissance Hotel. I moved closer and found myself captivated by their sound--especially the banjo playing. I watched the white-haired gentleman picking the 5 string with obvious ease and grace, but drew a blank on who he might be. I asked my friend Ron Barnett, standing next to me, if he knew, and he said he wasn't sure but thought they were from Kentucky. Then Ron asked someone he knew, and whispered back to me, "Jack Hicks."  Well, the last time I saw Jack Hicks was when he was playing banjo with Bill Monroe and his Blue Grass Boys between 1971 and 1973. Those dates coincide with the years I made annual pilgrimages to Bill Monroe's festival in Bean Blossom, Indiana. Jack was one year out of high school back then, and, as I recall, had jet-black hair.


An old African phrase goes something like,"It takes a village... "

Well, it took our HVBA village to make the Gibson Brothers concert such a huge success.  Aside from the fact that we had such excellent musicians with a large fan base, we had so many people who were working hard to make everything flow smoothly.

This Week ONLY - Jam will be at Mariner's on the Hudson

We jam this Wednesday, April 14,  at the Mariner's on the Hudson at 6PM.  For this week only, there will be no Slow Jam.  All jammers are invited to start playing at 6PM.

The Pirate Canoe Club was unavailable for this night and we are excited to explore a new jamming venue.

Call the restaurant at 845.691.4711 for directions and/or check the map on our Events Tab.

The jam will begin at 6pm and end at 10pm. 

The Gibson Brothers 4.17.10

The Hudson Valley Bluegrass Association is proud to sponsor the Gibson Brothers with Special Guests, Too Blue! 

Where:  The James Earl Jones Theater
             Poughkeepsie Day School - Middle School
             260 Boardman Road
             Poughkeepsie, NY
Doors:   Open at 6:15PM
When:   Saturday, April 17, 2010 at 7PM
Tickets: Available at the door.

Tickets now available at the door only.

Interview with Mike Barber of the Gibson Brothers

NOTE: Be sure to also read the interviews with Leigh Gibson and Eric Gibson

Lynn Lipton recently asked me if I would be willing to interview Mike Barber.  I am not a journalist and I have never attempted something like this, however, as a bluegrass bass player I greatly admire Mike’s playing and I jumped at the opportunity.  Mike caught my attention when I first heard the Gibson Brothers’ album Bona Fide about seven years ago. He plays with tremendous drive and energy.  He is a master of what I refer to as the three T’s: Taste, Tone, and Timing.  Mike is a great bass player and I thoroughly enjoyed having this conversation with this extremely gracious musician.


RB:  I understand you have been with the Gibsons for almost 20 years.

A Review of David Parmley and Continental Divide’s “3 Silver Dollars”

Since the early days of California’s landmark bluegrass band, The Bluegrass Cardinals, David Parmley has been setting his mark as one of the best singers, songwriters and band leaders in the business.  His smooth-as-velvet baritone voice is easy to identify amidst the scores of tenors out there today.  On “3 Silver Dollars,” he again reminds bluegrass fans everywhere that he has still got it!

While his band, Continental Divide, has seen some changes over the years, the lineup for this recording project was: David on guitar and vocals, Dale Perry on banjo and finger picked guitar, Kyle Perkins on bass, and Ron Spears on mandolin and tenor vocals.   I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting any of the other members on this group, but I have met Ron Spears on several occasions and jammed with him at IBMA’s World of Bluegrass in Nashville.  Ron, formerly of Special Consensus, is a wonderful singer, songwriter and talented mandolin player.
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