Carlton HaneyInterview

Bing’s Bluegrass Blog-The Carter Familyby Andy Bing

NEW! Let's Talkby Dick Bowden

Playlist - No Banjo, No Problemby David Chernack

Let’s Talk

by Dick Bowden

I’ll Give You a Topic and then – Let's Talk

The title comes from a gag in an old Saturday Nite Live skit called “Coffee Talk”. Two Queens ladies and a guest would prattle about everyday life: “dogs, coffee, daughters, we’ll talk!” After a while the lead lady would say something like “I’ll give you a topic – Rhode Island is neither a road nor an island – Discuss!” (Of course one of the ladies was played by Mike Myers in drag…

So instead of a Trivia Question, I’ll give you a topic – you discuss! Using the Comments section at the bottom of the column, please write in with your thoughts. Just keep it civil. It’s OK to say you don’t like something, just avoid personal attacks.

So, let’s try this out and see what happens, OK? If you’d like to remain anonymous for the follow-up column we’ll take of that. I hope we can have some fun, and learn more about the bluegrass thoughts of our on-line followers.

I’ll Give You a Topic – Do you enjoy/tolerate/or actively dislike seeing bluegrass bands who “plug in” for their concerts, and why? Let's Talk!

I’ll tell you, I got positively downhearted at the last IBMA Week I attended in Raleigh NC in 2014. At the outdoor “street fair” free concerts (there were around 10 separate street stages) nearly every band was plugged in, very loud, and the band members were swanning around on the stage like rock ‘n’ rollers. Even some of the bands at the “indoor” concerts were plugged in. Singers of course stuck to the mics, but instruments went “free range”. I fully expect soon to see singers wearing those head mics like they now use on Broadway and at seminars/conferences. Yuck! To me, this is just too far from the spirit and practice of bluegrass as it existed from the beginning through the end of the 20th century. I’m a firm believer that “bluegrass sounds the same when the power goes off”. It disheartens me to see a few modern bands that I really would like to love, but their habits of plugging in just make my spirits drop. What are your thoughts?

The HVBA hosts two monthly jam sessions!

The Manor at Woodside
168 Academy Street
Poughkeepsie, NY

All jams are cancelled until further notice.

Held on the first and third Wednesdays of each month.


All of our jam sessions feature the Slow Jam, which happens during the first 60 minutes. From 6:30 to 7:30, we invite you to play at a sane pace in a supportive, non-competitive environment. The regular jam begins at 7:30 and all level players are welcome for the entire evening.

For info, call Lynn at 914.456.1981

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