Earl Scruggs Music Festival 2023

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From festival kickoff to finale — Pete’s report on the 2nd Annual Earl Scruggs Music Festival, Mill Springs, NC. This very special festival had a huge growth surge in only its second year, with a great facility and a strong lineup featuring many major headliners as well as excellent lesser-known bands from North Carolina and elsewhere. … Read More

Remembering the Great Ukrainian-American Musician Peter Ostroushko — and Ukrainian Country Star Hank Chenko

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Like many of you, I’m watching the situation in Ukraine with dismay, while deeply inspired by the spirit of the Ukrainian people. Last month marked one year since the passing of a great Ukrainian-American musician, Peter Ostrousko, a good friend who performed on Prairie Home Companion throughout the show’s 40+ years. … Read More

Banjorama at MerleFest

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The April, 2014 edition of Merlefest included a special event Friday called the BanjoRama. Festival talent coordinator Steve Johnson had thrown an interesting assignment my way this past winter: coordinating ten banjo players to do an hour-long set on the the Doc and Merle Watson Stage.… Read More

The Wernicks in Russia

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Pete and Joan Wernick and Justin Hoffenberg have returned from headlining the first-ever Russia-America Bluegrass Jamboree. The event took place July 20 and 21, 2010 in the cities of Vologda and Semenkovo in “deep Russia”, an overnight train east from St. Petersburg. … Read More

Tsunami in Kauai

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Pete and Joan weather tsunami threat in Kauai! Today was “tsunami day” here in Hawaii. We got a call from the mainland that woke us up about 5am. Joan checked with the front desk and they were already apprised that there would be sirens at 6am, which there were. … Read More

Hot Rize for Public Consumption

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I am lucky to have had some neat opportunities in music these days. Along with three banjo camps and six or seven jam camps a year, I’ve gotten to perform with a number of cool groups in a variety of places (Ryman Auditorium and Carnegie Hall in just the last week, yow!). … Read More

Red Rocks Report

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“It was a thrill and a challenge to lead so many people. We had a lot of guitars and mandolins, some banjos, a few saxophones, a trumpet, a harp, a vena (a large stringed instrument from India), and quite a few percussion instruments. All acoustic. … Read More

MerleFest 2008 Report

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This was my 20th Merlefest, having missed only the first one, back in 1988. What an amazing event. I heard some of the most beautiful music and some of the most inspiring I’ve heard in a long time (Jerry Douglas Band and Levon Helm’s Ramble on the Road set concluding Saturday night).… Read More

Hot Rize Plays Steve Martin’s Wedding

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It’s been hard to keep this under my hat, but now it can be told: Hot Rize performed July 28 at the wedding of Steve Martin to Anne Stringfield, at his home in Beverly Hills, California. Due to Steve’s concern about disruption by paparazzi, we were asked to not discuss the event in advance.… Read More

Pete Recalls Time Spent with Jerry Garcia

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Notes From The Road: This is my “Pete’s-eye view” feature on this site, with reports on interesting people and events I encounter in my travels. I posted this piece in July 2006 on the BGrass-L discussion list when a number … Read More

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