02 November 2005


[Last update 18 Apr. 2016]

Here is a link to a detailed four-page memo, 'Thinking of touring in Europe?', produced by the European Bluegrass Music Association (EBMA).

The original version of this document was compiled from contributions by two distinguished leaders of American bluegrass bands with considerable experience of touring in Ireland.

The early draft has since been comprehensively rewritten and expanded by Kevin Lynch of the EBMA to apply to Europe in general, but all the advice holds good for anyone considering a band tour in Ireland.

[UPDATE 2016: As you will have found out if you tried the link, the EBMA seems to have dropped this document from its website. The BIB is preparing to republish the text, which will take a little time as it needs some updating itself.]

We also strongly recommend two articles on Bluegrass Today by singer, writer, guitarist, bandleader, and broadcaster Chris Jones (USA): 'International man of bluegrass' and 'International touring dos and don'ts'. Chris has toured a lot in Europe (though not yet, unfortunately, in Ireland), and his articles are both sound advice and good reading.

Venues: as a means of identifying venues favourable to bluegrass and old-time music, check the BIB calendar and calendar archive to get an impression of where touring bands have played in the last couple of years.

Updates 2015

(1) On 18 Feb. 2015 the BIB published 'For visiting bands - finding places to play', which supplements the information above.

(2) A major additional resource: on 2 Oct. 2014 a seminar on 'Gigging through Europe' was held at IBMA's World of Bluegrass in Raleigh, NC, with a panel comprising Greg Cahill, Amy Gallatin, Chris Jones, Chris Keenan, and Kathy Kallick, chaired by Angelika Torrie, who was then chairperson of the European Bluegrass Music Association and remains IBMA's International board member. Apply to the IBMA for a record of the proceedings.

Richard Hawkins, BIB editor
Originally posted 2010; updated June 2012; further updated March 2015, April 2016

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