06 August 2020

BU - August 2020 (update)

The latest issue of Bluegrass Unlimited contains a lot that has special significance for the bluegrass fan in Ireland. The cover story by Derek Halsey is about Laurie Lewis (headliner at Omagh an incredible twenty years ago). Bob Webster writes a major feature on Rick Faris, best known here as mandolinist/ guitarist and lead singer with the Special Consensus but with the foundations laid for a major career as songwriter, recording artist, and luthier. Professor Jack Bernhardt, in charge of the McAuley Lectures series at many Omagh festivals, writes on Charles Pettee, who played and instructed at Omagh several times.

Richard D. Smith gives a Highlight Review to the latest album by award-winning Australian artist Kristy Cox, who toured here in May 2019, should have been here in May 2020, and will be here in May 2021. (The review section of the BU website is still linked to the July reviews, so keep looking for when the August reviews appear.) Nancy Cardwell contributes two features, one on celebrated songwriter/ activist Si Kahn (see Si's latest newsletter here) and one on Z Mandolins, made of carbon fibre.

Mother goes to the Care Home

This month it will be three years since the death of Peter V. Kuykendall, the moving spirit of BU (and a great deal else) throughout its history. Two days ago the Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame & Museum in Owensboro, KY, announced that it has acquired BU and will continue to publish the Mother of Bluegrass Magazines, with the Nov. 2020 issue being the first to appear under its auspices. The press release has some nice photos, and to judge by John Lawless's feature on Bluegrass Today everyone concerned seems very happy with the arrangement.

Update 27 Aug.: John Lawless reports on Bluegrass Today that Dan Miller, formerly editor of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine, will be the new editor of Bluegrass Unlimited as from the Nov. 2020 issue.

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