18 December 2020

The latest BBN

The latest issue (no. 92, winter 2020) of British Bluegrass News (BBN), journal of the British Bluegrass Music Asociation, maintains its usual high standard of presentation and solid content. In length and depth the artist interviews are as good as anything in an American source, and better illustrated than most.

Editor Chris Lord contributes two six-page interviews: the first, with Leon Hunt, one of the most adventurous banjo-players on the British scene, includes his involvement with the Fairfield Banjo Company; the second is with the 'new-traditional' Alex Leach Band from east Tennessee.

Other features include 'Discovering bluegrass in Scotland', focusing on the Glasgow-based Fountaineers band (but passing over the Moniaive Michaelmas Bluegrass Festival, which for many in Ireland has been the main link to the Scottish scene); and a major 'Tab Corner' feature by Jack Baker, with 'I'm on my way back to the old home' tabs for banjo, fiddle, mandolin, and guitar. And much more, including guitarist Hubert Murray of Tullamore in the list of music teachers.

NB: The Moniaive Michaelmas Bluegrass Festival website announces that the 12th Moniaive festival will be held on the weekend 24-26 September 2021, with (as always) an impressive lineup; YouTube videos of all the bands on the bill can be seen on the website. They include Nu-Blu and Jeff Scroggins & the Scroggdogs. Incidentally, both Chris Lord and Jack Baker of BBN appear at the head of the Moniaive website as members of The Vanguards, who played at the 2017 Westport Folk and Bluegrass Festival and returned for a tour of Ireland in May 2019.

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