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AUG. 7-10, 2014



35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out “Playing music is the easy part,” says Russell Moore with a laugh as he looks back on more than 30 years of doing what he grew up wanting to do. By the time he put together his band IIIrd Tyme Out, his musical vehicle since 1991, he says, “I was realistic enough to know that bands come and go. Being able to stay together is the hurdle everyone faces. So I didn’t have a preconceived notion that someday I’d be celebrating 20 years with IIIrd Tyme Out – but I did feel like I would be playing music for the rest of my life.” Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out have endured. In the process, they’ve managed to climb to the top twice, winning a slew of IBMA vocal awards, including two Male Vocalist of the Year honors, in the mid- and late 1990s, and then persevering through rough times to see Moore recapturing the Male Vocalist trophy for the past three years. Along the way, they’ve made a whole new generation of fans and, with the release of Timeless Hits From The Past ... Bluegrassed by Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, the quintet is poised to deliver its distinctive brand of music more widely than ever. In 1994, they earned the first of an unsurpassed seven consecutive IBMA awards for Vocal Group of the Year, along with Russell’s first Male Vocalist of the Year title. For the remainder of the decade and into the new century, IIIrd Tyme Out was among the most important acts in the field, earning acclaim for the compelling artistry they brought both to a string of well-received albums and to stages across the United States. However, partnership tensions and personnel instability came to a head, and with them, the very real possibility of an end to the group. It was at that point Russell Moore stepped up to lead the group. With Moore in charge, and his name now in front, recognizing both his new leadership role and the group’s single biggest musical

focus, IIIrd Tyme Out began to rebuild. Signing with Rural Rhythm Records in 2007, the quintet solidified a new lineup (the same one it has today), and the 2009 release of Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out, with its hit single “Hard Rock Mountain Prison,” paved the way for Moore to take another Male Vocalist honor in 2010. Prime Tyme and its irresistibly catchy “Pretty Little Girl From Galax” followed in 2011, as did another Male Vocalist trophy, and Moore was called to the stage yet again at the 2012’s IBMA awards to accept still further recognition of his pre-eminence as a singer. Yet IIIrd Tyme Out is hardly a one-man show, even with a frontman as spectacular as Moore. Wayne Benson, who joined the band nearly 20 years ago – just in time for the aptly titled Grandpa’s Mandolin – and stayed for nearly a decade

before taking a job with the John Cowan Band, returned in 2007; his tasteful, influential approach to the mandolin is a focal point of the group’s instrumental prowess even as he continues to contribute in the vocal department. Behind him comes fiddler Justen Haynes; a member for nearly a decade, he’s a second-generation bluegrasser who’s earned the admiration of peers and fans alike for his supple melodic lines and tasteful vocal support. Joining the veterans are two new members who, Moore says, have fit quickly and easily into IIIrd Tyme Out’s signature sound. Blake Johnson, a long-time member of The Hagar’s Mountain Boys and, for the past year, guitarist for Grasstowne, returns to his preferred role as bass player, while Keith McKinnon, who served memorable stints with his brother Kevin in singer Carrie Hassler’s band and in their own Still-House, takes over the banjo slot. Both men also contribute to the group’s award-winning harmonies. Add it all up, factor in an appearance on Billboard’s list of the 15 bestselling bluegrass albums for 2013, and the future is looking very bright for Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out. They will appear on the festival mainstage for one show at 8:35 p.m. Saturday. You’ll also find some of their members in workshops and showcases.

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35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival


2014 MBOTMA Festival, Under an August Moon Welcome to the 35th anniversary Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival. We hope you enjoy the more than 30 hours of main-stage concerts, daytime showcases and nightly dances in the Showcase Tent, fun and games in the Family Area, hands-on workshops in the Workshop Area, new excitement at the Underground, dozens of food and merchant booths in the Marketplace, late-night shows at Ranch House Live and all the campground jam sessions, and all under a full moon. This event is produced by the non-profit Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association (MBOTMA), and has been nominated three times as Event of the Year (2005, 2007, & 2010) by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) in

The Boxcars If you don’t know about the Boxcars by now, you have likely been practicing your accordion licks and not listening to bluegrass. The announcement of the formation of this new group made the rounds in 2009, and they were awarded the Emerging Artist of the Year award by IBMA in 2011. That same year, they also were named the Instrumental Group of the Year, which they have repeated in 2012 and 2013. Not that that should come as a surprise. Individual band members have played with Alison Krause and Union Station, Dusty Miller, the Lynn Morris Band, Curly Seckler, J.D. Crowe and the New South, the Dan Tyminski Band, and the Isaacs. With pedigrees

like that, it would have been amazing if they had not been so successful. The Boxcars are made up of Adam Steffey on mandolin (10-time IBMA mandolin award winner), Ron Stewart on banjo and fiddle (IBMA award winner on both instruments), Keith Garrett on guitar and Harold Nixon on bass. Founding member John Bowman recently announced his departure from the group, and, of special excitement to us here in MBOTMAland, has been replaced by former Sloughgrass member Gary Hultman from Birchdale, Minn. If you’re a fan of hardcore, straight ahead bluegrass, then this is your band. They play a mix of traditional songs, including numbers by Hank

Nashville. These activities are also made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund. We also owe our thanks to our sponsors and our 400 volunteers (over 400!). Thank you all for keeping us going.

Williams and A.P. Carter, mixed in with some great originals. And, while they’re widely known as an instrumental band, make no mistake about it, these guys can sing, too. Their three recordings – the self-titled The Boxcars, All In and It’s Just A Road – have all earned high marks and been on the top of the charts. When The Boxcars released It’s Just A Road in April 2013, members of the band fielded the usual interview questions about song selections, style, creative decisions and more. Both eloquently and quite simply, Steffey summed up the process, the project and the band philosophy in general with characteristic aplomb, saying “What’s wrong with just playing good bluegrass?”

Good bluegrass indeed! The album garnered a Grammy nomination for Best Bluegrass Album. The group’s website proclaims “We are humbled to have won the


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IBMA 2013 Instrumental Group of the Year for a third year in a row! We are also very proud of our own Adam Steffey for his win for 2013 IBMA Mandolin Player of the Year!”

The Boxcars will be featured on the festival main stage for one show at 8:35 p.m. Friday. Members of the group will also participate in various workshops and showcases.


35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Festival rules and policies Under the terms of admission, you enter the grounds on your own responsibility and assume all related risks. All federal, state and local laws will apply. Wristbands must be worn on wrists at all times. Admission to the festival grounds will be permitted between 9 a.m. and 11 p.m. only Thursday through Sunday, Aug. 7-10. Advanced festival admission to the grounds will be permitted between 2-10 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 3 and between 11 a.m. and 10 p.m. Monday through Wednesday, Aug. 4-6. The gate will be closed to admission at all other times.

Monroe Crossing Named in honor of Bill Monroe, “The Father of Bluegrass Music,” Monroe Crossing dazzles audiences with an electrifying blend of classic bluegrass, bluegrass gospel and heartfelt originals. Their airtight harmonies, razorsharp arrangements and on-stage rapport make them audience favorites across the United States

and Canada. Based in Minnesota, the group plays an average of 125 shows a year at major venues and festivals, frequently for non-bluegrass audiences — and people often comment they’d never really liked bluegrass music until they attended a Monroe Crossing concert! Monroe Crossing is made up of five very distinct

personalities with differing musical backgrounds and tastes, combining for a very unique ensemble sound. They are Derek Johnson: guitar, lead and harmony vocals; Lisa Fuglie: fiddle, mandolin, lead and harmony vocals; Matt Thompson: mandolin, fiddle and baritone vocals; Mark Anderson: bass and bass vocals; and David Robinson: banjo. Their paths crossed through the music of Bill Monroe so they like to say they had a “Monroe Crossing.” Among their many honors, Monroe Crossing was selected to showcase at the 2007 International Bluegrass Music Association Convention and they were inducted into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame in 2007. The only bluegrass band ever nominated as Artist of the Year by the Minnesota Music Academy, Monroe Crossing won the 2003 MMA Bluegrass Album of the Year award. The group also took home four awards — for Female Vocalist, Guitar, Mandolin and Banjo — at the MBOTMA’s 25th Anniversary Awards Banquet. Monroe Crossing has recorded 13 CDs and one DVD to date. Their lucky 13th CD is The Road Has No End, showcasing both the band’s unique originality and its high regard for the classic bluegrass tradition.

All vehicles shall be parked in one of three places: 1.) day parking (if you are attending for the day); 2.) your campsite (if you are staying overnight), or 3.) in handicapped parking (by request only). All vehicles in day parking lots must be removed by midnight each day. Vehicles left overnight may be towed. Campfires are allowed only in campground-provided fire rings or suitable off-the-ground fire containers. Where fire rings are not installed, you must provide your own suitable off-theground fire container. Fires must not be left unattended. No firewood will be allowed to be brought into the campground. Campfire wood will be available for purchase on the grounds. No roping of sites is allowed in the rough camping area. Tents or vehicles must occupy space. Generator hours are 9 a.m. to noon and 5 to 7 p.m. daily. No generator running is allowed at other times except in 24-hour generator area. Generators must be spark-arrested and meet guidelines for use within Minnesota state parks. Excessive noise, use of foul language or other rowdy behavior will not be tolerated and will be grounds for ejection. The Family Area should be considered a family affair. Please attend events with your children. No gas- or electric-powered cycles, dune buggies, go-carts, ATVs or other personal vehicles are allowed on the grounds. If you have special accessibility needs, please contact the festival administration at 1-800-635-3037 prior to the festival so we can best accommodate your needs. Use of private motorized handicapped vehicles is allowed under certain conditions. Use of bicycles is limited to daylight hours only.

The swimming beach is for campers’ use only. No lifeguard is on duty so please supervise your children. The beach closes at dusk. No glass, vehicles or pets are allowed on the beach. The main concert area (including the Food Court, the Family Area, all public tents and buildings and the trolleys) are non-smoking areas. Absolutely no fireworks of any kind are allowed on the festival grounds or in the campgrounds. No alcohol is allowed in the main concert/vending area. You may be asked to open containers for inspection upon entry. Pets are not allowed in the main concert/vending area. Pets must be leashed or enclosed in campers or cages in all other areas. Pets are not allowed on the beach. All debris from your pet must be picked up. The MBOTMA Festival reserves the right to ask any pet be removed from the premises if there are any problems or disturbances, especially barking. The MBOTMA Festival is not responsible for chairs, blankets or other items left unattended in the concert area. Chairs left overnight may be removed from the seating area. Chairs can be brought into the concert area after 8 a.m. each day. Please, no sun umbrellas in the concert area. All individuals entering camp on Thursday are required to have a Thursday-Sunday ticket package. Individuals entering camp on Friday are required to have at least a FridaySunday ticket package. Individuals entering camp on Saturday are required to have a Saturday-Sunday ticket package. No camping will be allowed with single-day tickets. The rough camping area will not be open until 2 p.m. on the Sunday prior to the opening of the festival. Prior to Thursday night, rough campers are subject to a per-night fee of $15/person (with a maximum of $30), payable to El Rancho Mañana. All campers under 18 years of age must camp with, and be supervised by, a responsible adult. Monte’s Meadow, and other portions of rough camping adjacent to the day parking area, is designated as a quiet camping area. Noise, including instrument playing, will not be allowed after 10 p.m. in these areas. Campers, please bag your garbage in yellow bags, aluminum in white bags and leave them along the road to be picked up nightly between 6 and 8 p.m.

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers

Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers have an energetic mix of quality bluegrass and gospel music, a professional presentation, inventive instrumental work, a wide variety of vocal arrangements including a capella quartets and tasteful, down-home humor. Their professionalism and successful, heavily played recordings have kept them in demand with a national audience. JMRR has been seen by thousands of fans across the country at nearly every national bluegrass event. Joe Mullins is a southwestern Ohio native who has been a recognizable banjo player, vocalist and radio broadcaster for 30 years. Mullins toured and recorded as a founding member of the band The Traditional Grass until 1995, when he purchased WBZI Radio in Xe-

nia, Ohio. Mullins recorded and performed with the band Longview, earning Song of the Year and Recorded Event of the Year awards from the International Bluegrass Music Association in the late 1990s. He was honored by winning an Instrumental Recording of the Year award in 2001 from the IBMA for his banjo work on Rebel Records’ Knee Deep In Bluegrass. Mullins was also one of many artists in 2006 sharing Album of the Year honors for Celebration of Life, on Skaggs Family Records. A contributing factor to JMRR’s success is their active marketing capabilities, due to Mullins’ network of radio stations in the Midwest, including a 24/7 webcast available at or the new “Classic Country Radio” app for Android and iPhone. Here are a few fun

Long Road Home Did you guess the identity of our “Mystery Band” before you arrived at the festival? Long Road Home was a lastminute, special addition to our 35th anniversary line-up; hence their name was missing from much of the early printed promotions. They became the mystery band on schedules and in social media. But we are very excited to be able to name them as performers for our “Under An August Moon” festival. When Long Road Home was formed by Justin Hoffenberg and Martin Gilmore in 2005, they struggled with defining the band’s personality and style. While other young bands often moved away from bluegrass, they found themselves moving toward it. At-

tracted to its power, simplicity and honesty, they focused all the more on staying true to the tradition they found inspiring and meaningful. They could wear suits on stage without obscuring their personality, and they could sound their best on stage without using technology foreign to the genre. The lineup has gone through a couple changes over the years, as often happens, but the spirit of the band has always remained the same. Still featuring Gilmore (guitar), Hoffenberg (fiddle), Pete Wernick (banjo), Jordan Ramsey (mandolin), and now with Andrew Bonnis on bass, Long Road Home continues to champion the music they love to represent. Each year you see more bands qualifying their

facts about Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers. They were the IBMA’s Emerging Artist of the Year in 2012. Mullins has earned five IBMA Awards and three SPBGMA awards during the past two decades. Their recent album, They’re Playing My Song, reached the Billboard Bluegrass and Bluegrass Unlimited Top Ten. Their single, “Bottom Of A Mountain,” reached #1 nationwide in December of 2012. They had the #1 Most Played Bluegrass Album on Satellite Radio in December of 2012 and again in March of 2013, and their song, “Some Kind Of War,” reached year-end top 30 most-played bluegrass songs. Mullins has a new duet album along with Junior Sisk called Hall Of Fame Bluegrass from which the song “Wild Mountain Honey” reached #1 nationwide earlier this year.

brand of bluegrass with an adjective: “hard-driving bluegrass,” “progressive bluegrass” and many others. These five musicians are proud to just call themselves bluegrass. You can see Long Road Home on the mainstage both Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Wernick, aka Doctor Banjo, will also take part in our Bluegrass Banjo Masters Showcase on Sunday. And a special new feature this year, the group will be your backup band for “Bluegrass Karaoke” in the Showcase Tent at 2 p.m. Saturday. You can sing or play a song with these pros. Look for the sign-up clipboard in The Gathering Place starting at 9 a.m. Saturday or after 1 p.m. at the Showcase Tent.


35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival


Festival first aid To make the Minnesota Bluegrass & OldTime Music Festival the safest possible for you and your family, we have professional medical personnel on duty 24 hours from 6 p.m. Thursday through 6 p.m. Sunday. If you need assistance or advice for minor medical needs, come by the medical-service station located adjacent to the festival headquarters tent and just across

exploring new facets of the genre while remaining true to their roots. Born in Fitchburg, Mass. and raised across the border in Coal Branch, New Brunswick, Canada, The Roys’ early childhood days were filled with music. “Our Grandma LeBlanc played Acadian tunes on her fiddle while my aunts and uncles joined in,” Elaine recalls. “It was truly ‘roots’ music. We fell in love with that ‘honest’ sound, and our harmonies seemed to

fit that style of music,” Lee adds. Growing up in a family where guitar pulls were a normal occurrence, Lee became adept on drums, bass and mandolin and joined his first bluegrass band at the age of 9. Elaine learned guitar and began singing at age 5, making her first onstage appearance at the tender age of 10. Though the siblings were keenly aware of each other’s talent, they had no idea they shared a common hope for the future. “I had always dreamed about going to Nashville,” Elaine states. “I was amazed when I learned my brother shared that vision as well.” For Lee, “It was something that we both wanted – and it just seemed natural to pursue it.” Since making the decision to move to Nashville seven years ago, it’s been one success story after another for the duo. Growing up on traditional country and bluegrass music had given them a strong stylistic base, and their sound developed into a blend of bluegrass, country, folk, roots and gospel music that resonates with the listener. Songs like the rollicking “Workin’ Girl Blues” and the timeless “Beautiful” earned them a strong following among

fans while helping them forge strong bonds with programmers, talent buyers and critics across the country. Phone lines began to light up with requests for their music, and the crowds at their live appearances began to grow. The accolades started rolling in with their wins for Inspirational Country Music Duo of the Year in 2009 and 2010. Their three recordings to date have all earned high spots on Billboard Magazine charts, Bluegrass Unlimited charts, Bluegrass Today charts, Sirius XM Radio charts and even a #1 on Amazon’s Bluegrass Best-Sellers list. Additionally, in 2012, Lee and Elaine were named ICM Bluegrass Artist of the Year and their song, “I Wonder What God’s Thinking,” was named the ICM Inspirational Country Single of the Year. 2014 found The Roys aboard the inaugural Country Music Cruise, winning the hearts of traditional country music fans and earning a coveted performance spot aboard the 2015 cruise. They were also named the #1 Bluegrass Artist of the 2014 International Acoustic Music Awards and were a featured act at the Folk Alliance International.

of rough camping. All routes end at the main venue area dropoff point within easy walking to the Main Stage concert area, Marketplace Stage, Showcase Tent, Family Area, Workshop Area and the Gathering Place.

The shuttles are free. But please, children should ride only when accompanied by an adult, no dogs are allowed and no smoking either. There are racks for your coolers, instruments and lawn chairs. Look for the “shuttle stop”

signs. Trolley stops are marked with a big “T” on the published festival maps. Shuttles will operate from 5 p.m. to midnight Thursday, 10 a.m. to midnight Friday; 10 a.m. to midnight Saturday; and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

from the main shuttle stop. For more serious problems, we have a First Responder service that will come and assist you. You can contact any of the festival volunteers at the various entertainment venues if you need help. For purposes of making your own 911 call, you should know that you are at El Rancho Mañana, 27302 Ranch Road in Richmond, Minn.

The Roys After years of hard work, siblings Lee and Elaine Roy have firmly established themselves as one of the pre-eminent acts in bluegrass today. As The Roys they bring immaculate harmonies, impeccable musicianship and strong songwriting to their music, combining a traditional vocal styling with a progressive instrumental attitude to enchant fans around the world. Proud to continue the “family harmony” tradition of the music, The Roys also revel in

Shuttle service You may have noticed various shuttles at the festival. There are three main routes. One runs through the reserved camping area, one to the day parking lots and the south half of rough camping, and the third covers the north half

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Brad Leftwich & The Hogwire Stringband Let’s start with a quote from Hogwire’s website, “Traditional Americana: superb fiddling, high energy, rich harmonies and a direct link with tradition drives Hogwire’s brand of American roots music.” It makes no difference how thoroughly modern you want to be with your labels such as “Americana” or “roots music,” and your fancy websites and Facebook pages. Those are for the masses. Underneath, the music is still honestto-goodness, sure-fire, thereal-thing, pure joy old-time stringband. And the Hogwire Stringband presents an exciting and sophisticated brand of old-time music, blending rich vocal harmonies with superb fiddledriven melodies backed by a dynamic rhythm section. Brad Leftwich anchors this band on fiddle and vocals, with long-time musical partner Linda Higginbotham on banjo and banjo uke. Sam Bartlett adds powerful rhythmic support on

guitar, banjo and mandolin, and Abby Ladin completes the sound on stand-up bass and vocals. The band is based in Bloomington, Ind., deep in the heartland of the United States. Leftwich has long been the gold standard for traditional old-time fiddling, and he is a highly regarded banjo player and singer as well. He grew up in Oklahoma in a family with at least three generations of old-time musicians, and learned directly from such legendary masters as Tommy Jarrell, Melvin Wine, Violet Hensley and the Hammonds family. In his nearly 40 years as a performer, he has released 12 feature recordings to stellar reviews, appeared on dozens of anthologies and created teaching materials that define the genre. He has entertained at the White House, backed up Doc Watson on stage and counts the late Buck Owens and John Hartford among his admirers. Brad

also plays with Alice Gerrard and Tom Sauber in the band Tom, Brad & Alice. Higginbotham is from a family of musicians and colorful characters with deep roots in the pioneer heritage of Indiana, Kentucky and Arkansas. She learned to play guitar from her father, a Tin Pan Alley songwriter, and was introduced to old-time music as a teenager in New York by Miles Krassen. She moved to Bloomington, in the early 1970s where she helped start an active community based on old-time music and dance. She began playing clawhammer banjo and banjo ukulele after meeting Leftwich, and together they spent many hours visiting and learning from older musicians in the Appalachians and Ozarks. The pair collaborated throughout the 1980s as Leftwich & Higginbotham, and in the 1990s with the Humdingers. They now play together as a duo and in the Hogwire Stringband. She is

widely known for her part in popularizing the banjo uke in old-time music. “If you are alive, Linda will make you want to get up and dance” (Don Stevens, All Music Guide). Ladin grew up immersed in the East Coast traditional folk music revival of the 1970s. As a dancer Abby was clogging by the age of 6, performing with her sister Evie by age 10, and touring nationally at 18 with the renowned dance and music company Rhythm In Shoes. As a musician, she has played bass with some of this country’s finest fiddlers, lending her percussive strength and blending harmony vocals with sweet simplicity. She has won several top honors in the traditional band competition at the Appalachian String Band Music Festival. Abby is also a member of The New Mules, founded by (the late) Garry Harrison, with whom she recorded the now legendary Red Prairie Dawn album in 2000.

Bartlett is a nimble, irrepressible performer on guitar, banjo and mandolin. His original compositions have been profiled on NPR’s All Things Considered, and The Thistle & Shamrock. His evocative musicianship has been featured in the Ken Burns documentaries, Prohibition and The Dustbowl. Sam is known as one of this country’s most engaging dance musicians, and has been crisscrossing the United States playing for dances for 30 years. He is also the author of a bestselling book on pranks and


parlor tricks, The Best of Stuntology (Workman Publishing). Hogwire will be a featured group on Friday and Saturday of the festival, playing the main stage on Friday night as well as Saturday afternoon, and for an old-time dance in the Showcase Tent on Saturday night. In addition, members of the group will be found in various specialty showcase events both days such as the Old-Time Banjo Masters Showcase, the Midwest Old-Time Fiddle Showcase and the Ukelele Craze Showcase.

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival


Bluegrass Karaoke debuts

Volunteers needed The Minnesota Bluegrss & Old-Time Music Festival depends on volunteers to serve your needs and fill more than 500 time slots to keep this festival operating smoothly. Prior to the festival, the volunteer MBOTMA Festival staff does the planning and preparatory work. During the festival, volunteers take tickets, sell shirts, watch the gates, provide handicap services, set up

the grounds and clean up afterward. Can you help us? Please stop by the festival headquarters and check out the volunteer schedule for openings. And don’t forget to thank all the volunteers you see. For their efforts they receive a specially designed volunteer shirt, and they make new friends, learn new skills and have fun too.

Stay nimble with morning yoga Lucy Weberling is the founder of Inner Smile Yoga located in Tulsa, Okla. She is a 200-hour certified yoga instructor educated at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health in Lenox, Mass., and is registered with the Yoga Alliance. Both organizations are dedicated to maintaining the integrity of yoga teaching. Weberling is also a long- time bluegrass musician and festival-goer, and is there-

fore well-versed in the rigors of the festival lifestyle – long hours, little sleep and sore fingers. So for you late-night pickers, and the rest of you too, Lucy will lead a morning yoga session at 10 a.m. both Friday and Saturday at the Showcase Tent. Come stretch your body, relax your mind, calm your spirit and prepare for another grueling festival day of fun.

We have an exciting new event this year at the Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Festival. There will be a special “Bluegrass Karaoke Hour” with Long Road Home as your backup band, happening at 2 p.m. Saturday in the Showcase Tent. Here’s your chance to get up and sing with some of the best! Festival attendees will get a chance to pick a song and join the band on-stage to show off their talents. This event is open to all ages who can carry a tune, play an instrument or both! Participants will be encouraged to choose a vocal selection (within the realm of bluegrass or related “standards”), although instrumental pieces are also welcome. Sign-up will be available starting at 9 a.m. Saturday in the Gathering Place, and should there be open spots after that time, you can find the sign-up sheet starting at 1 p.m. at the Showcase Tent. Please note: these five-minute time slots are designed for individual performers. We hope you’ll join us for this great addition to our festival!”

The Volo Bogtrotters According to Wikipedia, “The Volo Bogtrotters were an old-time string band, based in the Chicago area that played songs and tunes from the string bands of the 1920s and fiddle music from the Midwest, as well as from other new and traditional sources. The band was together from about 1984 to around 2002 and made four recordings on the Marimac Label. They played at many music festivals and traditional dance venues, known for their driving twin-fiddle sound and old songs gleaned from 78 rpm recordings. Six members of the band have recently united again (2012) to play at some dances and festivals.” Can this be true? Has the group actually reunited to come to the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival? The answer is yes. According to their own

Facebook page (yes, they have a Facebook page!), “The Volo Bogtrotters are back. A Midwestern favorite since their first gig at the actual Volo Bog in 1985, the band took a rest after the festival season of 2002; 2012 saw them re-emerge as now a sixpiece old-time music powerhouse.” And Jim Nelson recently assured me, “Just for the record, there are six of us in the band: Chirps Smith on fiddle and mandolin, Fred Campeau on fiddle, banjo and Hawaiian guitar, Paul Tyler on fiddle and mandolin, Steve Rosen on banjo, fiddle [that’s a lot of fiddles!] and mandolin, Tony Scarimbolo on string bass and harmonica, and me on guitar.” Doug Lohman recently wrote in his magazine “The Volo Bogtrotters are one of the premier old-time bands from the Midwest. They have maintained their fire, passion, joy and respect for the music since the 1980s when I first met them.” They hail from Chicago, Skokie, Evan-

ston, LaGrange, Wis. and St. Louis, Mo. There influences range from Gid Tanner & the Skillet Lickers, to the Cofer Brothers, Pappy Taylor and Lotus Dickey. Jim Nelson says “There is a strong Midwest bent for our instrumental tunes. Chirps brought in a lot of tunes he collected while playing with Indian Creek Delta Boys in the 70s, with Garry and Steve Harrison. But we also grabbed tunes from Mississippi, Galax, Oklahoma. When someone heard something that caught the ear, we worked it up.” The Volo Bogtrotters are on the festival main stage on Thursday night and Saturday evening, and you can dance to their music in the Showcase Tent on Friday night. You’ll also find various members of the group in various specialty showcase events throughout the weekend such as the Old-Time Banjo Masters Showcase and the Midwest Old-Time Fiddle Showcase.

Armadillo Sound & Design Armadillo Sound & Design provides the highquality sound reinforcement for both the Main Stage and the Showcase Tent at the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival. The company was established in 1986 by Doug Lohman to specialize in providing production (sound and lights) for acoustic-music events. Lohman has more than 40 years experience as a musician, having performed many styles of music, such as hootenan-

ny, acoustic rock, country rock, blues, bluegrass, folk, swing and Cajun. Lohman brings to his love of music of all genres the production of sound, and his technicians focus on making the voices and instruments as clear as possible to allow the audience to fully appreciate what the performers are doing. This love for the music and attention to detail are what sets Armadillo apart. You can visit them at

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

A Showcase Tent Preview Presented by State Bank of Richmond With its stage, large dance floor and room for several hundred people, the Showcase Tent provides an opportunity to hold some unique events as well as nightly dances. The so called “showcases” are special shows or demonstrations usually revolving around a theme or an instrument. Several performers of the same instrument but different bands, for example, are brought together to share the intricacies of their instrument. This is a forum for musicians to talk about their instruments, influences, techniques and style, as well as to demonstrate their craft in an informal manner. It is also a forum for festivalgoers to ask questions and talk with the performers. At night the Showcase Tent becomes a dance hall, and we have some great dances planned. In the morning it becomes an exercise yard with the return of Lucy Weberling and Inner Smiles Yoga. On Sunday morning it will be a church with a non-denominational service. Below is a schedule of other activities for 2014.

Thursday • 7 p.m. - Bluegrass Jamcamp Student Recitals Friday • 10 a.m.– Inner Smiles Yoga with Lucy Weberling. • Noon – Accordion Styles Showcase. Bill Monroe once had an accordion player in his band, and today it is showing up in all kinds of music. We happen to have several fine players on hand this year, including Anabel Njoes (Ana & The Beltones), Shawn Glidden (Ana & The Beltones), Patrick Harrison (The Cat Swingers), Dwight Lamb (Fiddler Nelson), and Ann Larson (Minnesota Fiddle Tunes Project). John Everist (Fiddler Nelson) will make sure we know the difference from the concertina. • 1 p.m. – Old-Time Banjo Masters Showcase. There’s no happier sound than that of the old-time banjo, and we have some of the best with us here. Quillan Roe (Roe Family Singers) will host Brad Leftwich (Hogwire Stringband), Steve Rosen (Volo Bogtrotters), Sam Bartlett (Hogwire Stringband) and Fred

Campeau (Volo Bogtrotters). • 2 p.m. – Old-Time Fiddle Masters Showcase. AJ Srubas will host fiddle masters Brad Leftwich (Hogwire Stringband), Dwight Lamb (Fiddler Nelson), Fred Campeau (Volo Bogtrotters), Paul Tyler (Volo Bogtrotters) and Chirps Smith (Volo Bogtrotters). • 3 p.m. – Bluegrass Fiddle Masters Showcase. Brian Wicklund will host Lisa Fuglie (Monroe Crossing), Ron Stewart (The Boxcars), Luke Birtzer (Sawtooth) and Clint White (The Roys). • 4 p.m. – Honky Tonk Guitar. Jack Klatt (The Cat Swingers) will introduce us to his style of finger-picked honkytonk-style guitar. • 5 p.m. – Stuntology. In addition to being a master old-time musician, Sam Bartlett (Hogwire Stringband) is also the author of a best-selling book on pranks and parlor tricks, The Best of Stuntology. Let’s find out what this is all about. • 5:45 p.m. – Ukulele Craze. Is it a craze? Ask our guests Linda Higginbotham (Hogwire Stringband) and Clint White (The Roys). • 7 p.m. – Old-Time Barn Dance with music by Mike In The Wilderness and caller Pop Wagner. • 8:30 p.m. – Scandinavian Dance with The Nordic Bees. Scandinavian tunes with only a hint of traditional nordic angst. They believe in practicing random acts of polska, and play lots of waltzes, schottisches and marches. They never met a polka they didn’t like. Scandinavian dance instruction will be available. • 9:30 p.m. – Old-Time Square Dance with music and dance calling from The Volo Bogtrotters. Saturday • 10 a.m. – Inner Smiles Yoga with Lucy Weberling. • Noon – Minnesota Fiddle Tunes Project Showcase. Clawhammer Mike (Mike In The Wilderness), Matt Edwards (Mike In The Wilderness), Renee Vaughan (Nordic Bees), Bob Dixon and Ann Larson will tell you all about their Minnesota Fiddle

Tunes Project, an effort to preserve, promote and learn Minnesota fiddle tunes. • 1 p.m. – Clogging Showcase and Workshop. Shawn Glidden, Abby Ladin (Hogwire Stringband), Matt Edwards (Mike In The Wilderness), and Julie Young will show you how it’s done. • 2 p.m. – Bluegrass Karaoke. Here is your chance to get up on stage and sing with the best of them. A last-minute addition to our line-up, Long Road Home will be your back-up band in this search-for-the-stars event hosted by Sophie Galep. • 3 p.m. – Youth All-Star Showcase. We have some fine young talent waiting in the wings. Not only will we get a chance to have a listen, but also find out how, when and where they got their start. Who were their influences and instructors? And is there any advice they may have for other young musicians who want to pursue music? • 4 p.m. – Midwest Fiddle Styles Showcase. Bob Bovee (Bovee & Wagner) will host this showcase about oldtime fiddle tunes that have a Midwestern origin with Chirps Smith (Volo Bogtrotters), Fred Campeau (Volo Bogtrotters), Paul Tyler (Volo Bogtrotters), Bill Peterson (Fiddlers Nelson), Tom Carlson (Fiddlers Nelson) and Dwight Lamb (Fiddlers Nelson). • 5 p.m. – Bluegrass Mandolin Masters Showcase. Chris Silver will host Matt Thompson (Monroe Crossing), Wayne Benson (IIIrd Tyme Out) and Ian Kimmel (Barton’s Hollow). • 6 p.m. – Bluegrass Guitar Masters Showcase. Chris Silver will host Derek Johnson (Monroe Crossing), Duane Sparks (Radio Ramblers) and Clint Birtzer (Sawtooth). • 7:30 p.m. – Old-Time Barn Dance with music by Fiddlers Nelson and dances called by Terrence Smith. • 9 p.m. – Old-Time Square Dance with music by Hogwire Stringband and caller Julie Young. 10:45 p.m. – Cajun Dance. We love that Cajun music! Ana & The Beltones will get us dancing. Check out the Cajun dance workshop at 3:30 at the Underground to get started.


Reserved Camping Area

Sunday • 8:45 a.m. – Bluegrass Worship Service with host Richard Dugan and music by TBA. • 11 a.m. – Open Stage. The stage will be open and the PA will be hot for any musicians or groups who are looking for their 15 minutes

of fame. We have space for six acts. You can sign up and reserve a time after 1 p.m. Saturday at the Showcase Tent. • 1 p.m. – Bluegrass Banjo Showcase. Ron Colby (Platte Valley Boys) will host Dr Banjo himself, Peter Wernick (Long Road Home) and

Joe Mullins (The Radio Ramblers). • 2 p.m. – What About The Bass? Adam Kiesling (Fiddlers Nelson) will host Randy Barnes (The Radio Ramblers), Eric Paulson (Mother Banjo) and Ross Willits (The Platte Valley Boys).


35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival



35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival


Dwight Lamb & Fiddler Nelson

Dwight “Red” Lamb is a musician from Onawa, Iowa. Dwight has been fiddling and playing accordion for nearly 60 years and comes from a heritage that includes several generations of fiddlers, including his father and grandfather. And who is Fiddler Nelson? It’s a group, not a person, and composed of Bill Peterson from Canton, S.D. on fiddle; John Everist from Brandon, S.D. on banjo, concertina, guitar and piano; Tom Weisbecker from Sioux Falls, S.D., on guitar, harmonica, and Dobro; Al Slaathaug from Fort Pierre, S.D. on standup bass; and Tom Carlson from The Road and Spink, S.D. on fiddle. Lamb was born in

Hands-On Workshops Presented by My Favorite Guitars

Workshops at the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival are meant to be “hands-on” workshops (H.O.W.). In other words, they are for people to bring their instrument, get it out and actually learn something they didn’t know before. That’s not going to happen with just one instructor and a large crowd of people, so we limit each of these workshops to seven people who have registered in advance. That is why there are only eight chairs at each workshop tent. To sort out who gets to sit in one of those chairs, you must reserve a spot by signing up ahead of time at the workshop tent. Sign-up sheets for the day will be posted at the workshop tent at 9:45 a.m. each day. Advanced-level workshops (tent A) are intended for players with several years experience and beginning-level (tent B) workshops are intended for those just starting out. If you’re not lucky enough to be one of the seven, or you are interested but don’t have an instrument, you are welcome to “audit” the workshop by standing and observing from the back. In addition to the HOW workshops listed below, there will be several workshop “clinics” at this year’s festival which need no sign-up to attend or participate. The

workshop area starts at 11 a.m. Friday with a Musical Saw Clinic. Adam Wirtzfeld of the Roe Family Singers will have his collection of musical saws on hand for you to try one out. There are also three workshop events at the Underground on Saturday afternoon. A Square Dance Calling Workshop will be held at 2:30 p.m. with Paul Tyler of The Volo Bogtrotters on hand to teach some of the basics of calling dances for Square and Barn Dances (with live music from Mike In The Wilderness). At 3:30 p.m., there will be a Cajun Dance Basics Workshop with Ana & The Beltones providing music while Karen Kleinspehn teaches the basics of Cajun-style dancing. This workshop will get you set for the dance on Saturday night. And starting it all out at 1:30 p.m. will be a Songwriters Round Robin hosted by Paul Schulte. This is an opportunity to share your original music in an acoustic nonamplified setting. Participants will have the option to give a one- to two-minute introduction to their song, and then play their song, and then we’ll move on to the next song-

writer’s song. Just show up and do it! Banjo (Bluegrass) Workshops. Level A at noon Friday with Daniel Patrick (The Roys) and at 5 p.m. Saturday with Keith McKinnon (IIIrd Tyme Out). Level B at noon Friday with Shane Birtzer (Sawtooth) and at 5 p.m. Saturday with David Robinson (Monroe Crossing). Banjo (Old-Time) Workshops. Level A at 3 p.m. Saturday with Steve Rosen (Volo Bogtrotters). Level B at 3 p.m. Saturday with John Everist (Fiddler Nelson). Bass (Bluegrass) Workshops. Level A at 1 p.m. Friday with Erik Alvar (The Roys). Level B at 1 p.m. Friday with Ethan Moravec (Sawtooth). Bass (Old-Time) Workshops. Level A at 3 p.m. Friday with Tony Scarimbolo (Volo Bogtrotters). Level B at 3 p.m. Friday with Adam Kiesling (Fiddler Nelson). Fiddle (Bluegrass) Workshops. Level A at 2 p.m. Saturday with Justen Haynes (IIIrd Tyme Out). Level B at 2 p.m. Saturday with Evan McGregor (Radio Ramblers). Fiddle (Old-Time) Workshops. Level A at 2 p.m. Friday with Bill Peterson (Fiddler Nelson) and at noon Saturday with Brad Leftwich (Hogwire Stringband). Level B at 2 p.m. Friday with Tom Carlson (Fiddler Nelson) and at noon Saturday with Chirps Smith (Volo Bogtrotters).

Moorhead, Iowa on May 16, 1934 to Clarence and Mary Lamb. Descendants of Danish immigrants, the Lamb family cherished the traditions of self-made music and entertainment. Lamb’s grandfather, Chris Jerup, played traditional Danish melodies on the single-row button accordion and the fiddle. His father played the fiddle and his mother chorded on the pump organ. His great-grandfather, Kraen Jerup, was a famous fiddler in Denmark and his tunes are still played in Denmark to this day. In 1946, Chris Jerup moved in with the Lambs and it was then Lamb started to learn Danish tunes on his grandfather’s accordion. He cap-

Guitar (Bluegrass) Workshops. Level A at 5 p.m. Friday with Keith Garrett (Boxcars). Level B at 5 p.m. Friday with Derek Johnson (Monroe Crossing). Guitar (Old-Time) Workshops. Level A at 11 a.m. Saturday with Sam Bartlett

tured about 100 tunes from his grandfather and most of the tunes weren’t named. Lamb is also known for his Missouri Valley style of fiddling, which he picked up from radio, records and Decatur fiddler Bob Walters. The Missouri style is defined by both repertoire and the accent a fiddler puts on the bow. Lamb has played in, won and judged many fiddle contests throughout the Midwest. He was a featured performer in the Smithsonian’s 1996 Festival of American Folklife and the Sesquicentennial Festival of Iowa Folklife. He is a past recipient of the Iowa Arts Council Folklife Award and has several times been the recipient of Traditional

Arts Apprenticeship grants to teach fiddling in Iowa and elsewhere. He is also featured in the Department of Cultural Affairs Cultural Express program on Iowa Danish traditions and has a variety of recordings available. You’ll find Lamb on the festival main stage on Saturday evening and Sunday afternoon. Fiddler Nelson will be playing dance music at the Showcase Tent on Saturday night. And members of the group will be found in various specialty showcase events both days such as the Old-Time Banjo Masters Showcase, the Midwest Old-Time Fiddle Showcase and the Accordion Styles Showcase.

(Hogwire Stringband) and at 4 p.m. Saturday with Tom Weisbecker (Fiddler Nelson). Level B at 11 a.m. Saturday with Paul Tyler (Volo Bogtrotters) and at 4 p.m. Saturday with Jim Nelson (Volo Bogtrotters). Mandolin (Bluegrass)

Workshops. Level A at 4 p.m. Friday with Adam Steffey (Boxcars) and at 1 p.m. Saturday with Mike Terry (Radio Ramblers). Level B at 4 p.m. Friday with Jesse Moravec (Sawtooth) and at 1 p.m. Saturday with Scott Stebbins (Platte Valley Boys).

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35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

The Drunken Catfish Ramblers Traveling Medicine Show & Hokum Minstrels

Platte Valley Boys The Platte Valley Boys has existed in one form or another since 1975 and is now celebrating 40 years playing some of the best traditional bluegrass in the Upper Midwest. Founding member Ron Colby (banjo) has been influential in developing interest for bluegrass music and furthering its growth in Minnesota, for which he was inducted into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame in 2005. Tony Andreason (guitar) is known to many as the lead singer and guitarist with the legendary rock ‘n’ roll

group The Trashmen, who toured extensively in the 60s and had the hit song “Surfin Bird.” He was inducted into the Minnesota Music Hall of Fame in 2005. Scott Stebbins (mandolin) joined the band in 1985 and has become the band’s primary lead singer and has written several songs. Newcomers Ross Willits (bass) and Catie Jo Pidel (fiddle) round out the band and in 2007 The Platte Valley Boys became the first bluegrass band to be inducted into The Minnesota Rock & Country Hall Of Fame.

The Drunken Catfish Ramblers are, at their core, a street band. Although young in years, they have a lifetime of collective experience playing the streets of the world,

not to mention the stages of the Montreal and New Orleans Jazz Fests, Merlefest and Clifftop (where they won first place in the Neo-Traditional Band category), and more..

They started years ago as a freight-hopping bunch of travelers swapping songs, bottles and stories as they made their way east from California. But New Orleans was destined to play host to their signature sound. Their sets comprise a cross section of the best of American vernacular music, from delta blues to Appalachian stomps to early jazz and popular songs. The guitar and vocal interplay between Greg Sherman and “Stalebread” Scottie Swears

can be as sweet as cider or cut like the dozens. Backed by the hypnotic drive of R.C. Hampton’s washboard and the jugbased style of Robert Ayo’s tuba, it’s a potent combination. Mr. Gunn’s accompaniment provides solid counterpoint, ragging and syncopating the lines with uncommon ease or laying down the melody line with uncanny accuracy. They treat every song like a mint condition 78, so it’s no surprise they sound like it too.

at campsites. Only one photo will be accepted per person. Photos need to be 300 dpi high-resolution jpgs, and all submissions must become property of MBOTMA. The MBOTMA Festival Staff will review all entries

and nominate the best to be contest finalists. These finalists will be displayed at the Harvest Jam on Saturday, Nov. 22 during the banquet reception and dinner participants will vote on a winner. So start taking those pics now!

Festival photo contest Who wouldn’t want to win two free four-day tickets to the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival? If you like to take photos, then this is your chance to enter your best shot in our photo contest and win tickets to our 2015

festival. Anyone can enter – just submit your photo jpg to by Nov. 1. Photos can be of any aspect of the 2014 Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival, from acts on the main stage to random pictures of jams

The Family Area

Presented by Gruber Pallets

The Family Area has become a festival tradition for many of the families that attend the festival. In addition to the stage shows that are intended for a wide range of ages, there will be games, contests and craft projects too. Each day The Family Area will start at 10 a.m. with a scheduled craft and kid-friendly area to play some rhythm instruments, sing some songs and, weather permitting, hold a Maypole dance. Then one of the highlights of the Family Area will be the “Pick Up & Play An Instrument” at 10:30 a.m. both Friday and Saturday mornings. This is a hands-on workshop-style event and anyone can join in. Our friends from Sloughgrass will help you, and even loan you an instrument to learn a tune on. At 11:30 a.m. you’ll play your tune in the Big Jam with every-

one else. The family friendly stage shows start around noon each day. On Friday we’ll see Bob Bovee & Pop Wagner, The Nordic Bees and Sloughgrass. On Saturday it’s the Long Shots, Fiddlers On Fire, the Yellow-Bellied Sapsuckers, Aaron Lockridge and The Froemming Family. Sarah Mae & The Homestead Boys, The Halvorsons and The Froemming Family will finish things up on Sunday. The Family Area Talent Show will be back on both Friday and Saturday at 1 p.m. One act will be selected each day to do a “tweener” spot on the main stage later in the day.

And we intend to create various categories for all runners up that highlight their particular talents and foster a positive experience for all participants. Watch for many additional activities to be posted on the board just outside the Family Area. There will be ongoing activities like crafts, painting and various projects from 10 am. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and our joyful clean-up at 3 p.m. Sunday. There will be some kind of treat for everyone to look forward to when we’re all done, and one last good song or dance before we all split up for another year. Come join our family.

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Sawtooth Bluegrass In the tradition of classic bluegrass brother harmonies, the Sawtooth Bluegrass Band, with two sets of musical brothers, melds the sounds of the original bluegrass masters with the fresh sounds of today. Combining close harmony vocals, driving instrumentation and a sense of fun and high energy, they have a stage show

that has audiences wanting more. These young men are bringing audiences of all ages to their feet at fairs, festivals, opera houses and charity events across the Midwest. Their repertoire includes traditional and contemporary bluegrass, classic country, gospel, original pieces and even some 70s era rock. The band has

made several appearances in Branson, Mo., performed at numerous bluegrass festivals, the Minnesota State Fair and on stage with A Prairie Home Companion’s Garrison Keillor. Tight vocal harmonies and precision picking are getting them recognition, as they’ve received numerous accolades and awards. They were featured on Minnesota Public Television’s Off 90 season premier in February, 2010. The band features the 2009 and 2011 Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar Champion Clint Birtzer, and the 2011 Minnesota Duet Champions Birtzer and Jesse Moravec. Their performance at the 2010 Minnesota Duet Championships resulted in an invitation to play on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion Show on the grandstand at the Minnesota

State Fair. The group was also the “Race for a Place” Champions at the Harvest Jam Acoustic Music Experience in Minneapolis in 2008. Sawtooth has released four CDs to date. The group is comprised of the Moravec brothers from Wabasha, Minn. (Ethan on bass and vocals and Jesse on mandolin and vocals) and the Birtzer brothers from Rosemount, Minn. (Clint on guitar and vocals, Luke on fiddle and vocals, and Shane on banjo). You can see them on the mainstage both Thursday and Friday night and at the Underground late night Friday. Members of the group will be giving various workshops on Friday, and the singing duo will be featured along with other Duet Champions in the Marketplace Friday morning.

Join the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association

This festival is produced by the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association Inc. (MBOTMA), a non-profit organization with more than 1,000 members. You can find out how you can join and receive the benefits of membership such as ticket discounts, a subscription to Minnesota Bluegrass Magazine and more at the MBOTMA Raffle and Mem-

bership booth in the Main Stage Area. Anyone can join, and it’s a great way to get involved and support the preservation and promotion of bluegrass and old-time stringband music in Minnesota. MBOTMA produces four other festivals in addition to this festival. MBOTMA’s Winter Bluegrass Weekend is the first weekend in March and held at the Crowne Plaza Minneapolis West in Plymouth. The Minnesota Homegrown Kickoff is always the weekend after Memorial Day

right here at El Rancho Mañana. The Harvest Jam Acoustic Music Experience is the weekend before Thanksgiving at the Marriott Minneapolis West. And the Cabin Fever Festival will be March 20-22, 2015 in Duluth. MBOTMA also produces the Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar and Duet Championships at the Minnesota State Fair on Labor Day weekend and numerous concerts throughout the state as part of the Bluegrass Minnesota Community Concert Series and the Lonely Pines Concert

Series. You don’t need to be a member to receive information about our events. Stop by the MBOTMA booth or call us at 800635-3037 and ask to be on our mailing list to receive a postcard about any upcoming events in your area. Or email us at info@ and ask to receive our monthly email calendar of events. You can also keep track of everything happening on our website at www.minnesotabluegrass. org.


Blue Hazard Blue Hazard is made up of siblings Hannah (Gruber) Johnson, Luke Gruber and Dale Gruber, and musical extraordinaires Clara Wicklund and Uriah Nibbe. Blue Hazard was formed in 2000 and has evolved over the years to become the band it is today. Their sound merges traditional hard-driving bluegrass with popular acoustic music. It was not too long ago that Dale Gruber Sr. bought a little mandolin and fiddle for Luke and Dale Jr. when they were just tykes roaming the hills of the Minnesota Old-Time Bluegrass Festival (then held at the Camp in the Woods Resort near Zimmerman, Minn.). Luke and Dale began their musical careers in the band “Dad n’ the Craw-

dads” which consisted of Dale Gruber senior on the guitar, Luke Gruber on the mandolin and little Dale Gruber on the fiddle. Later Luke and Dale formed The Gruber Family Band with Dale Sr. and their sister Hannah and mother Diane. Finally, after years of trying to form the perfect band, Hannah, Luke and Dale joined forces and as Blue Hazard won several talent shows, recorded their first two CDs The Old Home Place and All I Know and performed on the main stage at MBOTMA. Wicklund and Nibbe joined Blue Hazard in 2011, and today they continue to move ahead with one goal: to enrich people’s lives with bluegrass music with a contemporary twist.


35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Jack Klatt and the Cat Swingers Mike in the Wilderness Mike In The Wilderness: Old-Time Stringband is composed of Spencer Anderson on fiddle and vocals. Although the heartbreaker in the group, Anderson is too serious about fiddling to be bothered about romantic encounters. You can usually find him at the local square dances or jams. Matt Edwards, on harmonium, banjo uke and vocals, is the only one whose day job actually has to do with music. He is the newest member of the Wild Goose Chase Cloggers, so that might improve his luck with the ladies – time will tell. Lee Mystrom, on bass and vocals, is happily retired and

plays bass all day. She is often referred to as mom in the group because she is actually Clawhammer Mike’s real mother. Clawhammer Mike, on banjo and vocals, geeks out on anything clawhammer banjo or old-time related. Last year he put out the Minnesota Fiddle Tunes Project, which set out to preserve some of the forgotten fiddling traditions of his home state. And Carly Kryzer on guitar, who plans on leaving all of her earthly possessions behind to walk the Pacific Coast Trail this summer. Now that she is finished with school she will soon be free to pursue a nomadic lifestyle.

Jack Klatt, a native of Minnesota’s Mississippi river banks, has traveled far and wide through the highways and bi-ways of America, Europe and Canada with his guitar always nearby. A self-taught musician and lyricist with eyes and ears wide open, he’s always eager to soak up songs and stories. Klatt has sung in countless bar-rooms, cafes, living rooms, theaters and street corners all over the world, entertaining folks

with his boisterous fingerpicking style and whiskeyworn voice, continuing the troubadour tradition of folks like Utah Phillips, Blind Willie MacTell and Towns Van Zandt. In 2009, Klatt settled down in Minneapolis, formed a band and founded the Cat Swingers. Soon enough he found himself performing around 100-150 nights a year perfecting his crafts of performance and songwriting. In 2011, he re-

ceived a Minnesota State Arts Grant to record a collaborative album with a number of veteran Minnesota legends including Spider John Koerner, Dakota Dave Hull, Cornbread Harris and Charlie Parr. Mississippi Roll

has since garnered praise all the way from California to the UK. With a solo album, Love Me Lonely, under his belt you can expect to see him on the road, with or without his band, rollin’ through a town near you.

S t o p by t h e G a t h e r i n g P l a c e The Gathering Place always seems busy even though there are few things scheduled there. That’s because it’s a central meeting place for folks to join a jam session or just get together. It’s a place for folks interested in bluegrass and oldtime music to gather and get to know one another. All are welcome to stop in so please come join us. We will treat you to a cup of coffee, tea or ice water. Our facility is available for you to ask questions, make new acquaintances or meet with old friends. Pickers – bring your instruments. We have a new Gathering Place annex to make more picking room! Listeners – come by and visit. No experience or requirements needed to have a good time. Newcomers to the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival are especially welcome. Here are a few scheduled

activities you’ll find at The Gathering Place. The annual Crafter’s Gathering will be from 9-11 a.m. Saturday. Bring any quilts or crafts you have made or are working on and we’ll have a great time sharing our projects and ideas with one another. The coffee will be on and everyone will be welcome, whether you have a craft to share or just want to see what others have done. Bill Cagley will host several of his slow jams on both Friday and Saturday. These are a great way for beginners to get a taste of playing with others in a jam setting. Cagley will intro all the songs, call out the chords as you go and generally lead everyone through a great time. Friday at 11 a.m. is a beginner’s jam, then at 3 p.m. Cagley will host an intermediate level jam. On Saturday he has a young people’s jam

planned at 11 a.m. and another beginner’s jam at 3 p.m. And also on Saturday at 1 p.m. the Minnesota Fiddlers Association will present a Fiddlers SloJam. John Wallace will lead this

jam session especially for beginner and intermediate fiddlers and others. They assure you the tunes will be played at a slow to moderate tempo.

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival


The Froemming Family The Froemming Family is a remarkable bluegrass and gospel music family band from Manannah, Minn. Scott and Anna (bass) have been married for 30 years and home school their children Ruth (mandolin and

guitar), Faith (fiddle), Elsie (banjo), and Carl (guitar).

Lots to find in the Marketplace Break with Bovee & Wagner 11:30 a.m. Lunch Break with Duet Contest Winners 5 p.m. Dinner Break with The Drunken Catfish Ramblers Presented by Deering Banjos

Inside the main concert area you will find our marketplace and merchants alley. We’ll have about a dozen food vendors grouped around our marketplace stage and almost 20 merchants selling wares along merchant alley (in the back of the concert area). And while you’re eating all this great food under the shade of the marketplace tent, you can enjoy a little entertainment before and during the breaks in the main-stage music on our Marketplace Stage. An exciting new event at the 2014 festival will be the Marketplace Family Fair on Thursday from 4-6 p.m. This is the new opening event of the festival and will include music, games, prizes and of course food. Many of our food vendors will already be open for business, and you’ll be right there when the main-stage show starts immediately after at 6 p.m. So bring the family and enjoy the first day of the festival in the Marketplace. Thursday NEW! Marketplace Family Fair from 4-6 p.m. 4 p.m. Dinner Break with Northern Lights Bluegrass 5 p.m. Dinner Break with Roe Family Singers Friday 9:30 a.m. Breakfast Break with The Nordic Bees 10:30 a.m. Breakfast

Saturday 9:30 a.m. Breakfast Break with Fiddlers On Fire 10:30 a.m. Pete Seeger Memorial Community Sing-Along 11:30 a.m. Lunch Break with The Drunken Catfish Ramblers 5 p.m. Dinner Break with The Yellow Bellied Sapsuckers Sunday 9 a.m. Breakfast Break with The Halvorsons The list of food vendors in the marketplace is wide ranging. B Concessions will be selling kettle corn. Chapman Concessions is your Mexican stop with steak and chicken fajitas, burritos, tacos, nachos and taco salad, plus breakfast burritos in the morning. Then cool off with a fruit drink, freshsqueezed lemonade, orange treat or strawberry treat from Orange Treets. They also have cheese curds, corn dogs and footlongs. The American Dairy Association will be selling shakes and malts. Sip of Class serves coffee, espresso, lattes, iced drinks and anything coffee, plus gyros, and breakfast sandwiches and muffins. El Rancho Mañana has a stand that sells pop, water, chips and candy. Doc E’s BBQ has mouthwatering, slow-roasted barbeque by the sandwich, plate or pound. And we have some new food vendors this

year. Sweet Williams will be cooking up hamburgers, chicken brats, grilled cheese, soup, German potato salad, garlic mashed potatoes, wraps and salads, plus pancakes, sausage, and biscuits and gravy for breakfast. Wild Earth will be baking hand-crafted pizza in their wood-fired brick oven. And Aston Concessions will have shaved ice, funnel cakes, pretzels and cotton candy. In addition to the good food, there are a string of exhibitors and crafts people around the back of the main-stage concert area. Honnie Ammann has quillows, throws and hair garlands. Earth Elements has handcrafted journals, bags and jewelry. Links of Love has infinity scarves, charms, snuggle blankies and framed photos. Talisman Trading has jewelry. And there is also Carol & Mike’s magnetic jewelry. Jolly Lama has juggling toys for kids of all ages. The Moon Company has clothing, jewelry and instruments. And you can even get a massage from Abigail or Amy. We also have many musical vendors. Offbeat Violins has violins and accessories for sale. Tone Music has musical instruments and supplies. Earthway Farm has many fine musical instruments.

Fussy Baby Guitars has unique cigar box guitars. And of course you’ll want to stop in at our sponsors’ booths, Nechville Banjos and David Vincent Guitars & Mandolins.

Ana & The Beltones Ana and the Bel-Tones are enthusiasts of Cajun music, playing traditional tunes and having a great time doing it. Tom Surowicz of the Star Tribune offered this description of the group: “Despite being so far upriver, in the land of walleye not crawfish, the Twin Cities has always had a lively little Cajun music scene. Now there’s a band in town breaking some new ground — in gender, if not genre — the all-female Ana and the Bel-Tones.

“Favorites at Sea Salt restaurant in the summer, the charming tradminded combo is also a perfect fit for the popular Monday Night Cajun Dance series at the Minneapolis Eagles Club, where two-stepping, waltzing and jitterbugging are the rage.” Members of the group include Anabel Njoes, Shawn Glidden, Shelly Siegel, Vaughn Asselstine, Amelia Biere, Karen Kleinspehn and Liz Mohan.

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival


Roe Family Singers The Roe Family Singers are a good-time, old-time hillbilly band from the Mississippi-headwaters community of Kirkwood Hollow, Minn. Led by wife and husband Kim Roe (Best Female Vocalist, City Pages/Village Voice) and Quillan Roe (Accident Clearinghouse), the band blends characteristic old-time sound with rock ‘n’ roll urgency and influence.

Joined by as many as seven musicians, and featuring banjo, autoharp, guitar and washboard, the band and family of fans have been regularly filling Minneapolis’ 331 Club every Monday night since 2005. In 2010, the band opened for both Doc Watson and Del McCoury, each playing at the Cedar Cultural Center; the Grascals at the

MBOTMA Winter Bluegrass Weekend; and Jim Kweskin and Geoff Muldaur at the National Jug Band Jubilee in Louisville, Ky. In 2011, the band was awarded the prestigious McKnight Fellowship for Performing Musicians, and has previously won the title of “World’s Best” at the 29th annual Battle of the Jug Bands. The Roes are often joined by these fellas in various combinations: Adam Wirtzfeld plays the musical saw, Kurt Froehlich plays the homemade mandolin, Dan Gaarder plays the guitar and will also sing from time to time, Rich Rue plays the Dobro, the tri-cone and the mountain dulcimer, Rob Davis on the jug, and Eric Paulson plays bass. With a mix of original music and contemporary takes on oldtime, traditional and gospel tunes, every performance raises a ruckus.

The Underground presented by Harvest Carriers

The Underground is the new name of the former Young Talent Stage, the newest stage venue at the Minnesota Bluegrass & OldTime Music Festival. We wanted to change the name because the old name implied the place was for kids. It is, but it isn’t. We hope all ages will find the Underground a cool place to hang, meet friends and see great music that may be just a bit out-of-the-box. The music and activities schedule has been expanded and will include stage shows both Friday and Saturday from 5:30-11:30 p.m., and also several workshops and clinics on Saturday afternoon from 1:30-4:30 p.m. Many of our main-stage acts will be visiting the Underground, including The Roe Family Singers, Jack Klatt & The Cat Swingers, The Drunken Catfish Ramblers, Blue Hazard, The Froemming Family, Barton’s Hollow and Sawtooth Bluegrass. In addition we’ll be hosting a couple of very special guests that you won’t be able to see anywhere else at the festival. On Friday at 9:30 p.m. it’s the Dead Horses, based out of Northeastern Wisconsin. They are a truly unique new-age stringband that brings a modern approach to American roots music; with a style they’ve dubbed folkgrass. This four-piece group, comprised of two guitars, mandolin, fiddle and upright bass, is led by the

Bob Bovee & Pop Wagner Renowned folk musicians Bob Bovee and Pop Wagner are teaming up to entertain us not only on the festival mainstage Saturday afternoon, but they will also be in the Family Area, at the Marketplace, in a showcase and calling a dance too. And they’ll be our host emcees for the big Saturday night show. Pop has quite the reputation as a singer, picker, fiddler, lasso twirler, poet and downright funny guy. He appeared quite frequently on Public Radio’s A Prairie Home Companion during the

show’s formative years and for the last four decades he has worked his cowboy magic throughout 44 states and 10 countries. His cowboy anthems crackle with the warmth of a prairie campfire and his old-time fiddle tunes set toes a-tappin’ while he serves up spellbinding rope tricks and tall stories – all with a good dose of friendly humor. Bob Bovee has traveled the country since 1980 taking old-time music to audiences of all ages at festivals, fairs, concerts, dances, schools, libraries, music camps, and ra-

sweet voice of singer/guitarist Sarah Vos, who is the winner of the 2013 Upper-Midwest SingerSongwriter Competition. Dead Horses was also nominated for a 2012 Wisconsin Area Music Industry (WAMI) Award in the category of Bluegrass/Americana. And on both Friday (8:30 p.m.) and Saturday (7:30 p.m.) it’s Barbara Jean & Dave Gustafson. Calling Minnesota’s North Shore home for the better part of the last decade, Barbara Jean crafted her debut record, The Great Escape, which brings together rich imagery from Lake Superior’s rugged banks, reflections on difficult choices poised in matters of the heart and masterful musicianship. Inheriting a musical legacy passed from grandmother to mother to daughter, she has honed her early gift for the violin into a sharp eye for songwriting and a skilled hand as a multi-instrumentalist playing banjo, fiddle and viola. Her gift for songwriting has been recognized on a national level with accolades from the prestigious Telluride Bluegrass Festival Troubadour Contest and the Big Top Chautauqua, earning her a spot on the esteemed Mountain Stage radio show. She has shared bills with such notable acts as Trampled By Turtles, Leon Russell, Kathy Mattea, Junior Brown, Low, The Pines, Eilen Jewell, Martha Scanlan and more.

Win a banjo, guitar, harmonica set or autographed poster dio and TV programs. Along with a repertoire including dance tunes, ballads, cowboy songs, humorous and sentimental numbers, blues

and rags, he spiced his shows with stories, history, folklore, and played fiddle, guitar and harmonica (and he yodels!).

Don’t forget to test your luck by purchasing a ticket for the MBOTMA raffle. You choose your prize by placing your ticket in the appropriate bucket for each prize. The winner for each prize will be drawn and announced from the mains stage at 3 p.m. Sunday afternoon. You do not need to be present to win. In addition to the main prizes, we’ll be drawing throughout the weekend for additional prizes that will be on display at the raffle booth in the main concert area. And this year we have a bonus “second-chance” prize, a MBOTMA 3-foot x 6-foot throw we’ll draw for from all four raffles combined after the drawing for the main prizes. Tickets are $5 so stop by and try your luck while supporting the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association. The four main prizes are: • A Nechville Five-String Banjo. The premium, quality craftsmanship of these instruments is

readily apparent, so come check it out yourself at the raffle booth. No other banjo can compare. Retail value of $3,980. • A David Vincent Guitar. These are the same instruments used for top prize at the Minnesota State Flatpicking Championships at the State Fair. Retail value of $2,900. • A set of three Hohner Harmonicas: a 2-1/2 Octave Key of G Chromonica, a 3-Octave Key of G Chrometta12, and a Big River Harp. Plus a Hands-Free Harmonica Holder, Retail Value: $400 • This is exciting! A framed, autographed copy of our unique 2014 festival poster. You can purchase a copy of this at the shirt stand, and we’ll have the framed version on display at the raffle booth, but after the festival we’ll substitute a copy that we’re having autographed backstage by many of the performers, making this a unique one-of-a-kind item. Retail value: priceless.

35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

Mother Banjo Featuring Ellen Stanley on banjo and vocals, Mother Banjo is a New England-raised, Minneapolis-based songwriter. Called “an outstanding poet” (Inside Bluegrass), she was a Midwest Final-

ist for the prestigious Mountain Stage NewSong Contest and has been featured nationally on Sirius XM Radio and An engaging live performer, Mother Banjo weaves humorous stories with

fun covers and her own original material. She has performed at prestigious venues like The Ark (Ann Arbor, Mich.) and the Cedar Cultural Center (Minneapolis, Minn.) and has shared the stage with notable songwriters (Lucy Wainwright Roche, Cliff Eberhardt, Tracy Grammer and Storyhill) and poets (Robert Bly and Todd Boss). She has toured across North America, performed at South By Southwest (SXSW) and just played a sold-out release show at the world-renowned Dakota Jazz Club. Following up on the success of her CDs Stray Songs and The Sad and Found (named the #10 album of the year by the St. Paul Pioneer Press), she releases her highly anticipated new album The Devil Hasn’t Won on her own label So Low Recordings.

Ranch House Live hosts ‘open mic’ series What Is It? Ranch House Live is a laid-back informal open-mic series. This is a chance for you and your friends to put together a few tunes to perform on the Ranch House Live stage. The idea is to strut your bluegrass, old time or related stuff in a casual and laid-back environment. The emphasis is on friends, fun and good music, not perfection. The sets will be 30 minutes on the hour and 20 minutes on the half hour, allowing for a five-minute emcee and setup time between sets. This odd-time format allows for some shorter sets to encourage groups that only have a short set list or have never been on stage to just have fun or show us what they’ve got. Where Is It? Ranch House

Live is held in the newly remodeled El Rancho Mañana Campground & Riding Stables ranch house (campground office) located near the main entrance to El Rancho Mañana. It will be held at 8 p.m.-midnight Thursday, Friday and Saturday. This is the venue you can sit down inside and order a beer and food. There is also a new outdoor deck with fireplace and speakers. The wait staff will be available to serve your needs so invite all your friends to this unique venue. Can I Emcee? We also use this series to develop additional emcee talent which we can draw upon in the future for our other stages and festivals. This is an important role as the emcee binds together the entire process

keeping the audience connected and engaged during the band change-overs and the bands within the time slots. We are especially looking for younger volunteers to get involved as emcees. Mentoring and assistance is provided along with a clipboard of information and jokes. Please consider signing up as emcee. How Do I Sign Up? Advance festival sign up was available on the MBOTMA website at During the festival you can sign up for any remaining times at the Gathering Place during the day or at the Ranch House during Live hours. If you have problems or questions contact Earl at 612868-1313 before or during the festival.

An Americana gospel collection produced by Steve Kaul (The Brass Kings), it showcases her all-star five-piece band that includes guitarist Dan Gaarder (Trailer Trash, The Roe Family Singers), bassist Eric Paulson (The Roe Family Singers, Jennifer Markey & The Tennessee Snowpants), mandolin player Jim Parker (Ukrainian Village Band, Town Hall Stompers) and pianist/ drummer Ben CookFeltz (The Federales, Art Vandalay). Featuring lively originals and unique covers of songs she calls “pub gospel,” the new album shows why Mother Banjo has been hailed for her poetic songwriting and powerful vocals, winning the praise of such artists as Josh Ritter and John Gorka.


Barton’s Hollow Barton’s Hollow is a bluegrass, gospel and acoustic music band based in Minnesota. Although the band members are young (the oldest being 20 and the youngest 16), they became an award-winning group in 2013 when they were crowned the Race For A Place Champions at the Harvest Jam Acoustic

Music Experience in Minneapolis. The members include Ian Kimmel (vocals, mandolin, mandola, guitar), Kiley Ellingson (vocals, guitar, bass), Max Etling (vocals, guitar), Hugh Stier (banjo, vocals), Daniel Halvorson (fiddle, Dobro, vocals) and John Halvorson (bass, vocals).


35th Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival

How about a guitar on a stick? Championship at the state fair

Every year at the end of the summer Minnesotans have a habit of heading to the Minnesota State Fair. But this year fair goers will find the Heritage Square Stage is gone. Not to worry, as it has been rebuilt and renamed and is now the West End Market Stage. You’ll still find the “deep-fried pickles” and “pork chops on a stick” and you’ll also still find the Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar & Duet

Championships, hosted by the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association. This year the Championships will be more exciting than ever with the announcement of even bigger prizes. For the Duet Championship, The Podium (new location in Minneapolis) will be providing not one, but two full-size Breedlove guitars. For the Flatpicking Guitar Championship,

David Vincent of David Vincent Guitars is again donating one of his fine guitars. During the festival this weekend you can see his fine instruments on display at the David Vincent Guitars & Mandolins booth in the marketplace. And in addition to these grand prizes, there are many cash prizes as well. There are two days of competition. On Friday, Aug. 29, MBOTMA presents the Minnesota Duet Championship. In the preliminary round, up to 20 duets perform two selections in the oldtime, bluegrass, country

or western-swing style using one or two acoustic instruments and two voices. Three professional judges will listen to the performances in front of the stage, where they can see the contestants. In the championship round, the top five duets perform one song each. The grand prize is a pair of Breedlove guitars from The Podium with a retail value of $500, and a cash prize of $200. Plus trophies and cash prizes for the next four duets: 2nd place $200; 3rd $100; 4th $75; and 5th $50. The Minnesota Flatpicking Guitar Championship takes place on Saturday, Aug. 30. In this contest, the judges are sequestered backstage and can’t see who is competing. In the preliminary round each contestant

plays two instrumental numbers on the six-string guitar in the traditional fiddle tune or bluegrass style. In the championship round, the top five guitarists go on to play two additional tunes. The grand prize is a handmade Dreadnought guitar by David Vincent Guitars with a retail value of $2,500. There will also be trophies and cash prizes for the other four contestants who make it to the championship round: 2nd $350; 3rd $250; 4th $150; and 5th $100. Plus trophies and cash prizes for the top performers in the preliminary round: A) Ages 21 & Under 1st $40; 2nd $20; and 3rd trophy, B) Ages 22 to 55: 1st $40; 2nd $20; and 3rd trophy, and C) Ages 56 & Up: 1st $40; 2nd $20; and 3rd trophy.

Anyone can enter either of the contests (or both!). Registration is on a first-come first-served basis and is limited to the first 20 who sign up. Registration for either Championship is only $20 if you register before Aug. 15, and this includes State Fair Gate Passes for the contestants and accompanists and also contest T-shirts for both. You’ll find full entry information at or call 800635-3037 and ask that a contest entry brochure be mailed to you. Good luck!

Coffee drinks ~ Italian Soda ~ Wine & Beer ~ Appetizers Lunches ~ Ice Cream and Malts ~ Bakery ~ Desserts Aug. 15-17 - Weekend of Songs Songwriters Festival Aug. 22 - Mosquito Shoals Aug. 23 - David Berner LIV E Aug. 29 - Benny K 8 p music .m. Aug. 30 - James Warren at w eek every Sept. 5 - Benjamin Raye end ! Sept. 6 - Song of My People/Flannel Jammers Sept. 12 - A Breeze Sept. 13 - Megan Elizabeth Sept. 19 - BrakeAway Sept. 20 - One for the Road Sept. 27 - Coffee Shop All-Stars

Open Mic every Tuesday from 7-10 p.m. For booking inquiries, visit our website. Open every day ~ Wi-fi always on 19 W. Minnesota St. • St. Joseph 320-363-1011

MN Bluegrass 2014  
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