Category Archives: Bluegrass

Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman: Rhonda Vincent July 12, 2012

Rhonda Vincent is an award-winning bluegrass singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist. Famously crowned “the new queen of bluegrass” by the Wall Street Journal. In 2010, she released her album “Taken,” which she released on her own label. While amazingly independent, she is proud to acknowledge the contributions of her longtime band The Rage consisting of Hunter Berry, Mickey Harris, Ben Helson, and Aaron McDaris, as well as her collaborations with artists such as Dolly Parton, Richard Marx, and Next Big Thing. Rhonda Vincent and The Rage have over 70 awards to their name, with honors including an IBMA Entertainer of the Year award and an astounding seven consecutive IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year awards. Vincent is an incredibly talented, self-motivated, independent woman who is seemingly taking over bluegrass, one song at a time.

Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers, made up of Joe Mullins, Adam McIntosh, Tim Kidd, Evan McGregor, and Mike Terry, feature a charismatic blend of country, gospel, and bluegrass. From slow country ballads to bluegrass instrumentals at breakneck tempos to dense harmonies reminiscent of old gospel music, Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers will leave you absolutely stunned. Before working with The Radio Ramblers, Joe Mullins performed with the band Longview, earning Song of the Year and Recorded Event of the Year awards from the IBMA. He also took home the IBMA Instrumental Recording of the Year award in 2001 for his banjo work on Rebel Records’ “Knee Deep in Bluegrass.” Mullins owns a number of Ohio radio networks featuring Bluegrass and Gospel music. He has been nominated for 2010 SPBGMA for Broadcaster and Promoter of the Year, and one of his stations, WBZI, was nominated for Bluegrass Radio Station of the Year. When it comes to both knowing and performing great Bluegrass music, no one appears to do it better than Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers.

Rhonda Vincent and Joe Mullin and the Radio Ramblers will play Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman on Thursday, July 12. For more information and to purchase ticket click here.


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Chris Thile & Michael Daves and The Boxcars This Week on Bluegrass Nights!

The Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Series continues this Thursday night, June 28, with Chris Thile & Michael Daves and The Boxcars! Tickets are only $26.50 and are available here.

If you like hardcore bluegrass featuring twangy, flawlessly-blended harmonies, then you’re in for a treat for this week with Chris Thile & Michael Daves. Many may know Chris Thile as the former mandolin player for Grammy-Award winning band Nickel Creek; however, Thile continually proves that his skills step far beyond Nickel Creek, or even the bluegrass genre. In 2006, Chris Thile expanded his horizons when he initiated the collaboration that developed into Punch Brothers, a band that radically ties bluegrass to elements of rock, pop, jazz, and even classical. In 2005, when Thile met Michael Daves, a Georgia-born New Yorker with a fearless voice and a fondness for bluegrass, the pair immediately connected. The dynamic duo came out with an album entitled “Sleep With One Eye Open” in 2011, which Nashvillean Jack White produced. The combination of Thile’s technical-style of mandolin musicianship and Daves’ emotionally-charged guitar and vocal parts, along with their intertwining vocal harmonies, this pair is the perfect balance of musicianship and passion, leaving a lasting impact on any audience.

The Boxcars, made up of Adam Steffey, Ron Stewart, John R. Bowman, Keith Garrett, and Harold Nixon, have a smooth, seamless, classic country and bluegrass sound, featuring skillful instrumentation and dense vocal harmonies. The makeup of the band is rather impressive: Steffey was once a member of Union Station, Stewart is one of the most sought after multi-instrumental session players in bluegrass history, Bowman has worked for Alison Krauss and is married to one of the Isaacs, Garrett is a founding member of Blue Moon Rising, and Nixon has toured with the band JD Crowe and the New South. Last year, The Boxcars took home the 2011 IBMA Awards for Emerging Artist of the Year and Instrumental Group of the Year. Adam Steffey and Ron Stewart also won awards individually: Adam for Mandolin Player of the Year and Ron for Banjo Player of the Year. With this incredible amount of talent and experience under their belts, The Boxcars are sure to delight any bluegrass lover.

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Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman Vince Gill + Sarah Jarosz Photos

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Vince Gill and Sarah Jarosz Open Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman

Guitar-slinger Vince Gill is kicking off the annual Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman series on June 21 with Sarah Jarosz.  Tickets are available here and cost $26.50, or a series pass is available for all six shows for only $140.

Vince Gill is most famous for being a phenomenal country music star with hits like “Go Rest High on That Mountain” and “Don’t Let Our Love Start Slippin’ Away,” but his talents extend far beyond one genre.  Gill grew up playing guitar, banjo, bass, mandolin, dobro, and fiddle, playing in bluegrass bands even as early as high school.  Earl Scruggs, a legendary banjo player and member of The Original Bluegrass Band founded here at Nashville’s historic Ryman Auditorium, heavily influenced Gill’s musical style.  In response to Scruggs’ recent passing, Vince said, “It feels like losing my musical father … I don’t know if music would have spoken to me if it wasn’t for the sound of Earl’s banjo.”  Inspired by country and bluegrass pickers alike, Vince Gill is one of the most respected performers, musicians, and songwriters of our time. Gill has won eighteen CMA honors and twenty Grammy® Awards.  He has also sold over twenty-six million albums, and is a member of the Country Music Hall of Fame.


Sarah Jarosz is a bluegrass multi-instrumentalist, singer, and songwriter.  Jarosz first picked up a mandolin at age 10, and now, she plays octave mandolin, banjo, and guitar as well.  In 2009, the year she graduated high school, she released her debut album, “Song Up In Her Head” on Sugar Hill Records.  Her collaborators included Chris Thile, Darrell Scott, Stuart Duncan, and Jerry Douglas.  When listening to Jarosz, it’s easy to see why The New York Times calls her “one of acoustic music’s most promising young talents.”  Although Jarosz is only 21 years old, her incredible singing, picking, and songwriting abilities are well beyond her years.  This will the second time Jarosz has appeared on Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman.

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June 14, 1994 :: This day in Ryman history.

On this day in 1994, Bill Monroe and Alison Krauss took to the very stage where Bluegrass was born to kick off the first Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman.

The tradition started by The Father of Bluegrass continues this summer with an impressive lineup of who’s who in the Bluegrass genre. Tickets are $26.50 per show, on sale now and available here.

2012 Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman

June 21 Vince Gill with Sarah Jarosz
June 28 Chris Thile & Michael Daves and The Boxcars
July 5 Gibson Brothers, Steep Canyon Rangers, and The Roys
July 12 Rhonda Vincent and Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers
July 19 Dailey & Vincent
July 26 Ricky Skaggs

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Pickin’ on the Plaza during Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman June 21 – July 26, 2012

Come early to Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman for our Puckett’s Pickin’ on the Plaza showcase for your chance to become Chicken Rich!

Each week, a top regional band will perform on the Ryman plaza starting at 6:00 p.m. visit the 650 AM WSM table to register to win a “Chicken Rich” prize pack including a t-shirt, Hatch poster and cooler of delicious Springer Mountain Farms chicken delivered to your door! The winner’s name will be called from the stage each Thursday night by a Springer Mountain Farms representative and legendary 650 AM WSM announcer Eddie Stubbs!

The lineup will be as follows:
June 21 Freshwater Creek
June 28 Dana Romanello
July 5 Todd Grebe & Cold Country
July 12 Jake Cox
July 19 Travis Wetzel Trio
July 26 A Step Ahead

Come hungry because Puckett’s will be bringing their food truck, Trolley Parton, and offering up some of their delicious southern recipes featuring Springer Mountain Farms chicken! Food sales begin at approximately 5:30 p.m.

Bring the whole family out to catch Pickin’ on the Plaza, right before legends of Bluegrass perform on the stage of the Mother Church of Country Music. Tickets for Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman are available here and cost only $26.50 per show.

The full lineup for Springer Mountain Farms Bluegrass Nights at the Ryman:

June 21 Vince Gill with Sara Jarosz
June 28 Chris Thile & Michael Daves and The Boxcars
July 5 Gibson Brothers, Steep Canyon Rangers and The Roys
July 12 Rhonda Vincent and Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers
July 19 Dailey & Vincent
July 26 Ricky Skaggs

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Dierks Bentley Comes “Home” to the Ryman This Week.

Preview of Dierks Hatch Show Print for February 2 Ryman Concert

Before a recent Opry appearance, we took a few minutes to speak to Dierks Bentley about his new album, playing the Ryman and his love of Bluegrass. Dierks plays the last full stand-alone concert on the current Ryman stage this Thursday, February 2 before renovation begins February 4 (read more about the stage replacement here.)

Playing at the Ryman never gets old, does it?

Dierks: No, it never does. It never gets old looking around the hallways at all of this great memorabilia on the walls. It’s a living, breathing museum – it’s unbelievable.

You started playing at the Honky Tonks, paying your dues, and now you’re standing here in the Ryman. What was that first time like for you?

Dierks: Oh man, I mean just amazing, unbelievable. I used to play the bars down there at night. Around two o’clock in the morning, I’d be walking back to my car and I’d run my fingers along the wall of the Ryman and dream of one day getting a chance to perform on the stage. Now I’ve had several chances through the Opry and through our own live shows here. It’s just the coolest stage to stand on. It really is my favorite room of any building I’ve played in the whole country.

Tell us about some of your favorite shows that stand out or moments you’ve experienced in the pews.

Dierks: Oh sure! Well last night I was here watching Gillian Welch and David Rawlings, so that is my most recent memory and it was just great. With my wife, one of the first shows we went to in this building was the Opry. I remember Martina McBride was playing that night, and it was really cool to take my wife to that show. I’ve seen some great music in this building. And of course get a chance to be part of the Opry and play here this time of the year is incredible.

When Coldplay played here in 2003, Chris Martin actually stopped the show and said something along the lines of “Not to sound arrogant, but I’ve never sounded this good.” I heard you were here that night…

Dierks: Yeah I was here that night. I’ve seen so many shows, from the loud rock bands to folk bands, and the room sounds good no matter who’s playing. There’s a great sound to it. It’s one of the greatest places to sit as a fan and watch a show. And for me, to be onstage tonight, it’s the best view of any show I get to play every year.

Your new single is called “Home” and the Ryman is the home of country music, does this feel like “home” to you?

Dierks: Well I was thinking the same thing about this being the home of country music, the Mother Church of Country Music. Playing this song onstage for the first time is going to be a pretty powerful song. This song talks about a lot of things. It talks a little bit about the troops and the military. We have a lot of guys that are coming home from Iraq right now, so it’s just a special time of year. To sing this song onstage tonight should be pretty memorable for me and all the guys in the band.

You’ve got a special concert performance coming up Thursday, February 2 to celebrate the release of your new record, “Home”. (The record will be available in stores and on iTunes on February 7.)

Dierks: I’m really proud of the record. I put in over a year’s worth of writing and recording into the record. It’s been the longest I’ve spent on a record, but I really wanted it right after “Up on the Ridge”, which was such a different record for me. That was one of the most important records of my career. I feel like this record coming out after that needed to have the same attention to it. We put all we had into it, and I just can’t wait for our fans to hear it.

Now you mentioned your last record, “Up on the Ridge”, which obviously had bluegrass ties. You know bluegrass really started here. There’s a lot of history here with Del McCoury and you came out to help celebrate Bill Monroe’s 100th birthday with a special concert in our parking lot last year.

Dierks: Yeah! Del played out there in the street not too long ago. I got a chance to get up and sing with him in the parking lot facing back towards the building. It was incredible just to get the chance to do that. Every chance I get to play around this venue, any genre of music – especially the acoustic stuff, it’s always pretty cool.

Your concert on Thursday will be the last stand-alone concert on the current stage. How does that make you feel?

Dierks: My “Home” album release show will have even more meaning to it now…the significance of that stage and who played there before me will definitely be in the back of my head all night. As a member of the Grand Ole Opry, I couldn’t be any prouder.

Dierks Bentley plays the Ryman Thursday, February 2 with Will Hoge opening. Tickets are available by clicking here.

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