Just two weeks to go until the first bluegrass festival of the year, and the first festival since the pandemic arrived last year!
BattleField Bluegrass Festival opens on Thursday July 22nd at Naseby, Northhants, and runs through to Sunday night – see https://www.battlefieldbluegrass.co.uk/ for more details of location, pricing, and of course the bands that are playing. The BBMA tent will be on site, so stop by and say hello, and hopefully pick some tunes with us.
Now that we are tentatively re-emerging to socialising it is great to see that Battlefield Bluegrass Festival, Purbeck Festival, Clyro Court, Sore Fingers, Sweet Sunny South and Banjo in the Holler are going ahead. Apologies to others which I will have missed here. We wish you all the best of luck and look forward to seeing friends, many of whom we will not have met for two years. I know from my involvement with Didmarton festival the risks which these organisers are taking and the huge amount of extra work they are having to undertake to keep us all safe.
The BBMA has funded three young students for Sore Fingers Summer Schools going ahead in October. We take great pride in our involvement and sponsorship, as usual. We also have sponsored music competitions with prizes at Naseby.
I have been guilty on a personal level of not playing much at all. Yes, we’ve joined in with various musical zoom and recorded events but nothing is quite the same as ‘doing it live’ with newcomers and friends. Also of course we’ve greatly missed the concerts, large and small, which are so difficult to put on even in normal times. I am off to my first session for a very long time next week and greatly looking forward to it, even though we will be in a marquee outside a local pub!
If you can get to any events in your area, do try to support them. It’s been so difficult for everybody so let’s go party …. Carefully of course!
See you somewhere soon I hope.
Last year was disastrous for festivals, tours and other bluegrass events. The rollout of the vaccines does show some light at the end of the tunnel but it’s clear that many organisers are waiting to see what the latest guidance will be before committing time and effort to new ventures. The BBMA will continue to try to keep you informed as and when we know the situation.
The Musicians’ Union have produced a comprehensive guide to the restrictions for the UK.
Besides COVID 19 there is also the issue of Brexit. Details of what you will need to know to work as a musician in Europe can be found on the ISM website.
Bluegrass, like most of the live music scene, has been badly affected by the Covid 19 pandemic. We all hope the situation will only be temporary. As this is a quiet time for everyone, it was understandable that at a recent Committee meeting Dave Teague announced that he was bringing forward his intended retirement as Chairman. The Committee would like to than Dave for all his hard work on behalf of the Association, particularly in the area of Tour Support. We wish him well in all future endeavours.
Sherryl Payne is now acting chair and has posted the following announcement in the BBMA Facebook group.
Dave Teague’s recent resignation from the Chair, there have been several changes to the committee which has resulted in four out of five elected positions being ‘Acting’ only until an AGM takes place. For this reason and to abide by our Constitution we have decided to hold an AGM this year using Zoom and an electronic method of voting. Details will be in the next magazine out in September. Postal votes and any new nominations will, of course, also be accepted.
Further details about the proposed AGM can be found at https://britishbluegrass.org/agm-2020/