Friday, June 27, 2014

Jenny Brook Review

Jenny Brook is a great festival and I want to be fully here. That means not blogging about it until we get home. There's too much going on. Furthermore, as with many very good rural festivals, Internet access here is very spotty except for early in the morning. I'll try to put very short pieces up during the rest of the week, but don't count on it. Here are a few early impressions to give you an idea. The site is wonderful, the design thoughtful, and the music superb. Much more during next week.

The Fairgrounds


Jamming Under the Steeple

Seth & Candi Sawyer During
the Seth Sawyer Band Set

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Musicians Against Childhood Cancer (The MACC) 2014 - Preview

Musicians Against Childhood Cancer, an annual bluegrass festival to benefit St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, celebrates its fifteenth season at Hoover-Y Park in Lochbourne, Ohio from July 16 - 19, 2014. Begun in 2000 after promoters Darrell and Phyllis Adkins lost their daughter Mandy to an incurable brain stem cancer. Since that first festival, The MACC has contributed over $750,000 to St. Jude. Bluegrass musicians eagerly flock to work for free at this annual festival of hope and celebration.

Mandy Adkins

The Lineup

The MACC always presents great bands in a wonderful setting. What distinguishes it from many other festivals is Darrell Adkins ability to call together many musicians who don't often play together, placing them on the stage together, and cutting them loose to create "Classic Performances." These classic performances, which now occur on every day of the festival are the sort of musical experience that lead fans and musicians to say, "You should have been at the MACC when x,y, and z played together!" Here's a listing of the performers with a few highlighted commets:
MACC Debuts
Daryle Singletary

Daryle Singletary has been mostly a country musician who is now touring in both conventional country and fully acoustic formats delivering his own brand of aggressively traditional country music. Opening the "Classic Performances on Thursday evening, his set should be a real treat.

Adkins & Loudermilk

Dave Adkins is familiar to bluegrass fans for his work with his own band, David Adkins & Republik Steel. Edgar Loudermilk spent the last seven years as bassist and harmony singer with Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out. Now they have joined together to form Adkins & Loudermilk, a driving bluegrass band representing their combined sensibilities. Welcome them to the MACC stage and see for youself on Friday. 

Dave Adkins

Edgar Loudermilk

Breaking Grass

We first saw this dynamic Mississippi-based bluegrass band at an after hours showcase at IBMA about three years ago. Since them we've enjoyed seeing them develop at Newell Lodge in Georgia. This debut performance at The MACC represents a breakout opportunity for a very good band that deserves to be much more widely heard. Singer/Songwriter Cody Farrar has surrounded himself with a group of very fine, mostly young pickers presenting covers of New Grass Revival classics, Darrel Scott, and Farrars own material - a very entertaining band.

Cody Farrar

Rarely Herd - Jeff Weaver

It's sad to say this band is aptly named. It's a very good band!

Clay Hess 

Recognized as a hot young gun when he was quite young, Clay Hess's music continues to develop and mature. Irl Hees on bass has added further depth and experience. We last saw this band arrive tired at Gettysburg for a Sunday afternoon performance without a hint of giving anything less than a highly professional performance representing the best they had to give. Good Stuff.

Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper

Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers
Mike Terry, Joe Mullins & Dwayne Sparks

Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out

Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out have not only survived a major lineup changed but thrived and grown with it. The addition of Keith McKinnon on banjo and Blake Johnson has bolstered the band instrumentally and vocally. Five time IBMA Male Vocalist of the Year, Russell Moore's fine tenor voice is undimmed, while the vocal harmonies surrounding him are strong. As ever, this is also one of the finest instrumental bands...ever.

Joe Mullins & Junior Sisk

Joe Mullins & Junior Sisk combine for a Hall of Fame Bluegrass as the first of the week's "Classic Performances." Two of the most recognized modern interpreters of traditional bluegrass music in the style of Flatt & Scruggs and the Stanley Brothers, these two fine performers present the music as it was originally heard and in new interpretations representing their own unique skills. They make traditional contemporary.

Darryle Singletary "Acoustic"
see above

Blue Highway
 Tim Stafford

One of bluegrass music longest lived and most recognized bands, Blue Highway still has its original lineup after twenty years of touring and recording. Their new CD The Game continues their high level of ensemble achievement.

 Wayne Taylor

Adkins & Loudermilk
see above

Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice

Marty Raybon & Full Circle

The Gibson Brothers

The Gibson Brothers, 2012 and 2013 IBMA Entertainers of the Year, are having a great time making more friends and fans wherever they appear, and appearing in the highest profile music events around. They have just completed a new recording featuring interpretations of the brother duos from the Louvin Brothers to the Everly Brothers. Look for them to  perform selections from this new work as well as from the deep and increasingly varied, creative catalog of their own work.

Eric Gibson

Leigh Gibson

Larry Sparks & the Lonesome Travellers

Lonesome River Band

LRB (How many bands are known by their initials alone?) has been making great music for over thirty years. No reason to stop now.....

Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver

From Jimmy Martin & the Sunny Mountain Boys, to J.D. Crowe, to the Country Gentlemen to his own band Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Doyle Lawson has remained both an interpreter and an innovator. Through six decades he has shown the way.

James King "Three Chords and the Truth"

James King's latest CD Three Chords and the Truth was nominated for a Grammy award, providing recognition his fans have been giving him for years. In this "Classic Performance," King is joined on vocals by bluegrass legends Don Rigsby and Dudley Connell to interpret classic country songs in bluegrass versions in Hall of Fame Bluegrass.

Flatt Lonesome

Kenny & Amanda Smith

Lou Reid & Carolina
Christy Reid

Lou Reid

Josh Williams, Randy Kohrs, Aubrey Haynie & Michael Cleveland
Aubrey Haynie

A "Classic Performance" bringing together four fine musicians whose instrumental work is unparalleled. People often overlook Josh Williams fine singing because of his superb guitar playing. This should be an interesting and, perhaps, surprising grouping capable of enormous versatility as well as straight ahead bluegrass. 

Randy Kohrs

Larry Stephenson

The Grascals

The Grascals have become associated with their support for The MACC and for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, often going to Memphis withe the Adkins on their annual visit to deliver The MACC donation. Here a young cancer survivor sings the Jamie Johnson song We Are Strong accompanied by the Grascals vocal trio: Jamie Johnson, Terry Smith, and Terry Aldridge. Take a look at the audience reaction below:

Seldom Scene

Rambling Rooks

Three legendary bluegrass singers and award winners have re-combined after going their separate ways for two decades into the Rambling Rooks. Ronnie Bowman, Don Rigsby, and Kenny Smith have been offering up their own hits as well as standards from LRB when they were members. They will be joined by Justin Moses on banjo. They never fail to hit the stage with enrgy and commitment to deliver a pleasing performance.

Amanda Smith & Garnet Imes Bowman

Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out w/Centerville Alternative Strings
Russell Moore

The Centerville Alternative Strings have appeared with major bands at The MACC for the last two years. Composed of string students from the massive music program at Centerville (Ohio) school district under the direction of band-master and bluegrasser Doug Eyink, their performances are always polished, impressive, and moving. Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out should provide an ideal element for their combined performance.
The Centerville (Ohio) Alternative Strings


A well designed bluegrass festival creates a momentum of its own, rising with increasing intensity to an intense climax on its final day. The MACC does this in spades. Saturday's performances will excite the most exacting traditional bluegrass fans as well as those seeking something different.

The MACC Childrens Band

The MACC Children's Band has, through the years, given a huge range of musicians both a start and a place to demonstrate their growing skill and sophistication. Many former Children's Band members have entered the ranks of professional musicians or attend(ed) college programs in traditional music. It's lots of fun for the kids as well as a respite for their parents during part of the day. For further information or to enroll, call Jackie Barnett at 304-991-0509.

 The Children's Band

The Price Sisters - Leanna & Lauren
Now at Davis & Elkins College

Breaking Grass
see above

Feller & Hill

Tom Feller and Chris Hill have wide and deep experience in bluegrass. Tom is related to the Holt family of Boys from Indiana fame, and Chris played with them, too. They made their performing debut as a duo at The MACC two years ago and their band debuted at The MACC last year. Since then they have toured widely, sharpening their music and delivery. Expect good things from this band. Furthermore, they run sound for The MACC, delivering some of the best sound you'll hear anywhere.

Don Rigsby & Midnight Call

Lost & Found - Alan Mills

Larry Cordle & Lonesome Standard Time

Larry Cordle is a great singer/songwriter in both country music and bluegrass. His story songs are virtual novels in three verses and a chorus. Murder on Music City Row is anthemic in its powerful resistance to change and praise of excellence. It was an award winner and hit in both country and bluegrass music.

Bradley Walker & Friends

IBMA Male Vocalist of the Year in 2007, Bradley's rich baritone voice and deep knowledge of both classic country and bluegrass guarantee a first rate set of music. His band will consist of: Aubrey Haynie on fiddle, Clay Hess on guitar, David Babb on bass, Brent Burke on Dobro, Don Rigsby on mandolin and vocals, and Jody King on banjo. 

MACC Opry "Classic Country"
Carl Jackson

A few years ago, Darrell Adkins put storied singer/songwriters Carl Jackson, Larry Cordle, and Jerry Salley together on the stage to sing their songs together. This performance has grown and developed into the MACC Opry, one of the most looked forward to sets at The MACC. It has also grown into a band called New Monday which performs every Monday evening at the World Famous Station Inn in Nashville, where, with the addition of luminous singer Val Storey and a movable feast of top Nashville side musicians they sing and play classic country. Carl tells me that the band at MACC will be pretty much the one that plays at the Station Inn with a few necessary substitutions and, of course, drawing on the resources of the great musicians available at The MACC. 

Jerry Salley

Val Storey

J.D. Crowe & Josh Williams

J.D. Crowe's retirement from active touring has allowed him to pick and choose his spots and to arrive at events where he performs both rested and filled with energy. His touch on the banjo still contains magic. Josh Williams has been named IBMA Guitar Player of the Year three times, but his marvelous voice is often overlooker because of his guitar wizardry, strongly influenced by Tony Rice. Look for this "Classic Performance," which will also include Doug Jernigan and Aubrey Haynie to include lots of material from the the The Bluegrass Album Band, which did much to re-energize bluegrass in the 1980's by taking it back to its roots.

Josh Williams

The SteelDrivers

The SteelDrivers are one of the great closing acts in bluegrass. The band that brought the blues back to bluegrass, they come out at night with their most entertaining and affecting music. The band is both musically exciting and terrific entertainment. They're the kind of band that can keep an audience until the very end on a Saturday night.

Tami Rogers

So that's a taste of what's coming up in July at The MACC. In addition, you can expect a festival infused with the spirit of giving and the celebration of life. Now lets take a look at the details of attending.

The Details


2014 Ticket Prices at the Gate, beginning July 9:
*4 Day Tickets $110.00​
*Daily Ticket - $40.00 or *Combination of 2 or 3 day - $40.00 per day
Children 11-15 years old 1/2 price
Children 10 and under are free with a parent
The ticket gate will be open from 8am to 11pm daily
No Refund on Tickets

Purchase Advance Tickets before July 9, 2014 for a price of:
*4 Day Adult Tickets $100.00  *4 Day Children's Tickets $50.00

You can order tickets online here. The MACC also accepts most credit cards. Call or write:

Charge by phone (740) 548-4199

Musicians Against Childhood Cancer
1434 S. 3 B's and K Rd.
Galena, OH 43021

Raffle Guitar by Todd Sams
Replica of the Clarence White 1935 D28

Each year for the past several years, Todd Sams has built one of these great replica's of the famed Clarence White guitar used by Tony Rice. The guitar will be raffled off on Saturday night. Tickets cost $10.00 a piece and can be ordered on line on the ticket page.

Camping: The MACC is held on the large, shady campus of the Hoover-Y Park in Lockbourne, Ohio, just south of the city of Columbus. A limited number of electric sites have been provided, which are usually reserved ahead of time. There is almost unlimited rough camping available in a delightful variety of settings, many tree shaded. The festival provides frequent tranport from your site to the main stage area. Here's a map of the park:

You can find a larger version here. Primitive sites and sites with 20 Amp service cost $5.00 per night. 30 Amp sites are $25.00 per night. For further information look here.

Hotels: A number of options for hotel accommodations can be found within 2 1/2 miles of Hoover-Y Park at the Alum Creek Drive exit of I-270. Here's the contact information for these preferred hotels:

  • Quality Inn
    4850 Frusta Dr
    Obetz and Columbus
  • Baymont Inn and Suites
    2323 Port Rd
    Columbus, Oh 43217
  • Comfort Inn
    4870 Old Rathmell Ct
    Obetz, Oh 43701

  • For other choice, check here.

    Directions: Input your location in the o and then click to create personalized directions for getting to Hoover-Y Park for The MACC

    Musicians Against Childhood Cancer grew out of loss and grief, but has developed into a celebration best expressed in the titles of the two recordings that have come out of live performances at the festival. The festival is always A Celebration of Life which continually makes the statement that Life Goes On. Come out and become a part of this great celebration. If you can't be there and wish to make a donation to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital you can send donations to:

    Musicians Against Childhood Cancer
    1434 S. 3B's & K Rd.
    Galena, OH 43021

    Or donate online here.

    Promoter Darrell Adkins