Bangalow Pickers’ Competition

banjoHere’s a chance to win $250 in the amateur Pickers Competition at the Bangalow BBQ & Bluegrass Festival, Bangalow Showgrounds, Saturday 2 August. Open to everyone, categories include fiddle, guitar, mandolin and banjo.

It was Bill Monroe’s virtuosity on the mandolin which was credited as defining Bluegrass music as a genre. With improvisation and frenetic tempos characteristic of Bluegrass, its combined energy and style belies the masterful technique of bluegrass picking instrumentalists. So we’ve decided to showcase them!

Each of the contestants in each heat (and the final) will step up to the mic in turn and perform a ‘solo’ over a pre-arranged backing track, performed live by the house band (guitar and upright bass) with a progressive tempo. Finalists will enter the Grand Final, each instrumentalist performing to the same track.

Judging will be industry professionals including musician (fiddle, Emilie Owen (Mr Cassidy), Rod Coe (Freshwater) record producer and music director for the late Slim Dusty, and Steve Berry (former Australian flat picking champion).

Judges will be looking for technique/definition, phrasing and form, cohesion with other players, originality and enthusiasm/spirit.

Music Program Director, Ash Bell says “The pickers’ comp is about pitching the players against each other in their natural habitat, and on an even playing field. Same track, same tempo, same amount of time to impress. It’s as much about mic technique and player awareness as it is about musicianship.  The best thing about this comp is that it will look and sound just like a bluegrass band playing, but they’ll all be trying to outplay each other. It’s going to be a hoot!”

With a festival line-up including, The Morrisons, The Stetson Family, The Mid North contestants are in good company.

Entry fee $25. Cheaper than general admission and all proceeds go to prize money. Register now at

Bangalow Showgrounds, Saturday 2 August, 2014.

Check out these links:

Mustered Courage tours USA

Mustered Courage takes their broad appeal progressive bluegrass to the USA, with the release of Powerlines on Travianna Records.Mustered Courage

Music Australia Guide describes Mustered Courage as “the link between Bill Monroe and Mumford & Sons, with just the right mix of mirth and mournful.”

The Melbourne based quartet has quickly risen to the top of Australia’s folk and roots scene on the strength of their energetic live shows and albums that have won them a string of glowing reviews, national radio support, an endorsement from Seal, and two “Golden Guitar” nominations at the 2014 CMAA Country Music Awards of Australia.

After a heavy touring schedule of headlining club dates and festival appearances in support of their debut project, Mustered Courage went back into the studio to record this sophomore album, Powerlines, with ARIA Award winning producer Jimi Maroudas (The Living End, Eskimo Joe, Kimbra).

Powerlines - Mustered CouragePowerlines finds them fine-tuning a diverse sound that Bluegrass Today calls, “the line between bluegrass and the mainstream style of folk music that’s quite popular today, but they do it well. They provide a nice mix of material that fans of progressive bluegrass should enjoy.”
The Alternate Root Magazine hit it on the nose when talking about the album. “When the music of Appalachia landed Down Under, it sprouted up as Mustered Courage. The album breathes bluegrass purity and stretches possibilities for string band music as it accents the blue in the grass with bending strings and vocal walls.”
Mustered Courage’s quick ascent has not gone unnoticed in music industry circles, both in Australia and abroad. These down-home pickers have played many of the major Australian festivals, performed an official showcase at the Americana Music Association Conference and Festival in Nashville, and are currently on tour this summer for over 50 dates in the U.S. where they will end their tour in Raleigh, NC to perform at the International Bluegrass Music Association conference.

Like the Avett Brothers and the SteelDrivers, Mustered Courage breathes new life into the bluegrass scene with a style that appeals to both traditionalists and newcomers alike. They are a band on the rise that, as Rhythms Magazine contends, is “guaranteed to soon be on to bigger things.”

For more information about the band, please visit

Mustered Courage 2014 American Tour Dates:

24 – Cambridge, Mass. @ Atwood’s Tavern
25 – Winooski, Vt. @ The Monkey House
26 – South Hiram, Maine @ Ossipee Valley Music Festival
28 – New York, N.Y. @ Hill Country
30 – Philadelphia, Pa. @ World Café Live (upstairs)
31 – Washington, D.C. @ Hill Country
3 – Minneapolis, Minn. @ The Cabooze
4 – Sioux City, Iowa @ Vangarde Arts
5 – Clarks Grove, Minn. @ Shangri-La Fest
7 – Chicago, Ill. @ The Tonic Room
10 – Grand Rapids, Mich. @ The Tonic Room
13 – New Hope, Pa. @ Triumph Brewing Company
18 – Gatlinburg, Tenn. @ Sugarland’s Distilling
19 – Bristol, Tenn. @ Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion
20 – Bristol, Tenn. @ Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion
21 – Nashville, Tenn. @ AMA Sounds Australia Farewell Bash
22 – Nashville, Tenn. @ Whiskey Jam at Winners
24 – Charleston, W.V. @ The Boulevard Tavern
25 – Thomas, W.V. @ The Purple Fiddle
26 – Chillicothe, Ohio @ The Dock At Water
27 – Cincinnati, Ohio @ Midpoint Music Festival
30 – Raleigh, N.C. @ IBMA Bluegrass Ramble
1 – Bristol, Tenn. @ Border Bash
2 – Knoxville, Tenn. @ Barley’s Taproom
5 – Atlanta, Ga. @ Smith’s Olde Bar
6 – New Orleans, La. @ The Beatnik
7 – The Woodlands, Texas @ Dosey Doe
8 – Austin, Texas @ Lamberts
9 – Dallas, Texas @ The Foundry Bar
12 – Los Angeles, Calif. @ Hotel Café
13 – San Francisco, Calif. @ Hotel Utah
14 – Reno, Nev. @ Peppermill Resort Spa & Casino
15 – Reno, Nev. @ Peppermill Resort Spa & Casino
16 – Reno, Nev. @ Peppermill Resort Spa & Casino
18 – Santa Cruz, Calif. @ The Crepe Place
22 – Portland, Ore. @ Mississippi Studios
23 – Port Townsend, Wash. @ Sirens Tavern
24 – Seattle, Wash. @ Tractor Tavern
27 – Paonia, Colo. @ Revolution Brewing
28 – Paonia, Colo. @ Pickin’ In The Park
29 – Denver, Colo. @ Lost Lake Lounge
30 – Carbondale, Colo. @ Steve’s Guitars
1 – Raleigh, N.C. @ IBMA Bluegrass Ramble
2 – Raleigh, N.C. @ IBMA Bluegrass Ramble
3 – Raleigh, N.C. @ IBMA Bluegrass Ramble

Davidson Brothers to Play Meeniyan Hall.

DavidsonsThis Saturday 26ht July, the Davidson Brothers will play Meeniyan Town Hall for the first time, with special guests The Little Stevies.

Tickets are selling quickly but there’s still some available.

Hamish and Lachlan Davidson grew up just down the road from Meeniyan in the town of Yinnar. Raised in a musical family, the brothers began playing music and performing from a young age. With seven albums under their belt, they have built the reputation of being one of Australia’s hottest bluegrass acts .

Australian Country Music Award winners in 2009, 2010 and 2012, Hamish and Lachlan Davidson are “the best young bluegrass pickers we have seen for a long while in Australia and a very exciting live act. They appeared on the Ryman in Nashville at the 2010 International Bluegrass Music Awards as presenters and showcased at IBMA’s World of Bluegrass in 2004 and 2009 and the 2011 European World of Bluegrass in the Netherlands.

Winner of multiple Australian National Bluegrass Championship titles on fiddle, banjo and mandolin, After recording four albums in the US, Hamish & Lachlan knew it was time to record in their native country with their live band. 2014 will see the release of their brand new album ‘Wanderlust’ featuring ten original tracks recorded in Melbourne, Australia featuring Jacob McGuffie on acoustic guitar and Louis Gill on upright bass.

The Passionate Fools in SA.

The Passionate FoolsThe Passionate Fools have a gig at the Singing Gallery in McClaren Vale this weekend. and are asking  you to help them advertise the gig.

You are invited to join The Passionate Fools: Wendy Jackson and Peter Hisco for a fun-filled evening of acoustic music. With very special guests: Jeri Foreman and Gage Stead along with Hugh and Janet Gordon.

The Passionate Fools are teaming up with Jeri Foreman and Gage Stead for one set and then with Hugh and Janet Gordon for the second set. They will then have everyone play together for the closing set. A great night of acoustic music.Gordon-Forman-Stead

  • Where: Singing Gallery
  • When Sat 19th July 7.30pm
  • How to Book: 0413 358 618 or email
  • Cost:Tickets: $20

About the Singing Space:

The old Congregational Church in McLaren Vale on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia has been bought and transformed in to the Singing Gallery. It is recognised as a unique performance space for acoustic music with local, interstate and overseas performers. It also hosts markets, live theatre, music groups, weddings, festivals.

Bluegrass Bonanza – Part Two

The Stetson FamilyThe Berwick Folk Club and Folk Victoria present a night of bluegrass featuring The Stetson Family and Faux Grass at The Balla Balla Community Centre – Casey Indoor Leisure Centre at 65 Berwick Cranbourne Road, Cranbourne, Vic.Bluegrass Bonanza

The event is supported by  Peninsula Folk Club, Mountain Pickers, Fat Chance and Ringwood Folk Club.

The Bluegrass Bonanza is scheduled for Sat. 30th Aug 2014, 7:30pm.

All enquiries to Chris or Edward on 03 – 9702 1223.

Tickets $20 full price or $16 members. Book at or pay at the door.



Borderline to Play Tyers

BorderlineThe Gippsland Acoustic Music Club are delighted to present well-known local band Borderline, as the main act for the July club night at Tyers, commencing at 7.30pm on Sunday 6th July at the Tyers Hall, Main Rd Tyers,

Borderline comprises band members Terry Cupples, Dan Boothman and Carolyne Boothman and they are set to provide a great night of music. Featuring tight harmonies, great instrumental work and a sense of humour, Borderline will perform sets of three songs by artists like The Eagles, John Denver, Alison Krauss, The Hollies, Gillian Welch, Gordon Lightfoot, many other well-known artists, as well as originals.

Support Act on the night is the Sale Catholic College “Show Choir”, a group of young performers who will impress with their talent and lovely singing.

Entry is $10 club members/concession, $15 non members. U 18 free.

Prior to the club night, Vocal Nosh will be held from 5.30pm (please arrive 5.15pm), and led by the very talented Wendy Sellings and Sue Cullen from Acoustic Kitchen. Entry is $12 adults, members/concession $8, Under 18 free. This group then stays on to share fresh bread, home-made soup and fruit.

For further information contact: Carolyne Boothman ph. 0419 526709, email or the club’s website

Old Time Jam Victoria Hotel.

Vic Hotel JamIt’s not often we get to hear about some old-time music activities this one looks like  lots of fun:

Old-Time Stringband Jam Sessions, with Craig Woodward, Warren Rough and Friends at the Victoria Hotel, 380 Victoria Street, Brunswick 3056.

Open jam session for any players interested in Traditional Old-Time music. Flat-Foot dancers are most welcome.

Admission Free.


  • Sat 14 Jun, 5:00pm – 8:00pm
  • Sat 21 Jun, 5:00pm – 8:00pm
  • Sat 28 Jun, 5:00pm – 8:00pm
  • Sat 5 Jul, 5:00pm – 8:00pm
  • Sat 12 Jul, 5:00pm – 8:00pm

Bluegrass Bonanza in Cranbourne



BluegrassBonanza Folk Victoria and Berwick Folk Club have let us know of their plans to co-host a ‘Bluegrass Bonanza’ night in Cranbourne on Sat 7th June.

The artist line up includes Hardrive and Coolgrass with local clubs including Mountain Pickers Association, Peninsula Folk Club and Selby Folk Club  providing additional bands for the evening.



The venue is Balla Balla Community Centre, 65 Berwick Cranbourne Road Cranbourne in Victoria. Click on the poster to the right for more details.

Folk Victoria has been pretty dormant for the last few years. The new and invigorated committee is trying to get things moving again by building up a membership base and supporting live music.

Brunswick Bluegrass Collective Play Open Studio

Brunswick Bluegrass CollectiveThe BBC are performing on Saturday 10th May at 8.30pm at Open Studio at 204 High St, Northcote, 3070.

Brunswick Bluegrass Collective has evolved out of a love of old timey and bluegrass music with a fluid lineup that has included members of various ensembles such as Hobson’s Choice, Devil Goat String Band and the Blue Grassy Knoll and includes musicians such as Dan Witton, Nara Demasson, Gus Macmillan, Jim Green, Kate Connor, Jenny Thomas,Trent Arkleysmith and others.

The result is a spontaneous meal of rich musicianship, where songs and tunes get thrown together and mixed with playful and improvisatory approach to traditions inspired by mountain music, sweet tunes and fine company.
Cost will be $8 or $5 concession. They’d love to see you there.

Old Man Luedecke In Australia

Old Man LuedeckeCanada’s Old Man Luedecke is making a welcome return to Australia after the success of last year’s tour with fellow folk troubadour Jordie Lane. He is touring Victoria, New South Wales and Tasmania.

Old Man Lueddcke is bringing with him his new EP I Never Sang Before I Met You. He will be performing tracks from both the new EP and his Album of the Year and Folk Recording of the Year winner Tender Is The Night album (2014 East Coast Music Awards, Canada), this tour promises to delight.

You are invited to come along, meet and be charmed by Old Man Luedecke. For more info, hit or check out the dates below.

Tour Details:

Thu 24 May Carrington Bowls Club
1 Cowper St, Newcastle
Ph: 02 4961 4140
Fri 25 May St Stephens Anglican Church
39 Kurrajong St, Dorrigo NSW
Sun 27 April Petersham Bowls Club
77 Brighton St, Petersham NSW
Ph: 02 9569 4639
Thu 1 May South Coast Folk Club
Port Noarlunga Bowling Club, River Rd Port Noarlunga SA
 Fri 2 May  The Singing Gallery
133 Main Rd, McLaren Vale SA
 Ph: 0413 358 618
 Sat 3 May  The Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania
Marieville Esplanade, Hobart TAS
 Doors open 7pm, music from 7.30pm
Tickets $30 / $35 @ door
 Sun 4 May (3pm)  The Flying Saucer Club
4 St Georges Rd, Elsternwick VIC
 Ph: 03 9528 3600
 Tue 6 May  Burrinja Café
351 Glenfern Rd, Upwey VIC
 Ph: 03 9754 5707