2023 IBMA International Grant To South Korea’s Country Gongbang.
The International Bluegrass Music Association has announced this year’s recipient of the IBMA International Band Performance Grant – Country GongBang from South Korea. The band was selected through a competitive process and will be featured as a part of this year’s IBMA World of Bluegrass on 26th to 30th September, 2023 in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Country GongBang is a five-piece band featuring instruments that are not easy to find in South Korea – the banjo, fiddle, dobro and mandolin – creating what is a unique sound in this part of the world that melts warm melodies and exciting rhythms.
The group has already played in front of international audiences, such as at the 2015 Takarazuka Bluegrass Festival in Japan and at the 2022 Bluegrass in La Roche festival in France. Their international exposure has also come virtually via a performance during IBMA’s 2020 Virtual World of Bluegrass, as well as through the band’s livestream show during the 2021 California Bluegrass Association Jam-a-Thon.
Country GongBang created quite a buzz with their performance during IBMA’s Virtual World of Bluegrass in 2020, so it is exciting that, as this year’s IBMA International Band Grant recipient, they will perform in Raleigh this fall and on a U.S. tour in 2024. Their Korean-influenced repertoire epitomizes the talent, passion, and creativity growing in bluegrass music around the world – Paul Schiminger.
About the Program:
The International Band Performance Grant is open to all non-U.S. bluegrass acts who wish to participate in IBMA World of Bluegrass®. The program provides financial assistance to bands traveling to IBMA World of Bluegrass® and helps to establish a 2024 follow-up tour in the United States. Please consider donating to help this program grow and further extend bluegrass music’s reach around the world!