Since first hitting the scene in the early 1980’s, Alan has made a name for himself as one of the most technically gifted mandolinist in bluegrass and acoustic music. He was an original member of such ground-breaking bands as The New Quicksilver, IIIrd Time Out, BlueRidge and, for the last 12 years, Alan Bibey & Grasstowne. He has been voted Mandolin Performer Of The Year by SPBGMA six times, including 2018, 2019 and just recently the 2020 title. Alan also won 2019 IBMA Mandolin Player Of The Year as well as previously for Instrumental Album Of The Year, Album Of The Year and Recorded Event Of The Year, just to name a few. Alan Bibey & Grasstowne’s Bluegrass Gospel single “Gonna Rise & Shine” has been #1 twelve times and in the top ten for 34 weeks and their latest single “When Jesus Swings The Wrecking Ball” has been in the top ten for the last 50 weeks and was named the #1
Gospel Song for the Year by Bluegrass Today according to
airplay! Alan was included in the Mel Bay book, “Greatest
Mandolin Players Of The Twentieth Century”, and in 2004, the Gibson Company put into production the Alan Bibey Signature line of mandolins, reaffirming his status as one of the most influential mandolin players in Bluegrass and acoustic music history.
Recognized internationally for his performing, teaching, judging and composing abilities, Calvin is
‘Canada’s Fiddling Sensation’. He has released 71 of his own albums and composed over 700 tunes,
many of which have become standard contest and dance tunes played across North America &
Europe, Calvin is a driving force behind the revitalization of fiddle music in Canada. Calvin was
commissioned to compose 5 fiddle tunes for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics Opening
Ceremonies to represent various Canadian Fiddle styles. He is well-sought out to play fiddle on
countless recordings of other artists and has shared the stage with the likes of Willie Nelson and
Vince Gill. He has been recognized with several honors including induction into the ‘North American
Fiddler’s Hall of Fame’ and having his name displayed on St. Paul’s ‘Home of’ welcome sign. Calvin’s
tunes are played in fiddle contests & dance halls all over North America by fiddlers of all levels
including the National Champions. www.calvinvollrath.com
Grammy-winning guitarist Scott Nygaard has been one of the most inventive and original guitarists in the bluegrass/acoustic music scene for more than 30 years. Downbeat magazine has called him “a phenomenally talented stylist.” A member of Tim O’Brien’s band the O’Boys for six years in the 1990s and a co-founder of Darol Anger’s Republic of Strings, Scott was the main guitarist on three recordings that have proven to be extremely influential on the contemporary acoustic music scene: Chris Thile’s Leading Off, Tim O’Brien’s Red on Blonde, and Jerry Douglas’s Slide Rule.
He has performed and/or recorded with Chris Thile, Brittany Haas, Jerry Douglas, Peter Rowan, Joan Baez, Laurie Lewis, Sharon Gilchrist, Joe K. Walsh, John Reischman, Matt Flinner, and many others. Rounder Records released his first two solo albums in the ‘90s and he has self-released four albums featuring a variety of other musicians and styles since then. Formerly the editor of Acoustic Guitar magazine, Scott has written hundreds of articles on music, musicians, guitars, and guitarists; authored two bluegrass instruction books and an instructional video; and taught at music workshops from Fairbanks to Finland. Scott also co-founded the roots-music video instruction site Peghead Nation (www.pegheadnation.com), which provides high-quality instruction on roots music instruments with acclaimed instructors/performers. www.scottnygaard.com
Joe K Walsh
Hailed by David Grisman as a “wonderful mandolin player”, and by Darol Anger as “one of the best mandolinists I’ve ever played with”, Portland Maine-based Joe K. Walsh is known for his exceptional tone and taste, and his years of collaborations with acoustic music luminaries including banjo innovator Danny Barnes, fiddle legend Darol Anger, modern master fiddler Brittany Haas, wildly creative flatpicker Grant Gordy, bluegrass stars the Gibson Brothers, influential guitar hero Scott Nygaard and pop/grass darlings Joy Kills Sorrow, a band he co-founded. He’s played with everyone from John Scofield to Bela Fleck to Emmylou Harris, and performed everywhere from festivals to laundromats to Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium. After a number of award-winning years as mandolinist with the Gibson Brothers, Joe currently splits his time between an inventive string band called Mr. Sun (featuring Darol Anger, Grant Gordy and Aidan O’Donnell), a trio with Danny Barnes and Grant Gordy, and his own band. An avid educator, Joe is a professor at the Berklee College of Music. He teaches regularly at music camps throughout North America and beyond, and teaches online through Peghead Nation.
Jim Hurst’s unique picking style and mastery of bluegrass guitar wows audiences and is revered by both novice guitar players and his musical peers. His eclectic career has made him a remarkable performer, an experienced instructor and a highly sought after session musician. His affability and gregariousness make him one of the most approachable musicians of his caliber.
Alison Krauss hired Tim in 1990 and Union Station proceeded to record a Grammy-winning CD, Every Time You Say Goodbye (Rounder, 1992). Tim formed Blue Highway in 1994 with Wayne Taylor, Shawn Lane, Rob Ickes and Jason Burleson. The band is one of the most decorated and influential in bluegrass history, having been nominated for 3 Grammys, winning a Dove Award, and nearly 30 IBMA Awards. In March 2016, Blue Highway was named the most popular bluegrass artist in history in an online poll by Bluegrass Today. In December 2016, their CD Original Traditional was nominated for a Grammy Award in the "Best Bluegrass Album" category.
Tim is a prolific songwriter, with over 250 songs recorded. He was named IBMA's Songwriter of the Year in 2014 and 2017. Tim was named SPBGMA Guitar Performer of the Year in 2001 and 2015. He has produced many award-winning records for various artists.
Tim worked on a PhD in History at Miami University in the mid 1980s. In 2010, he and Caroline Wright co-authored Still Inside: The Tony Rice Story, the critically-acclaimed authorized biography of bluegrass Hall of Fame member and living legend Tony Rice. Tim gave the keynote address at the 1994 IBMA World of Bluegrass in Owensboro, KY and has been on the IBMA Board of Directors two different times, serving as Vice Chair from 1995 to 1998. He is a former Board member of the Foundation for Bluegrass Music. On May 8, 2015, Tim was named a Distinguished Alumnus in the Arts by the East Tennessee State University National Alumni Society.
Tim released his first solo record, Endless Line in 2004 on FGM Records to critical acclaim. It was nominated for IBMA’s Instrumental Recording of the Year in 2005. His second, Just to Hear the Whistle Blow, was released in July 2014, while his third, Acoustic Guitar, was released in September 2017. In addition, he has recorded two duet projects--one with Steve Gulley, Dogwood Winter, in 2010 and What We Leave Behind: A Songwriters' Collection, with Bobby Starnes in 2018.
Long recognized and praised as a creative force in acoustic music, Claire Lynch is a pioneer who has continually pushed the boundaries of the Bluegrass genre. Her career has been decorated with many accolades including three GRAMMY nominations, eight International Bluegrass Music Association awards and the prestigious United States Artists Walker Fellowship.
Dolly Parton credits Claire with "one of the sweetest, purest and best lead voices in the music business today." Her harmonies have graced the recordings of many stellar musicians. Equally gifted as a writer, her songs have been recorded by The Seldom Scene, Patty Loveless, Kathy Mattea, Cherryholmes, The Whites, Irene Kelley, Pierce Pettis and others.
Claire spent seven years as a staff writer at two of the most prestigious publishing houses on Music Row in Nashville. At the same time, she became a much-sought-after session vocalist.
DigitalJournal.com listed Claire as “One of the 10 Best Angelic Voices of Our Time”. She shared that honor with such luminaries as Judy Collins, Alison Krauss, Sarah McLachlan, Martina McBride, Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris.
As one observer writes, “Listening to Claire Lynch sing is not something to be undertaken casually. Her songs and stage presence demand the listener’s rapt attention. She’s an intensely soulful singer, whose distinctive voice resonates with power and strength, yet retains an engaging innocence and crystalline purity. She’s also a songwriter of extraordinary ability who can bring listeners to their feet with her buoyant rhythms or to their knees with her sometimes almost unbearably poignant and insightful lyrics.” (Dave Higgs-WPLN Nashville)