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This year the International Bluegrass Music Association’s World of Bluegrass festival has gone virtual! And the IBMA Foundation is making two of the festival events free and open to the public, “Go to Bluegrass U” and “New Research in Bluegrass.”

Jocelyn NealProfessor Jocelyn Neal will speak at the first webinar, “Go to Bluegrass U,” on standard song forms and their use in bluegrass songs. To learn more about both webinars and to view them, visit the IBMA Foundation’s Facebook page via the links below.

Go to Bluegrass U

Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2-3:30 p.m. EDT, live-streamed from the IBMA Foundation Facebook page

If you have ever thought “Gee, I wish I could have attended a university program in bluegrass,” now’s your chance! Three presenters will each deliver a lesson related to string band music, educating participants, and then engaging them in a question and answer session. Dr. Jocelyn Neal from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will present the most standard song forms and how they are used in bluegrass songs. Dr. Nate Olson of East Tennessee State University will discuss approaches to teaching music theory to string band music students. Andrew Brown, formerly with The Price Sisters, Jeff Parker and HillHouse, will introduce the slap bass style and discuss ways of using it in bluegrass. Dr. Lee Bidgood, Associate Professor of Bluegrass, Old-Time, and Country Music in the Department of Appalachian Studies at East Tennessee State University, will moderate.

New Research in Bluegrass

Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2-4 p.m. EDT, live-streamed from the IBMA Foundation Facebook page

New Research in Bluegrass will feature four scholars working in a variety of areas of string band music, with 20-minute presentations followed by 10-minute question and answer sessions. Chloe Levine will present research on politics, social divisions, and possible “togethernesses” in the music. Hunter Dux will address festivals in a variety of geographic/social contexts. Emily Williams will discuss ways that participants in bluegrass create a community that overcomes disability. John Duncan will explore influences on the banjo playing of Fred Cockerham. Lee Bidgood will moderate.

To learn more about the full World of Bluegrass festival, visit Virtual World of Bluegrass

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