Celebrating our 40th Anniversary July 23 - 25, 2021
Named SPBGMA’s 2019 Gospel Group of the Year, the Bluegrass Blondies entertain audiences across the Midwest with delightful experiences all in a wholesome, family-oriented style. This family of talented musicians and vocalists, perform Traditional and Contemporary Bluegrass, Country, Old-Time, Traditional/Southern/Contemporary Gospel, Patriotic, Acapella, Comedy, and good ole’ down home fun
Call it retro, hillbilly, bluegrass or rockabilly, the The Kody Norris Show strives for something Kody simply calls "dern good entertainment." Deeply rooted in North American folk music, Norris has crafted a performance that harkens back and tips a hat to the traditions created by Bill Monroe, Jimmy Martin's showmanship, the Stanley Brothers' harmonies, performances of the Grand Ole Opry and a bit of Vaudeville. Top notch picking is center stage, but humor and visual flash are part of the entertaining package.
"That Dalton Gang” began in 2010 as the dream of Cheyenne Dalton. At a young age she had discovered the lively and hard-driving sounds of Bluegrass music while visiting Silver Dollar City since birth. With the help of her grandmother, she began playing shows with just a guitar back up, and the assistance of her younger sister. Over the years, much has changed. Players have come and gone. One thing that has never changed is Cheyenne's love for this beautiful music.
The Anderegg Family makes their home in the eastern part of Iowa near a small town. The family developed a love for bluegrass music while attending several festivals when the kids were little. They play bluegrass, gospel, and old-time classic country music. This family band enjoys playing for churches, nursing homes, town celebrations, private events, opera houses, and at festivals.
The Briggs family lives on a small acreage in rural Iowa, where the older girls developed an early love for bluegrass music and traditional acoustic string instruments by attending music festivals and stage shows from the time they were toddlers. The Briggs Family Band features Galen on guitar, Stephanie on bass, Mike Carter on banjo, Kaitlyn (16) on mandolin, Ashlyn (14) on fiddle, and Evelyn (5) on vocals, when she feels like it. They have been playing music together since 2013 and entertaining with a mix of bluegrass, traditional country, gospel and whatever else the girls decide to play. The band performs together at festivals, community events, churches, care facilities, and anywhere they can find a willing audience.
Flash in a Pan a folk and grass string band from Iowa City, IA. Founded in 2012 the band has enjoyed unusual success'. They released their first studio album Off the Rails in April of 2017 and their sophomore album Folklore in June of 2018. Both albums are filled with original cuts that the group is known for. Flash in a Pan brings a fun mix of folk music of many shades. Noted for their shining harmonies, provocative compositions, and heart-felt performances, Flash in a Pan dishes out a sound that is all at once familiar and refreshingly different.
The voice. The pen. The heart and soul. Whether she is singing her own songs or those that have helped to shape her as a singer and a writer, Donna Ulisse continues to make her mark as a uniquely talented artist. Like fine wine, she just keeps getting better. With her touring band, The Poor Mountain Boys, Ulisse regularly hits the road, playing festivals, concert venues and churches, and gaining new fans at every stop.
Multi-award-winning songwriter, Jerry Salley, is renowned for his success in multiple genres: Country, Bluegrass, and Gospel. He has over 500 different songs that have been recorded and more than 18 million records sold worldwide. A performer in his own right, when not writing or performing Jerry is instrumental in the day-to-day operations of Billy Blue Records, a new record label launched in 2018. If networking is your thing then you will find Jerry has a wealth of knowledge and experience to share.
The Messengers are a group of friends that have been making music together since 2013. They call the beautiful area around Viola, Iowa home and while they love to play Bluegrass and Gospel Music, they also have a passion for sharing the word of God. Their group includes Mike Mast on the banjo, Charles Diehm on mandolin, Jessica Huffman on fiddle, Kris May on Bass and Jim May on guitar.
A popular regional bluegrass band in the 80's. Pathfinder’s unique and eclectic repertoire made them a crowd favorite. Known for their entertaining banter, crisp lyrics, and tight harmonies. They would treat their audiences to old western music, old time music, traditional bluegrass and their own original compositions like Bluegrass Lullaby, Fly Like an Eagle, Durango, Fog In The Lowlands, Dusty Freight, Ozark Mountains Of Missouri and Memories, just to name a few.
The original members will reunite after 30+ years to perform two shows at the 40th Annual Backbone Bluegrass Festival in 2021. Stu Stuart plays guitar and is the lead singer. Stu is from the Wichita, KS area where he still performs with the Diamond W Wranglers. Ed Weber plays banjo, sings harmony and some lead. Ed continued in the music business working for the Gibson Co. designing, building, and testing banjos. Toby Strause fills the roll of emcee for the band, plays Dobro, sings harmony and some lead vocals. Toby still attends festivals and jam sessions. Doug Page the only member to have performed recently at the Backbone Bluegrass Festival with the band Highway Home. They are looking forward to visiting with old friends and making new ones.
Members of this band are an eclectic and diverse group and are as their name implies, instructors of the Strawberry Jam Camp which is celebrating 15 years in July 2021. Co-founder, Keith Yoder is a 35-year veteran to teaching and playing bluegrass. Bob Black, the senior member, whose bluegrass roots go straight back to Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys, toured and recorded with the Father of Bluegrass in the 1970's. Iowa native, Bill Cagley comes to us from the Twin Cities area. Bill's primary instrument is guitar but plays other instruments with over 35-years’ experience, as a professional musician and full-time music instructor. Scott Amos of the Bluegrass Blondies is a multi-instrumentalist and offers instruction to anyone interested. Long-time bluegrass music performer, Scott has played at many of the Backbone Festivals . Paul Roberts, singer/songwriter, has been performing and entertaining since 1978 and multiple instruments. Daryl Yoder rounds out this group and provides solid instruction on the upright bass. These instructors not only provide exceptional training to jam camp attendees, they also are established musicians. Performing all weekend long, they will also be available at the free Instrument Workshops.
A gifted fiddler and Kentucky Colonel, Kirk Brandenberger has received many awards including Iowa and Kentucky State Championships. He has recorded with many nationally-known and regional musicians during his 50-year musical career, including two of his own compact discs. Kirk has toured nationally with Larry Sparks & The Lonesome Ramblers and Karl Shiflett’s Big Country Show. He was the host of two long-running bluegrass radio shows; WBKR-FM in Owensboro, Kentucky and KOKX-FM in Keokuk, was a member of the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Board of Directors for a six-year term and was president of Prime Cuts of Bluegrass during the 17 years of its operation. In 2004, Kirk and his wife Becky received a Distinguished Achievement Award from the International Bluegrass Music Association. Kirk is in his 21st year as the Executive Director of Tourism in Keokuk and plays music every chance he gets.