Each July we set aside 5 days to bond deeply with bluegrass music: to carefully consider the art of the mandolin chop, to dissect the anatomy of a G-run, to sing a stronger tenor harmony, to carve a mandola neck from a block of wood. For dedicated bluegrass pickers, these 5 days are the culmination of a winter of woodshedding and daily dreams of bluegrass heaven along the St. Vrain River.
For the 5 days of the RockyGrass Academy, bluegrass music comes deeply alive: closing the circle with our bluegrass heroes and friends, sharing music together from dawn until deep into the July night.
We're excited to announce the preliminary list of instructors for the 18th Annual RockyGrass Academy (July 22-26) on the Planet Bluegrass Ranch in Lyons, CO. This year we welcome two of the finest, most groundbreaking bands in bluegrass: Punch Brothers featuring Chris Thile and the Infamous Stringdusters. Members of both Grammy-nominated bands will be teaching several levels of instrument classes, morning band workshops, and electives all week.
Aoife O'Donovan (founding member of Crooked Still and recent Tonight Show guest, along with Chris Thile) will be teaching our vocal class. And we'll be announcing many more instructors in the coming days, including our songwriting teacher.
Beyond the classes in bluegrass instruments, vocals, and songwriting, the RockyGrass Academy also offers courses in instrument building. Over the course of 5 days, students are immersed in the instrument building experience, as they complete their own hand-built instrument (mandolin, mandola, octave mandolin, guitar) in time to be christened by the Academy instructors in the St. Vrain River on Thursday afternoon. Again this year we invite prior instrument building students to enroll in the guitar building class.
For bluegrass musicians, there is no more exhilarating week than the RockyGrass Academy. Workshops and classes fill the day (offering a years-worth of ideas and inspiration), while the evenings burst with band scrambles, BBQs, bluegrass camaraderie, and jams at every campsite along the St. Vrain River.
Academy registration is open thru Wednesday evening (Nov. 16) at 11:59pm MST. Overwhelming demand for Academy spaces prompted us to again employ an online lottery for registration. Get all the details at bluegrass.com.
Mark your calendar: Tickets for the onsite campground at the 40th Annual RockyGrass Festival (July 27-29) will be sold via an online lottery, open November 21 thru December 4. Then all other RockyGrass tickets and camping – including the band contest and a very limited number of holiday-priced 3-day passes – go onsale at 9am MST on Wednesday, December 7 at shop.bluegrass.com or 800-624-2422.
Camping passes for the most popular campground at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival – Town Park – are available thru this Wednesday night (Nov. 16) via an online lottery. Home to many of the festivals longest-running traditional camps, the Town Park campground is an essential part of the Telluride Bluegrass experience for many festivarians. If this is you, don't forget to get your lottery entry in by Wednesday at 11:59pm MST. Or perhaps, one of the festival's 4 other campgrounds better suits your festival style...
All other tickets for the 39th Annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival (June 21-24) go onsale at 9am MST on Wednesday, December 7. This includes the popular Warner Field campground, spaces in the band contest, and a limited number of holiday-priced 4-day passes. Scribble shop.bluegrass.com somewhere on your December calendar and you'll be one step closer to the summer solstice in Telluride.
Do you follow Planet Bluegrass on Facebook? Yesterday we gave one of our Facebook followers a pair of tickets to the live eTown taping featuring Mark O'Connor's Hot Swing! and singer-songwriter Matt Wertz tonight (Nov. 15) at the Boulder Theater. Keep an eye on our Facebook page later this week, as we'll be giving away a pair of tickets to see Elephant Revival and Steep Canyon Rangers' Saturday night show (Nov. 19) at the Boulder Theater.
We're busy confirming artists for all of our 2012 festivals, as the personality of next summer's festivals season slowly starts to reveal itself. We hope to begin announcing preliminary lineups in early December. In the meantime, make sure you've drawn a colorful yinjo over Wednesday, December 7 on your calendar. All our other 2012 tickets go onsale at 9am MST, including the Rocky Mountain Folks Festival and The Song School. We can't wait to begin sharing dreams of Summer 2012 with you.
The Folks on Planet Bluegrass