Today representatives from the Earl Scruggs Center and WNCW 88.7 FM announced big plans for the First Annual Earl Scruggs Music Festival, coming September 4-5, 2020 to Tryon International Equestrian Center in Mill Spring, NC. Celebrating the legacy of an American music legend, the Earl Scruggs Music Festival will bring together artists from bluegrass, Americana, blues, and many other roots music genres to celebrate the pioneering vision of Earl Scruggs. Few other artists in American history have had such an impact as Scruggs. His work in 1946/47 with Bill Monroe & the Blue Grass Boys and later with Flatt and Scruggs helped create an entire genre of music. His banjo playing was so fresh and different for the time that it was christened the “Scruggs style” of banjo and is still the most prominent banjo performance style in the world. The Earl Scruggs Music Festival will pay homage to Scruggs’ groundbreaking vision in the setting of the Tryon International Equestrian Center in Mill Spring, NC, a short distance from Scruggs’ birth region and the home of the Earl Scruggs Center in Shelby, NC. The Festival will be a benefit for the Earl Scruggs Center and Isothermal Community College in Spindale, NC, home of WNCW.
The initial festival lineup, announced today at the International Bluegrass Music Association’s annual conference in Raleigh, North Carolina, consists of Marty Stuart and His Fabulous Superlatives, Jerry Douglas, Alison Brown, Dom Flemons, Radney Foster, The Barefoot Movement, Darin and Brooke Aldridge, The Po Ramblin Boys, and Unspoken Tradition. More artists, both national and North Carolina-based, will be added over the coming months. The festival will feature more than 20 artists and three stages in a beautiful setting at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Camping, lodging, restaurants, and other amenities will be available onsite at the Tryon International Equestrian Center.
“Earl was my uncle, so I knew him a long time,” said JT Scruggs, a board member of the Earl Scruggs Center. “The first Earl Scruggs Music Festival presents an opportunity to bring exposure and new visitors to the Earl Scruggs Center in Shelby, North Carolina. The proceeds from the festival will also help to keep the center in good financial shape. The festival will bring great music and many different groups to the region. And, I hope that people will hear things about Earl that they may have never heard before as all the artists share their personal stories. I know that Earl would be proud of what we are doing and that we are remembering him through the festival."
Jerry Douglas... a friend of Earl Scruggs
“Probably the first thing I can remember hearing as a young child was Earl Scruggs’ banjo,” said renowned musician Jerry Douglas. “Little did I know that later in life he would be my friend. I doubt if I would be a musician now if it hadn’t been for that sound. I know I am not alone in making that statement. As far as I’m concerned this festival named in his honor is far overdue. But I also believe that’s the way Earl would want it to be. We can only hope that we can make him proud in how we perceive his legacy to the world.”
“I grew up in North Carolina and I feel so lucky to have that in common with legends like Earl Scruggs,” said Noah Wall of The Barefoot Movement. “He was such a trailblazer, not just a pioneer of bluegrass, but he also pushed the boundaries of traditional music. I don't think he set out to be different for the sake of standing out, I think he did it for sake of the music itself. He just sought after good music, music that moved him, and that is so inspiring to me.”
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More Information About The Earl Scruggs Center:
The Earl Scruggs Center combines the life story of legendary five-string banjo master and Cleveland County native, Earl Scruggs, with the unique and engaging story of the history and cultural traditions of the region in which Mr. Scruggs was born and raised. It was in the nearby Flint Hill community where Mr. Scruggs learned to play banjo and began the three-finger playing style that has come to be known around the world as “Scruggs Style.” The Earl Scruggs Center explores Mr. Scruggs’ innovative career and the community that gave it shape while celebrating how he crossed musical boundaries and defined the voice of the banjo to the world. Mr. Scruggs embraced tradition while also adapting to the changing times and looking toward the future—themes which resonate throughout the Center. Engaging exhibits, special event space and rich programming provide a uniquely rich experience for visitors.
More Information about Tryon International Equestrian Center:
Tryon International Equestrian Center at Tryon Resort is the ultimate international destination for all who love horses, outdoor living and an active lifestyle. As host of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, Tryon International Equestrian Center offers first-class facilities for all FEI disciplines in addition to showcasing hunter/jumper, equitation, steeplechase, polo, and multidiscipline events in Mill Spring, NC. From carousel to competition, the mission of Tryon Resort is to celebrate the magic of the horse, grow equestrian sport, and increase access to this majestic animal. A haven for equestrian competitors and enthusiasts alike, Tryon Resort is an iconic, year-round destination for connoisseurs of diverse cuisine and shopping, lodging getaways, and family entertainment.
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