About NCBS

The Northern California Bluegrass Society is a non-profit organization that exists to promote bluegrass music in northern California. The NCBS is member supported and run by volunteers. Its operations are overseen by the board of directors, also volunteers, elected by the membership.

The NCBS was founded in 1982 as the Santa Cruz Bluegrass Society. Over the years its scope grew to cover more than just the Santa Cruz area, and in 1999 the membership voted to change its name to the Northern California Bluegrass Society.

As we are a non-profit organization, donations are both tax-deductible and greatly appreciated!

News

IBMA Nominees & Honorees Announced In Nashville

ibma-logoThe Northern California Bluegrass Society is a longtime organizational member of the International Bluegrass Music Association, which announced the 2015 IBMA Award Nominees and other honors on August 12. Many current and former Californians are on the list this year. The winners will be announced on October 1, 2015 at the IBMA World Of Bluegrass (September 29-October 3) in Raleigh, NC. IBMA members and special award committees have voted — here are the 2015 nominees and honorees:

2015  HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES

Bill Keith

Larry Sparks

2015 DISTINGUISHED ACHIEVEMENT AWARD RECIPIENTS

Alison Brown

Murphy Henry

International Bluegrass Music Museum

“Bashful Brother” Oswald Kirby

Steve Martin

2015 International Bluegrass Music Award Nominations

ENTERTAINER OF THE YEAR

Balsam Range

Hot Rize

The Earls of Leicester

The Gibson Brothers

The Del McCoury Band

VOCAL GROUP OF THE YEAR

Balsam Range

Blue Highway

Flatt Lonesome

Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver

The Gibson Brothers

INSTRUMENTAL GROUP OF THE YEAR

Blue Highway

Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper

Punch Brothers

Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen

The Earls of Leicester

SONG OF THE YEAR

“Big Black Train” – Earls of Leicester (artist), Stanley Johnson, George Sherry (writers)

“Fiddlin’ Joe” – Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper (artist), Mark Brinkman (writer)

“Her Love Won’t Turn On A Dime” – Lonesome River Band (artist), Bart Butler, Timothy Johnson, Shane Minor (writers)

“Moon Over Memphis” – Balsam Range (artist), Mark W. Winchester (writer)

“Southern Flavor” – Becky Buller (artist), Bill Monroe, Guy Stevenson, DeWayne Mize (writers)

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

Brotherhood – The Gibson Brothers (artist), Eric Gibson, Leigh Gibson, Mike Barber (producers), Rounder

Five – Balsam Range (artist), Balsam Range (producer), Mountain Home Music Company

The Earls of Leicester – The Earls of Leicester (artist) Jerry Douglas (producer), Rounder

Too – Flatt Lonesome (artist), Andrea Roberts, Tim Surrett (producers), Mountain Home Music Company

When I’m Free – Hot Rize (artist), Hot Rize (producer), Ten In Hand Records

GOSPEL RECORDED PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR

“Holding To The Right Hand” – Lonesome River Band (artist), Turn On A Dime (album), Marvin Clark (writer), Sammy Shelor (producer), Mountain Home Music Company

“Insured Beyond The Grave” - J.D. Crowe, Doyle Lawson & Paul Williams (artist), Standing Tall and Tough (album), Ira Louvin, Charlie Louvin (writers), Doyle Lawson (producer), Mountain Home Music Company

“Stacking Up the Rocks” – Balsam Range (artist), Five (album), Buddy Melton (writer), Balsam Range (producers), Mountain Home Music Company

“What a Wonderful Savior Is He” - The Gibson Brothers (artist), Brotherhood (album), William G. Brewster (writer), Eric Gibson, Leigh Gibson, Mike Barber (producer), Rounder Records

“Who Will Sing for Me” – The Earls of Leicester (artist), The Earls of Leicester (album), Carter Stanley, Ralph Stanley (writer), Jerry Douglas (producers), Rounder Records

INSTRUMENTAL RECORDED PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR

“Backdraft (You Light It, You Fight It” – Balsam Range (artist), Five (album), Buddy Metlon, Marc Pruett, Tim Surrett, Darren Nicholson, Caleb B. Smith (writer), Balsam Range (producer), Mountain Home Music Company

“Come Along Jody” – Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper (artist), On Down the Line (album), Benjamin F.”Tex” Logan (writer), Jeff White, Michael Cleveland (producers), Compass Records

“Cumberland Gap” – Lonesome River Band (artist), Turn On A Dime (album), Sammy Shelor (arrangement), Sammy Shelor  (producer), Mountain Home Music Company

“The Three Bells” - Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes (artists), The Three Bells (album), Jean Villard, Bert Reisfeld (writers), Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes (producer), Rounder Records

“Yeah Man” – Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen (artist), Cold Spell (album), Mike Munford (writer), Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen (producer), Compass Records

RECORDED EVENT OF THE YEAR

“Against The Grain”- Larry Cordle & Lonesome Standard Time, featuring Garth Brooks (artists), Larry Cordle (producer), MightyCord Records

“Blue Memories” – J.D. Crowe, Doyle Lawson & Paul Williams (artists), Doyle Lawson  (producer), Mountain Home Music Company

“For Buddy” - Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes (artists), Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes (producers), Rounder Records

“Test of Time” – Steep Canyon Rangers & Edie Brickell (artists), Carl Jackson (producer)

“The Three Bells” – Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes (artists), Mike Auldridge, Jerry Douglas and Rob Ickes (producers) Rounder Records

“Southern Flavor” – Becky Buller, with Peter Rowan, Michael Feagan, Buddy Spicher, Ernie Sykes, Roland White and Blake Williams (artists), Stephen Mougin (producer) Dark Shadow Recording

EMERGING ARTIST OF THE YEAR

Adkins & Loudermilk

Band of Ruhks

Becky Buller

Mountain Faith

Snyder Family Band

The Earls of Leicester

Volume Five

MALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

Shawn Camp

Del McCoury

Buddy Melton

Russell Moore

Tim O’Brien

FEMALE VOCALIST OF THE YEAR

Dale Ann Bradley

Becky Buller

Claire Lynch

Amanda Smith

Rhonda Vincent

INSTRUMENTAL PERFORMERS OF THE YEAR

BANJO

Kristin Scott Benson

Rob McCoury

Noam Pikelny

Sammy Shelor

Ron Stewart

BASS

Barry Bales

Mike Bub

Missy Raines

Mark Schatz

Tim Surrett

FIDDLE

Becky Buller

Jason Carter

Michael Cleveland

Stuart Duncan

Ron Stewart

DOBRO

Mike Auldridge

Jerry Douglas

Andy Hall

Rob Ickes

Phil Leadbetter

GUITAR

Jim Hurst

Kenny Smith

Tim Stafford

Bryan Sutton

Josh Williams

MANDOLIN

Jesse Brock

Sam Bush

Sierra Hull

Ronnie McCoury

Adam Steffey

2015 International Bluegrass Music Association Special Award Nominations

BLUEGRASS BROADCASTER OF THE YEAR

Cindy Baucom, Knee-Deep In Bluegrass (syndicated)

Becky Buller, Bluegrass Crossroads, WMSR

Kyle Cantrell, Bluegrass Junction, Sirius XM

Chris Jones, Bluegrass Junction, Sirius XM

Ronnie Reno, Reno’s Old Time Music, RFD-TV

BLUEGRASS EVENT OF THE YEAR

La Roche Bluegrass Festival 2014, La Roche sur Foron, France

A Lester Flatt Celebration 2014, Sparta, Tennessee

Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival 2014, Richmond, Minnesota

Park Slope Bluegrass & Old-Time Jamboree 2014, Brooklyn, New York

42nd RockyGrass Festival, Lyons, Colorado

BEST GRAPHIC DESIGN FOR A RECORDED PROJECT

Evan Gaffney (designer), The Phosphorescent Blues, Punch Brothers, Nonesuch

Michael Gerstenberger (designer), Complete Recordings 1936-55, Chuck Wagon Gang, Bear Family Productions

Jimmy Hole (designer), Della Mae, Della Mae, Rounder

Deano Martin (designer), Trouble Follows Me, Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice, Rebel Records

Carrie Smith (designer), The Lonesome Trio, The Lonesome Trio, Sugar Hill

BEST LINER NOTES FOR A RECORDED PROJECT

Frank Godbey, If Only You Knew: The Best of Larry Rice, Larry Rice, Rebel Records

Phil Leadbetter, Next Move, Phil Leadbetter, Pinecastle Records

Randy Pitts, Laurie & Kathy Sing Songs of Vern & Ray, Laurie Lewis and Kathy Kallick, Spruce and Maple Music

Ted Olson, Old Time Bluegrass from the Great Smoky Mountains (1956 & 1959), Carroll Best & the White Oak String Band, Great Smokey Mountains Association

Eddie Stubbs and Bill Malone, Complete Recordings 1936-55, Chuck Wagon Gang, Bear Family Productions

BLUEGRASS PRINT/MEDIA PERSON OF THE YEAR

Fred Bartenstein, The Bluegrass Hall of Fame Inductee Biographies 1991-2014

Derek Halsey, writer for the Herald Dispatch in Huntington, West Virginia, Bluegrass Unlimited magazine, and The Bluegrass Situation.

John Lawless, editor for Bluegrass Today

Ted Lehmann, blogger for Ted Lehmann’s Bluegrass, Books & Brainstorms

Gary Reid, author, The Music of the Stanley Brothers and The Bluegrass Hall of Fame Inductee Biographies 1991-2014

BLUEGRASS SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR

Mark ‘Brink’ Brinkman

Becky Buller

Bill Castle

Shawn Lane

Donna Ulisse

Also announced on August 12 from a separate process were the 2015 Momentum Nominees, honoring the up-and-coming in the bluegrass world:

MOMENTUM AWARDS NOMINEES

This year’s Momentum Award nominees are:

Performance Award nominees, Instrumentalists (final committee will select 3)

Annie Staninec (fiddle)

Casey Campbell (mandolin, fiddle)

Molly Tuttle (guitar, banjo)

Nate Lee (fiddle, mandolin)

Paul Kowert (bass)

Patrick McAvinue (fiddle)

John Mailander (fiddle, mandolin)

Bryan McDowell (fiddle, guitar)

Performance Award nominees, Vocalist

Savannah Church (The Church Sisters)

Alysha Bankester (The Bankesters)

Kim Robins (Kim Robins and 40 Years Late)

Louise Holden (I Draw Slow)

Summer McMahan (Mountain Faith)

Performance Award nominees, Band

I Draw Slow

Lonely Heartstring Band

Twisted Pine

Haas Kowert Tice

Industry Involvement Award nominees, Media/Artisan/Business/General

Alan Tompkins (promoter, radio broadcaster, association leader)

Casey Freeland (association executive director)

Daniel Mullins (journalist, radio broadcaster)

Erin Scholze (publicist)

Nominees for Festival/Event/Venue

HoustonFest – Galax, VA

Outer Banks Bluegrass Festival – Manteo, NC

ISIS Restaurant and Music Hall – Asheville, NC

PineCone Youth Camp – Cary, NC

Christmas in the Smokies - Pidgeon Forge, TN

Mentor Award (given to a bluegrass professional who has made a significant impact on the lives and careers of newcomers to the bluegrass industry):

Alan Tompkins (promoter, radio broadcaster, association leader)

Andrea Roberts (Andrea Roberts Agency)

Daniel Boner (director, Bluegrass, Old Time, and Country Music Studies at ETSU)

Ken Irwin (Rounder Records)

Woody Platt (Steep Canyon Rangers)

2015-2016 Northern California Bluegrass Society Board Of Directors Elected At Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival

NCBS Board of Directors

NCBS Board of Directors

Brenda Hough

Brenda Hough

The 2015-2016 Northern California Bluegrass Society Board Of Directors was elected by the membership on Saturday, August 8 at the Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival in Tres Pinos.

Bruce Bellochio (Brookdale), Eric Burman (Bonny Doon), Elicia Burton (Boulder Creek), Bruce Edmundson (Sunnyvale), Mike Fisher (Boulder Creek), Penny Godlis (Santa Cruz), Michael Hall (Redwood City), & Mike Russell (San Mateo) were re-elected.

Alison Steele of Boulder Creek was newly-elected.

Longtime board member Brenda Hough of San Jose retired from the board.

The new board will meet in September to begin planning Society activities for the coming year.

NCBS Board Of Directors Candidates For August 8 Election

The Northern California Bluegrass Society’s Annual Election for Board of Directors will be held on Saturday, August 8, 2015, 10:00am-5:00pm, during the Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival at the Bolado Park Event Center in Tres Pinos, and by mail. Mailed ballots are due by August 4.

There are nine announced candidates running for nine positions.

Alison Steele

Alison Steele

WRITE-IN CANDIDATE

The following candidate has announced that she is running as a write-in, and submitted this statement and picture:

Alison Steele

You may know me as the banjo player for Sugar by the Pound.  I really enjoy the West Coast Bluegrass sound and want  to help the bluegrass community by serving on the NCBS Board of Directors.  I am a native Virginian and have lived in Santa Cruz for the past 12 years.  It would be a joy to help with the Santa Cruz Bluegrass Fair and the Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival along with other Society events and projects. I would appreciate your vote!

CANDIDATES ON BALLOT

These candidates previously submitted candidate statements and are on the ballot that was published with their statements and photos in the July/August issue of Bluegrass By The Bay magazine:

Bruce Bellochio, Eric Burman, Elicia Burton, Bruce Edmundson, Mike Fisher, Penny Godlis, Michael Hall, & Mike Russell.

NCBS Membership

Northern California Bluegrass Society Late Summer Official Dates & Deadlines

Here are the late summer official dates & deadlines for the Northern California Bluegrass Society:

JULY

11 — NCBS Santa Clara Historic Train Depot Jam.

22 — Discount Advance Ticket deadline for Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival.

AUGUST

4 — Mail-in ballots must be received at PO Box for NCBS election.

6-9 — NCBS Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival.

7 — Nominations open for 2016 Northern California Bluegrass Awards.

8 — NCBS Board of Directors election.

Candidates On Ballot For August 2015 NCBS Board Election

ncbs-plain-logoThe following candidates have filed statements for the 2015 Northern California Bluegrass Society Board Of Directors Election, set for Saturday, August 8, 10:00am-5:00pm at the Good Old Fashioned Bluegrass Festival and by mail: Bruce Bellochio, Eric Burman, Elicia Burton, Bruce Edmundson, Mike Fisher, Penny Godlis, Michael Hall, & Mike Russell. Candidate statements and ballots will be published in the July issue of Bluegrass By The Bay magazine.