John Cowan, "The Voice of New Grass", To Kick Off Ralph Stanley Museum Mountain Music Festival 2008
The Ralph Stanley Museum & Traditional Mountain Music Center is pleased to announce that The John Cowan Band will perform as featured guests during the Museum & Center's annual benefit concert at the Jettie Baker Center on Clintwood Main Street. This year's special concert event, sponsored by Alpha Natural Resources, is scheduled for Friday, September 26th at 6:30pm, kicking off the Ralph Stanley Museum Mountain Music Festival 2008, which will offer events to the public all weekend long on September 26th, 27th, and 28th. Reserve your tickets early for a very special evening of regional music.
Bluegrass. Newgrass. Rock N' Rollgrass. True innovators defy easy categorization and John Cowan is the ultimate innovator. His ability to move easily between music styles and blend and bend genres into creative new forms has made him one of the most significant voices in acoustic music over the past thirty years.
After making a name for himself as one of the most in-demand vocalists in the early 1970s' music scene in Louisville, Ky., Cowan rose to fame when he became the lead singer for New Grass Revival. He and bandmates Sam Bush, Bela Fleck and Pat Flynn introduced a new generation of music fans to an explosive, experimental brand of bluegrass.
After inspiring and entertaining fans for nearly two decades, New Grass disbanded in 1990. Cowan immediately gave chase to his creative muse following it all over the musical landscape with a series of critically acclaimed albums. The Evansville, Indiana-native wrapped his expansive voice around tunes that ran the gamut from rock to soul to blues and beyond. As the 21st century began he found himself circling slowly, inexorably back to the acoustic music that he knew so well. He began to surround himself with some of the finest acoustic musicians working.
When the current line-up of his band, Jeff Autry (guitar), Wayne Benson, (mandolin) Shad Cobb (fiddle) and Noam Pikelny (banjo), came together, he knew he was on to something special. The music began to take a natural, organic turn back to Cowan's acoustic roots.
"For me it's coming back to something I know really well," he says. "It's been a coming home of sorts. We've had this line-up of the band for over a year now and the response from the crowds has been overwhelming."
Tickets to the special concert event with The John Cowan Band are $20 and may be purchased from the Ralph Stanley Museum & Traditional Mountain Music Center by calling (276) 926-8550 or by visiting the website at www.ralphstanleymuseum.com. Early ticket buyers receive reserved seating, so purchase your tickets early!
The Ralph Stanley Museum Mountain Music Festival also offers regional music, storytelling, workshops, kids rides, crafts, vendors, an annual quilt show, and much more all day on Saturday and during the afternoon on Sunday. All outdoor performance events and workshops on Saturday and Sunday are free and open to the public, thanks to the support of festival sponsors Alpha Natural Resources, Equitable Resources, New Peoples Bank, Johnson Chevrolet, Mountain Empire Community College's Home Craft Days and Mountain Music School, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Thompson & Litton, and Ralph & Jimmie Stanley.
The Ralph Stanley Museum & Traditional Mountain Music Center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation. All proceeds from the benefit concert help to support the Mountain Music Festival and future programming and ensure that the collection is properly maintained.