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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
540-483-5113
Fax: 540-483-8013

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Jefferson Center & Harvester partner for show
Sam Bush will perform in Rocky Mount in October
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Publicity Photo: Grammy Award-winning instrumentalist Sam Bush will perform in Rocky Mount on Oct. 30 as a joint production of the Jefferson Center and the Harvester Performance Center.

Monday, July 28, 2014

The Harvester Performance Center will partner with The Jefferson Center for an Oct. 30 performance by Grammy Award-winning instrumentalist Sam Bush in Rocky Mount.

The Jefferson Center in Roanoke has long been one of the premier venues for live concerts in all genres, said Harvester Manager Gary Jackson.

"Now with the Harvester Performance Center in nearby Rocky Mount, Southwest Virginia has another unique and excellent venue to showcase top-notch artists," Jackson said. "Both organizations are proud to host one of the best when Sam Bush performs this fall."

Matt Hankins, assistant town manager and venue developer, said it is important to have great partnerships, not only with artists, but also with other venues and arts organizations.

"Our recent partnership with the Smith Mountain Arts Council resulted in a sold-out Suzy Bogguss show," Hankins said. "So many great artists are out there playing, and if we have partnerships with other regional venues, we can all benefit from working together to avoid scheduling conflicts."

For example, if the Jefferson Center is hosting a blues or jazz show one night, the Harvester can host a country or rock show to avoid attracting the same music fans, Hankins said. It makes sense to coordinate schedules and talk about plans so everyone can build great lineups and give fans outstanding music choices.

"Gary Jackson and the Harvester have been able to attract highly-regarded master artists to the Harvester, like Jerry Douglas and Jake Shimabokuro, and now Sam Bush coming in October just adds to the appeal of the venue," Hankins said. "Artists are talking to one another, and word is getting out in the music community about what a great room it is, how well the audience responds and how the sound and acoustics are so good."

Known as the King of Telluride and the King of Newgrass, Bush has been honored by the Americana Music Association and the International Bluegrass Music Association.

"It's overwhelming and humbling," Bush said of his lifetime achievement award from the AMA. "It goes along with the title cut of my new album, 'Circles Around Me,' which basically says, 'How in the hell did we get this far?' In my brain, I'm still 17, but I look in the mirror and I'm 57."

But honors are not what drive him. "I didn't get into music to win awards," he said. "I'm just now starting to get somewhere. I love to play and the older I get the more I love it. And I love new things."

Bush has helped to expand the horizons of bluegrass music, fusing it with jazz, rock, blues, funk and other styles. He's the co-founder of the genre-bending New Grass Revival and an in-demand musician who has played with everyone from Emmylou Harris and Bela Fleck to Charlie Haden, Lyle Lovett and Garth Brooks.

And though Bush is best known for jaw-dropping skills on the mandolin, he is also a three-time national junior fiddle champion and Grammy award-winning vocalist.

"In the acoustic world, I've been pretty lucky to play with almost every one of my heroes," he said. "I've gotten to play with Bill Monroe, Doc Watson, Earl Scruggs... I've been to the mountain."

Another partnership that will enhance the Harvester experience is the Crooked Road, Hankins said.

"We're working to develop a lineup for the inaugural Crooked Road Mountains of Music Festival next summer because a festival that takes place all along the Crooked Road will help all the communities along the route, including ours," he added.

 
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