2017-18 Bluegrass Series

Bluegrass 2017-18

Sideline – Fri, Oct 13, 2017 @ 8pm

Sideline plays songs you love performed in a way that makes audiences understand why these pickers and singers are A-tier bluegrass artists, loved and adored by fans around the world.

Mile Twelve – Fri, Dec 8, 2017 @ 8pm

Mile Twelve is a fresh, hard driving young band beautifully walking the line between original and traditional bluegrass.

Red Wine – Fri, Feb 16, 2018 @ 8pm

Red Wine is one of the most important European bands – and one of the most entertaining bands on any continent-playing traditional and contemporary Bluegrass, Country, Gospel, and Swing.

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Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper – Fri, Mar 16, 2018 @ 8pm

Michael Cleveland is one of the most important fiddle players of his generation and an Emelin favorite.

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Jeff Scroggins & Colorado – Fri, Apr 13, 2018 @ 8pm

Jeff Scroggins & Colorado believes in creating an intriguing musical experience that pushes the boundaries of bluegrass while honoring the culture and tradition of the music.

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Curator’s Note


I’m often asked how I go about choosing artists for the Emelin’s bluegrass series. Over the course of each season, my goal is to present a range of bluegrass from traditional to contemporary. While I’m committed to having audience favorites return every few years, I also think it’s important to introduce new or unfamiliar artists into the series. More than 20% of the artists who have appeared at the Emelin since 2006, when I first became curator of the series, are performers whom I saw for the first time at the annual IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association) business conference.

The 2017-18 bluegrass season reflects all of these considerations, with all but one of the bands – the amazing Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper – being new to the Emelin.

The season opens in October with the traditionally rooted contemporary band, Sideline, headed by Steve Dilling. Banjo player for Russell Moore and IIIrd Tyme Out for 20 years, Dilling has recruited some of the most respected sidemen in bluegrass to create an A-tier band. December brings us Mile Twelve, a fast-rising young traditional band from Boston. Mile Twelve follows in the footsteps of the 2015 audience favorite here at the Emelin, the Lonely Heartstring Band, whom they fondly refer to as their “big brothers.” In February, the Italian band Red Wine will demonstrate that the IBMA is truly international. A wonderfully entertaining band with an eclectic repertoire and tons of personality as well as superb vocal and instrumental chops, Red Wine is not to be missed. By the time Michael Cleveland appears in March, he may well have won his eleventh Fiddle Player of the Year award. Regardless, there are few performers as exciting to see and hear as Michael and his band. Our final band, Jeff Scroggins and Colorado, is one of the most musically accomplished, crowd-pleasing bands I’ve come across. They were among the standouts in a stellar lineup at this year’s Joe Val Bluegrass Festival outside Boston, captivating the audience not only with their skill, but also with their energy and stage presence.

Each of these shows will be pretty special. Experiencing all five will be even more so. As Bill Monroe, the father of bluegrass, would have said, bluegrass is a “mighty powerful” music. Subscribe to the entire series, and you’ll understand why.

Arnie Fleischer