Sunday, May 7, 2017

OldTone Music (and dance) Festival announces new site plan; early bird tickets expire at midnight

Oldtone Roots Music Festival 
September 7-10, 2017
Cool Whisper Farm, N. Hillsdale, NY

has announced its layout for 2017

For those who attended this tiny gem (as they say, "Think Winterhawk/Nobett Hill!") last year, you will see a huge improvement this year. The main stage is being moved away from the farm compound, to the area occupied last year by day parking. The workshop stage will be moved to the former main stage location.

But the best news is camping has been added closer to the main grounds, above the main stage! This means campers will be able to see and hear main stage acts from their sites!

Love the new layout!

Note: map is stylized and not to scale.

From the festival:

Dear Friends and Family,
We wanted to take a moment to make sure all those that want to come to Oldtone 2017 have saved the dates & telling their friends! 
We are having a lot of fun planning this years festival, and it is challenging and time-consuming to found a Roots Arts Organization. We are dedicated and working very hard to make sure Oldtone is successful and we thank everyone we know personally that has helped Oldtone so in the last year. It has been amazing to have so many wonderful people pitch in and support our vision.
We wanted to let you know that the time to get tickets is now. Early Bird Day & Camping Tickets save substantial buckaroos! So please take advantage of it, it’s a great way to support the festival and save money too. You can get your tickets here:
Another great way to help is to be an Oldtone Volunteer, which gives you comp tickets, and makes you a part of our growing Oldtone Family. Volunteering is actually really fun, and having reliable people we know take on those simple jobs is a huge help for us! Please contact Beth if you would like to Volunteer: or click on this link: Volunteer at Oldtone!!

In addition this year we are adding the option to be a personal sponsor and financial supporter of Oldtone Roots Music Festival and join us in our mission to preserve, teach, and create experiences of the American Oral tradition that is Roots Music. Contact Beth about sponsoring a band, having your name in the program, or having your name burned into the main stage posts for the life of the stage. More info coming soon.

We’ve had so much fun planning this year’s line up. And there are some big improvements such as moving the main stage to a much better spot, with the main camping in a horseshoe shape all around it! Think Winterhawk/Nobett Hill! 

Please Spread The Word. Facebook shares, posts, and forwarding an email or two about Oldtone really does help, and we rely on you helping us spread the word.

Video Preview of Oldtone Roots Music Festival--Click HERE! 

Also: Look for SuperTONE-July 22nd, which has launched!

Thank You to all our good friends and family members that have given us such strong support, we are so grateful! 

Kip, Matt, Jim, Beth and the Hundreds of Wonderful Volunteers!
Oldtone Roots Music Festival 
Foghorn Stringband, The Revelers, Jesse Lége, Bill and The Bells and much more...
September 7-10, 2017 Cool Whisper Farm, N. Hillsdale, NY

Monday, May 1, 2017

Good news from Americans for the Arts - Congress Finalizes Current Budget with Arts Increases

Congress Finalizes Current Budget with Arts Increases

We wanted to share the latest breaking news from Washington this morning and another great example of how all of your grassroots arts advocacy efforts of sending thousands of letters, emails, phone calls, personal visits, op-eds, news articles, targeted advertising, and research proved effective.

Congress has reached a bipartisan agreement on a bill to fund the nation’s federal agencies and programs for the remaining balance of the current Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 budget, which ends on September 30, 2017.  None of the nation’s arts and cultural agencies nor programs incurred a budget cut. In fact, many of them received funding increases for this year (see chart below).

Key Federally Funded Arts & Culture Agencies/ProgramsFY 2016 Enacted Appropriations
(in millions)
FY 2017 Omnibus Proposal
(in millions)
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)$148$150
National Endowment for Humanities (NEH)$148$150
Assistance for Arts Education grant program through U.S. Department of Education$27$27
New ESSA Well-Rounded Education grants--$400
21st Century Community Learning Centers (after-school program)$1,140$1,190
Corporation for Public Broadcasting$445$445
Office of Museum Services$31$32
Save America's Treasures$0$5
Smithsonian Institution$840$863
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum$54$57
Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts$36$36
U.S. Commission of Fine Arts$2.65$2.8
Nat’l Capital Arts & Cultural Affairs Program$2$2
National Gallery of Art$148$155.5
Special thanks goes to House Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Ken Calvert (R-CA) for initiating a funding increase for many of these cultural programs in the House Interior bill last summer along with ranking member Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN) and to Senate Interior Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) for matching the funding increases in the final Senate version of the bill. Many thanks to Congressional Arts Caucus co-chairs Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Rep. Leonard Lance (R-NJ) and Senate Cultural Caucus co-chairs Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM) and Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) for keeping pressure on Congressional leaders to increase funding for these critically important cultural agencies.

Picture of House Interior SubcmteNone of this could have happened without you. The grassroots calls to action that you promoted and pushed out led to arts advocates from all across the country sending over 165,000+ emails to their elected representatives. As you know, Arts Advocacy Day in March drew new record numbers (712 attendees!), larger than we have ever seen before in the 30 years of Arts Advocacy Days.  Every Congressional and Senatorial office was hit with messages of the value of the arts and there were over 400 face-to-face meetings with Congressional leaders and staff!

Next Steps:
  • FY2017:  Both chambers of Congress will next vote on this bipartisan Omnibus Appropriations bill before it proceeds to the President’s desk for him to sign/veto by this Friday, May 5th.  Despite the President recently proposing funding cuts to many of these cultural programs (i.e. $15 million cut to NEA), it appears that he will sign the bill that was held over from last year's congress.
  • FY2018:  Please note that the FY2018 appropriations bill for funding the federal government from October 1, 2017 through September 30, 2018 is still very much in play and going through the legislative process. This is the bill that the President recommended eliminating the NEA, NEH, IMLS, CPB, etc.  We remain focused on getting all of these agencies fully funded in the coming months.
As we turn our focus to FY 2018, the success of securing increased funding for the arts for FY 2017 is great testimonial to the impact of advocacy!

Thank you!

1000 Vermont Avenue NW
6th Floor
Washington DC . 20005

One East 53rd Street . 2nd Floor
New York NY . 10022

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Letter From IBMA to President Trump and Our Legislators in Support of the NEA and NEH

Excerpt: "...An important principle of our nation has been to protect and promote our rich artistic and cultural heritage. Bluegrass music, as a core genre of American roots music, was created on American soil as an extension of our country’s working class communities. It is this cultural history, along with exceptional musicianship, that makes this music loved throughout our country today. This is not simply entertainment; it is a vital part of our nation’s identity. Our plea to maintain funding for these public endowments is not based in any political agenda. It is about the music and the professionals and audiences who span the entire political spectrum..."

April 20, 2017
Letter to President Trump and Our Legislators in Support of the NEA and NEH
IBMA executive director Paul Schiminger has sent a letter on behalf of the entire bluegrass industry to President Trump and to key legislators in support of both the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Last month, the President  proposed a budget that would cut funding entirely to both endowments. This cut would be extremely small within the overall Federal Budget, but it would create a major loss of funding for the arts, adversely affecting many bluegrass professionalsincluding event producers and artists.
You will find the full letter below:
An Open Letter to President Trump and Our Legislators:
On behalf of the International Bluegrass Music Association (“IBMA”) members, the entire bluegrass music community, and countless other professionals and fans of American roots music, I am writing in response to the President’s 2018 Federal Budget proposal.  The United States of America cannot afford to eliminate the National Endowment for the Arts (“NEA”) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (“NEH”).  These two government agencies carry out three highly beneficial missions across our country:  preserving and promoting the arts, educating and inspiring children, and expanding commerce through the grants provided by these public endowments.
An important principle of our nation has been to protect and promote our rich artistic and cultural heritage.  Bluegrass music, as a core genre of American roots music, was created on American soil as an extension of our country’s working class communities.  It is this cultural history, along with exceptional musicianship, that makes this music loved throughout our country today.  This is not simply entertainment; it is a vital part of our nation’s identity.  Our plea to maintain funding for these public endowments is not based in any political agenda.  It is about the music and the professionals and audiences who span the entire political spectrum.
A second guiding principle is to provide educational opportunity to the children of our country living in poverty.  It has been shown that participation in the arts improves overall student learning and grades while fostering their creative skills.  NEA grants reach nearly 16,000 communities nationwide, with 40% of funds going to high-poverty neighborhoods.  Elimination of these endowments even further disadvantages these at-risk children.  
The final important principle is an economic one.  The current budget proposal would cut $148 million in funding to the NEA and the same for the NEH.  Each of these represented .004% (less than one half of one hundredth of one percent) of the $4 trillion federal budget in 2016.  This miniscule cut to the federal budget would inflict devastating and irreparable damage to so many involved in the arts and humanities.  This is specifically true within our bluegrass music community and other forms of American roots music where artists, performing arts centers and venues, not-for-profit festivals, and other industry professionals rely on grants from the NEA and NEH to make a modest living and contribute to the U.S. economy, in stark contrast to other musical genres featured prominently on commercial media outlets who rightfully do not benefit from such grants.
Furthermore, according to Americans for the Arts in their study entitled Arts & Economic Prosperity IV, not-for-profit arts and culture organizations and their audiences alone generated $135.2 billion of economic activity in 2010 and generate over $22 billion in revenue to local, state, and federal governments every year.  The NEA estimated the impact to be $704 billion in 2013 if considering all arts and cultural production.  This multiplier effect creates an overwhelmingly compelling return on investment of our tax dollars.     
We realize fiscal responsibility comes with difficult choices.  However, the choice to fund the NEA and NEH should not be one that is difficult.  It is vital to maintain our commitment to arts and humanities.  Otherwise, our nation suffers a meaningful loss of its cultural heritage, we turn our backs on children, and we turn our backs on talented and hard working professionals who choose their careers based on art, education, and community rather than great financial reward. 
We strongly encourage you to support the arts and humanities by maintaining the same, or even increasing, the financial commitment to the NEA and NEH as this country has done for more than 50 years.
Paul Schiminger
Executive Director,

International Bluegrass Music Association

Thursday, April 20, 2017

The Tannahill Weavers w/ Elizabeth and Ben Anderson 4/27 is SOLD OUT!

Tannahill Weavers
with Elizabeth and Ben Anderson


But here's how you may be able to get tickets.

The Tannahill Weavers w/ Elizabeth and Ben Anderson
Thursday, April 27, 7:30pm
Harvard Unitarian Universalist Church
9 Ayer Road, Harvard, MA
Waitlist reservations are being accepted.

A limited number of tickets will be released on or before Wednesday, April 26.
Waitlsited patrons will be notified in the order received. Go to the notloB Music Website, click on "upcoming", then "tickets."

Parking is limited, here are your options:
The several spaces near the rear entrance.
The small lot between the church and the fire station.
In the church lot at the fellowship building down the driveway at 7 Elm St.
In the Hildreth House parking lot, located at 13 Ayer Road (top of the hill, behind the fire station.
Near the town hall.
Along the Common side of Elm Street.

Parking is NOT allowed:
Around the fire station.
Blocking any driveways.
On both sides of Elm Street.

A special offer to loyal notloB Music patrons.

MAHLER Symphony No. 6
Boston Philharmonic Youth Orchestra
Symphony Hall
Sunday, April 23, 2017,
Conductor's talk 1:45pm
Concert 3:00pm
More at More at

notloB Music has 4-5 or orchestra tickets (rows J, K, & L) with value of $50ea. If you can be at Symphony Hall by 1:30pm, send an email to Include your name and phone/text number. Winners will be drawn at random and notified by Saturday night. 

Friday, April 7, 2017

"Songs of Separation" wins Best Album at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards

Congratulations to Hannah Read - notloB Music concert #34, Folk Arts Quartet, April 11, 2009 - on winning the Best Album of 2017 for Songs of Separation at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards 2017!! 

In her own words, "Songs of Separation" won Best Album at the BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards in London on Wednesday night! What an incredible honour. Thank you to everyone who voted and supported us over the last year - so happy! X"

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Arts Matter Advocacy Day 2017

"March up the steps of the capitol
Hold them accountable..."
~Jack Hardy

Arts Matter Advocacy Day 2017

On March 28, MASSCreative will bring together the creative community for Arts Matter Advocacy Day to show our state political leaders that the arts are crucial in Massachusetts.

Join us in the march to the State House and add your voice to the chorus of support for the arts!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Folk Fights Back Boston: For Immigrants and Refugees

Folk Fights Back Boston: 
For Immigrants and Refugees
Hosted by Folk Fights Back
Sunday, March 19 at 6:30 PM
Arts at the Armory
191 Highland Avenue, Somerville, Massachusetts 02143
Folk Fights Back is a musician led organization that seeks to raise money and awareness for critical issues during the Trump presidency. Our second event, Folk Fights Back for Immigrants and Refugees will raise money for local organizations that are doing litigation or other support work for refugees and immigrants. All proceeds of this Folk Fights Back Boston event will go to the Political Asylum/Immigration Representation Project (PAIR).
For over 25 years, the Political Asylum/Immigration Representation Project (PAIR) has been a nationally recognized pro bono model that provides free legal services to asylum-seekers and to promote the rights of detained immigrants. PAIR provides hope and a new beginning to asylum-seekers, torture survivors and immigration detainees.
Bruce Molsky
Mariel Vandersteel, Joe K. Walsh, and Eli West
Laura Cortese & the Dance Cards
Twisted Pine
Corporate Punk
Lonely Heartstring Band
Billy Wylder
Stash Wyslouch
Jenna Moynihan & Mairi Chaimbeul