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Launch of Athy Bluegrass Festival 2007


The annual Athy Bluegrass Festival will take place from the 12th - 15th July 2007
The line up includes Patuxent Partners, Washington; Red Wine, Italy; Gary Ferguson, USA; Woodbine, Athy; Tennessee Hennessee, Armagh; The Niall Toner Band, Carlow; The Sullivan Brothers, Athy and Acoustic Grass, Derry. More acts will be announced. The festival contains a mix of traditional & contemporary bluegrass.
Musicians appearing at the festival include Tom Mindte, John Brunchwyler, Gary Ferguson, Dave Miner, Mel Corry, Sean McKerr, Niall Toner, Frank Robinson, Dessie Crerand and Tony Curran.
The festival is run by the Athy Bluegrass Music Association [] which was formed in 1997 to run the festival and promote bluegrass music. Most of the festival events will take place in the Carlton Abbey Hotel, but there will also be a gig trail which will include The Clanard Court Hotel and The Athy Heritage Centre, Clancy’s Bar, Pat Dunnes, and Smugglers.

This year's festival is sponsored by Albert Dunne, Car Sales.

What is Bluegrass?
Bluegrass music is a form of American roots music which began in the mid to late 1940s in the US. It has its own roots in Irish, Scottish and English traditional music. Bluegrass was inspired by the music of Scots-Irish immigrants as well as that of rural African-Americans, jazz, and blues. In bluegrass, each instrument takes a turn playing the melody and improvising around it, while the others revert to backing. Bluegrass is distinctively acoustic, rarely using electric instruments. Typical instruments include fiddle, banjo, acoustic guitar, mandolin, dobro, and upright bass.

Dobro is a trade name now owned by Gibson Guitar Corporation and used for a particular design of resonator guitar. Originally coined by the Dopyera brothers when they formed the Dobro Manufacturing Company, for a time it came in common language to mean any resonator guitar. The Dobro brand also appeared, quite legitimately, on other instruments, notably electric lap steel guitars and solid body electric guitars and on other resonator instruments such as Safari mandolins.