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Florence Band of the Month October – Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass

Willis Music Florence is happy to have Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass as our October band of the month!

Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass is a driving, five piece bluegrass band established in Cincinnati, OH during the 1960’s. Vernon’s years of playing both banjo and guitar with the greats of bluegrass have honed his skills as an entertainer and make him uniquely qualified to define the traditional bluegrass sound of the Appalachian Grass. He began his professional career at the age of 15 playing banjo with Earl Taylor and the Stoney Mountain Boys. He has since played with Walt Hensley, Jimmy Martin, Jim McCall, James Monroe, Mac Wiseman, and Scott Stoneman. Vernon was also a founding member of the Bluegrass Pardners of Wheeling Jamboree fame and his banjo work with the Easterners is well remembered.

Through the years, Vernon has made several appearances on the Grand Ole Opry stage. He appeared playing banjo with both Earl Taylor and the Stoney Mountain Boys and with Jimmy Martin and the Sunny Mountain Boys. When the Appalachian Grass was invited to perform at the Opry with Vernon as band leader, singer and guitarist, Vernon became one of the few who have been on that stage as a banjoist, a singer, and a guitarist.

Vernon has recorded many projects with Appalachian Grass that feature both his unique banjo style and his vocals and guitar work. Vernon’s matchless rhythm guitar is the bedrock for wife Kitty’s two fiddle instrumental recordings. During the 1970s, Vernon was a staff musician at Jewel Recording Studio and has contributed banjo and/or rhythm guitar tracks to innumerable recording sessions for entertainers such as Mac Wiseman, Jimmy Skinner, Charlie Moore, Rusty York, Lonnie Mack, Sid Campbell, JD Jarvis, Hylo Brown, and Bobby Grove.

Over the years, Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass has played concerts, festivals, fairs, colleges, radio, television, and exclusive nightclubs across the United States and Canada. In 1998, Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass won the CAMMY award for Best Bluegrass Band in the Cincinnati – Tri-State Area. The band’s exploits even include the grand opening dedication of an historic cemetery!

As emcee, lead singer, and rhythm guitar player, Vernon McIntyre infuses the Appalachian Grass with the warmth and spontaneity of a small family gathering even when playing for thousands of fans. He combines bluegrass history and stories with showmanship and humor to deliver top notch entertainment. Vernon’s wife, Kitty McIntyre, brings to the group some of the best bluegrass fiddling that you can hear. Audiences always enjoy her energetic performances as well as her trick fiddling act. Known for the quality of their singing, the group’s vocals are a blend of smooth and intricate harmonies that are a delight to hear. Hard-driving banjo by Robert Campbell, mandolin by Wayne Haddix, and upright bass by Tammy Powers round out the Appalachian Grass sound.

With Vernon McIntyre’s Appalachian Grass on stage you’re sure to get old-fashioned entertainment at its best!

Check them out at Willis Music Florence on October 15 at 7pm!

Like their facebook page here to receive a 10% discount on one item at Willis Music. Already a fan, don’t worry, you still get the discount.

Want to be the next band of the month? Contact Denise at deniseb@willismusic.com for details!

Calendar of Events – February 2016

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Tons of great events going on at Willis Music Florence Superstore this month! Concerts, discounts and more!

Check out our band of the month, Jason Owens Band! Like them on Facebook or Twitter for a discount in the store!

Fiddle Me This!

We just finished up with our second annual Kids Got Talent video contest! What is that you ask? Well, that is a video Facebook contest that we hold, where awesome talented kids in the tri-state sumbit videos of them playing their favorite instrument. This year we got 6 entries and they were all great! Do you want to see them? Of course you do! Check them out!

Here is 11 year old Haley

Here is 12 year old Davis Johnson playing “Portraits in Rhythm.”

Here is 11 year old Donovan Johnson playing “The Entertainer.”

Here is 9 1/2 year old Logan playing “Seven Nation Army.”

Here is 9 year old Jack! Jack writes his own piano music.

Here is our winner 9 year old John Maupin playing Orange Blossom Special!

Let’s get to know our winner a little! First of all, here is John!I asked John’s mom to help us get to know him a little better. This is seriously one cool kid! Here is what his mom had to say about him. John began playing fiddle at the age of four. By the time he was eight he knew over 200 fiddle tunes. (Whoa!) He especially responds to Kentucky old-time fiddle and bluegrass music, but enjoys Cajun and jazz, too. He has played on the stage with Ralph Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys with Nathan Stanley, Larry Sparks and the Lonesome Ramblers, the Farm Hands Bluegrass Quartet, Michael Cleveland, Jeff Guernsey, and the New Coon Creek Girls. Recently he had the opportunity to perform at Mulate’s and the Mahogany Jazz Hall in New Orleans. He has also performed on Hilton Head Island at Ruby Lee’s and The Jazz Corner. John performs at many old-time and bluegrass festivals and loves to jam. He recently won both the Morehead Old-Time Fiddle and the Ed Haley Fiddle Competitions for the second year in a row. In 2014 he was awarded the JP Fraley Scholarship from the Cowan Creek Mountain Music School. John most recently won the KY Farm Bureau talent show for both the Madison County and district level. He will be competing at the state level later this month in Louisville, KY. You can find him performing every weekend on stage at the Mountain Arts Center in Prestonsburg, KY. Here he is the youngest member of the Kentucky Opry Junior Pros. John is also a member of the HASP orchestra in Danville, KY, which is under the direction of Jeremy Mulholland. He has performed on Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour where he was described as a “tsunami of personality and a future IBMA Fiddle Player of Year winner”. John’s only interest isn’t music! He is also an honor student, on the swim team, and competes in equestrian events. His other love is his family’s farm where he has his own herd of cattle. John sounds like one cool and talented kid doesn’t he? It’s unbelievable that he started playing at the ago of four. He already has an impressive musical resume. It’s awesome to see we have such talented young musicians in the tri-state like John! Keep up the awesome fiddlin’, John; we can’t wait to see what your future in music holds.

Thank you to all of our contestants and a special congrats to our winner Fiddlin’ John Maupin! We can’t wait until next year’s contest. Until then, keep practicing!