Spring Has Sprung-The Wintergrass, Acoustic Sound Newsletter

Wintergrass sends out an electronic newsletter every few months and here is the text version of the Spring 2010 Newsletter (you can sign up at this link)

2010 Lineup so far…

Tim O’Brien

Seldom Scene

The Infamous Stringdusters

Crooked Still

Dry Branch Fire Squad new

Väsen & The Duo (Mike Marshall & Darol Anger) new

Super-early bird Ticket Deadline April 16th!

Happy Spring! It’s only 319 days til Wintergrass 2010, give or take a day or so. Never too early to plan but almost too late to get in on the best ticket price of the year. The super-early bird discount goes away at midnight on April 16th. Weekend passes are $95 for all adults. Be sure to get your weekend passes by then to take advantage of this price. Purchasing your weekend pass by April 16th also makes you eligible for the room reservation drawings at both the Hotel Murano and the Courtyard Marriott. You may purchase your tickets online at www.wintergrass.com, or via the mail with a check or money order. Printable ticket order forms are available at www.wintergrass.com. There are processing fees for both online and credit card orders, but no fees at all associated with orders paid by check. Zero. Nada. Zip. You know what to do – zip on over to your computer and get those tickets now. You save $$$ and you help us keep things running all year long. Everybody wins!

PS – We can’t make your car payments for you, but we can and will hold prices to 2009 levels!

Weekend Pass (full festival pass) price deadlines for 2010 tickets:

(single day tickets will go on sale April 17, 2009)

Super-early bird Tickets available through April 16, 2009

$95 adults

$250 family (2 adults, up to 4 kids 6-17)

Early bird Tickets available April 17, 2009 through September 1, 2009

$110 adults

$100 seniors (age 62+), students, military, Canadians

$280 family (2 adults, up to 4 kids 6-17)

Pre-festival Tickets available September 2, 2009 through February 22, 2010*

$115 adults

$105 seniors (age 62+), students, military, Canadians

$290 family (2 adults, up to 4 kids 6-17)

*online ticket sales will cease at midnight on Tuesday, February 22, 2010. After that at-the-door prices will apply.

Kids ages 6-17 are always $25 no matter what time of year you buy your ticket. Kids under 6 are always free.

The Inside Scoop

Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Every year, we hear some very nice things from you.

“It’s the happiest place on Earth!!…great people, great volunteer experience, great music!!! Can’t wait till next year.”

We can’t wait either. Actually, that’s really true. We started working on Wintergrass 2010 before 2009 even started. All that friendly, well-organized, fun stuff seems to just happen like magic, as it should. But it takes a lot of work all year long to make things as good as they can be.

Wintergrass operates with a corps of about 300 volunteers, a couple of dozen volunteer managers and a tiny staff of three people. That tiny staff works all year and believe it or not, Wintergrass is their day job. This year, the volunteers and staff together presented 70 shows on 5 stages, dances, and four education programs. Bluegrass in the Schools provided training to over 35 teachers. The Youth Academy inspired over 60 kids to polish their bluegrass chops. The Reader’s session helped 40 classically trained musicians experience the joy of improvisation. The Wintergrass Academy provided intensive instruction with some of the best players in bluegrass for 50 students. And then we had that crazy Choro jam where over 100 people showed up with readers and improvisers rubbing shoulders while churning out Brazilian rhythms while the girls danced. The girls and Andy, that is. And despite a couple of rough patches, countless jammers still found a way to make the halls ring out with the sounds of our beloved bluegrass.

Despite our fancy digs, the festival operates on very slim margins every year. Most years, we’re happy to break even. This year, the bad economy affected us every bit as much as it has affected other parts of community. That’s left us perched precariously between now and next year.

But you can help.

•The best thing you can do is buy your ticket now.

But there are other things you can do too.

•You can join a growing band of folks who are Acoustic Sound Supporters. In addition to buying tickets and/or volunteering these folks provide us with additional funds that truly do help to keep the lights on in the office all year. For that they get goodies, big and small, including invitations to unique events both at the festival and throughout the year. Last year we hosted a spectacular event with Chef Greg Atkinson and Mike Marshall & Big Trio at the home of John Eisenhauer. We hope to do one or more such events this year. Read more about the Acoustic Sound Supporter program at http://www.acousticsound.org/!as_about.htm

But wait! There’s more!

•Our longtime, faithful webmaster, Steve Johnson, has been shipped off to Iraq this year. Our best thoughts and prayers go with him and we fully expect him to be back. But this year we are very much in need of help with the website. If you’ve got webmaster skills and can help us out, please contact Patrice directly at patriceo@comcast.net.

•We’ll be further developing our education programs, and are particularly compelled to build on the good success of the Bluegrass in the Schools program. If your band, or you are interested in helping us to develop this program, contact us at patriceo@comcast.net. At this point, this doesn’t mean we have school gigs to hand out, but with your help, we think we can make that a reality.

Wintergrass – O’ MY Gosh! It was a freaking blast. I played for the first time with a jam group. Loved the workshops. People were exceptional (I lost my banjo bag, and got a mail from the parking garage that it was found, with all my gear). Did I say it was great?”

And Wintergrass 2010 performer Aoife  O’Donovan of Crooked Still will be in town soon with a side project of hers:

The Heather Masse and Aoife O’Donovan Band

April 23, 2009 7:30 PM

Shafer Baillie Mansion

907 14th Avenue East

Seattle, WA 98112

Tickets: https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/56152

There are so many great concerts happening it would be impossible for us to list them all in this newsletter. But we’ll try to let you know about one or two every time we send something. This month, folk goddesses Aoife O’Donovan (of Crooked Still) and Heather Masse (of The Wailin Jennys) unite to wail and still the ears and hearts of west coast audiences this April 2009.  Aoife and Heather were classmates, collaborators, and friends while attending The New England Conservatory of Music from 00′-04′.  Five years later, both having made a name for themselves in the music world, they reunite joining forces to sing together again.  They will be making their way to the west coast to perform their original songs and music accompanied by a full band from April 19th-26th.

Sonicbids-How to Let Wintergrass Know You Want to Perform

Over the last several years we’ve received an increasing number of requests from bands to “Go check out my website! My band wants to play Wintergrass!” We fully appreciate why bands would choose to send electronic submissions rather than mail a package. It costs a bunch of money and at least one precious CD that could otherwise be sold. On the festival side of things, it’s dang near impossible to keep track of such requests and so most simply go by the wayside. Not anymore. Wintergrass is now accepting all electronic submissions via Sonicbids. We’re finding it to be a wonderful way to review band material and communicate quickly with bands. While there is a small fee to apply, it is less than the cost of mailing your package. As a musician, you are assured that all submissions will be reviewed by those who receive them. You’ll also gain access quickly to other sources for gigs. So far, we like this a lot. We think you will too. To find us on Sonicbids, go to Sonicbids.com and look for Wintergrass2010.

Wintergrass 2010 Addition-The Dry Branch Fire Squad

The Dry Branch Fire Squad has been signed to the Wintergrass 2010 lineup.Thanks to those who have filled out the Wintergrass survey on the website. This survey is an important part of Wintergrass and is really helping the staff to improve the festival and the shape the lineup. The survey is still available on the Wintergrass site.  drybranch_2007_2_rgb1

Early Tickets are still available until April 16th 2009.

And also if you are on Facebook,Wintergrass does have an event posted  there. Just search for Wintergrass. And to follow Wintergrass on Twitter just follow “Wintergrass”

Wintergrass 2010 Performer Aoife O’Donovan & Heather Masse Seattle Show

Wintergrass 2010 performer Aoife O’Donovan (Crooked Still’s lead singer) & Heather Masse (of the Wailin’ Jennys) will be performing at a house concert in Seattle on April 23rd,2009. The venue is in Seattle’s Capitol Hill area. For more info here is a link for both tickets to the show and more information about this performance.  Information is also available on Facebook at this link

Wintergrass Early Tickets are available until April 16th, 2010 and don’t forget to fill out the Wintergrass Survey.  For those of you on FACEBOOK Wintergrass is on Facebook.