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Florence Winter Music Fest Readies to Heat Up Oregon Coast at End of January

Published 12/04/23 a 5:05 p.m.
B
y Oregon Coast Beach Connection staff

Florence Winter Music Fest Readies to Heat Up Oregon Coast at End of January

(Florence, Oregon) – Once again, the last weekend in January will be a sizzling one on the central Oregon coast. The Florence Events Center will be kickin' out the jams over two days with the Florence Winter Music Festival on January 26 and 27, sweltering in the heat of bluegrass, new and traditional folk, and foot-stompin' Americana. (Above: Appalachian Road Show)

Visitors will get to witness a special kick-off event on the 25th with an open mic session called “Take the Stage!” on that Thursday eve. Jam sessions, workshops for performing and songwriting, and fab food and drink grace the pre-func fun.

Tickets are starting to go quickly, however, say organizers, so you may want to jump on this bandwagon soon.

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Organizer Rachel Pearson said they just created more two-day passes, which are back by popular demand.

“This is the best way to get the most out of the event,” she said.

Friday night’s headliners are Never Come Down, the Henhouse Prowlers, Beth Wood, Crying Uncle Bluegrass Band, Becky Buller Banjo Duo, Josh Goforth. On Saturday, it's Appalachian Roadshow.

Each act has earned rave reviews from devoted fans, and from industry titans including the International Bluegrass Music Association. Tickets are available at the Florence Events Center and its website, EventCenter.org.

The Full 2024 Lineup:

THURSDAY NIGHT

A now-annual favorite, the community open mic “Take the Stage!” event will be unleashed from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Pearson says this is “A good ol’ fashioned hootenanny. It’s free and open to all ages and abilities. Come sign up, sing, play, collaborate, and have fun cheering on your friends and neighbors on the Florence Events Center flat floor stage.”

FRIDAY NIGHT

Never Come Down. They are Portland’s hottest bluegrass band, returning to the central Oregon coast town by popular demand. Blending modern and traditional bluegrass styles and incredible onstage presence, this band is must-hear. NCD has been recognized by the International Bluegrass Music Association’s (IBMA) 2023 World of Bluegrass summit and, along with the Crying Uncle Bluegrass Band (see Saturday afternoon), were nominees for IBMA Momentum Band of 2023.

Henhouse Prowlers. This group is in its second decade, honing the unique, high-energy vibe that makes them an unforgettable stage presence - be it in Chicago, Siberia, or the Middle East. These musicians are official Cultural Ambassadors for the US State Department, and they show the world what American bluegrass is all about.

SATURDAY AFTERNOON

Beth Wood. Beth is a modern-day troubadour and proponent of the power of music: word, song, and performance. Come be transported to a world where creativity, skill, sincere songwriting, and music making create a community circle for an hour or more.

Crying Uncle Bluegrass Band. Brothers Miles and Teo Quale with bassist Andrew Osborn and guitarist John Gooding have shaken up the USA, Japan, and Europe with their vibrant mix of bluegrass, dawg, jazz, and original acoustic sounds. Crying Uncle were the winners of the International Bluegrass Music Association Momentum Band Award for 2023.

Becky Buller Banjo Duo. Becky is the recipient of 10 IBMA awards including Fiddler of the Year in 2016. Ned Luberecki was voted IBMA 2018 Banjo Player of the Year by the IBMA. Together, they will light up the theater with the fire of their vibrant playing, exuberant personalities, and shared joy in music making. Bonus: Ned was the winner of the IMBA Broadcaster of the Year in September 2023.

SATURDAY NIGHT


Fun in Florence

Appalachian Road Show combines the award-winning talents of lead singer and banjoist Barry Abernathy, tenor singer and mandolinist-extraordinaire Darrel Webb, and award-winning fiddler and producer Jim Vancleve. Their motto is “Authenticity never goes out of style,” as they honor the music, traditions, and history of the Appalachian people and regions. Join them for a spell and an unforgettable evening. IMBA nominees for Performers of the Year.

Josh Goforth. Josh is back by popular demand. This one-person Bluegrass Renaissance Man learned his craft “on the porch” back in Madison County, NC, and has mastered close to 20 instruments. Performances include the National Storytelling Festival in Jonesborough, TN; The Grand Ole Opry, Carnegie Hall, David Holt’s PBS show “State of Music,” and the Florence Winter Music Festival 2023. Josh will also headline the invitation-only Kiwanis Kids Concerts on Thursday, and the free Friday afternoon Community Concert at Oregon Pacific Bank, 1355 Highway 101 in Florence.

ALL WEEKEND LONG

Linda Leavitt of The Oregon Bluegrass Association and Tom Nechville, proprietor of Nechville Banjos, will anchor the action in Gallery Five. There you’ll find jams, pickin’ sessions, playing advice, and tall tales of festivals past including sparkling bluegrass reminiscences and spirited conversations! They’ll also be on hand for Take the Stage to keep the musical energy flowing.

Throughout the Winter Music Festival you can expect plenty of informal jams, performer interactions, super merchandise sales, excellent food and drink, and great vibes. For more information on the Florence Winter Music Festival visit WinterMusicFestival.org.

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Andre' GW Hagestedt is editor, owner and primary photographer / videographer of Oregon Coast Beach Connection, an online publication that sees over 1 million pageviews per month. He is also author of several books about the coast.

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