Upcoming DCBU Events

The DC Bluegrass Festival returns to the Sheraton Tysons Hotel, Friday & Saturday March 10 & 11, 2017! Please visit dcbluegrassfest.org for more information.

2017 DC Bluegrass Festival
Put your band on stage at the 2017 DC Bluegrass Festival! Contestant bands open the festival with their best material on Friday, March 10, competing for a total of $1,600 in cash and the opening festival set on Saturday, March 11. Visit http://dcbluegrassfest.org/band-competition/ to enter.

The Hazel Dickens Song Contest has closed for accepting entries as of January 5, 2017, with more than 180 songs entered; the winning entries will be announced on February 15, 2017. Visit http://dcbu.org/hazel-dickens-song-contest-rules-and-entry/ to view the contest rules.

Hazel Dickens and Alice GerrardThe Hazel Dickens Song Contest celebrates the life and muse of one of bluegrass music’s most beloved songwriters by bringing attention to bluegrass songwriters following in her footsteps. Cash prizes are awarded to the top three entries; First Place – $500, Second Place – $250, Third Place – $100, with the first place winner being invited to play their winning entry at the DC Bluegrass Festival.

Latest News

On July 7, 2016, WAMU announced that their Bluegrass Country radio station will shut down on December 31 due to financial issues if a new owner is not found in the interval.

Breaking News – On October 17, 2016, the Bluegrass Country Foundation became the only organization to submit a bid to save the station. Read the Washington Post article Group Moves to Keep Bluegrass on Washington’s Airwaves, and please visit the Bluegrass Country Foundation‘s website to support the effort to keep bluegrass on the radio in DC!

January 19, 2017 – The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) has announced the roll of its 2017 Leadership Bluegrass class. Congratulations to this year’s DC-area class members, mandolinist Akira Otsuka of Bluegrass 45 fame and John Smith, co-founder of Takoma Park-based record label Free Dirt Records & Service Co.!

For more information and a complete list of 2017 attendees, please read https://ibma.org/press/archives/ibma-announces-selection-2017-leadership-bluegrass-class.

Bill FosterBluegrassers may know Bill Foster as a guitarist and mandolin player, as a radio DJ, as an open mic host, as a writer for the Bluegrass Unlimited magazine, and as an active member of the IBMA. For many years, Bill has also been the man behind the scenes at DCBU.org.

Bill’s tireless efforts as DCBU webmaster have helped musicians and fans find each other, supported local venues, introduced players to teachers and jam sessions, and connected the bluegrass community in the DC area and throughout the Mid-Atlantic region. Without his expertise and constant hard work, DCBU.org would not exist, the DC Bluegrass Union and the DC Bluegrass Festival would not be what they are today, and the current upgrade of the DCBU.org website would not have been possible.

As Bill moves on to new endeavors, the Board of the DC Bluegrass Union extends him its deepest thanks and gratitude for everything he has done for DC bluegrass. Bill’s fans can find him hosting Foster’s Corner on WAMU’s Bluegrass Country, playing live in the Strasburg, VA area, and on his home website at www.swfostermusic.com/.

Thank you, Bill.

What is the DC Bluegrass Union?

The DC Bluegrass Union is an all-volunteer, 501(c)3 non-profit organization serving Washington, DC and surrounding areas in much of Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. It is an area historically rich in bluegrass music’s development, and we strive to help inform, educate, connect and broaden its very active community of performers, fans, venues and promoters. Resources for all of them are found on this website. Our other activities include open jams, performances, and our annual DC Bluegrass Festival. Learn more on this website, on Facebook, and on Twitter — and welcome!