November 2017 - Marriott Minneapolis West
We expect scores of pickers and grinners to pack into the Minneapolis Marriott West Hotel for a weekend gala of musical performances, entertainment, and jamming. The Harvest Jam is the highlight of the fall festival season!
The main ballroom has a wonderfully visible stage with seating in a comfortable banquet style arrangement. In 2016 our headline act is Breaking Grass from Mississippi. With their fresh sound, original material, strong vocals and innovative musicianship, Breaking Grass is doing exactly what their name implies. Although not quite traditional, the music they present is without a doubt steeped in the timeless genre they grew up listening to. This relatively new band formed with one goal in mind - to make music that all ages could enjoy.
The Race For A Place Band Contest
This contest will be on Saturday from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Bands will compete for $2000 in prize contracts, with the winner getting a place on the main stage of the 2017 Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival. Last year’s winner was No Man’s String Band. Entry is available now - download the entry form (PDF) and learn more about Race for a Place!
The Banquet Dinner Celebration
Saturday evening starts with a Social Hour at 5:00 PM, banquet dinner at 6:00 PM, followed by the Annual Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association Membership Meeting. Then, keep your seats for an after dinner program that includes a performance by the Race For A Place Champions and the evening's ballroom concert featuring Breaking Grass.
Fall Great Minnesota Uke Gathering (GMUG)
A get-together for all area ukulele players (or want-to-be players) - workshops, jams, sing-alongs, lessons for all levels. Featuring special guest
Jim D'Ville, a music educator and facilitator who is on a mission to get ukulele players off the paper and playing music by ear.
Band Development Workshops
Workshops run on Saturday from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM. This will be a comprehensive program focusing on band development and performance. Tentative topics include finance, booking, stage craft, songwriting, copywriting, sound reinforcement, instrument care, and more.
This open stage runs on Friday from 8:00 PM to 1:00 AM and on Saturday from 2:00 PM to 1:00AM. You are the star of this informal single mic open stage in Kip's Irish Pub. Click on the "Kip's Live" tab above to sign up!
We'll have a number of vendors on hand selling everything from instruments and musical supplies to jewelry and massages. And of course we'll have some MBOTMA merchandise on sale too. So plan to do your holiday shopping at the Harvest Jam. Check out the details on our vendor page. Email Martha to reserve your table space.
Theme Jams. You supply the fuel, we'll supply the spark to start one of our theme jams!
The Harvest Jam Acoustic Music Experience would like to thank our business partners for helping to make the festival possible, including Lesson Pros, Minnesota State College Southeast's Musical Instrument Repair and Building Programs in Red Wing, My Favorite Guitars and Nechville Banjos. Make sure to visit them during the festival in the "Hayloft Jam Rooms" on the second floor of the hotel or at their booths in the Vendor Room.
Last year at Harvest Jam, we began offering Theme Jams, and wow were they ever popular! So we're bringing them back bigger and better!
Ya'll Come - Friday 6 pm In the Lobby
Hosted by The Biscuit Boys - This will be easy 3 and 4 chord standards to get your fingers warmed up and ease you into the weekend! Great jam for beginners and folks new to jamming!
Americana Jam - Friday 7 pm Workshop Room
Tom Peschges of the Double Down Daredevils will host this popular jam. Fiddle tunes are fun but sometimes ya just wanna haul off and sing something right? Here's your chance and it's not just bluegrass either... Dust off some Dylan, Enjoy some Emmy Lou, you might even hear some Grateful Dead... It's all good!
Country Jam - Saturday 11 am Largest Jam room upstairs
Hosted by the Now and Then Band - Join Dan Fish and company for some good old country music. This isn't todays "rock and roll with cowboy boots" country. This is the good stuff from back in the day!
Fiddle Jam - Mary DuShane - Saturday 2 pm Jam Room upstairs
Very fun jam for fiddle tunes and more!
Gospel Jam - Gloryland Gospel Band - 1 pm In the Lobby!
Last year this Fun jam was so popular they were literally bursting at the seams. We're going to have them in the lobby this year so there will be plenty of room for everyone!
Youth Jam - New this year: Saturday 4:30 workshop room (we will move to the lobby if it gets too big)
This one is for the young 'uns hosted by Sophie Galep! This is going to be a GREAT place for teens to meet other teens who love this music, have fun and get inspired!! Speaking of inspiration, we can't say for sure but there just might be some special guests stopping by.
Friday from 8:00 PM to 1:00 AM
Saturday from 2:00 PM to 1:00AM
Kip's Irish Pub is located right on-site at the Minneapolis Marriott West, and it's the perfect place for a pint, traditional Irish fare, and music. At Kip's Live, we host an informal single mic open stage where you are the star !
Sign up for a time slot using the button below!
Band Development Workshops
11am until 12:20 “Instrument Tasting and Care”
Host: David Vincent and others. David is the lead instructor of the Guitar Repair and Building program offered at Minnesota State College Southeast in Red Wing, MN and also the owner of David Vincent Guitars and Mandolins. This workshop will present finer acoustic instruments played by some well know instrumentalists so you can hear the differences in volume, tone, playability. Q and A and loads of discussion time about instruments and caring for them.
12:20 until 1 lunch
1pm until 2:10 “Fishing for Gigs”
Host: Ann Iijima owner of Silver Cranes Resources: Opportunities For Mid West Musicians. We all know Ann and all the hard work she does for musicians and MBOTMA. She'll be bringing along her tackle box of info and years of experience to help you find and book those elusive gigs.
2:20pm until 3:15 “Banjo Workshop w/Cory Walker”
Host: Cory Walker
We don't normally do single instrument workshops but when we found out Cory would be at our festival it was hard not to pass this by. For those who don't know who Cory is: Cory Walker is one of the most exciting young banjo players on the scene today, making many national television appearances with artists such as Keith Urban, Earl Scruggs, Ricky Skaggs, and Kix Brooks. He has played the Grand Ole Opry dozens of times both as a featured performed alongside his brother Jarrod Walker, and with various acts including Mountain Heart, Sierra Hull, and Ricky Skaggs. In 2014, he received an IBMA Momentum Award for Instrumentalist of the Year, an honor given to two young musicians annually who show great promise on their respective instruments.
3:20 until 4:45 “ Breaking Grass Question and Answer”
Host: Breaking Grass. Here's your chance to meet our main act and ask them how they do it as a professional band, from practice, rehearsal, to stage presence. They will answer your questions and help you gain knowledge and tricks for making your practice rehearsal and stage craft better. This is our most well-attended workshop every year, so get there early in order to get a seat.
Minneapolis Marriott West
9960 Wayzata Blvd, Minneapolis MN 55426
The Minneapolis Marriott West is located just west of Hwy 169 and north of I-394. Coming from I-394, exit at Hopkins Crossroad and go north. Bear right and then turn right on the frontage road. Go east on the frontage road to the hotel.
For hotel reservations call 952-544-4400 and ask for the Minnesota Bluegrass Festival rate: $91.00 per night in all standard rooms - $114.00 for a Suite.