Fifty years after producing his first LP record, Red Allen, Frank Wakefield & The Kentuckians: Bluegrass for Folkways, David “Dawg” Grisman remains a force of nature on the mandolin and in the recording studio. He still tours regularly with his sextet, quintet, bluegrass band and FolkJazz Trio, all featuring his instantly recognizable style and tone. Quietly at home, the Dawg has embarked (no pun intended) on a new venture, slowly creating one of the most extensive, high-grade archives of acoustic music anywhere.
Carl Jackson surveyed the room full of rustic rocking chairs with a smile. “I feel like I’ve died and gone to Cracker Barrel,” joked the Grammy-winning producer-singer-songwriter-multi-instrumentalist. But it was the people occupying those rows of rockers that really made the tiny TV studio north of Nashville seem like heaven for bluegrass lovers: Mac Wiseman, Bobby Osborne, Jesse McReynolds, Del McCoury, Ramona Jones, Ricky Skaggs, Doyle Lawson, The Whites, Ronnie Reno, Rhonda Vincent, Sam Bush, Jerry Douglas, Dailey & Vincent, Eric and Leigh Gibson, Paul Brewster, Larry Cordle, Sierra Hull, Dierks Bentley, The Roys, Donna Ulisse, and Kyle Cantrell. And then there was the house band: Bryan Sutton, Stuart Duncan, Barry Bales, and The Boxcars’ Adam Steffey and Ron Stewart. That’s the makings of a pretty spectacular three-day festival right there, but not only was there no audience for this bluegrass summit, they were all gathered there for just one day.