Join the Bluegrass Band Project at IBMM


A Partnership of the International Bluegrass Music Museum and Volunteer Owensboro

Have you ever wanted to play in a bluegrass band…actually be part of a real bluegrass band?  You don’t have to be an “expert” on your instrument to play in a band. In fact, playing music with others, in both informal and more structured settings, is the key to developing as a musician.  And let’s face it, playing music with other people is simply more fun.  The Bluegrass Band Project is an opportunity to experience playing as part of a band while also serving the community with the gift of your music.

In coordination with Volunteer Owensboro, The International Bluegrass Music Museum is launching its newest program, The Bluegrass Band Project.  The objective is to bring together local musicians, learn specific bluegrass songs in a group setting, learn the fundamentals of playing music as part of a band, and finally putting people together into smaller groups as a basis for creating a band.  Once small groups are established in month three, each group will have a band coach to help the musicians gel and grow accustomed to the give and take of working with other musicians.  In other words, working together as a real band.

The Bluegrass Band Project will meet once a month from August to December. 

As part of the program, each band will “graduate” to work on their own committing to one rehearsal each month along with one performance each month coordinated through either Volunteer Owensboro or the International Bluegrass Music Museum.  This performance could be for another local non-profit event, charity fundraising event, skilled nursing facility, homeless shelter, or other similar organization.  The idea is to serve and to share the joy of making music with others.

Below is a summary of the Bluegrass Band Project:

  • The Bluegrass Band Project is limited to 50 participants.
  • Cost to participate in the program is a one-time fee of $35, and this fee includes the following:

- Practice CD containing 12 songs that will be the focus throughout the program

- Lyrics for each song that includes chords and other pertinent information

- T-shirt (this shirt will be worn by each band member when serving in the community)

- Group instruction to learn the songs and to talk through personal practice strategies

- Band coaching and mentoring in smaller groups (band coaches will also participate with eachband on their first performance outside the museum)

  • Bluegrass Museum instructors will determine the 12 songs that will be the focus of the Bluegrass Band Project
  • The Bluegrass Band Project will run from August through December as follows:

- Aug 17th:            Orientation from 6 – 7:30 (no need to bring instruments that evening)

- Aug 31st:            First group rehearsal

- Sept 14:             Second group rehearsal

- Oct 19:               1st small group band rehearsal

- Nov 14:              2nd small group band rehearsal

- Dec 14:               3rd  small group band rehearsal (final session of the program)

In January, each small group will plan a band rehearsal somewhere other than the museum and will play their first performance in the community.  (Band coach will not coordinate or attend the January band rehearsal but will accompany the band on the first performance)

The expectation is that each band will initiate one practice per month as well as one performance per month.

Both the International Bluegrass Music Museum and Volunteer Owensboro will be able to connect each bluegrass band with on-going, future service opportunities.