Great performers coming to Music Center starting May 28

Steep Canyon Rangers.jpg

Steep Canyon Rangers The Steep Canyon Rangers play the Blue Ridge Music Center on Friday, June 17.
May 4, 2016

In 2013, the Foundation took over musical programming at the Blue Ridge Music Center to help preserve the history and culture inherent in Blue Ridge Music. The venue is a wonderful spot along the Parkway to hear local, regional, and national acts play old-time, bluegrass, country blues, gospel, Americana and folk and explore the the Roots of American Music Museum. We want visitor to experience and understand the region's rich roots at this crossroads of music in Virginia. We're thrilled to announce the 2016 lineup, which includes the Steep Canyon Rangers, who have been great friends and supporters of the Parkway. 

Here's the Music Center's announcement about the 2016 Concert Season:

Beginning May 28, the Blue Ridge Music Center will welcome a stellar lineup of musicians to the venue at milepost 213 on the Blue Ridge Parkway for the 2016 Roots of American Music Concert Series. The season continues most Saturdays through September, and includes two fall heritage performances in October.

Each year, the Music Center selects performers that carry on and interpret the traditions of bluegrass, old time, folk, gospel, Americana, and country blues music. This season includes concerts by beloved veterans of the music scene such as Carlene Carter, Bryan Sutton and his Bluegrass Band, Steep Canyon Rangers (Friday performance), Lonesome River Band, and The Virginia Luthiers, as well as rising talents Mipso, Bill and the Belles, The Church Sisters, Dori Freeman, Zoe & Cloyd, Shadowgrass, and Mason Via.

Some of the best old-time mountain music bands from across the Blue Ridge, including the Reed Island Rounders, Crooked Road Ramblers, Larry Sigmon & Martha Spencer, South Carolina Broadcasters, and Five Mile Mountain Road will also take the stage.

The Music Center will honor the late Joe Wilson with A Show for Joe: The Joe Wilson Memorial Festival on September 3, featuring Wayne Henderson, Helen White and Herb Key, plus Elizabeth LaPrelle, Linda and David Lay, and The Barr Family. Wilson was instrumental in creating the Blue Ridge Music Center and The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail.

In addition to the Saturday performances, the Blue Ridge Music Center will host:

  • Midday Mountain Music performances daily from noon to 4 p.m. (free)
  • JAM & Family Day on Saturday, May 21, with activities and workshops for young musicians, plus hiking, an instrument petting zoo, and more
  • Banjos: From Africa to the New World exhibit featuring Bob Thornburg’s collection of restored and reproduction banjos, July 26 through September 5 in the Luthier Shop

2016 Concert Dates

JAM & Family Day
Saturday, May 21, 1 to 7 p.m. / FREE
Presented in partnership with Junior Appalachian Musicians Inc.

Mipso + Shadowgrass
Saturday, May 28, 7 p.m. / $15

Big Ron Hunter + Martha Bassett Band 
Saturday, June 4, 7 p.m. / $10

Steep Canyon Rangers + Dori Freeman 
Friday, June 17, 7 p.m. / $25
A concert of the Mountains of Music Homecoming Festival 
+ Ticketed preshow reception, $30

Crooked Road Ramblers + Mountain Park Old-Time Band
Saturday, June 25, 7 p.m. / $10

Bryan Sutton and his Bluegrass Band + The New Ballards Branch Bogtrotters 
Saturday, July 2, 7 p.m. / $20

Jeanette Williams Band + Zoe & Cloyd 
Saturday, July 9, 7 p.m. / $10

Carlene Carter + Reed Island Rounders 
Saturday, July 16, 7 p.m. / $20

Five Mile Mountain Road + Hard Cider
Saturday, July 23, 7 p.m. / $10

Bill and the Belles + South Carolina Broadcasters 
Saturday, July 30, 7 p.m. / $10

Diali Cissokho & Kaira Ba + Mason Via
Saturday, August 6, 7 p.m. / $10

The Church Sisters + Larry Sigmon & Martha Spencer 
Saturday, August 20, 7 p.m. / $15 
+ Ticketed preshow reception, $30

Lonesome River Band + Iron Mountain
Saturday, August 27, 7 p.m. / $20

A Show for Joe: The Joe Wilson Memorial Festival
Wayne Henderson, Helen White & Herb Key + Elizabeth LaPrelle + Linda and David Lay + The Barr Family & more
Saturday, September 3, 1-9 p.m. / $20

The Virginia Luthiers 
Saturday, October 15, 5 p.m. / $15 
(indoor concert)

Craver, Watson, Hicks & Newberry
Saturday, October 29, 5 p.m./ $15
(indoor concert)

Tickets & Hours

Concert tickets can be purchased at, by calling (866) 308-2773, ext. 245, or in person at the Music Center. Full (15 concerts), half (any 7 concerts), and Pick 3 season ticket packages and Music Center memberships are available by phone or online.

Beginning Saturday, May 7, the Visitor Center and Roots of American Music exhibit will be open Thursday through Monday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Music Center will be open daily starting Thursday, May 26, through October.


About the Blue Ridge Music Center

The Blue Ridge Music Center, milepost 213, celebrates the music and musicians of theBlue Ridge Mountains. The site includes an outdoor amphitheater and indoor interpretive center used to highlight an important strand of American musical culture, which is still alive and thriving in the region. The site is operated through a partnership between the National Park Service and Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation. In the summer, its beautiful outdoor amphitheater comes alive through a vibrant and diverse concert series. Many of these concerts include activities for the whole family such as flatfoot dance lessons. The Music Center also offers scenic trails for the novice and seasoned hiker, educational programs and the interactive Roots of American Musicmuseum. The center and museum are open May through October. Admission to VisitorCenter and the Roots of American Music Museum is free. Midday Mountain Musicperformances are offered free from noon to 4 p.m. daily.


About the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation

The Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, under a cooperative agreement with the National Park Service and U.S. Department of the Interior, is the primary fundraiser and trusted steward of the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Foundation is forever committed to preserving the past, enhancing the present, and safeguarding the future of America’s Favorite Journey®. We are a strong defender of the Parkway, funding critical projects that enhance and protect the natural, cultural, historic, and recreational qualities that make the Blue Ridge Parkway an American treasure.