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Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Fest Features Top Name Lineup

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Gibson BrothersThe Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival (MBOTMA) at El Rancho Mañana takes place August 8-11, 2013. This event, produced by the non-profit Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Association (MBOTMA), has been nominated three times as Bluegrass Event of the Year (2005, 2007, & 2010) by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) in Nashville. This year's headliners will include the IBMA's Entertainers Of The Year - The Gibson Brothers!

Joining The IBMA’s 2012 “Entertainers of the Year,” The Gibson Brothers will be The Claire Lynch Band (Fri), Junior Sisk & Rambler’s Choice (Fri & Sat), Darin & Brooke Aldridge (Sat & Sun), and Bigfoot (Fri-Sun) are all award winning performers and will all be part of the 2013 MBOTMA Festival main stage line-up. It will surely be another year of great entertainment at El Rancho Mañana in Stearns County on August 8th through 11th.

In a recent Washington Post interview, Del McCoury said, "...when I hear someone like The Gibson Brothers, I know it's them from the first note. They have that little thing in their voices that no one else has..." And from Bluegrass Unlimited: "The brothers and the band have it all -- lead vocals, brother-duet harmony, instrumental virtuosity, ensemble sensibilities and great original material."

Long recognized and praised as a creative force in acoustic music, Claire Lynch is a pioneer who continually pushes the boundaries of the bluegrass genre. The current Claire Lynch Band is a powerful juggernaut, a quartet that has the innate ability to perfectly interpret the beauty, subtlety, and genre-defying sophistication of Claire’s music. Claire’s career is fittingly bookended by two IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year awards: in 2010, in recognition of her current work with the Claire Lynch Band, and in 1997, for her influential work with the Front Porch String Band and as a solo artist.

Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music FestivalFrom the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia comes one of bluegrass music's most honest voices in the genre's history, Junior Sisk. Over the years, his haunting, almost lonesome vocals have earned him the devotion of countless traditional bluegrass fans from all over the world. Nominated numerous times for Male Vocalist of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) and Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America (SPBGMA), Junior Sisk is at the top of his game and has surrounded himself with a top notch group of musicians with his band Rambler’s Choice. Together they received the 2013 Album of the Year (for “The Heart Of A Song“) and Song of the Year (for “A Far Cry from Lester and Earl”) from the Society For The Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America (SPBGMA). Individually Junior has been awarded the SPBGMA Contemporary Male Vocalist of the Year Honor for 2013, and has been nominated numerous times for Male Vocalist of the Year by the IBMA.

Darin and Brooke Aldridge, are from Cherryville N.C. and are one of the best duos in acoustic music these days. In 2011 the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) voted them an Emerging Artist of the year nominee two years in a row and the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music (SPBGMA) voted them as gospel group, album, and song of the year nominees. Their self-titled album a year ago propelled Darin and Brooke Aldridge into the top five on bluegrass, Americana Roots, and Gospel music charts. One of the songs from the album was still number two on the bluegrass chart a full year after the album was released. And last summer they were the most played bluegrass artists on Sirius/XM radio.

Just under two years ago, Bigfoot burst upon the old-time music scene by winning the Appalachian Stringband Festival Traditional Old-Time Band Championships in Clifftop, Virginia. individually, these musicians had already shown themselves for years to be talented, accomplished, and fun to accept a free beer from. The band consists of Rhys Jones, Cleek Schrey, John Herrmann, Susie Goehring, and Meredith McIntosh. Their combination of two fiddles, guitar, banjo, and bass is the best old-time string band sound, especially for dancing. Also, these folks give an equally wonderful and authentic old-time flavor to the songs they perform.

Fifteen other groups will round out this award-winning mainstage line-up for the 2013 MBOTMA Festival. In addition to the professional bands, a large portion of the 4,000 plus people that attend are amateur musicians. They will bring their instruments and join in the many impromptu jam sessions that go on day and night in the campgrounds, and that is why they say this festival “picks around the clock.” For more information visit or call 800-635-3037.

MBOTMA is looking forward to another entire week of musical fun at El Rancho Manana near Richmond Minnesota. Several days of pre-festival instructional camps will be followed by four days of bluegrass and old-time bliss on August 8th through 11th, 2013. We hope you enjoy the more than thirty hours of Mainstage concerts; daytime instrument collaborations and nightly dances in the Showcase Tent; music, contests, crafts, and games in the Family Area; the twenty hands-on workshops in the Workshop Area; the new groups on the Young Talent Stage; the dozens of food and merchant booths in the Marketplace; and the late night fun at Ranch House Live.

In addition to the professional bands, a large portion of the 4,000 plus people that attend are amateur musicians. They will bring their instruments and join in the many impromptu jam sessions that go on day and night in the campgrounds. So please join us for our 34th year of “Fiddlin’ Around” at the Minnesota Bluegrass & Old-Time Music Festival. Visit for all the details, tickets and updates.

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