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Steep Canyon Rangers Raise Over $75,000 for Charity

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Steep Canyon RangersNashville, TN -- This past weekend, the Steep Canyon Rangers presided over their 9th annual Mountain Song Festival at Brevard Music Center in their hometown of Brevard, North Carolina. The festival, which the group founded with local music promoter John Felty in 2006, is an annual fundraiser that benefits the Cindy Platt Boys & Girls Club of Transylvania County, N.C.

This year’s sold out event, which took place over September 12th and 13th, boasted a lineup that included some of the finest musicians on the contemporary bluegrass and acoustic music scene, including Della Mae and The Kruger Brothers on Friday night with The Boys & Girls Club JAM (Junior Appalachian Musicians) Program opening the event. Chatham County Line, Shannon Whitworth with Barrett Smith, Noam Pikelny and Stuart Duncan, Seldom Scene and the Steep Canyon Rangers played on Saturday. The legendary King of Telluride and Father of New Grass, Sam Bush, even made a special appearance Saturday evening to close out the show with the Steep Canyon Rangers during their headlining set, with Pikelny and Duncan joining in for the star-studded finale.

This year’s Mountain Song raised approximately $70,000 for the Boys & Girls Club of Transylvania County. Since its inception, the annual event has raised over $420,000 for the organization, which provides educational and recreational programs for youth between the ages of five and eighteen. The Steep Canyon Rangers also strive to keep Mountain Song Festival a "green event," with very few bags of waste generated throughout the entire weekend and everything else being recycled or composted.

Mountain Song offers non-profits the opportunity to set up booths to raise awareness for their causes during the festival as well. Participating non-profits this year were: Free Rein, Friends of DuPont State Forest, Transylvania Youth Strings Orchestra, Muddy Sneakers and IBMA (SCR bassist Charles R. Humphreys III serves as chair of the Membership Committee).

Volunteers from the Brevard College recycling club, students from the Outdoor Academy and neighbors from the surrounding communities showed up to help make this two day event a huge success. Brevard College's own theater department even provided the design and lighting for the stage set. The Steep Canyon Rangers expressed the following message of gratitude: "Mountain Song Festival is a joy to produce and host. We love the support we receive from the local community and beyond! The Boys & Girls Club of Transylvania County is a wonderful, impactful organization that will have a long term positive influence on our local youth - we are proud to be involved."

Mountain Song Festival is not the only event the Steep Canyon Rangers are involved in to benefit their home state of North Carolina. They recently partnered with Bonesteel Films to benefit the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation and Graveyard Fields trail. Earlier this year they filmed the instrumental "Graveyard Fields" written by the band’s mandolin player, Mike Guggino, off their latest album, Tell The Ones I Love. They gathered there in a collaborative effort with Bonesteel Films to benefit the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation, whose mission is to safeguard the future of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Graveyard Fields is not only a place that inspired the band’s songwriting, but is also a place that continues to inspire their lives.

While this collaboration primarily focuses on improvements at Graveyard Fields, it is hoped it will also inspire others to engage with the Foundation’s widespread efforts to protect the Blue Ridge Parkway. The Foundation released the video in a final push to accelerate fundraising for completion of the Graveyard Fields project completed just before July 4 this year. Funds raised helped with construction of a much needed restroom, significant trail improvements, and expansion of the parking lot. They will also perform at the Blue Ridge Music Center on October 11 to benefit the Blue Ridge Parkway. Watch “Graveyard Fields” on Vimeo and visit BRP Foundation online to learn how you can help.

"Graveyard Fields" is nominated for a 2014 IBMA Award for Instrumental of the Year. The Steep Canyon Rangers are slated to perform at the International Bluegrass Music Association Awards Wide Open Bluegrass Festival in Raleigh, N.C. on October 3. They are also set to perform at the Americana Music Association Festival in Nashville this week. For a full schedule of tour dates, visit www.steepcanyon.com.

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