Nashville, TN – Brother/sister duo THE ROYS won the Bluegrass Artist of the Year award for the fourth consecutive year at last night’s 20th Annual ICM Faith, Family & Country™ Awards show. “Truly humbled once again,” noted Elaine of the honor. “We thank the Lord Jesus and Mom and Dad,” added Lee. Following their acceptance of the award, THE ROYS delivered a stellar version of the poignant “Mended Wings” from THE VIEW, their fourth Rural Rhythm Records’ release. The disc hit stores in September, debuted at #2 on the Billboard Top 10 Bluegrass Albums chart, and generated a #1 single with “No More Lonely” on the Bluegrass Today Weekly Airplay Chart.
The popular Bluegrassers were previously honored with the following ICM Awards: 2013, 2012 & 2011 Bluegrass Artist of the Year; 2012 #1 Inspirational Country Single (“I Wonder What God’s Thinking”), and the 2010 & 2009 Duo of the Year.
The star-studded 2014 Awards show was hosted by legendary entertainer Ray Stevens and Megan Alexander of Inside Edition, and was taped for future broadcast across multiple outlets. Performances by Rhonda Vincent; American Idol finalist and BMG recording artist Danny Gokey; Grand Ole Opry member John Conlee; CMA award-winner John Berry, and Curb recording artists Sweetwater Rain and Rachel Holder made for an outstanding evening of music.
Stay social with THE ROYS
Tags: bluegrass, christian country, Family & country, ICM Faith, Mended Wings
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Blue Highway presents Bluegrass Gospel Artist of the Year Award to Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver at 23rd Annual Diamond AwardsWritten by Staff on November 11, 2014 – 2:20 pm -
PIGEON FORGE, TN (November 6, 2014) — Powerhouse bluegrass band Blue Highway appeared as special guests at Tuesday evening’s 23rd Annual Diamond Awards held at the Smoky Mountain Convention Center in Pigeon Forge, TN.
In addition to presenting the Bluegrass Gospel Artist of the Year Award, they also performed two songs: the a cappella fan-favorite Some Day, and Wicked Path of Sin (I Can Hear the Angels Singing) from their Dove and IBMA-winning and Grammy nominated all-gospel release,Wondrous Love.
It marked Blue Highway’s first appearance on the Awards Show, and they were honored to present the Bluegrass Gospel Artist of the Year Award to Eli Johnston representing Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, who took home their second consecutive Bluegrass Gospel Artist of the Year honor at the fan-voted Diamond Awards.
The Diamond Awards were presented as part of the Creekside Gospel Music Convention, andsponsored by SGN Scoops Magazine, the vibrant all-digital source of Southern Gospel news and current #1-visited Southern Gospel website.
For more information on Blue Highway, please go to: www.BlueHighwayBand.com orwww.Facebook.com/BlueHighway
For more information on Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, please go to: www.DoyleLawson.com or www.Facebook.com/
For more information on SGN Scoops Magazine and the Diamond Awards, please go to www.sgnscoops.com.
Photo by Sherri George
Blue Highway presenting the Bluegrass Gospel Artist of the Year Award to Eli Johnston who accepted in behalf of Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver.
L to R: Wayne Taylor, Jason Burleson, Eli Johnston, Shawn Lane, and Tim Stafford. (Rob Ickes was unable to attend due to prior commitments.)
Tags: Blue HIghway, bluegrass, Creekside Gospel Music Convention, diamond awards, Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver, sgn scoops
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“Our winter concert series is a kind of gift to our community. It’s an opportunity to share the talents of some really amazing artists that we admire and don’t usually get to perform with,” says Balsam Range’s Tim Surrett.
Guests for each of the five concerts include fan favorites and award winners. The 2014-15 series will include The Jeff Little Trio with Steve Lewis and Josh Scott; The Molly Tuttle Trio; North Carolina’s own, The Harris Brothers; The Snyder Family Band; and The Studio Dream Team, comprised of musicians Jeff Collins, David Johnson and Tony Creasman. Concerts are held at the Colonial Theater in Canton on the first Saturday of each month, December 2014 through April 2015. Balsam Range, winner of the 2014 IBMA Entertainer of the Year, also performs at each show.
Special guest artists are selected by the members of Balsam Range. Tim Surrett, Buddy Melton, Caleb Smith, Darren Nicholson and Marc Pruett often use their many hours on the road to talk about and share with each other the music of artists they admire.
“We love to get our own musical heroes on these shows,” says mandolin player extraordinaire, Darren Nicholson. “Musicians are inspired by other artists. It’s just as much fun for us to share an evening with these folks as it is for our fans and friends to hear them.”
Balsam Range tries also to bring artists to the series who don’t regularly play in the area. Past concerts, which have all been sell-outs, have boasted guests from among the top names in the business as well as fast-rising stars of acoustic music. Guests have included Tony Rice, Bobby Hicks, John Wiggins, Carl Jackson, Jerry Salley, Larry Cordle, Jim Hurst, Shawn Camp, The Sweet Lowdown, John Driskell Hopkins of the Zac Brown Band and more.
BALSAM RANGE WINTER CONCERT SERIES 2014-15
12/6/14 – The Molly Tuttle Trio: LINK
01/3/15 – The Jeff Little Trio: LINK
02/7/15 – The Harris Brothers: LINK
03/7/15 – The Snyder Family Band: LINK
04/4/15 – The Studio Dream Team: Jeff Collins, David Johnson, Tony Creasman: LINK
Each of the five concerts will support a different area charitable organization, as chosen by the members of the band.
The band gratefully acknowledges its sponsors for the 2014-15 series: Amy Spivey of ERA Sunburst Realty, The Waynesville Inn Golf Resort and Spa, and Smoky Mountain Roasters Coffee Shop.
In addition to IBMA Entertainer of the Year, Balsam Range was also honored with Vocal Group of the Year, and single awards were given to Buddy Melton (Male Vocalist of the Year) and Tim Surrett (Mentor Award – one of a series of special honors called Momentum Awards – for his inspired work with young and developing artists).
For more information, visit www.balsamrange.com
Tags: Balsam Range, bluegrass, Bluegrass Gospel, Winter Concert Series
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The Isaacs brand new CHRISTMAS DVD is releasing in two weeks. You can pre-order it now.
$18.00 plus $3.00 shipping and handling for the DVD only.
Or, get a DVD and our Christmas CD for only $25.00 plus $3.00 shipping. $28.00 for both items.
This is a Limited time offer.
This would make a Great CHRISTMAS present for that someone special on your list.
We can also autograph and send to your loved ones in time for Christmas
Order the DVD only – $18.00 plus $3.00 S&H
Order the DVD & CD – $25.00 plus $3.00 S&H
This special features songs from their latest Christmas CD The Isaacs Christmas as well as impromptu performances by the Isaacs and their families. You’ll get to know each of their personalities as they tell stories, read scriptures, go shopping, cook Christmas dinner and share their annual traditions for both Christmas and Hanukkah.
About The Isaacs
The Isaacs, a multi-award winning family group who began singing 30 years ago, are based out of Nashville, TN . The vocalists are Lily Isaacs, Ben Isaacs, Sonya Isaacs Yeary and Rebecca Isaacs Bowman. Playing their own acoustic instruments and joined by other band members, The Isaacs have a unique style that blends tight, family harmony with contemporary acoustic instrumentation that appeals to a variety of audiences. Their musical influences emerge from all genres of music including bluegrass, rhythm and blues, folk, and country, contemporary acoustic and southern gospel. They perform frequently at the Grand Ole Opry, are active members on the Gaither Homecoming Videos and Concert Series and travel throughout the year performing internationally. Concert venues include civic centers, auditoriums, arenas, fair grounds, parks, churches and other locations. They have performed the National Anthem for many sporting events, including a Cincinnati Bengal’s football game, several Nashville Predators Hockey games, an Astros/ Braves pre-season baseball game as well as various political gatherings. They also received a standing ovation for their patriotic performance at Carnegie Hall.
Tags: bluegrass, Christian Music, christmas, christmas music, gospel music, the isaacs
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PIGEON FORGE, TN (October 28, 2014) – Dove and IBMA Award-winning powerhouse band Blue Highway will appear as special guests at the upcoming 23rd Annual Diamond Awards. The fan-voted Diamond Awards will be held at the Smoky Mountain Convention Center at 4010 Parkway in Pigeon Forge at 8:00 pm on Tuesday, November 4, as part of the Creekside Gospel Music Convention.
The 2014 Diamond Awards are sponsored by SGN Scoops Magazine, the vibrant all-digital source of Southern Gospel News and current #1-visited Southern Gospel website on the Internet.
The highly esteemed Bluegrass band Blue Highway will perform as special guests on the Awards Show, which will be taped for a television special to air later this year on Atlanta’s WATC Channel 57 and be shown in syndication via various Christian media outlets in 2015.
“Blue Highway is honored to be invited to perform as special guests on the Diamond Awards,” said Tim Stafford, a founding member of the band who was just named IBMA Songwriter of the Year (2014). “Gospel music has always been a part of our lives as individuals, and at least one gospel song usually appears on even our Bluegrass releases. We’re excited to be a part of this great Southern Gospel event in the heart of the beautiful Smoky Mountains!”
Gospel harmonies will definitely be ringing in the heart of the Smokies next week, as the Diamond Awards and Creekside Gospel Music Convention bring acclaimed gospel artists such as the Dixie Melody Boys and Exodus to Pigeon Forge’s Smoky Mountain Convention Center with events running from Monday, November 3, at 4:00 pm through Thursday, November 6 at 10:30 pm.
Tickets for the event are being made available FREE of charge, but must be reserved at: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/creekside-gospel-music-convention-2014-tickets-10916793423?aff=New
“We are excited to have bluegrass supergroup Blue Highway performing at this year’s Diamond Awards,” said Rob Patz, CEO of Coastal Media Group and Publisher of SGN Scoops Magazine. “Blue Highway is not only one of the top contemporary Bluegrass bands, but their gospel songs are incredible and multi-award winning.”
Blue Highway has won a combined 24 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Awards and five SPBGMA Awards. The high octane band is known for its powerhouse performances, but their gospel music roots run deep. The gospel song God Moves In a Windstorm from Blue Highway’s Wind to the West (1997) album took home the IBMA Gospel Recorded Event of the Year Award (1997). The band’s All-Gospel release Wondrous Love skyrocketed up charts and won a Dove Award for Best Bluegrass Album (2004) and the IBMA Award for Gospel Recorded Event of the Year. The incredible 13-song Wondrous Love release also garnered a prestigious Grammy nomination for Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album.
Blue Highway is 20 years strong with all original members still intact with Jason Burleson on banjo, Rob Ickes on dobro, Shawn Lane on mandolin and fiddle, Tim Stafford on guitar, and Wayne Taylor on bass. Rob Ickes currently reigns as the most awarded instrumentalist in the history of IBMA, with an astounding 15 IBMA Dobro Player of the Year honors. The band was honored with 9 IBMA Award Nominations in 2014 including Entertainer of the Year, Vocal Group of the Year, and Album and Song of the Year for The Game.
Blue Highway’s current album The Game debuted at #4 on Billboard, and has been riding high at #1 for a staggering 5 months atop the Bluegrass Unlimited Monthly Album Chart (June-Oct 2014), while the title track The Game has been #1 for 3 months (August-Oct 2014) on the Bluegrass Unlimited Monthly Song Chart.
For more details on SGN Scoops Magazine and the Diamond Awards, please go: www.sgnscoops.com
Tags: Blue HIghway, bluegrass, Creekside Gospel Music Convention, diamond awards, Southern Gospel News
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First 25 Fans to Purchase Physical CD Today, Get A Free Gift
The Larry Stephenson Band is proud to announce today’s new release of PULL YOUR SAVIOR IN on Whysper Dream Music. The album is available for digital sale at iTunes, Amazon,and CD Baby. Physical copies include a special Bonus Track and can be purchased at larrystephensonband.com. In honor of the band’s 25th Anniversary, the first 25 fans to purchase the album today at the band’s website will receive a special gift.
“The title song, Pull Your Savior In, is distinctly Bluegrass with a gospel message. Fast and foot tapping arrangement with Mandolin and Banjo accents. A river of country influence runs in Come To Jesus Moment, asking for forgiveness and atonement, all self-inflicted. Overall the selections are traditional in feel and intention, a celebration marked by classic gospel blessings,” said Digital Journal in a recent album review.
PULL YOUR SAVIOR IN was produced by Ben Surratt and Larry Stephenson and includes the talents of Larry Stephenson, Kenny Ingram, Colby Laney, Danny Stewart with special guests Jimmy Fortune, Aubrey Haynie, David Parmley, and Dale Perry.
Gospel, Bluegrass, and Country music fans will certainly enjoy the songs written by Donna Ulisse & Rick Stanley, Larry Stephenson and more, plus traditional favorites by the Louvin Brothers, Earl Scruggs, and Randall Hylton.
Tags: bluegrass, Earl Scruggs, Larry Stephenson Band, Pull Your Savior In, Southern Gospel News
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By Miles Pike
Over my years of road ministry I’ve worked with many popular artists and not very many have struck me as just good ole folks. Being a country boy myself, I love being able to sit down and talk with fellow singers about the Lord, music, hobbies, and just feel at home with them, like they are a long lost relative. Mark Bishop is one of those types of people. To know him is to love him and his sincerity shines out in his music, his concerts, and his Christian life toward others.
Mark is a longtime fixture in Southern Gospel music and one of the most successful. I could list many accolades that the fans and industry have bestowed upon him through his years with The Bishops and now as a soloist, but you can go to his website and read his bio about that. I want you to have a minute to get to know the man behind the mic. I was honored to have a few minutes to have an interview with him recently and you can listen in below…
Miles: I am a big fan of your music and songwriting, but like many of those familiar with the Southern Gospel field, I first knew you with your family trio, The Bishops. I spent many an evening as a teenager sitting on the front row when the Bishops would come to town. Let us know how the family is doing and if you get together to sing occasionally.
Mark: Thanks Miles for the compliment. I’m glad that you enjoyed our music. We had a lot of fun when the group was out traveling; of course it was a lot of work too and many, many days away from our families. These days, my dad is pastoring a little country church here in east-central Kentucky and that’s where my family goes. Mostly my wife and daughters go because I am usually out singing somewhere. My brother Kenny works in the state capitol, involved in politics. He has always enjoyed that atmosphere. After the group disbanded in 2001, I kept our three-day festival in Berea, KY going and for a few years we would get together and sing for that, but we haven’t sung together now for a few years. Everyone has just gone their own direction.
Miles: I’m sure you’ve written hundreds of songs since you began your musical journey. What are three of your favorites and why? And what song do you wish you would have written?
Mark: That’s always a tough one because I like them all depending on the mood that life and circumstances have put me in. A song to me is really just a snapshot of what the songwriter was experiencing at that moment of their life. But it’s true that some songs seem to become more timeless. Favorites? I guess I have always enjoyed singing “You Can’t Ask Too Much of My God” because it is such a wonderful realization that He is literally bigger than any problem I will ever have. It has a catchy tune and I felt as a songwriter that the first verse in that song was very clever and worked well as a hook to get you into the rest of the song.
I also enjoy singing “Can I Pray For You” just because I still have so many people come up and request it, saying that it had truly ministered to them in a time when they needed to be encouraged. What more could you ask of a song than that? Another song that I enjoy singing was from that same album. It is called “I Got Here As Fast As I Could” and it tells the story of a person’s entire lifetime in just a few short minutes. Yet still it somehow seems to convey the ups and downs of a life well lived and experienced. It has a certain amount of melancholy but a happy ending that promises us a wonderful reunion someday with the ones that we love. I guess every song has a story, but these are three that still resonate with my audiences today.
Miles: Obviously it is God that blesses us as we work for Him, but what do you consider your most noteworthy accomplishment in the time you’ve been on the road?
Mark: This will probably sound like I am trying to be clever or something, but I honestly have never focused on accomplishment in my music career, to the degree that I might have had more number one songs or more accolades if I had only been more ambitious. That’s not to say that the Lord hasn’t blessed me with a lot of things; by myself and with the group, I have had a lot of wonderful things happen in my career. But that was the Lord. It certainly wasn’t me. Maybe this is the introspective songwriter dude coming out, but when I think about myself at the end of this journey and I think about what were the important things, my answer will be: “Was I a good husband to my wife and was I a good dad to my daughters? Did I shower them with love and attention at every opportunity? Did I make them feel good about themselves?” Well, honestly, I’d take that over whatever my songs might do after I am gone. My love for my family runs achingly deep.
Miles: What are some interests or hobbies that you have that may be a surprise to the fans of your music?
Mark: Well, I don’t know if it would surprise anyone or not, but I love sports. I am a Kentucky basketball fan (of course) and a Cincinnati Reds fan. We love going and watching games when we can. It’s a relaxing evening when we are at the ballpark. My daughters have always played fast pitch softball so we spend a lot of evenings at the ballpark watching them. When I am home, I serve as the announcer at the high school home games. I love to hunt and fish when I have the time. I love to work in the yard, believe it or not, doing landscaping and getting my hands dirty. I guess I got that from my dad.
Miles: What do you think about when you are singing? What is a Scripture verse that has helped mold your thoughts and actions toward an audience and toward what you do as a minister?
Mark: Well, I try to be in the moment when I am singing so I just totally immerse myself in the lyrics and the melody. The lyrics most of all because as anyone who has seen me can attest, I am really up there just telling stories. It just so happens that I am telling them with a song. As far as scriptures go, they are as unique and specialized as songs so that really depends upon the situation. If I feel like I am facing an uphill battle, I might think of Philippians 4:13… or there have been times when Corinthians 4:16 through 18 have given me comfort. I really find myself enamored with all that the Apostle Paul had to say to the church. It’s some of my favorite reading in the Bible.
Miles: What else is going on in your ministry that you would like to share with the readers?
Mark: Of course I am always writing songs and I am already working on new material for my next album, though we don’t have a date set for its release. [Editor’s note: article first published in April 2013] My current album I Can Rejoice is doing well and praise the Lord that the radio stations are playing the songs. I am excited about a few upcoming concerts that I think folks will really enjoy. At the end of June, I will be joining some of my songwriter friends and peers, including Phil Cross, Gerald Crabb and Squire Parsons, for a special Song of A Lifetime concert in northern Georgia. That is a concert that folks won’t want to miss and will be worth the drive from about anywhere. Folks can learn about that at my website or at our Facebook page. Just search for Mark Bishop Music and you’ll find us. We are also looking forward to next year’s Singing at Sea cruise. Come join us for that. If folks would like to keep up with our music ministry, they can subscribe for free to our email newsletter that comes out about once a month. They can do that on the main page of our website.
Mark: I don’t tweet or twitter but by that I guess you mean something succinct? I’ll just say, “Be true to your heart and your beliefs, don’t sell yourself short. You’re stronger than you think.”
Be sure to visit Mark’s website at www.MarkBishopMusic.com and read more about him and see where he’ll be in concert near you! You won’t regret taking an evening to go sit and listen to what he has to offer.
Thanks for reading and if you would like to suggest someone to me for a future interview, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Miles Pike
First Published April 2013 on SGM Radio website. For current features visit http://www.sgmradio.com/
Tags: bluegrass, Christian Music, Cincinnati Reds, gospel music, Mark Bishop, Miles Pike, sgm radio
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Mountain Home Music Company artists honored for excellence in several categories
Balsam Range, [pictured above], recently released its fifth album, FIVE. The band’s previous release,PAPERTOWN, was named 2013 IBMA Album of the Year.
Nashville, TN – It was a big night for Balsam Range at the 2014 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) awards, which were announced during a red carpet event at the annual World of Bluegrass convention in Raleigh, NC.
Singer/Fiddler Buddy Melton was named Male Vocalist of the Year and shared his heartfelt gratitude from the stage. Balsam Range was honored as Vocal Group of the Year, and in the final award of the night, this band of friends from North Carolina’s Haywood County was honored with the coveted IBMAEntertainer of the Year Award.
Guitar virtuoso and singer, Caleb Smith, however, nearly missed the big moment.
Balsam Range had just performed “Moon Over Memphis” and Caleb was backstage talking guitars with fellow-artist, Del McCoury. Guitars are, after all, a favorite topic for Smith, a luthier who makes Caleb Smith Guitars. When the Entertainer of the Year award was announced, McCoury had to interrupt Smith, saying “Son, I think they just said your name.” No fret, Caleb made it to the stage in time to accept the award alongside Tim Surrett, Buddy Melton, Marc Pruett and Darren Nicholson.
Label-mates at Mountain Home Music Company also received IBMA awards. Adam Steffey of The Boxcars was named Mandolin Player of the Year, and Flatt Lonesome won the Emerging Artist of the Year award. At an earlier luncheon program, Tim Surrett of Balsam Range was honored with the Mentor Award (one of a series of special honors called Momentum Awards) for his inspiration and work with young and developing artists.
IBMA Awards are decided by a vote of the professional membership of the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA), the trade association for the bluegrass music industry. The IBMA Awards Show was broadcast live on SiriusXM Satellite Radio (Bluegrass Junction), and streamed for viewing by Music City Roots.
IMAGES: Balsam Range at IBMA Awards, Raleigh, NC (Oct. 2, 2014)
Photos courtesy of Alane Anno Photography
Tags: Balsam Range, bluegrass, IBMA, International Bluegrass Music Awards
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RALEIGH, NC (October 4, 2014) — Powerhouse band Blue Highway members Tim Stafford and Rob Ickes were among the award winners as the brightest stars in Bluegrass gathered on Thursday evening for the 25th Annual IBMA Awards at Raleigh’s Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts.
Tim Stafford took home the 2014 International Bluegrass Music Association Songwriter of the Year Award. Rob Ickes and Claire Lynch were special guests on a Special Consensus recording of Wild Montana Skies which was named 2014 IBMA Recorded Event of the Year.
Tim Stafford co-founded Blue Highway, and is a gifted songwriter, guitarist, vocalist, producer, session musician and collegiate instructor, who added author to his list of accolades with the recent release of an acclaimed Tony Rice biography which he co-authored with Caroline Wright. A former member of world-renowned Alison Krauss and Union Station, Tim released his second solo album, Just to Hear the Whistle Blow, in July to rave reviews and immediate chart action, and was also a nominee in this year’s IBMA Awards for Guitar Player of the Year.
Of his award win, Tim shared: “I’m deeply honored to receive the IBMA Songwriter of the Year Award. Songwriters are a huge part of Bluegrass music, and I’m just proud to be part of that vital and growing scene.”
Rob Ickes is the most awarded instrumentalist in the history of the IBMA, with a staggering 15 consecutive trophies for Dobro Player of the Year. Rob has played on recordings with artists from Merle Haggard to Dolly Parton, and David Lee Roth to Mary Chapin Carpenter. When Alan Jackson assembled his dream team for his acclaimed Bluegrass Album, he wanted Rob Ickes on dobro, and Rob played in Jackson’s all-star band from Nashville’s famed Station Inn all the way to Carnegie Hall. The Grammy-winning Ickes just released a hot-selling collaborative dobro album entitled Three Bells in mid-September with IBMA Awards co-host Jerry Douglas and the beloved late Mike Auldridge.
Of his IBMA Award win on Special Consensus’ special team, Rob shared: “Very happy for Greg (Cahill) and Special Consensus! Greg has dedicated his life to this music, and it was great to see him honored Thursday night. It was a fun session, and I was tickled to be a part of the recording!”
Blue Highway, as an Entertainer of the Year nominee among their 9 nominations, performed near the close of the Awards Show, with Shawn Lane lending lead vocals to the poignant Just to Have a Job from Blue Highway’s #1 chart-topping IBMA Album of the Year nominated Rounder Records release, The Game. Shawn Lane was also invited to sing and play fiddle with Awards Show co-host Lee Ann Womack in her performance on the program.
The multi-award winning Blue Highway is 20 years strong with all original members still intact with Jason Burleson on banjo, Rob Ickes on dobro, Shawn Lane on mandolin and fiddle, Tim Stafford on guitar, and Wayne Taylor on bass.
Blue Highway currently sits at #1 atop three prominent Bluegrass Airplay Charts: Bluegrass Unlimited Monthly Airplay Chart with The Game, Bluegrass Unlimited Monthly Song Chart with the The Game, and Roots Music Report Weekly Top 50 Song Chart (released September 29) with Reminds Me of You.
Tags: Blue HIghway, bluegrass, Dobro Player of the Year, IBMA Awards
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First I’d love to thank everyone for your prayers. The passing of my mother has been very emotional and sad. I know many of you have lost loved ones……parents, spouses, children, good friends and it’s a very lonely feeling because it’s final. Although we do believe in an after life, just the fact that you will never get to hear their voice or hug your loved one ever again here on earth , leaves you with such a void in your heart. Seems like its hard to take a deep breath! I’m so grateful that I got to keep my sweet Yiddish Mamma till age 95 and I was with her when she took her final breath. She truly was a survivor. She was a very strong spirited woman. My entire family is thankful for the legacy she has left behind.
So many of you have asked us about funeral arrangements. Many of you wanted to send flowers and special gifts to honor Mom. I wanted to take this time to explain a little about our beautiful Jewish traditions when we loose someone in death.
Before I get into the explanation I will tell you that we tentatively have the funeral scheduled for Wednesday morning….Oct 1st. Mom passed away on Friday Sept 26th and it is currently in the middle if a very Holy holiday, Rosh Hashanah (9/24-9/26) and Yom Kippur (10 days later) so it is hard to make final arrangements with the Rabbi, especially since Friday night started the Sabbath. We will know more Monday morning.
We have chosen to give Mom a traditional Jewish funeral. Our father had the same and this is what she would want. A Jew must be buried within a day or two of death and we do no embalm the body so it must stay refrigerated until burial. Of course with family far away it’s acceptable to wait until all gather together. The coffin must be a plain pine box and the deceased is clothed in a shroud…..white pure linen called a Tachrichim . The reason is because we are all equal in death and we can’t take anything with us when we leave this world. God judges our merits and deeds ,not our material wealth. Once the casket is lowered into the ground, the final act we do is to shovel dirt on top of it. Basically the family will cover the casket with dirt. The reason for this is the deceased cannot do it for themselves. In a way it also acts as a gesture of love and gives family closure. We never see flowers at a Jewish funeral. Tradition says that flowers are unnecessary and die too quickly. Instead of flowers we place stones on the casket or grave site. There are many speculations about the reason for this custom but the one that makes most sense to me is that stones were the only way a grave was marked before headstone were made. It also leaves a sign that the person had a visitor and they’re not left without being remembered . We will then sit shiva (means 7)…..The mourning period which actually lasts 7 days. Family will rent a garment and gather in the home to receive guests.
This is the way we do it and we plan to put Mom away in this manner. She deserves this honorable final gesture from us.
For those of you who wanted to honor our mother, I’ve thought of a beautiful way do this. This seems like a gesture if love and would carry on our Jewish tradition.
Instead of gifts and flowers we will set up a fund in my mothers name and receive donations to help purchase her a headstone! We cannot put the headstone up for one year at which time we have an ” unveiling “. This way you can be a part of putting a stone on her grave. We can all participate in giving her a loving departure together. We have so many friends far away and we can join together in this gesture.
If you want to do this, you can just make a check out to us…. The Isaacs and put on bottom of the check, for “Faye Fishman Headstone Fund”. When the time comes for the purchase of the headstone we will post a photo and you will all know that you were a part of our mothers home going.
Please remember our family as everyone is trying to get our here in the next day or so.
Send any donations to:
PO BOX 370
Goodlettsville, TN 37070
Blessings to you all and again thank you for your prayers and support.
About The Isaacs
The Isaacs, a multi-award winning family group who began singing 30 years ago, are based out of Nashville, TN . The vocalists are Lily Isaacs, Ben Isaacs, Sonya Isaacs Yeary and Rebecca Isaacs Bowman. Playing their own acoustic instruments and joined by other band members, The Isaacs have a unique style that blends tight, family harmony with contemporary acoustic instrumentation that appeals to a variety of audiences. Their musical influences emerge from all genres of music including bluegrass, rhythm and blues, folk, and country, contemporary acoustic and southern gospel. Zak Shumate is on percussion and is the only non family member in the group.
Family also just recently sang anthem at Indiana Pacers game and got a standing ovation. They perform frequently at the Grand Ole Opry, are active members on the Gaither Homecoming Videos and Concert Series and travel throughout the year performing internationally. Concert venues include civic centers, auditoriums, arenas, fair grounds, parks, churches and other locations. They have performed the National Anthem for many sporting events, including a Cincinnati Bengal’s football game, several Nashville Predators Hockey games, an Astros/ Braves pre-season baseball game as well as various political gatherings. They also received a standing ovation for their patriotic performance at Carnegie Hall.
Tags: bluegrass, Christian Music, gospel music, Lily Isaacs, the isaacs
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