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JAM believes

that children who are actively engaged in traditional mountain music are more connected and better prepared to strengthen their communities for future generations.

We envision

a world in which all children have the opportunity to experience community through the joy of participating in traditional mountain music together.

Our mission

is to provide communities with the support and tools they need to teach children to play and dance to traditional old time and bluegrass music.

What’s Happening in the JAM World

Summer Camps & More

Many of our JAM and YAM affiliates have been busy this summer carrying on the old time and bluegrass traditions. Even though most schools across the countryside are on break, there have been many successful day camps for jammers in North Carolina and South Carolina.

Every year, Preserving Our Southern Appalachian Music (POSAM) hosts the TAM YAM Camp in July in Pickens County, South Carolina. The POSAM organization works with Pickens County Schools to provide seven YAM (just like JAM) programs throughout their county each year. These YAM programs reach over 200 students per year! From July 15-19, YAM kids enjoyed jamming, performing, special music appearances, craft events and fun activities to beat the heat. Among this busy schedule, TAM YAM Camp coordinators made time for classes in guitar, mandolin, fiddle, banjo, dulcimer, harmonica and singing. Over 50 youth and more than 20 adult volunteers were involved in this week-long day camp held at Pickens Recreation Center, creating a wonderful community atmosphere. To look at photo albums, visit their YAM Facebook Page or the YAM website

In nearby North Carolina, Chatham County JAM held a similar week-long day camp for its JAM students and community at the Silk Hope Heritage Farm Park during the last week in June. Chatham County JAMmers were happy to report that they survived the rainfall and carried on with music classes, performances, games and appearances by special guests. For the last day of camp, they had a big square dance, potluck dinner, cake walk and a 50/50 drawing open to the community. Chatham County JAM was helped tremendously by the Cumnock Union United Methodist Church, who provided snacks for the day campers. To find out more information about the success of their JAM Camp and about the Chatham County JAM program, please visit their Facebook page or the Chatham JAM website

Also in North Carolina, the Haywood County JAM program celebrated its first year of day camp the week of July 8-12. They had 29 students enrolled and featured classes in banjo, fiddle, guitar and dance. Other camp events included mountain songs and stories and special guest performances. Haywood County JAM looks forward to this school year’s program and being involved in their local community as much as possible! Please visit the Haywood County Arts Council’s Facebook page or their website to find out more!

Coming up soon is the 78th Annual Galax Fiddlers Convention held in the World’s Capital of Old Time Mountain Music itself – Galax, Virginia. This one of a kind event dedicates Monday to youth musicians around the world. Please join us Monday evening, August 5 to see JAM kids and other youth performers play in the old time and bluegrass contests. For more information about the contest rules and registration, please visit the Galax Fiddlers Convention website

Caldwell County JAM will be also featured at the upcoming Happy Valley Fiddlers Convention during Labor Day weekend in Lenoir, NC. Among the special activities of the fiddlers convention, Caldwell County JAM will have their own stage in the Instrument Making Tent for open mic youth performances. For more information, please visit their website at http://www.happyvalleyfiddlers.com/Home/Highlights.

In Regional JAM news, we have been busy working with multiple communities throughout Appalachia to spread our mission and develop more JAM programs, so please stay tuned for updates about upcoming and existing affiliates!

OLDGRASS to play at Grove Park Inn’s 100th Birthday

In addition to their show this Thursday at Heartwood in Abingdon, VA, JAM Alumni, Jared Boyd and Daniel Greeson, will be performing at Asheville, North Carolina’s Grove Park Inn this Friday, July 12 with their band, OLDGRASS. The Grove Park Inn is celebrating their Centennial Birthday by partnering with the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area, the Asheville Museum of Art and other local organizations. OLDGRASS will be officially representing Junior Appalachian Musicians with their fusion of old time and bluegrass music at 4 p.m. in the Great Hall.

Please visit Grove Park Inn’s website for more information.

OLDGRASS Featured in The Crooked Road Youth Music Performance Series at Heartwood

Come check out JAM Alumni at Heartwood on Thursday, July 11!

Abingdon, Virginia– The Crooked Road: Virginia’s Heritage Music Trail presents a concert by OLDGRASS on Thursday, July 11th from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. at Heartwood: Southwest Virginia’s Artisan Gateway in Abingdon, Virginia. The concert is part of The Crooked Road’s Youth Music Performance Series.

OLDGRASS, a stellar youth group from Carroll County, VA, brings together high-powered old time and bluegrass musicians to play a blend of tunes that wins audiences and competitions throughout the region. The band took first place in their first performance together in 2010 in the youth band competition at the Galax Old Time Fiddlers Convention at the 75th anniversary of the convention. In 2012 they earned the Triad Youth Band Award in High Point, NC. Each band member is an award winning musician on their own individual instrument. Band members include Jared Boyd on banjo, Daniel Greeson on fiddle, Ben Marshall playing bass, Jacob Greer on guitar, and Joshua Allen on mandolin.

The Crooked Road Music Series features youth music performers, as well as showcasing venues of the Crooked Road region. These events along with open jams on the 1st, 3rd, (and 5th) Thursday of every month are hosted at Heartwood. A complete schedule for the music series is available on The Crooked Road website at www.thecrookedroad.org or at www.heartwoodvirginia.org. The music series is sponsored by The Crooked Road, Heartwood, Virginia Commission for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Heartwood: Southwest Virginia’s Artisan Gateway is located off I-81 at Exit 14 in Abingdon, Virginia and features food, music, and craft of Southwest Virginia. Admission to the concert is free and donations will be accepted for The Crooked Road Traditional Music Education Program (TMEP).

For more information on The Crooked Road Music Series call (276) 492-2409 or email: info@thecrookedroad.org.

Photo Credit – Vickie Boyd. Please contact us for additional photos.

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