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Music center names four headlining concerts

GALAX, VA — The Blue Ridge Music Center has revealed four of the artists appearing on the organization’s amphitheater stage this summer as part of the annual Roots of American Music concert series. Tickets for these four shows go on sale on Feb. 17 at 10 a.m.

The Music Center is located at milepost 213 on the Blue Ridge Parkway, just south of Galax and 30 minutes from Sparta and Mount Airy, N.C.

The Steep Canyon Rangers will take the mountain stage at 7 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 2. This band is a Grammy winner, perennial Billboard chart-toppers, and frequent collaborators of the renowned banjoist (and occasional comedian) Steve Martin.

The group first formed as a band in college at UNC-Chapel Hill, then dove head first into bluegrass in its most traditional form. Over the years, they have risen to the top of the bluegrass genre headlining festivals such as MerleFest and Grey Fox Bluegrass. Their collaboration with Martin has taken the group on a nearly decade-long tour introducing them to hundreds of thousands of new fans, and helping to make the Steep Canyon Rangers one of the most recognizable modern names in bluegrass music. The band has continued to tour extensively on their own, and have expanded their genres into country and Americana. Tickets for this show are $40 for adults and $20 for children 12 and younger.

Sierra Ferrell will perform at 7 p.m., Saturday, July 22, as part of her Long Time Going tour. Growing up in small-town West Virginia, the singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist left home in her early 20s to journey across the country with a troupe of nomadic musicians, playing everywhere from truck stops to alleyways to freight-train boxcars speeding down the railroad tracks. After years of living in her van and busking on the streets of New Orleans and Seattle, she moved to Nashville and soon landed a deal with Rounder Records on the strength of her magnetic live show. Now, on her label debut Long Time Coming, Ferrell shares a dozen songs unbound by genre or era, instantly transporting her audience to an infinitely more enchanted world. Tickets are $30 in advance, $35 day of show, and $15 for children 12 and younger.

Scythian, another fan favorite, is appearing on the Music Center stage at 7 p.m., Saturday, June 3. Scythian was founded by brothers Alexander and Danylo Fedoryka, who are first-generation sons of Ukrainian immigrants. From the start, the group has searched for and loved the “old time, good time” Celtic-influenced music. They were inspired by a tale told by their grandmother of a roving fiddler who came into her farming village every six months or so. Once he was spotted, messengers were sent to all the outlying fields and mills and work ceased; everyone gathered in the barn and danced the night and their cares away. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 day of show, and free for children 12 and younger.

The Lonesome River Band will kick off the season at 7 p.m., Saturday, May 27. Led by five-time International Bluegrass Music Association Banjo Player of the Year, and winner of the Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass, Sammy Shelor, the group is constantly breaking new ground in acoustic music. With two lead vocalists, Jesse Smathers (guitar) and Adam Miller (mandolin), and the talents of Mike Hartgrove (fiddle) and Kameron Keller (bass), the band seamlessly fuses instrumentals and harmony vocals, traditional and contemporary bluegrass sounds, performing their trademark sound that fans continue to love and embrace. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 day of show, and free for children 12 and younger.

Advance tickets for these shows are available beginning 10 a.m., Friday at Multi-concert passes are also available including full season (all 14 concerts), half season (seven concerts), and pick 3 (three concerts) passes.

The complete lineup and opening acts for the annual Roots of American Music concert series will be released at the end of February. For more information, visit



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