View Full Version : Ideas for mandolin and bluegrass fueled motorcycle trip
Justus True Waldron
I've seen a similar thread to this in the past, but it was with slightly different circumstances so I figured I'd start my own. I am looking to take about a weeks vacation time (maybe up to 9 days if I include the following weekend) and take a motorcycle trip from my NY home to music city and back sometime this summer. I will be riding my highly modified 1978 kz750 and I hope to take my two main instruments (mandolin and clarinet) with me and find chances to play them all along the way. The path I am planning on taking is more or less like this, (https://maps.google.com/maps?saddr=Schuylerville,+NY&daddr=Lancaster,+PA+to:38.34144,-81.70125+to:Louisville,+KY+to:Nashville,+TN+to:War trace,+TN+to:Huntsville,+AL+to:Rockville,+MD+to:Sc huylerville,+NY&hl=en&sll=38.85306,-80.182335&sspn=9.696378,21.643066&geocode=FaunkQIdKjud-ynfi7oJ3S7eiTGVqygXMU0eEA%3BFfTtYgIdlqtz-ym5FHKRiyTGiTHW0tsw0JBntA%3BFUALSQIdflYh-ynrL5kcozJPiDE3Wj2ncgt5Wg%3BFXmwRwIdCG7j-ikR1VuzGgtpiDEy_XEgKLTT1A%3BFQvcJwIdm8rT-ik9kOsTMuxkiDGg2umh0Lk_fQ%3BFX8aHgIdXKfa-ilBBsgetOBjiDEWKGV6WR5VMQ%3BFYHxEQIdCM3W-imNiaLNZ2tiiDFrVgTIiX4smg%3BFd1fVAIdCr5m-ykVkeP-LCq2iTEk38nZEL6l7A%3BFaunkQIdKjud-ynfi7oJ3S7eiTGVqygXMU0eEA&oq=schuy&t=h&mra=dpe&mrsp=2&sz=6&via=2&z=6) although I plan on taking back roads to highways as much as possible. I have friends and family along the way to crash with for the most part, although I don't know anyone near Louisville. It seems like such a historic place that I had to cut through there anyways. I've been to nashville 2 or three times before several years back, but I'm much more into bluegrass now (and a much better player). I'm 23 years old and hoping to have an adventure that will make the rest of the year writing software for hospitals bearable. Anyone have ideas for famous bluegrass landmarks (THE Clinch Mountain, etc), jams, places to eat, things to do, advice? People that want a fill in bluegrass mando player for a gig? Any ideas on when would be a good time to take this trip? I was going to do the first week in July, but I ended up putting an offer on a house, and I think I should take some more time to save for that and set up my bike a little more. I definitely want to take my vacation before the end of the summer, say labor day weekend... Any ideas at all?
Sounds like a real adventure!
Have a Great time & Be Safe.
Sorry, nothing else to offer.
I'd visit Floyd, VA which is the home of the great cd store, County Sales. They have music jams and concerts I believe,
and would give you some resources of places to visit.
Santa Cruz, CA
Check out The Crooked Road in Virginia. Floyd is one of the stops. Almost 300 miles of road with music venues and open jams all along the way. Mostly Bluegrass. Web site is thecrookedroad.org. I'm heading there next week and my first stop is in Floyd.
If you do the Crooked Road thing, the Galax Old Fiddler's Convention run Aug.6-12. Right down the road from Floyd. A week of non-stop BG and old-time jams, plus some swing (if you wanna give the clarinet some work).
Justus True Waldron
Ooooh this is coming together! I know lots of good pickers that go to Galax, and I was planning on heading that way to pick with them anyway. I've wanted to go for a couple years but always had to work... but nothing saying I couldn't take my trip that week! Thanks for the ideas... keep 'em coming!
Stop in Bethlehem PA to tour the Martin Guitar factory. Brown County IN for the bluegrass festival (not sure when it is). Elderly's in Lansing MI. Check the concert & festival calendar on this site to see what's going on where.
Have fun, ride safe, & lose the clarinet!
Lose the mandolin...and travel a little further (down to the crescent city) ;)
Some thoughts - Make sure you take Skyline Drive vs. I81 through Virginia. Get contact info for local music stores on the way to call or e-mail and ask about local music venues. You might also want to stop in and do some mando shopping. Some possibles in the DC area - Appalachian Bluegrass, Catonsville, MD; House of Musical Traditions, Takoma Park, MD; Melodee Music, Sterling and Leesburg, VA. This link might help you find some jams and such in Virginia - http://www.brownbearsw.com/freecal/r...ate=2012-06-01
I envy you and your youth. I took my one (and only) solo, cross-country motorcycle trip from Little Rock, AR to Philadelphia, PA and back when I was 18 in 1977. Best of luck!
Make sure to check out the calendar of events at The Station Inn (http://www.stationinn.com/index.html). If you're lucky, you might get to see a master at work:
There are also some VERY cool instruments on display at the Country Music Hall of Fame & Museum - Bill's Loar F-5, Maybelle's Loar L-5, and Hank's D-28 - just to name a few...