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Mandolin Cafe Blog

2009 Mandolin Year in Review

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Every year we like to pause around this time and reflect on some of events that stick out in our mind. Not surprisingly, 2010 was a busy year packed with a lot of excitement. Got your own favorite memories from the year past? Post them here as a follow-up reply.

inline imageJanuary, 2009 - The passing of Butch Baldassari started the year out on a sad note. The night before he left us, he told his wife Sinclair he'd decided it was time for him to die, and if he saw an opening, he was going to take. By the following morning, he had passed on. He's missed by many.

Collings shows off their new oval hole model at the winter NAMM show.

February, 2009 - News of the most recent discovered Loar (#76782) filters out. The instrument is passed around in a family for decades, used as decoration for the fireplace mantle. Owners take it to local luthier to see if it can be fixed up and played, only to discover they've been in possession of something pretty special all this time.

Dailey & Vincent continue to receive recognition at the 35th Annual SPBGMA awards, the start of another remarkable year for this spectacular duo.

March, 2009 - The canceled Bluegrass Hotel Concert brought up a set of bizarre stories from the event organize. Sam Bush had to address some outright lies being passed around about his participation on his own web site.

April, 2009 - Bluegrass legend Frank Wakefield releases a new solo recording, Ownself Blues.

The Matt Flinner Trio releases Music du Jour, the best selections from their quirky tours where group members compose tunes during the day and then perform them that evening in concer.

May, 2009 - Doyle Lawson and Quicksilver release their new recording Lonely Street.

The first Gibson Jam Master model mandolins begin appearing in a few select retail outlets and are widely discussed on the Cafe's message board prior to any official announcement from the company.

inline imageJune, 2009 - Austin's Sarah Jarosz releases her Sugar Hill debut recording Song Up In Her Head which then received a Grammy Nomination in December.

The Butch Baldassari tribute recording The Road Home appears in print.

July, 2009 - Bluegrass legend Jesse McReynolds turned 80!

The mandolin community learns of classical great Alison Stephens' battle with cancer, one that she has apparently succeeded in battling. Congrats, Alison!

Mandolin Magazine celebrates 10 years in print.

August, 2009 - Mandolin legend Herschel Sizemore releases a new recording of originals entitld B-Natural.

September, 2009 - Ricky Skaggs receives critical acclaim for his new solo recording Songs My Dad Loved.

Homespun Tapes releases their Instant Access Music Instruction with the Mandolin Cafe being their first affiliate on the web.

Adam Steffey's marvelous recording One More For The Road released.

The 2009 Full Moon Pickin' Party in Nashville paid tribute to the late Butch Baldassari and raised funds for inner city children as part of their annual event.

Chris Thile was on tour with his new mandolin concerto, Ad astra per alas porci.

inline imageOctober, 2009 - Sam Bush releases Circles Around Me, a marvelous recording that revisits some of his bluegrass roots.

November, 2009 - Federal agents from the United States Fish & Wildlife Service raid Gibson Guitar under suspicion of violating the Lacey Act, a key piece of environmental law, for importing endangered species of rosewood from Madagascar.

December, 2009 - Bill Monroe's gouged headplate sold for $37,500 at auction at Christie's.

Berklee College of Music unveiled their New American Roots Program on Dec. 10., a move that's sure to increase enrollment in students interested in acoustic music.

That's it. It was a great year. Have your own favorite memories? Share them below in the comments section.

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  1. Mike Bunting's Avatar
    One of the mando highlights for me is always the Monroestyle Mandocamp at the IBGM in Owensboro.
  2. Mike Bromley's Avatar
    Ditto, Mike. I may get a chance to actually attend one before I get too old....
  3. JeffD's Avatar
    Two new (new to me) mandolins. A record for me, two in a year. A Martin bowlback I got at Gruhn's in Nashville, and a Paris Swing I got off ebay.