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Boogie down at the Bozeman Bluegrass Festival

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The 11th Annual Bozeman Bluegrass Festival will bring a burst of boot-stomping energy to The Emerson Center for the Arts and Culture on Saturday, Nov. 11 from 6 to 11 p.m. The family-friendly, all-ages event will feature four Montana bluegrass bands, beers by MAP Brewing and food by Red Tractor Pizza.

In the spotlight will be Missoula’s Lochwood, and Bozeman-area bands The Dirt Farmers, The Bridger Creek Boys, and Lazy Owl String Band, a diverse set of acoustic acts with common roots in traditional bluegrass music.

Lochwood will provide the most conventional bluegrass sound in the line-up. Since 2014, Lochwood has been playing in the tradition of Bill Monroe, Lester Flatt, Earl Scruggs, and the Stanley Brothers. Their music features three-part harmonies, hard-driving rhythms, and exhilarating solos. The five band members hail from all over the country, but share the rural mountain values of western Montana. Lochwood is comprised of Richie Reinholdt on guitar, bassist John Parker, Steve Taft on banjo, Chad Fadely on mandolin, and fiddler Taylor Buckley.

The Dirt Farmers are a local string band who have dubbed their musical style “paisley grass.” They’ve gained a following for their fun-loving mix of old school country, bluegrass, blues and rock—with the occasional slip into hip hop. The band members, who are as unique as their set list, serve up their tunes on a mandolin, banjo, guitar, fiddle and bass, highlighted by vocal harmonies. The Dirt Farmers are comprised of Nate Fortier, Kelly Hagerman, Bill Devine, Hans Swenson, Suzanne Ford and Chuck Swenson.

The hosts of the festival, the Bridger Creek Boys, add a twist of “newgrass” improvisation to old-timey bluegrass. They’ve logged more than 1,400 gigs nationwide since they began pickin’ together in 2005. The band presents a mix of explosive solos, tight harmonies and high energy fun. With a repertoire that includes songs by The Grateful Dead, The Band and The Beatles, as well as classics by Doc Watson and the Carter Family, expect the unexpected with this four-piece band. The Bridger Creek Boys are Matt Broughton, Jim Dungan, Andrew Schauer and Scott Stebbins.

Kicking off the evening’s music is The Lazy Owl String Band who cite diverse influences spanning from jazz and blues to punk rock, but remain rooted in an old-timey traditional style. Their hard-driving sound, whiskey-drinking, boot-stomping energy is geared toward filling the dance floor.

Tickets are available at Cactus Records and at the door. Children 12 and under are admitted free. Visit for more information.

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