Southwest Bluegrass Association

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We’re a large organization of bluegrass pickers and grinners, who take part in and promote Bluegrass music events in the Southwest and Beyond.

Location: Pinon Hills, CA

Website: https://www.southwestbluegrass.org/

Meetings:

SWBA Board of Directors meets bi-monthly, SWBA SuperJam Annual Campout & Membership Meeting every year in May

Cost to join:

US Resident $20 per year (single, married, family), Canadian or 1st class postage $30 per year

(single, married, family), Band $25 per year

Mission Statement:

Bringing people together for the preservation, enjoyment, and advancement of bluegrass music.

Promoting local, regional and national bluegrass music and family-oriented events. Improving public appreciation of bluegrass, and the music’s contribution to our American heritage. Assisting other organizations, event promoters and any others involved with bluegrass music, to increase the public’s awareness and appreciation of this music. Introducing and conducting, educational and promotional activities which will advance and encourage others to appreciate our American music heritage and culture. To develop school-based activities and events that will introduce young people to take part in bluegrass music. Attend and encourage others to support and promote bluegrass music and those involved in it.

Is membership open to all states or local only?

All

What benefits will members receive for joining?

Being a member of a large organization of bluegrass pickers and grinners who support and promote Bluegrass music to the public. A Bi-monthly newsletter ~ The Bluegrass Soundboard. Membership provides funds for: our newsletter, SWBA sponsored programs and events, our new website which allows us to provide information about Bluegrass news, articles, festivals, cd reviews, member bands and links to other Bluegrass related websites and more.

Do you host performances to promote the organization?

Yes, recently SWBA hosted 7 band showcases at the Great 48 Hour Jam in Bakersfield CA and a performance in Victorville CA by Nu-Blue and the SWBA Bluegrass Kids to raise funds for the SWBA Bluegrass In Schools Program. And in a few weeks SWBA Bluegrass Cruise Kickoff Jam and Concert Fundraiser featuring The Special Consensus and Jeff Scroggins & Colorado in Long Beach CA

Background of the organization: 

To the best of our knowledge, the Southern California Inland Bluegrass Association (SCIEBA) founded in 1975 by Don Tucker, Charlie Reid, Art Tate and possibly one or more others. Their mission was to give information about bluegrass music, events, and festivals to the public. With their dedication to bluegrass music & hard work, the association began to grow in membership.

Setting up a table at festivals like Calico Spring Festival, Norco, Topanga, Julian, Idlewild, and Huck Finn Jubilee. In the 80’s, SCIEBA started to add members from all over the USA, and in 87-88 the association name changed to the Southwest Bluegrass Association (SWBA). Over the last 40 years, SWBA has grown to one of the largest bluegrass organization in the US, Thanks to a long list of dedicated Southwest Bluegrass Association members who have volunteered and put in many hours promoting the music we love and making the Southwest Bluegrass Association what it is today!

Over the years SWBA volunteers have provided a newsletter to its members and the public. This publication has evolved from one page to 20+. The Bluegrass Soundboard is printed and sent to SWBA members in the US and Canada via us mail or email and passed out at festivals, jams and concerts to the public.

The Southwest Bluegrass Association Proudly Sponsors the Bluegrass In Schools Program and the “SWBA Bluegrass Kids”. SWBA volunteers are now conducting a school program that brings bluegrass music and instruments into the classroom. The SWBA Bluegrass In Schools Program is designed to introduce Bluegrass, an American form of acoustic music to the next generation.

Since 2006, the “SWBA Bluegrass Kids” students from our school program have attended music events and festivals accompanied by Eric Nordbeck, their instructor and SWBA School Program Chairperson. They have appeared before a very responsive and enthusiastic audience at a number of music events and festivals over the years. Each year New and returning students are provided with instruments for the classroom and to take home to practice. By bringing the instruments home they also introduce bluegrass music to their parents, brothers, sisters and family. The SWBA Bluegrass In Schools Program – SWBA Bluegrass Kids Uses donated instruments and funds for repairs, strings, tuners, picks, and cases. This program reached an all time high of 101 students in 2017.

Over the last Five years the Southwest Bluegrass Association has aggressively used the web and social media to promote SWBA and bluegrass music with pages, groups and recently a new web site. Our members have created FB groups and have encouraged others to join and share bluegrass music related links, bands, festivals, radio, history and websites. Groups like Bluegrass The Music That Matters Most To Us created and managed by Julie Evans, Bluegrass Music somehow I ended up with because the admins left. And The Bluegrass Café created by Terry Brewer, which is now managed by a number of awesome people who love bluegrass.

Goals for the organization:

To grow in membership and pass this organization on to the next generation of bluegrass music lovers. To find new ways to promote bluegrass and reach more people to grow the bluegrass community and fan base in the Southwest and Beyond. Continue to support and promote Bluegrass and those involved.