4 local bluegrass bands will take stage on Saturday
URBANA — The Champaign-Urbana Folk & Roots Festival and Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center have a cure for cabin fever: the third annual Indoor Bluegrass Festival from 5 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday at the Independent Media Center, 202 S. Broadway Ave.
The event will feature four local bluegrass bands that have performed at festivals and venues in central Illinois and beyond. Also, area musicians are invited to jam from 5 to 11 p.m. The doors will open at 4:40 p.m.
— 6:30 p.m., Grass Roots Revival plays traditional bluegrass and old-time country music, specializing in close-knit harmonies. Its members are Jamie Lou Carras of Urbana, Michael Jones of Homer and Jim Hand of Tolono.
Jones plays not only Scruggs-style banjo and flat-pick guitar, but also sings and yodels. Carras plays autoharp — a fairly recent discovery for her. Hand has explored nearly all of the common bluegrass instruments and for now "holds down the fort" with his bass playing.
— 7:30 p.m., Black Coffee Fridays, with Sam Payne on mandolin, Phil Alley on guitar, Charlie Harris on bass and Cody Jensen on banjo. All sing lead and harmony vocals.
— 8:30 p.m., High Cotton aims for a high-lonesome sound full of foggy bottoms and smoky mountaintops. Members Cliff Anglen, Bill Blickhan, Milt Craig, Dan Defend, Tom Koehler and Rick Rhodes perform three- and four-part harmonies on top of banjo, fiddles and Bill Monroe-style mandolin, all played to the rhythms of guitar and a doghouse bass. The band formed from its start as a house band for a local production of the musical "Cotton Patch Gospel."
— 9:30 p.m., Bluegrass Biscuits, featuring Sam Payne, Dustin Norder, Bob Watson, Chris Strand and Jensen, playing down-home traditional bluegrass.
Admission is $10 for adults, $8 for students and $25 for families. Children younger than 12 are admitted free.