Norwich Bluegrass Festival begins this weekend

NORWICH – Growing up in Eastern Kentucky, James Reams remembers being able to walk up to his heroes and shake their hands – heroes like Bluegrass legends J.D. Crow, Carter Stanley and Earl Scruggs.

Thirty years later, Reams has his own Bluegrass band, and says making the common connection with fans and fellow musicians is still at the heart of the music – literally and figuratively.

“There’s no barrier between the performers and the people going to the shows,” said Reams. “They were and are common people who hoe fields and raise kids and they write songs that tell their stories. That’s why I think it’s so great that places like Norwich embrace it.”

“James Reams and the Barnstormers” is one of over a dozen national and local performers rounding-out the 2007 Norwich Family Bluegrass Festival happening this Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the Chenango County Fairgrounds.

“Bluegrass music is of the people, by the people and for the people,” said festival organizer and performer Mike Tirella of “The Cabin Fever Band.” “It is real.”

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