Where does the time go?

The Grass Is Dead at Magnoliaball 05/09/2003

It seems like just yesterday we were back at the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park for the Magnoliaball. It was such a great weekend of music and without question one of my favorite places to perform at. The festival grounds are located in North Florida where I-75 & I-10 meet. It is a magical setting covered in Live Oak trees and on the Suwannee River. Actually the first tune I learned on the piano was Stephen Fosters “The Old Folks at Home” when I was around 4 or 5 years old based on this area! I have played at this wonderful place many times with different line-ups and every one of them is a great memory.

Way Down Upon the Suwannee River

Far, far away

There’s where my heart is turning ever

There’s where the old folks stay

-Stephen Foster

This weekend I was with “The Grass is Dead”, a bluegrass tribute to the Grateful Dead. The line up was Billy Gilmore (Banjo, Mandolin, Dobro, Vocals), Corey Dwyer (Guitar, Vocals), Bubba Newton (Bass), Brian Goodpaster (Fiddle) & I was playing mandolin and singing. It was a few years back so I cannot remember all of the other bands that were billed for this one…. Dark Star Orchestra was there doing there Grateful Dead concert re-creation & they did a really great show that night.

Late night pickin’ sessions were a staple at these festivals. Sleep was rare as no one wanted to miss a single moment or opportunity to experience the event at it’s fullest. It is the prime opportunity to meet up with musicians from other bands and festival goers that wanted to play some tunes. We would pick around the fire till the sun came up, rest for a second, get back on stage and do it all again. Man, do I miss these days and hope that we can get back to this soon!

The Grass is Dead at Magnoliaball 5/9/2003 (Casey Jones)

I am so grateful to the folks that captured some of these on video. Our brother Corey Dwyer has gone on to the great jam in the sky along to many other great friends of ours so these moments to look back at are so special to us. I will definitely be posting a lot more about Corey here soon.

Here is the full show from Magnoliaball 2003

The Grass Is Dead at Magnoliaball at Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park. May 9th, 2003.

Setlist: Candyman*, Tennessee Jed, Brown Eyed Women, Pig In a Pen, Down Where the River Bends, Casey Jones, E: EMD

*With Special Guest David Gans (Guitar, Vocals)

  • Billy Gilmore – Banjo, Dobro, Vocals
  • Corey Dwyer – Guitar, Vocals
  • Brent Hopper – Mandolin, Vocals
  • Bubba Newton – Bass
  • Brian Goodpaster – Fiddle

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