Blue Moon Rising Reunion Concert Dates Announced


2015-bmr-bismarkBlue Moon Rising has announced they will perform select tour dates with original band members Chris West (Guitar), Tim Tipton (Bass), Keith Garrett (Mandolin), Randall Massengill (Guitar), Justin Jenkins (Banjo), plus current member Brandon Bostic (Dobro). Three Blue Moon Rising Reunion concert dates have been booked so far, including the kick-off on September 28 at the National Muscadine Festival in Sweetwater, TN.

Fans can ring in the New Year with the Blue Moon Rising Reunion tour when they return to Bismarck State College in Bismarck, North Dakota for the 10th Annual Blizzard Bluegrass Weekend January 2-3, 2015. Festival Promoter Jill Wiese recalls how she met the band. “Ten years ago, I got a phone call from Tim Tipton asking if Blue Moon Rising could play somewhere in around the Bismarck area in the winter time. I had never put on an event before, so I called Bismarck State College and the rest is history. We are thrilled beyond belief the BMR band is coming back as these guys played the first three years of this winter event. We are going to sell this one out for sure – blizzard or no blizzard,” said Wiese.

albumcover-on-the-rise-blue-moon-risingBlue Moon Rising had two self-released albums, RAISED ON PAIN and WHERE WOOD MEETS STEEL, prior to their successful ON THE RISE (Lonesome Day Records) album that garnered the national spotlight for this band configuration in 2005. The album certainly proved to be a symbolic title for them when it made its debut on the BILLBOARD Top Bluegrass Album Chart and received many “Best Albums of the Year” honors by numerous publications including It also received significant Radio chart success spending 10 months on the Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine Top 15 Album Chart and the single, This Old Martin Box spending the entire 2006 calendar year in the Top 30 Singles. The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) members honored the band with a 2006 Nomination as Emerging Artist of the Year.

Blue Moon Rising has released three other albums since then including: ONE LONELY SHADOW (Lonesome Day Records), STRANGE NEW WORLD (Rural Rhythm Records), and their current self-released BLUE SIDE OF THE MOON.


All of the original members contributed their songwriting talents to the group’s recordings over the years, but none more so than band leader, guitarist and lead vocalist, Chris West. His songs are part of the group’s signature sound with fan favorites such as: The Crime I’m Guilty Of, The Hanging Tree, The Old Time Preacher Man, Good Time for Going Home, Revival, He Arose, and so many more. Chris is the only remaining original member of the group.

Tim Tipton not only played Bass with the band, but also contributed original songs to their recordings. He wrote Papaw Taught Me that appeared on the album, ON THE RISE. The song was also featured on the Lonesome Day Records’ compilation project, “The Very Things You Treasure – 24 Bluegrass Songs of Faith & Family.” Tim’s outgoing personality was certainly an asset in getting this group off the ground, and he was an integral part of the band’s success.

Keith Garrett is now with The Boxcars who lead the Nominations for 2014 IBMA Awards with ten nominations for the band and their individual members. Keith received his first IBMA Song of the Year Nomination for his original It’s Just a Road. Keith contributed numerous songs to Blue Moon Rising over the years including Jeffrey’s Hell, Far Away From Home, Angeline, Moonshine Hard Times, and the instrumental Sling Blade he co-wrote with Justin Jenkins.

Banjo player, Justin Jenkins, now with Grasstowne, landed his first professional gig at age 12 when he was asked to become a regular member of the Renfro Valley Barn Dance. He then made his Grand Ole Opry debut in 2003 as a guest of Mike Snider. After high school, Justin hit the road with Mountain Heart to sell merchandise. Soon after, he joined Blue Moon Rising and appears on ONE LONELY SHADOW and ON THE RISE.

Randall Massengill toured nine years with the bluegrass gospel group, New Road, before joining Blue Moon Rising in 2005. He appears on the ON THE RISE album performing guitar, tenor vocalist and taking the lead vocals on Modern Day Outlaw. After Blue Moon Rising, Randall formed the band, Brand New Strings who recorded two albums together.

BrandonBosticCurrent member, Brandon Bostic has been an essential member of Blue Moon Rising for the past five years. His strong and soulful lead vocals, combined with his stellar musicianship on Guitar, Mandolin, and Dobro , are a true asset to the group. He has played professionally in the past with Valerie Smith and Liberty Pike and now runs his own recording and production studio, Root Note Studio.

For more information including upcoming announcements for the BLUE MOON RISING REUNION TOUR and BLUE MOON RISING’s tour, please visit

Two Rivers, Wisconsin concert series ends

I was very sad to hear of the closing of the B.K. Productions bluegrass concert series in Two Rivers, Wisconsin.  I had the opportunity to travel to one of the concerts years ago when one of my clients, Blue Moon Rising performed (pictured above in a photo by Mike Morebeck —– L-R Justin Moses, Keith Garrett, Tim Tipton, Chris West, Justin Jenkins).  After working with producer, Brad Klabunde, over the phone for many years, it was very nice to finally meet him and his wife Janice.

Brad Klabunde

Over the years, Brad’s enthusiasm for bluegrass music certainly was evident in his successful concerts.   He was able to get some of top award-winning bands in bluegrass music at this series.  Most recently the event was held at the Two Rivers High School.

Unfortunately Brad has made the hard decision to cancel the concerts due to numerous reasons, the most obvious being the economy, cost of fuel for these national touring acts, but also a problem that other promoters around the country face – competing with local free shows.  At concert series like Brad’s, of course, promoters have to charge for tickets.  That is how these national touring bands get paid.

Just some of the artists that have made their way to Brad’s show were: Carrie Hassler, Rhonda Vincent & The Rage, Charlie Sizemore Band, Jimbo Whaley & Greenbrier, Blue Moon Rising, Valerie Smith & Liberty Pike, Special Consensus, Newfound Road, Mark Newton Band, James King Band and so many more.

Congratulations to Brad, Janice, and all of their sponsors and volunteers for a job well done for so many years!

Brand New Strings announces…..

Brand New Strings announces…..
CD Release Party Details
SIRIUS-XM Track by Track Airdates

National touring bluegrass band, BRAND NEW STRINGS have announced details of their upcoming CD Release Party for their new Rural Rhythm Records album, NO STRINGS ATTACHED.  The Knoxville area event begins at 7:00 pm on April 23, 2010 at the Carter High School Auditorium, 210 North Carter School Road, Strawberry Plains, TN. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at the door or the band’s website.  Proceeds will benefit the Carter Elementary P.T.O. The party will feature Brand New Strings members, Randall Massengill, Mike Ramsey, Tim Tipton, Stuart Wyrick, Matt Leadbetter and Preston Schmidt with special guests:  Steve Gulley (Grasstowne and the band’s CD producer); Keith Garrett (The Boxcars); Chris West and Brandon Bostic (Blue Moon Rising); Jim Millsaps (Knoxville Grass); Mike Bentley (Cumberland Gap Connection) and many more surprises throughout the evening.

“Brand New Strings plays hardcore bluegrass for the hardcore fan.  These are exciting, fresh, songs played and sung by superbly talented musicians and singers in a take-no-prisoners, no apologies, strictly bluegrass style.  This is bluegrass the way it ought to be!” says SIRIUS-XM Radio Host, Kyle Cantrell who will host the band on his upcoming Track by Track.  The show debuts April 14 at 11:00 AM EST with rebroadcasts on the April 15 (9:00 PM EST) and April 18 (11:00 AM EST).

The CD Release Party is sponsored by D’Addario, Ciderville Music, Lakota Leathers, On Board Research Corporation, Rural Rhythm Records, Hope River Entertainment, Chota Outfitters with numerous door prizes being given away during the evening. The band is currently on tour promoting their new album including tonight’s sold out performance at Tennessee Shines:  Live from the Bijou in Knoxville, TN. 

For more information on BRAND NEW STRINGS, their new CD and tour information, please visit,  or

**Don’t miss the limited time only special packaging of this album.  The CD resembles a package of brand new strings – very unique design!  Order your copy at Amazon, and many more sites including the band’s site and Rural Rhythm Records.

Our Favorite Tearjerker Songs of 2008

Our Favorite TEARJERKER SONGS of 2008

· ALONE by Jeanette Williams (Thank You For Caring, Blue Circle Records). Songwriter: Ryan Roberts. Lyric sample: “There’s a lonesome feeling at my door, and an emptiness that fills my home, but if you can’t love me anymore, well I’m sure I’ll be better on my own. Are you sure that you’d rather be alone?

· CATCUS IN A COFFEE CAN by Melonie Cannon (And The Wheels Turn, Rural Rhythm Records).  Songwriters: Allen Shamblin and Steve Seskin. Lyric Sample: My momma was a tortured soul, I still love her even though she gave me away on the day I was born.”

· I DON’T WANT TO WAKE UP ANYMORE by Carrie Hassler & Hard Rain (CHHR2, Rural Rhythm Records).  Songwriter:  Josh Miller and Josh Swift. Lyric Sample: I don’t want to fight for life without you. There’d be no reason left worth fighting for. If I can’t wake up knowing that you’d be here, then I just don’t want to wake up anymore.

· EVERYTHING’S BLUE a duet with Jeanette Williams and Keith Garrett (Thank You for Caring by Jeanette Williams on Blue Circle Records. Songwriter: Marcie Horne. Lyric Sample: You’re too young and it won’t work, that’s what the old folks say.” “How could a love that seem so right prove to be untrue? How could a promise meant forever fade like the morning dew?

· FLOWERS by The Lonesome River Band (No Turning Back, Rural Rhythm). Songwriter: Billy Yates and Monty Criswell. Lyric Sample:You won’t believe how much I’ve changed since you’ve left. It took losing you for me to find myself.”

· IF THESE WALLS COULD TALK by Carrie Hassler & Hard Rain (CHHR2, Rural Rhythm Records). Songwriter: Josh Miller. Lyric Sample: And the people screamed, and the people danced, and they try to conjure up some sweet romance. And they tell lies and make believe they’ve got more on earth to live for than the bar down the street. So look around and you will find that if these walls could talk I’d know they cry.

· SUPPOSED TO BE by Jett’s Creek (Supposed to Be, Indie). Songwriter: Angie Young. Lyric Sample: “Did it ever cross your mind just how it felt that night you left me standing all alone watching you go? Your words cut like a knife, and they broke everything inside. That wasn’t how it was supposed to be, but then you left me.”

· LONESOME DOVE by Tim Hensley (Long Monday, Rural Rhythm/Blue Chair). Songwriter: Larry Cordle and Carl Jackson. Lyric Sample: “Lonesome dove we’re not that different, you sing a sad song, but you are not alone. You’ve been forever forsaken by the one that you love and I know you feel lonesome dove.”

Now we want to hear you favorite tearjerker songs of 2008.  Leave us a comment!