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Big day at Merlefest


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Saw Jerry Douglas and Tommy Emmanuel-oh my, my...

And Jim Lauderdale

And Donna the Buffalo

Shook Buddy Miller’s hand.

And to top it off, my young pal Ashley Heath (whom I met a handful of years ago at my then-regular open mic and who is, as they say, the real deal) and her band entered and WON the best new band contest! They went on to slay a 30-minute set between the evening headliners (Sam Bush, followed by Jim and Buddy and the North Mississippi All-Stars). What a thrill it was to walk among the huge festival crowd, under a full Carolina moon, and feel the surge electricity among the people—watching my friend on the 3 giant screens doing her thing, counting her lucky stars, and having a ball.

Look her up, folks...

Whoa doggie, that was fun!

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Awesome day.


Hey Anne, is it this one ?



That’s her. She plays out solo as well as with the band (of which there are varying combinations of 4-5 members).

She released her sophomore album earlier this month; she’s got a world of talent (probably 80% of what she performs is original) and a package of skills to keep her moving forward.

All of that earned her yesterday’s reward; now, if Buddy (who went on minutes after and who could not have NOT hear Ashley’s set), took notice, too— why, that’s the stuff lucky breaks are made of.

If not Buddy, someone else.


I told her, when I heard her first iterations of Same Old Blue a year or two ago, that I thought it might become her signature song. Still think so. It works equally well when she does it solo or with the band or, here, with the backing of an award-winning Nashville guitar player:

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