Abigail Washburn: Bluegrass goes red

From hillside country Americana to Chinese grandmothers’ yarns, Abigail Washburn’s range and depth is evident.

Abigail Washburn is bringing her Chinese banjo get up to Central Park.  She combines traditional American bluegrass with Chinese folk song and writes catchy original compositions.  
 
After college and a stint in China, Washburn was headed back to Beijing with the intention of a permanent stay to work as a lawyer.  She decided to bring a banjo along as a piece of America.  Before taking off, she planned a road trip to Appalachia where she studied bluegrass via the clawhammer banjo.  As the story goes, she was then offered a record deal while playing in the hallway at a festival in Kentucky.  
 
In China she’d discovered a world of music that adopted her as its own. The record contract kept her in Nashville but China stayed relevant.  She began combining the two art forms in recordings and on stage. She honors both traditions with her band in a series of videos shot in Inner Mongolia and along the Great Wall.
 

 
From hillside country Americana to Chinese grandmothers’ yarns, Abigail Washburn’s range and depth is evident.  She’ll whisper or wail to fit the song.  She collaborates with excellent musicians from her own band and duets with husband Bela Fleck.  She has been known to wield the banjo as a diplomatic tool, collaborating with Chinese celebrity musicians and bringing a bit of America to some of the country’s more isolated villages.
 

Abigail Washburn plays Central Park Summerstage August 11 at 3pm.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.

International

Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.

News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

Local

Oval oasis: Summer of fun kicks off this…

A bold partnership between the Fairmount Park Conservancy and the city's Parks and Recreation Department is kicking off this weekend with family activities re-activating this unused public space.

Entertainment

Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

MLB

Jimmy Rollins is key to Phillies success

When John Kruk was asked about what the Phillies need to contend for a playoff berth, the ESPN analyst said Jimmy Rollins needs to play like a MVP again.

MLB

Ben Revere lifts Phillies to avoid sweep

Ben Revere came through with a two-out RBI single against Atlanta’s tough lefthander Alex Wood.

NBA

Season wrap: 76ers make the grade

The 76ers opened the 2013-14 season with a victory over the Miami Heat. The Sixers closed the season with a win at Miami.

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Tech

VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.

Tech

#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.