Cover for ROSENBERG: Bluegrass Generation: A Memoir. Click for larger image

Bluegrass Generation

A Memoir

Bean Blossom, banjos, and bluegrass becoming bluegrass

Neil V. Rosenberg met the legendary Bill Monroe at the Brown County Jamboree. Rosenberg's subsequent experiences in Bean Blossom put his feet on the intertwined musical and scholarly paths that made him a preeminent scholar of bluegrass music.

Rosenberg's memoir shines a light on the changing bluegrass scene of the early 1960s. Already a fan and aspiring musician, his appetite for banjo music quickly put him on the Jamboree stage. Rosenberg eventually played with Monroe and spent four months managing the Jamboree. Those heights gave him an eyewitness view of nothing less than bluegrass's emergence from the shadow of country music into its own distinct art form. As the likes of Bill Keith and Del McCoury played, Rosenberg watched Monroe begin to share a personal link to the music that tied audiences to its history and his life—and helped turn him into bluegrass's foundational figure.

An intimate look at a transformative time, Bluegrass Generation tells the inside story of how an American musical tradition came to be.

"Reading Bluegrass Generation was an enjoyable reminder of my time at Bean Blossom as a Blue Grass Boy. It brought back a lot of memories and reminded me of a few things I’d forgotten, too—and I even learned some things I never knew!"--Del McCoury

"A wonderful snap shot of a place and time in the history of bluegrass music. Neil traces his transition from musician to scholar and along the way offers vivid personal, musical and business glimpses of bluegrass patriarch Bill Monroe and his now-legendary Bean Blossom park."--Gary B. Reid, author of The Music of the Stanley Brothers

Publication of this book is supported by grants from the Manfred Bukofzer Endowment of the American Musicological Society, funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and from Memorial University of Newfoundland.


Neil V. Rosenberg is Professor Emeritus of Folklore at Memorial University of Newfoundland. He is the author of Bluegrass: A History and coauthor of Bluegrass Odyssey and The Music of Bill Monroe.

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