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At the Ryman, Four of Bluegrass’ Finest Sing “Down in the River to Pray”

Jan 12, 2021

At the Ryman, Four of Bluegrass' Finest Sing

In our celebration of the movie that returned bluegrass to the spotlight of pop culture, we’re throwing it back to the 31st Annual IBMA Awards from October 2020. During the ceremony, four of the five women nominated for Female Vocalist of the Year banded their angelic voices together to pay tribute to the 2000 landmark film O Brother, Where Art Thou? In the video below, Amanda Smith, Rhonda Vincent, Brooke Aldridge, and Dale Ann Bradley stand stoically on the stage of the famed Ryman Auditorium to deliver a brilliant rendition of “Down in the River to Pray.”

This a capella performance is a reminder of not only the music featured in the film, but also the unique characteristic that bluegrass and old-time music can have, feeling simultaneously nostalgic and modern. The women’s gentle voices are wonders to behold in their own rights, but sparks fly when they harmonize, emanating a warmth and life into the historic venue where bluegrass was born. Watch these four eminent women of modern bluegrass interpret an all-time classic recording from our BGS Artist of the Month, O Brother, Where Art Thou?

Editor’s Note: The 2020 IBMA Bluegrass Music Awards will air on Circle TV on Monday, January 18 at 8pm ET / 7pm CT. The ceremony will be broadcast on Circle and Gray TV stations and can also be seen on DISH Studio Channel 102, Sling TV, and other TV affiliates. Circle TV is also available on 275 million smartphones and tablets via the Roku Channel and XUMO apps in addition to a companion livestream on Circle All Access Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

Photo credit: Shelley Swanger. Pictured L-R: Amanda Smith, Rhonda Vincent, Brooke Aldridge, Dale Ann Bradley

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At the Ryman, Four of Bluegrass' Finest Sing