Bluegrass Journey


Here are some spontaneous comments we have received about the film:

"I just watched Bluegrass Journey, and felt compelled to write to you with my comments and feedback. I have been playing and listening to bluegrass my entire life, and this is undoubtedly the most authentic and inspiring portrayal of the "culture" surrounding the passion for bluegrass music.  The music is brilliant; the stories and dialogue are excellent.  I would just like to say "thank-you" for producing something that has inspired me. Cheers."
- Todd Cook; Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

“I watched the movie the other night and it is really incredible. I was reminded in parts of the film "Festival", a rarely viewed documentary about the original Newport Folk Festival produced by Murray Lerner. Both documentaries capture not only the music but what it means to the fans. I loved the way you used the Grey Fox footage as sort of a grounding point - leaving the site to visit IBMA or Nashville - but always returning to the "altar" if you will. You really captured the sense of community and showcased the virtuosity of the music. While I was watching it I was making a list of artists that I need to revisit for my show. Tony Rice is amazing!”

- Ron Olesko, host of TRADITIONS, radio station WFDU-FM.

"Hi Rob & Ruth,
I am very impressed with the workmanship shown in "Bluegrass Journey". I saw it at the Wednesday night showing at the Dance Pavilion [at Grey Fox] during which many stood up for the entire 86 minute showing. People talked about it all week. I felt that you brought home your points for what Bluegrass Music is, it's roots, and the homespun nature of this music. The use of scenes from Greyfox and IBMA Festivals to show the great artists playing through the years was well done. The mud and heavy rain during the Greyfox 2000 performances illustrates the dedication of both the musicians and the fans. The up-close views of the artists picking was well done and should not be overbearing to a non-musician while providing technique to the musician. They demonstrate the speed, dynamics and intensity of the music. Historical shots with Bill Monroe and later artists showed a variety of phases of the genres' development and (now) modern evolution. Many artists, some famous, and the rest of us show and teach the music and its techniques in the jam sessions and circles. Much is passed on around the campfires and parking lots during  these festivals. The youngsters of today are tomorrow's artists, each adding a new interpretation to the bluegrass lore. Thank you for your work making "Bluegrass Journey". I look forward to purchasing my copies." - Bill

"Hey there folks!

I was there on that fateful weekend. I am in the film. What you captured is probably the best document of the Grey Fox experience there could ever be . . . The rain, the mud, the sunshine, the music . . . It is the next best thing to being there. I saw the film at the Jacob Burns film center, on the same weekend as Grey Fox. For reasons that I cannot logically explain, I could not attend the fest this year. But sitting in that theater, all of the warm, overwhelming feelings that are Grey Fox flooded over me. The lady sitting next to me was having the same experience, and at one point I looked at her and said, "Why are we not on the hill RIGHT NOW???" Your film was a moving experience - I wanted to get up and dance so many times, but the rest of the crowd probably would not have appreciated that.

My parents have never been to Grey Fox, but they humored my sister and I when, one late fall day, we asked if they would swing by the Rothvoss farm on our way through the area. We drove up the road leading to the farm and got those same chills of excitement that we feel every summer as we approach and see the hill quilted with tents and campers. Then, my sister and I hiked about halfway up the hill and sat on the ground, where our lawnchairs would normally be during the festival. Our mom took a picture of us up there in the middle of that empty field, and Mom and Dad laughed at the idea that we would want to just sit there. But I know if they watch your film, they will understand what drew us there on that autumn day. Some of our very best memories were made on that hill, and your film is like a time capsule containing those memories. Thank you." - Dave


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Here are excerpts from a discussion that took place on the Internet amongst folks who saw the film at the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival:


I'm curious to know what people thought of the FILM! I haven't seen any comments about it. I DO hope many of you got to see it at least once during the course of the festival. I was among the 400 (?) or so at the dance tent on Wednesday night. People were clapping at the performances, laughing in all the right places and generally having a great time. I loved it! Kudos to Ruth Oxenberg, Rob Schumer (producers/directors) & Nancy Kennedy (editor/co-director) for a job SO well done.
" - Mary

"I only caught portions of it, as the tent was mobbed by the time I got there on Wed night, and I couldn't pull myself away from the Live thing the other nights. I signed up for it, so I will most definitely order a copy of the DVD the instant it is available. What I saw looked great! Can't wait to be able to sit down and watch the whole thing." - Sandy

"I only got to see part of it, but what I saw I liked! Lynn got to see the whole film at the Dance Stage Wednesday evening------when they opened with Jerry playing in the pouring rain, it brought her to tears......she just finished telling me this when a friend of ours joined our conversation, and that scene made him cry, as well! I can't wait to receive the movie in the mail........" 
- Dancin'Dave

"Something about the opening with Jerry in the rain just got to me. I'm glad to hear that I wasn't the only one wiping a few tears. I saw the film Wednesday night - what a great way to start the festival. I can't wait for copies to be available. Not only will it help us explain to friends, maybe it will help with those mid-winter withdrawals." - Paula C.

" 'maybe it will help with those mid-winter withdrawals.'
Yeah, I am envisioning putting it on about...oh, say every other day throughout the winter months...." -

"I was going to post a message about the film, I'm glad my friends Dancin' Dave & Paula brought it up. It's true, that opening scene brought me back to that time, standing in the pouring rain, right in front of the stage, feeling that unmistakable magic that permeated the air when Jerry & Chris played what was to me the most memorable set in my entire Grey Fox/Winterhawk/Berkshire mountain festival experience! I remember thinking to myself at the time, I'm glad it's raining, because tears were streaming down my face in complete elation on what I was experiencing. After the film was over on Wednesday night, I went right to the producer & director and expressed my gratitude for capturing that moment. I too am waiting to get the dvd as soon as it comes out. I think it will explain to my friends and family the reason I make it to the hill on a yearly basis. No words can do it justice." - Ralph

"I missed it Wednesday night, missed the first 40 minutes Thursday night, missed the first 10 minutes Friday night and finally got to see the beginning on Saturday night. Maybe when the DVD is out I'll get to see it from start to finish!" - Larry

"I saw the film on Friday night. Enjoyed it very much. Thought the camera work was outstanding. How many cameras did they use anyway? The movie has great panoramic shots, group shots, and fingerboard shots. The sound must have come right off the soundboard, because it was flawless. I signed up to get a copy and can't wait to have it in my collection. I intend on using it to explain to friends, who haven't got a clue, where it is I go every year on the 3rd weekend in July." - Phil

"I think the filmmakers did a great job representing the diverseness and family influences of bluegrass music. A big highlight for me was seeing Bob Paisley and Southern Grass. It made me feel good to see them get recognition that is long overdue!! And, it was especially fun seeing the hill and the interviews with all the folks we know and love!" - Jodie