String Fever with Barb Heller


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About String Fever

Join NCPR each week for the best acoustic and bluegrass music in the North Country.

Barb Heller
Host Barb Heller says:

If you are a first-time visitor, let me tell you a little more about String Fever: It’s all about the music - and the players.

I welcome live soloists, bands, and co-hosts in the String Fever studio – especially if you have an upcoming gig in our listening area! You can reach me anytime via email (, or by calling the station toll-free at 877-388-6277. If you have a gig in the region please email me the details for inclusion on String Fever – and include a copy to too!

There’s nothing like live music, but I strive to make String Fever your weekly nearly-as-good-as-a-live-gig Bluegrass Café… and I hope that you’ll hear something on the air that inspires you to seek out the live, in-person version of it; whether it’s a bluegrass festival, concert or workshop.

So… until we meet in person at a gig, festival, concert or fundraiser…. Happy listening! See you on the radio,

Together, singer-songwriters Cahalen Morrison and Eli West evoke the lonesome roots of country and bluegrass music's earliest duets. The duo makes its debut appearance on West Virginia's famous stage.
The bluegrass band makes its first appearance on West Virginia's most famous stage. Della Mae's latest album, <em>This World Oft Can Be</em>, landed the group its first Grammy nomination.
The bluegrass trio gathers around a single mic to perform songs from<em></em> its first album in seven years.
A mainstay of the contemporary bluegrass circuit, the progressive band performs a lush three-part tune from its sixth studio album, <em>Let It Go</em>.
One of the most decorated and highly sought-after upright bassists in bluegrass music, Raines explores an adventurous new sonic direction on her latest project.
more from Music at NPR

Bluegrass links:

Festival Finder | Ottawa Valley Bluegrass Music Association
or call the International Bluegrass Music Association Festival Hotline at

String Fever with Barb Heller
airs Thursdays from 3-5 pm

08/28/14 edition of String Fever with Barb Heller:

Listen to the show now
 Featured on String Fever

New Video from Irene Kelly

Irene Kelly's latest album, Pennsylvania Coal (Patio Records), showcases her wonderful songwriting ability.

Here's a video of Kelly (with Mark Fain, Sierra Hull, Justin Moses, Thomm Jutz, Justyna Kelley & Lynn Williams) performing Sister's Heart at the cd release party, held at the Station Inn, Nashville, TN

New Videos from Nu-Blu

Nu-Blu is celebrating ten years as a band, and celebrating with music videos of some of the tracks from their most recent album, Ten.

The band writes almost all of their own material. They performed last summer at the Madrid River Bluegrass Festival, and wowed audiences with their enthusiasm, stage presence, vocal arrangements, and very impressive tour bus!

Watch them in action here:

String Fever Radio Jam 2014, Thursday, March 13, 3-5 pm

Rosin up your bow and tune up your instruments. It's time to play along with the radio! The String Fever Jam Band and Barb Heller are back with classic bluegrass favorites. Here's the sets list and links to the sheet music. Download, practice up and join in! Here's the archive video of the Jam.

Jazz guitarist Paul Meyers
Jazz guitarist Paul Meyers

Barb Heller's extended interview with Paul Meyers

Here is a longer version of Barb Heller's interview with Paul Meyers from August 2014 with three complete songs performed in our studio.  Go to full article
Paul Meyers (courtesy
Paul Meyers (courtesy

Jazz guitarist Paul Meyers teams with old friends for two concerts this weekend

Potsdam native Paul Meyers returns to the North Country this weekend to play concerts in Edwards and Potsdam. He recently spoke with Barb Heller.  Go to full article
April Verch. Photo: provided by the artist
April Verch. Photo: provided by the artist

Celebrated fiddler April Verch to perform in Old Forge, Edwards

Ottawa Valley native April Verch began step dancing at age three, and fiddling at age six. She recorded her first album at 13, and before she was in her 20s she would win the Canadian Open Old Time Fiddle Championship and the Canadian Grand Masters Fiddling Competition, the first woman to ever win both contests.

Now in her 30s, she has 9 albums to her credit, was a featured performer in the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, and tours the world with her band.

She's playing this evening at View in Old Forge, and Saturday evening at the Edwards Opera House. A couple of days ago Joel Hurd caught up with her on tour in North Carolina.  Go to full article

New York's Bluegrass Trail, No. 4

The International Bluegrass Music Association celebrated its Awards Night in Raleigh, NC at the end of September. The Gibson Brothers were there, and won several awards.

Who do you thank when you win bluegrass vocal group of the year, song of the year, and songwriter of the year? If you're Eric and Leigh Gibson, you thank your mother.

NY's Bluegrass Trail reporter Andy Flynn was watching the awards online--with Eric and Leigh Gibson's mother and family members.  Go to full article

New York's Bluegrass Trail, No. 3

Sometimes it only takes one song to get you hooked. After hearing his cousin sing, Phil Randazzo bought his first guitar, learned to play, and eventually put together a band... so he, too, could play the same bluegrass song that cousin Bobby did so many years ago.

Randazzo's love of bluegrass music has blossomed into a yearly festival at the family winery in the Thousand Islands. Andy Flynn takes us there on his latest stop along New York's Bluegrass Trail.  Go to full article

"Songs to Keep" concert Saturday in Edwards

This Saturday, The Edwards Opera House presents Songs To Keep, a collaboration of musical performances by John and Trish Miller, Dave Ruch, The Fraser Family, Lee Knight, and Don Woodcock.

The concert is part of a project to revive the traditional music archive of Marjorie Lansing Porter, an Adirondack archivist in the mid-20th century. TAUNY (Traditional Arts In Upstate New York) has partnered with SUNY Plattsburgh, the Adirondack History Center, and Mountain Lake PBS to produce a series of concerts, a songbook, cds, and a documentary film.

Barb Heller spoke with John Kirk and Trish Miller about their role in the concert series. They both teach music and dance at college campuses, festivals and music camps throughout the US. They have represented the United States as musical ambassadors in Turkey, Moldova, Bulgaria and Syria. They are currently teaching at Skidmore College and Bennington College.  Go to full article

New York's Bluegrass Trail, No. 2

It was classic North meets South with New York's Gibson Brothers and Virginia's James King, They jined forces at this year's Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival. But was it coincidence or fate that brought them together? That's a questrion Andy Flynn explores in the newest installment of New York's Bluegrass Trail.  Go to full article
Andy Flynn
Andy Flynn

New feature series: New York's Bluegrass Trail

Adirondack writer Andy Flynn is best known for his Adirondack Attic series on NCPR, but he's also a banjo player and bluegrass fan. He's currently working on a book about The Gibson Brothers Bluegrass Band, who grew up north of the Adirondacks in Ellenburg Depot, NY.

For the debut episode of this new series, Andy recently followed the Gibson Brothers to the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival in Oak Hill, NY, and returned with renewed interest in his own musical roots.  Go to full article

Singer/songwriter Suzy Boggus to perform in Norwood

Singer/songwriter Suzy Boggus will appear on stage at the Norwood Village Green Concert Series Sunday evening at 7 pm. The Grammy-nominated artist has one platinum and three gold albums and is a past winner of the Academy of Country Music's award for Top New Female Vocalist and the Country Music Association's Horizon Award. She talks with String Fever host Barbara Heller.  Go to full article

String Fever Radio Jam 2011 Hour 2

Grab the sheet music from the String Fever website and play along. Songs this hour include Road to Boston, Will The Circle Be Unbroken, The Westfalia Waltz, Angelina Baker, Old Joe Clark, Dark Hollow, St. Anne's Reel and Goodnight Irene.  Go to full article

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Program Playlists

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Finding Music

You can find or special order any of the music heard on this program from local music stores, including:
Northern Music & Video, Potsdam: 315-265-8100
Ampersound, Saranac Lake:
Peacock Music, Plattsburgh: