Bluegrass at the Rock Welcomes Special Consensus on March 8, 2025, 7:30 p.m.
"The Special Consensus is a bluegrass band that has achieved a contemporary sound in over four decades of performing, making their music a modern classic. Band leader and founder Greg Cahill is a recipient of the prestigious Distinguished Achievement Award from the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) and was inducted into the Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America (SPBGMA) Hall of Greats. Special Consensus has released 21 band recordings and received seven awards from the IBMA and two Grammy nominations.
Special Consensus’ sound is grounded in a deep appreciation and understanding of bluegrass music, incorporating both the drive and harmonies of the traditional sound with the more contemporary sounds and repertoire of today. With the foundation of Greg’s unique banjo playing style and the vocal prowess of the 2023 IBMA Male Vocalist of the Year Greg Blake (guitar), Dan Eubanks (bass) and Michael Prewitt (mandolin), these musicians effortlessly support each other and consistently maintain their bluegrass center whether they’re playing a jazz-tinged instrumental or a song from any of their award-winning recordings. These four talented vocalists and instrumentalists follow their creative desires without straying too far from their roots.
Rivers and Roads, the band’s 19th recording, was nominated for a 2018 Grammy and was awarded 2018 IBMA Album of the Year. The tune “Squirrel Hunters” from that recording received the Instrumental Recorded Performance of the Year award.
International tours have brought the band to Australia, Canada, Europe, South America, Ireland and the United Kingdom. The band has also appeared on National Public Radio, The Nashville Network, the Grand Ole Opry at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee, and in concert with symphony orchestras nationwide.
Dedicated to preserving their craft as well as keeping it fresh, in 1984 Special Consensus initiated the Traditional American Music (TAM) Program to introduce bluegrass music to students in schools across the country and in several foreign lands.
The band records for Compass Records and proudly celebrated its 45th anniversary in 2020 with the release of Chicago Barn Dance. This recording also celebrates the long-standing connection of country and bluegrass music with Chicago from the time of the WLS “National Barn Dance” that was a precursor to the Grand Ole Opry. The songs on this recording either relate to Chicago and/or are written by artists who once lived in Chicago. The title song “Chicago Barn Dance” received the 2020 IBMA Song of the Year Award.
Compass Records released Great Blue North, the 21st Special C recording, in May of 2023. The band has been touring in Canada for nearly four decades and this recording was made as a tip of the hat to all the friends and fans made throughout the country over so many years. All songs featured on the recording were written by Canadian writers and numerous Canadian musician friends of the band made guest appearances. The Gordon Lightfoot song “Alberta Bound” received the 2023 IBMA Collaborative Recording of the Year award." (From Special Consensus Bio: specialc.com)
The Old Rock School in Valdese, North Carolina has become well-known throughout the nation for its outstanding bluegrass concerts. The 473 seat auditorium is the perfect place to hear all of your favorites. All of us at the Old Rock School are very excited about the 2024-2025 season featuring bands that have never performed at the Rock before, mixed with classic favorites.
All seating is general admission unless you are a season ticket holder. Season Ticket holders will receive a reserved seat of their choice for the duration of the season. The 2024-2025 Season will kick off in October and run through April 2025. Each year the Town of Valdese Community Affairs Office works diligently to bring outstanding bluegrass performances to the Old Rock School stage.
Tickets on sale July 1