Nashville Old-time String Band Association

Celebrating String Band Music in Middle Tennessee

“Music is a great gift, one of the greatest anybody can have, because it’s something nobody can take away from you. Money can’t buy it. It’s a precious thing, I think, very precious.”

– Ernie Carpenter, 1909-1997 | Appalachian fiddler, “Elk River Blues”

Welcome To NOTSBA!

The members and Board of Directors of NOTSBA – the Nashville Old-Time String Band Association – are dedicated to sharing and promoting Old-Time music. Membership in NOTSBA is open to anyone who has a love for string-band-style tunes. Musicians of all ages and abilities are invited to join in.

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Upcoming Events

Breakin’ Up Winter

NOTSBA’s biggest event of the year is the annual Breakin’ Up Winter old-time music retreat each year at Cedars of Lebanon State Park. This 26 year old conference brings together young and old for a weekend of fun and education. There’s usually a dance and plenty of fiddle tunes. It’s always well attended. Mark your calendar for next year’s event which will be held Thursday evening, Feb 29-March 2, 2024!

Old-Time Jams

We meet to play music on the first and second Thursday evening of each month for old-time jams. We also have Fourth Sunday Jams featuring an afternoon pot-luck and pickin’ session in the homes of kind-hearted NOTSBA members and friends. Currently, we are holding two recurring jams – on the first and second Thursday of the month to be held at the Buchanan Log House (2910 Elm Hill Pike, Nashville, TN 37214) from 7:00-9:00 pm.


NOTSBA has a performance group that plays for special events, festivals and dances in the Middle Tennessee area throughout the year. Not a jam opportunity, this dedicated ensemble is the result of rehearsals and special arrangements, some that accommodate singing. It’s a joy to attend and perform at these events, many at historical venues.

Tunes We Play

NOTSBA member Ray Mathes has created a library of old-time music standards from our jams, with chord charts, scores and lyrics, key transposition, variable tempo, plus downloadable audio files.

Tunes We’ve Taught

Some of our jams feature members who teach several tunes in detail. Below is a list of a few tunes that have been in the spotlight.

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