2024 Presenters & Performers

Breakin’ Up Winter XXVII

FEB 29-MAR 2, 2024

We are excited to announce that Breakin’ Up Winter will be held at the Cedars of Lebanon State Park on starting Thursday evening, Feb. 29 through Saturday, Mar. 2, 2024. Registration will open in sometime in December.

Ready to Have Some Fun? Join Us Feb 29-Mar 2, 2024!


Breakin’ Up Winter XXVI registration is just around the corner for 2024!!

We want to let you know that we took last year’s surveys seriously. We will still hold the event at Cedars of Lebanon State Park, which will mark this as the 27th year at that location. We also will have a new caterer this year: Wildberry Catering. We realize that last year’s caterer was not up to our BUW standards, so we really worked hard to come up with a much better vendor. We will not be raising the price for the meals this year either – to help make up for the lackluster meal situation from last year. We certainly learned a big lesson! We want you all to enjoy the weekend, have wonderful meals with wonderful company and fellowship! If last year wasn’t your favorite due to the caterer, we urge you to try us again. We promise we are working hard to make the meals the best they can be this year.

Register early and let’s make this the best Breakin’ Up Winter ever!

We have wonderful performers in our lineup and are looking forward to seeing everyone again! Please check out the bios below to our amazing performers that will be joining us in 2024.

Camp Closures

2 of the 3 campsites at the park will be closed for renovations. This is the first year that many campsites will be unavailable to us, however, there are ALWAYS plenty of bunk beds available in the group lodge – so take advantage of those. Also, there are several motels, hotels and such just up the road in Lebanon, TN. It’s a quick 6 mile drive to the park from HWY 40 – so consider staying in town as an option.


Earl White String Band

Breakin’ Up Winter XXVII is bringing some members of the fabulous Earl White String Band to our 2024 event to inspire, entertain, and teach us some great tunes. Earl will be with us sharing authentic Southern Appalachian old-time tunes and techniques for fiddle, banjo, and guitar.

The Earl White String Band bandmates are Earl White: fiddle, vocals; Mark Olitsky: banjo; Adrienne Davis: guitar, vocals; Joseph Dejarnette: bass. The group has this recording for sale:

Earl White

Fiddling Earl White has been a mainstay in the old-time, folk and dance community for more than 50 years.  An original and founding member of the famed Green Grass Cloggers, he is one of few Black Americans preserving and playing Appalachian oldtime string band music, which was once an intricate part of Black communities and formed the foundation for much of American music of today.  He has delighted audiences from Common Ground On The Hill, to the Scotland National Folk Festival, and many other festivals and camps throughout the US. Earl White is well known for his extensive repertoire of tunes, and his heartfelt, syncopated, driving style.  His mentors have been Tommy Jarrell, Judy Hymen (Horseflies) and Andy Williams (Plank Road String band), to name a few.  He has played in numerous Oldtime stringbands, and currently leads the “Earl White Stringband”, featuring Victor Furtado (banjo), Mark Olitsky (banjo) Adrienne Davis (guitar), Danny Knicely (guitar) and roving bass players to include Joe DeJarnette (bass), Mark Schatz (bass) .
In addition to the link above, Earl and Adrienne are featured on this CD as well:

Roadside Distraction

Gretchen Priest-May is somewhat of a legend around the Nashville area.

She the is founder, & director of the Musical Heritage Center, (aka Fiddle & Pick) and teaches old-time, Irish, bluegrass fiddle and other styles through private lessons, classes and hosts inclusive traditional music jams/sessions. She recently released a new record, “Roadside Distraction,” with mandolinist Emily Wilson (Old-time, Irish & wacky modern tunes). She also currently plays with The Nashville Irish Trio (Eamonn Dillon, Robert Johnson), Erinn Peet-Lukes, and also her long-time band, PLAIDGRASS. She has been on staff at many music camps, toured with Ceili Rain, Crucial Smith, played the Grand Ole Opry, and for many Nashville artists; and played for the Pope! 

Gretchen will be joined with some serious talent! Emily Wilson on mandolin;  Jeremy Blaes (flatfooting); and Tim May on guitar.

Emily Wilson teaches mandolin and violin at American Music School in Lakewood, Colorado. She started playing as a kid, piano at 5, fiddle at 9, mandolin around 13. She started college in Durango and later transferred to Metropolitan State University of Denver where she completed a BA in music. Along with Roadside Distraction, she also plays with the bluegrass band Out of Nowhere. She is constantly working on new and varied projects.

Tim May toured with Patty Loveless, & Eddie Rabbitt, & played The Grand Old Opry with Mike Snider’s band. He was voted Nashville Reader’s Poll Best Instrumentalist in Nashville in 2012, and in the Top 3 in 2013. Tim played on Charlie Daniels’ 2005 track of ‘I’ll Fly Away’, (nominated for Country Instrumental Grammy). He co-authored The Flatpicker’s Guide to Irish Music, The Flatpicker’s Guide to Old Time Music, The Mandolin Player’s Practical Guide to Scales and Arpeggios, the eight volume series Flatpicking Essentials, and is in demand as a roots music teacher including The Swananoa Gathering’s Guitar Week and Song Week.

Martin Fisher

Martin Fisher comes to every Breakin’ Up Winter (and other NOTSBA events) to share his passion and expertise in old-time recording technologies. His wax-cylinder recordings are as authentic as it can get, and he’ll show you how those are made and record you in true old-time style.

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