Qurantunes presents Kristin Scott Benson

Kristin Scott Benson holding a banjo across the top of her shoulders.
Photo courtesy of Kristin Scott Benson

Quarantunes continues this Friday evening with the amazing Kristin Scott Benson, performing Bluegrass. Kristin Scott Benson is the five-time, reigning, International Bluegrass Music Association’s Banjo Player of the Year and recipient of the 2018 Steve Martin Prize for Excellence in Banjo and Bluegrass. This year, Kristin became one of 5 recipients of the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, South Carolina’s highest honor for traditional artists and advocates. We are overjoyed to have her perform Friday, May 1st at 7 pm EST!

She has been a member of Grammy-nominated and two-time IBMA Entertainers of the Year, The Grascals, since 2008. Kristin is one of the nation’s top bluegrass banjo players, exhibiting impeccable taste, timing, and tone. With an attentive ear to back-up, she is known and respected as a true team player among her peers.

Many consider her to be one of the first females to successfully be a side-musician in a top-tiered bluegrass band:

“There was one grass ceiling no woman could cut through—until Kristin Scott Benson came along, that is….when she joined The Grascals. Not to front the band, not to sing, not to be eye candy, but instead to drive the group with her fivestring banjo. Until then, no woman had ever been hired to play one of the most defining of the bluegrass instruments in an Alist, festival-headlining, all-male band….It’s a high profile gig, as Kristin takes the banjo where no woman has taken it before.”

Larry Nager – “Kristin Scott Benson – Cutting the Grass Ceiling” Bluegrass Unlimited: Oct, 2010

Kristin’s latest solo album, entitled Stringworks, is on Mountain Home Records and was released in July of 2016. It debuted in the top-ten on Billboard’s Bluegrass album chart and the self-penned opening track, Great Waterton, was nominated for IBMA’s Instrumental Recorded Performance of the Year. The record is a mixture of styles that reflect her tastes and features original and traditional instrumentals, as well as vocal songs that showcase her banjo playing.

Kristin has been featured on The Grascals’ albums since 2008, including the release, Before Breakfast, which topped the Bluegrass Unlimited Album Chart, holding the #1 slot for 8 consecutive months. Media performances include The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Fox & Friends, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and CBS’ The Talk, among others. The band has performed for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, as well as accumulating over 200 performances on The Grand Ole Opry.

Kristin Scott Benson performing with her banjo.
Photo courtesy of Kristin Scott Benson

After living 13 years in Nashville, she moved back to her original home in the Carolinas, where she lives with her husband and son.

Can’t make the livestream or don’t have Facebook? Not to worry! McKissick will upload all of these performances to YouTube and Facebook for easy viewing at the end of every Facebook Live event.

Quarantunes is just a small piece of McKissick Museum’s mission to support the traditional arts in South Carolina. As you enjoy the sights and sounds of these influential artists, we hope you’ll consider supporting McKissick Museum’s Midlands Gives Campaign on May 5th. All funds raised will go directly to 10 local artists who have been selected to participate in FOLKFabulous 2020 and heavily affected by COVID-19. Your support will help ensure the continuation of South Carolina’s traditional arts and FOLKFabulous for years to come!

Midlands Gives Banner - May 5th, 2020

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About McKissick Museum

Established in 1976, we're located at the heart of the historic Horseshoe on the University of South Carolina's campus. Our collections date back to 1801 and provide insight into the history of the university and the community, culture, and environment of the American South. free and Open to the public Monday - Friday, 8:30am to 5pm, and Saturdays, 11am to 3pm, McKissick has a diverse schedule of exhibitions and programs. McKissick Museum is accredited by the American Association of Museums, operating within their guidelines for the proper care and safekeeping of these historical artifacts.

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