14-year-old Banjo Master Brandy Miller becomes first Youth Showcase Artist for the Bluegrass Heritage Foundation’s Play It Forward!™ Program
September 28, 2012
In early September, guitarist Lucas White (who appears in the Bluegrass Heritage Foundation short film, Fanning the Fire, and tours with the Zac Brown Band) approached us about helping North Carolina banjo phenom Brandy Miller to get a professional-grade banjo through our Play It Forward!™ program. Brandy is a wonderful young person who has been competing in banjo contests since age 9 and who won the Galax, Virgina banjo championship this year – at age 14.
We told Lucas that the Foundation did not have money for such a purchase but, after finding out more a bout Brandy, we challenged him to make a donation to make something happen for her. Well, he stepped up, and his donation was matched by another Foundation donor. Those donations and some Play It Forward! program money was enough to reach the goal. We contacted Steve Huber of the Huber Banjo Company and he quickly agreed to provide a professional-grade banjo for Brandy at a reduced price.
We presented the new Huber banjo to Brandy at IBMA’s World of Bluegrass in Nashville on September 28, 2012, and she was thrilled beyond words. She played her new banjo at several showcase events, including the Kids on Bluegrass show. Read all about it in the great story by John Lawless, Jr. in BluegrassToday.com. Photo credit to Dan Loftin and video production credit to David Seay Productions. Your support of the Foundation made it possible for a very talented young musician to have a professional banjo with which she can continue to learn, play, and compete. Congratulations, thanks for your support, and enjoy some banjo music by Brandy Miller!