Book Nook: Industrial Strength Bluegrass: Southwestern Ohio's Musical Legacy - an interview with co-editor Fred Bartenstein
Vick Mickunas' 2021 interview with Fred Bartenstein
Southwestern Ohio was once a bluegrass music hotbed. Bluegrass musicians performed all across the region during a heyday that ran from just after WWII until around 1989. Devotees of this musical form had poured north from the hill country of Appalachia to work in the once thriving industrial zone that included Dayton, Springfield, Middletown, and Hamilton. There were numerous venues where the music was performed, record labels that released bluegrass records, and radio stations that played the music.
The book "Industrial Strength Bluegrass: Southwestern Ohio's Musical Legacy" is a collection of essays that take a fond look back at this vibrant history. Co-editor Fred Bartenstein has loved this music since childhood. He is also a part of the history. As was WYSO, which brought bluegrass to an eager audience throughout that golden period and continues to do so today.
The Book Nook on WYSO is presented by the Greene County Public Library with additional support from Washington-Centerville Public Library, Clark County Public Library, Dayton Metro Library, and Wright Memorial Public Library.