After a three year hiatus, Bluegrass Spectacular – the WMPG fundraiser – is back with an evening of local Maine bluegrass bands including: The World Famous Grassholes, Breakin’ Strings, and Pejepscot Station at 7 p.m. on Thursday April, 13, at One Longfellow Square in Portland.

Pejepscot Station is based in the village of Pejepscot in Topsham. They have been playing music and performing as a band since 2011. Their love of bluegrass, Americana, folk and country songs reflects the range of interests of the five members of the band. Pejepscot Station’s sound encompasses a diverse mix of broad harmonies, lively Bluegrass instrumentals, and compelling tunes.

After a 10 year hiatus, Breakin’ Strings returned in 2022, started writing new material and headed south to Nashville to record at the legendary Blackbird Studio. The result, “Hangovers & Heartaches,” is a collection of 12 tunes sure to recall the greats of the high and lonesome and recently reviewed in Bluegrass Unlimited. The band is fronted by Cliff Gelina, who’s been playing bluegrass with his family’s band since he was 8 years old.

After two decades, the World Famous Grassholes are among the most storied bluegrass bands in Maine’s well-stocked country-music history, with dozens of collaborators who have made their way through the band and four well-received albums. For the past decade, however, the current five-piece lineup of Heather Kahill (fiddle), Merrill Marsh (guitar), Flann O’Brien (bass), Sam Pfeifle (guitar), and Field Rider (“deadly” banjo, according to one Dublin nightclub owner) have taken the band to new heights, with four-part harmonies in the traditional style infused with contemporary songwriting that draws from pop to indie rock to punk and the blues. Their latest album, “Gently Used,” produced with Jonathan Wyman and Chris “C$” Burns, takes you on a journey from a burning Monroe-style picker in “Walk Right Out” to an Eagles crooner in “Colorado” to the strutting blues of the Mickey Newbury classic “Why You Been Gone So Long.”

Doors open at 6 p.m. Tickets are $25 in advance and $35 at the door. One Longfellow Square is located at 181 State St., Portland.

Proceeds from the Bluegrass Spectacular benefit WMPG Community Radio, celebrating 50 years of broadcasting this year. WMPG is a volunteer-driven listener-supported Non-Commercial Educational FCC licensed radio station owned by the University of Maine System and located on the campus of the University of Southern Maine in Portland. WMPG broadcasts locally on 90.9FM. It also streams on and on the WMPG app.

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