Tag Archives: Jam session

Bluegrass jamming etiquette


A number of people attend U.S. bluegrass festivals not for the stage show, but for the informal jam sessions in the campgrounds or parking lot.

The interactional etiquette that jammers follow is manifested both in the conventions that help strangers to come together and in choices made during group playing of bluegrass standards. Ethics and aesthetics are fused as jammers negotiate interactional guidelines to reach a heightened musical and social communion.

This according to “A special kind of courtesy: Action at a bluegrass festival jam session” by Michelle Kisliuk (TDR: The drama review XXXII/3 [fall 1988] pp. 141–155). Above and below, festival attendees jamming with that special courtesy.

Related articles are here.

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