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Bobby Osborne – surprise guest at Bonnaroo!

At 85, bluegrass icon Bobby Osborne continues to ride the wave of resurgence surrounding the release of his new album, ORIGINAL, by appearing at the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival yesterday.  He surfaced as the surprise guest for The Bluegrass Situation Super Jam hosted by banjo-enthusiast Ed Helms, best known for his roles in “The Office” and “The Hangover”.
Here’s a clip via The Tennessean of Helms breaking the news during the Bonnaroo press conference.
Moments after Bobby stepped out in front of The BGS house band led by bluegrass giant Bryan Sutton, the superjam became an intergenerational love fest as Bobby performed two of his most well known songs, “Once More” and “Beneath Still Waters” in duet with upcoming Americana star, Lillie Mae. When news of the Stanley Cup finals spread to the festival crowd, the spirits of Predator fans were lifted when Bobby led the crowd in singing ‘Rocky Top’, now synonymous with Tennesse state spirit.
Watch Bobby and Ed and members of the house band rehearse “Rocky Top” backstage.
The superjam featured a who’s who of country, bluegrass and Americana performers including Greensky Bluegrass, Mandolin Orange, Martina McBride, Gaby Moreno, Baskery, Aaron Lee Tasjan and current reigning queen of Americana, Margo Price who posted this pic of Bobby from the wings on her instagram.
Bobby’s new record ORIGINAL was produced by Alison Brown who pulled together a cast of bluegrass music’s finest players and singers for the recording including Vince Gill, Sam Bush, Sierra Hull, Del McCoury, Molly Tuttle and the McCoury Brothers, among many others. The first single “They Call the Wind Maria” is currently #1 on the Bluegrass Today radio chart.
ORIGINAL is out now on Compass Records.