That’s What I Want To Do

Alan Bibey entered the bluegrass world in the early 1980’s, and has since become one of the top mandolin players in the industry.  He was an original member of the ground breaking bands; The New Quicksilver, IIIrd Tyme Out, and BlueRidge, before forming his current band eight years ago, Alan Bibey & Grasstowne.

Alan says it was his dad and his grandpa’s love of bluegrass music that initially influenced his own personal interest. “I remember my dad taking me to see Bill Monroe one weekend when I was five years old,” Alan recalled. “He was on a flat bed truck for a stage, and dad had to hold me on his shoulders so I could see. I remember thinking, ‘gosh, that’s the most awesome thing I’d ever seen,’ and on the way home I said, ‘that’s what I want to do.’ When we got home he showed me some chords, and he told me that I started chopping right away.”

“Dad told me one time, ‘when you get to be a better mandolin player than me, I’m going to start playing banjo.’ By the time I was eight, he said I was better than him, and so he started playing banjo,” Alan laughed.

Alan has received numerous industry accolades including 2007, 2009, 2010, and 2020 SPBGMA Mandolin Performer Of The Year, and IBMA’s Mandolin Player of the Year in 2019 and 2020. His band Alan Bibey & Grasstowne also was awarded the 2020 IBMA Gospel Recording of the Year.

Alan was included in the Mel Bay book “Greatest Mandolin Players of the Twentieth Century.” And in early 2004 the Gibson Company put into production the Alan Bibey Signature line of mandolins, reaffirming his status as one of the most influential mandolin players in bluegrass and acoustic music history.

Alan’s band’s latest release, Hitchhiking to California, came out at the end of January, produced in his studio, Maggie’s Crib, in Surfside Beach, South Carolina.

Check in with Alan here! Hear the whole interview here!