Radio Bristol’s Variety Show Streaming Live from the Neighborhood
Bristol, Tenn.-Va. (May 7, 2020) – WBCM Radio Bristol‘s Farm and Fun Time, presented by the Birthplace of Country Music (BCM), will stream another Home Edition of its popular Farm and Fun Time variety show on Radio Bristol’s Facebook page live on Thursday, May 14 at 7:00 p.m. with special guest singer-songwriter Ed Snodderly. Ed is the co-founder of Johnson City music mecca The Down Home and appeared in the Coen Brothers film O Brother, Where Art Thou? Lyrics to his song “The Diamond Stream” are permanently displayed on the wall in the Hall of Honor at the Country Music Hall of Fame in Nashville, and he currently teaches songwriting at East Tennessee State University in the Bluegrass, Old-Time and Country Music Program.
For those who may have missed: it was an eleventh hour decision to stream Farm and Fun Time online earlier in April. The Birthplace of Country Music Museum, where the show is produced before a live studio audience each month, was closed temporarily due to the COVID-19 pandemic, placing future broadcasts of the program in limbo. But as the previously cancelled Farm and Fun Time date drew closer, the show’s producer and host Kris Truelsen had an idea.
“If we could safely shoot a Farm and Fun Time from my front porch it would be a nice way to express our gratitude to our dedicated audience,” said Truelsen. “I’m sure it would also instill a sense of connection between our supporters, friends, and staff during this trying time.”
And with that, Farm and Fun Time Home Edition was born!
Farm and Fun Time house band, Bill and the Belles – which includes Kris on guitar, fiddler Kalia Yeagle, and banjoist Helena Hunt – gathered at a safe distance apart on Truelsen’s front porch in an undisclosed Johnson City neighborhood. They were the stars of the show that evening, with the ladies donning fancy gold lamé face masks handmade by Yeagle. Josh Littleton, the show’s engineer, worked his magic behind the cameras from several feet away.
The regular Farm Report was a quick trip around Truelsen’s own garden, where a lovely two-colored Dogwood in full bloom stands majestic.
“It’s the reason I bought this house,” beamed Truelsen.
Thomas Grant Richardson, a former staff member at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, mailed in his recipe for Three Ingredients and the Truth Bread (three chords and the truth, get it?) all the way from his new home in Santa Fe, New Mexico for the Heirloom Recipe segment.
As always, the show was a delightful mix of homespun humor and great live music, a great time Truelsen and his crew plans to recreate again for audiences in May – with some surprises!
In this new era of social distancing, the Birthplace of Country Music (BCM) is finding new ways to connect with communities around the world by offering everything from virtual, behind-the-scenes tours and student activities from the Birthplace of Country Music Museum to exclusive Quarantine Sessions by various artists scheduled to perform at Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion in September – a plethora of content online designed to entertain, educate, and engage. WBCM Radio Bristol‘s online media center at ListenRadioBristol.org has always been a hub for exciting music content, but the quarantine has given the station its well-deserved time in the spotlight.
In March of this year BCM announced an agreement with Blue Ridge PBS in Roanoke, Virginia, whereby WBCM Radio Bristol’s Farm and Fun Time variety show will air on its station each week, leading a block of great musical programming that includes Symphony of the Mountains, another locally produced show, and Austin City Limits.
Viewers will be able to access encore episodes of Farm and Fun Time on Blue Ridge PBS in Southwest Virginia weekly on Saturdays 7:00 p.m. EDT. The show also streams on Blue Ridge PBS’ website.
Farm and Fun Time is a refresh of the classic WCYB Radio program that broadcast from Bristol back in the 1940s and 1950s and helped grow the careers of important acts like The Stanley Brothers, Flatt & Scruggs, and Jim & Jesse McReynolds, among others.
Radio Bristol, a branch of the Birthplace of Country Music, Inc., is a public, listener-supported station that normally broadcasts live from the Birthplace of Country Music Museum in Historic Downtown Bristol, Tennessee-Virginia, home of the legendary 1927 Bristol Sessions. Radio Bristol operates a low-watt FM signal in the Bristol area in addition to an online media center at ListenRadioBristol.org and a free radio app.
Radio Bristol’s Stay at Home edition of Farm and Fun Time will stream Facebook Live at Facebook.com/WBCMRadioBristol Thursday, May 14 at 7:00 p.m. EST.
The station’s on-air Fund Drive campaign is ongoing; listeners may pledge online at ListenRadioBristol.org or by calling 1-833-I-LUV-BRIS (1-833-458-8274).