Jim Gregory receives Mississippi Arts Commission Grant

From press reports

Larry Wallace of Starkville and Jim Gregory of Louisville have been awarded a $2000 Folk Arts Apprenticeship Grant from the Mississippi Arts Commission (MAC).

This grant is a portion of the $1.5 million in grants MAC will award in 2012-2013 and will be used to carry on the heritage of old-time 5- string traditional banjo playing in our state. The grants are made possible by continued funding from the Mississippi State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts.

“The Mississippi Arts Commission is proud to support artists across the state. They are a key component to the growth of the creative economy across Mississippi Their artistic gifts, as well as their participation in local activities, provide a fertile ground for each community to grow its own unique story,” said Malcolm White, Executive Director of MAC.

“Traditional music in the state of Mississippi has always played an important part of the state’s rich musical culture. During my life I have felt very fortunate to have had the opportunity to experience and learn first-hand the sounds of old-time, country, and bluegrass genres of music here in my home state,” states Wallace. “Jim Gregory is a very talented musician. He understands music and has a great appreciation for the old-style of traditional music. The skills he will learn from me during the apprenticeship period will help him greatly to carry on the traditional style of banjo playing as he performs with the Red Hills Strings Band of Louisville. I am excited to have this opportunity to help him by passing on the knowledge and skills I acquired at the hands of my ancestors,” added Wallace.

The Mississippi Arts Commission is a state agency serving residents of the state by providing grants that support programs to enhance communities; assist artists and arts organizations; promote the arts in education and celebrate Mississippi’s cultural heritage. Established in 1968, the Mississippi Arts Commission is funded by the Mississippi Legislature, the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Mississippi Foundation, the Phil Hardin Foundation, the Mississippi Endowment for the Arts at the Community Foundation of Greater Jackson and other private sources. The agency serves as an active supported and promoter of arts in community life and in arts education.

For information from the Mississippi Arts Commission, please contact Susan Dobbs, 601-359-6031 or sdobbs@arts.state.ms.us