By Kirt Webster
It has been a big year for Rhonda Vincent, who has performed on numerous occasions in Pigeon Forge. She has transcended beyond the all-American bluegrass girl who stole the nation’s heart with her genuine songs and charismatic personality by expanding her sound globally. With a highly successful European summer tour, International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) and Dove nominations, along with a Christmas album on the way, it has been a monumental year for the 15-time “Entertainer of the Year.”
“I was so surprised to find out the Czech Republic is the ‘Bluegrass Capitol’ of Europe. The response to our shows was overwhelming” said an excited Vincent. “I guess you could say we’re bluegrass jet setters, as we’ve traveled to nine different countries in only the last 30 days, and I’m loving every minute as we share our music with the World.”
The IBMA announced their finalists for the 2015 awards ceremony, and Vincent has secured a nomination for “Female Vocalist of the Year.” After winning this exact award for an unprecedented seven consecutive years, from 2000–2006, in addition to “Entertainer of the Year” in 2001, she is no stranger to this annual event.
Vincent is also back in the United States following her sold out 2015 European Tour. The extraordinary excursion kicked off in Jablonec, Czech Republic on July 9 with what was supposed to be one show, but turned into a two-show affair after the first show quickly sold out seven months in advance. The area has a history of being major supporters of the genre. From there, Rhonda Vincent & The Rage made their way to Breim, Norway, where they performed a show at a historic church and at Norsk Country Treff for over 8,000 fans. Next came Amsterdam to play at the world famous Paradiso, which has hosted some of the biggest names in music, including The Rolling Stones. Thereafter came Germany, and to close things out, Vincent made her highly-anticipated return to Laufen, Switzerland for two more sold-out shows.
Rhonda Vincent & The Rage will soon hit the road again, aboard the Martha White Bluegrass Express and begin a countdown of 41 remaining performance dates for 2015. Next they travel to Canada then back to the USA for the rest of the year.