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Grants and Scholarships for Traditional Musicians - Music Camps, Lessons, and Projects

Are you a parent struggling to balance the support of your child's music development with the sometimes overwhelming cost of travel and tuition for music camps and lessons? This page is designed to help parents or music industry professionals find funding for their passion.

This Scholarship Fund is intended to honor Steve’s memory and benefit those who want to learn/develop/enhance their music education in folk, bluegrass, old-timey and other acoustic Americana styles. Awards between $500 - $1,000 will begin in April, 2020, annually or more frequently depending fund income and based on need and intention.

Applications will be reviewed and awarded by a board of knowledgeable musicians and others in the industry. For more information, email

THE STEVE MANDELL MEMORIAL MUSIC SCHOLARSHIP FUND is a program of Common Ground on the Hill. Common Ground on the Hill is recognized as a tax-exempt organization under section 501 (c) (3) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code. Donations to Common Ground on the Hill and its programs are tax deductible. Like us on Facebook! Steve Mandell Memorial Music Scholarship Page

ABOUT STEVE MANDELL​ You may not know the name, but you certainly knew his music. Winning a Grammy Award in 1973 and subsequent Gold Record, Gold and Platinum Albums as the guitarist on the infamous tune “Dueling Banjos” from the soundtrack of the movie Deliverance, that was only a small part of his musical background. Steve’s musical history started in the early 1960s, playing in Washington Square, NYC, with folk artists Judy Collins, blues legend Maria Muldaur and bluegrass mandolinist David Grisman. He continued working in the studio, on Broadway and touring into the 70s with Oscar Brand, actor/singers Ronny Cox and Theodore Bikel, country legend John Denver, banjo masters Tony Trischka and Eric Weissberg (fellow Grammy winner for Dueling Banjos), and many more. Steve had made his mark in folk and bluegrass in New York, then in the late 1980s he took his talents into Maryland and beyond. His love for the music led him to initiating a concert series at his congregation in Reisterstown, MD, judging numerous contests in MD and VA, and attending festivals and jams throughout the region.

Fletcher Bright Memorial Grant for Young Musicians (age 21 and younger).

Sally Ann Forrester Scholarship for female bluegrass musicians attending college

Arnold Shultz Fund encourages more participation in bluegrass from people of color.

Rick Lang Music Scholarship - For students interested in songwriting

Bluegrass in the Schools Mini Grants - Bring a bluegrass band to your school with these mini grants

IBMA Foundation Project Grants - The IBMA Foundation awards project grants each year, usually in amounts between $1,000 and $2,500. The deadline to apply is December 1. Projects must align with the Foundation’s mission in one of the following areas: arts & culture, education, literary or academic programs, or history preservation. 

Newport Folk Fest Artist Gives Program - Grants for artists to visit Music Education Programs that they care about

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