The Buzz: Kimberly Cyr
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...Kim Cyr, president of the Connecticut Bluegrass Association, and her daughter Taylor, 10, in Evans Hall at Conn. College.
Who: Kimberly Cyr
, 35, of Salem.
Why you should know her
pretty much the ambassador of bluegrass in Connecticut.She is president of the Connecticut Bluegrass Music Association - which she founded - and, with that nonprofit group, she runs a winter concert series, sponsors monthly jams at Connecticut College, and teaches public school kids about bluegrass.
Salem's bluegrass lot:Cyr
was bluegrass before bluegrass was cool.She
has been a fan of the genre since she
was a kid growing up in Salem, way before anyone had asked the musical question "O Brother, Where Art Thou?"New England is not exactly a bastion of country music appreciation.While other girls her age were swooning over Shaun Cassidy, Cyr
was listening to the Johnson Mountain Boys and The Seldom Seen.
At bluegrass festivals, Cyr
would sit, transfixed, in the front row, while other kids were off playing.
All in the family:She
came by her
passion for bluegrass naturally.
has passed her
love of bluegrass on to the next generation; her
daughter, 10-year-old Taylor, has taken up the mandolin.
Those who can't play, organize:Cyr
doesn't sing or play any instruments herself.Never has.She
didn't learn as a kid and knows she
wouldn't have as much time to practice as she'd need as an adult.But she
own unique tie to bluegrass: "I'm good at other things that need to be done to bring it to people."In other words, organizing shows and promoting performers and emceeing concerts and running radio shows and, in short, getting more people to listen to bands she's
A high, lonesome sound:Cyr
explained bluegrass' spell in an essay for the Leadership Bluegrass conference: "To me, it's the chill you get when listening to an a cappella gospel song while watching the sun rise on a Sunday morning.It's hearing someone hit that lick just right and seeing the joy on their faces when they do.It's watching a band come on stage with such energy that you feel like you have to hold onto your seat.It's being moved to tears just by the high lonesome quality of someone's voice."
Down-home folks:It's not just the music; Cyr
says that "the people who are involved in (bluegrass) are just the best people you'll ever meet.They're very down to earth."
Spare time?What spare time?Not only does she run the CBMA and work as a consultant pharmacist for Medicine Centre, but Cyr also airs a bluegrass show Sunday nights on WHUS.
hosts a cable TV show, "On That Note," which is about musicians of all genres; it's aired on Charter Cable.Last month, she
emceed a bluegrass festival in Framingham, Mass., sponsored by the Boston Bluegrass Union
.And she'll be emceeing at the bluegrass fest at Strawberry Park in Preston in May and June and the Podunk Festival in Hartford in August.
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