An event born of two musicians' friendship will be held this weekend at the Cullman Civic Center. Mountain Hollow and the Crane Hill Boys will host A Night of Gospel and Bluegrass on Saturday.

The event began last year when Mountain Hollow fiddle player Sarah Burkart, a 2002 graduate of Hanceville High School, sought help from her friend Josh Drummond. Burkart is now a senior studying music education at Auburn University, but she was going to be in Cullman County for a church show with Mountain Hollow.

Drummond, who graduated from West Point High School in 2003, said Burkart asked if he could find the band somewhere to play the Saturday evening before the church concert.

"I said, 'Why don't we just try to get a concert, promote it a little bit and see how it does?'" Drummond remembered.

A Night of Gospel and Bluegrass was born.

This year, like last, will feature sets by both groups. Mountain Hollow will open with an hour-long set, and gospel group Crane Hill Boys will wrap up the night with an hour-long set after an intermission.

"It's going to be a lot of upbeat bluegrass, like hard-driving bluegrass, and some slow, ballad-type music," Burkart said.

Burkart and Drummond, who met through athletics, have both played their instruments since childhood. Burkart started out playing classical violin when she was 3, but she has only focused on fiddle for two years.

"I got a call from the band members and they needed a fiddle player, so I went down and auditioned for them, and they liked me," she said. Burkart said there is not any sheet music in bluegrass, but classical violin is more straightforward.

"You can connect to people more with fiddle, I think, than in classical music, especially in this area," Burkart said.

Drummond began playing guitar when he was 9, then began teaching himself mandolin in high school. He also plays dobro and bass, but said guitar remains his favorite because he can do more solo stuff on it when he's playing at home.

Drawings will be held for studio recording time and CDs. CDs will also be available for sale, including the Crane Hill Boys new 12-song disc "Wings of the Angels."

Mountain Hollow will again follow the show with a church concert the next morning. They will play at Trinity Luthern Church in Hanceville at 2 p.m. Sunday. That show will be free of charge.

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