The Virginia Folk Music Association was founded in 1947, as a non-profit organization, with the mission to preserve and promote Virginia’s heritage of roots music to include bluegrass, string band and country music. The VFMA is sanctioned by the governor to be stewards of the Virginia Country and Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame and to hold competitions to name state champions.
Virginia is the home to many country, folk, bluegrass, and old-time musicians such as Ralph Stanley, Tony Rice, and Mac Wiseman. In 1947, a group of music lovers led by Uncle Ed Silverman to form an independent organization to promote and preserve the music and the musicians. The Virginia Folk Music Association, or the VFMA, was chartered on March 26, 1957 as a non-profit, volunteer organization. The late governor of William "Bill" Tuck and the late congressman Watkins M. "Watt" Abbitt were very instrumental in the foundation of the organization.
“Bluegrass has brought more people together and made more friends than any music in the world. You meet people at festivals and renew acquaintances year after year.”
— bill monroe, "the father of bluegrass music"
The Virginia Folk Music Association is governed by a volunteer board of directors who elects officers to form the executive board. Over the years, many loyal and dedicated volunteers have maintained and kept the VFMA as set forth by the founders. The mission of the VFMA remains the same over the years, as written by the founders, "To Promote and Preserve Virginia's heritage music of country, bluegrass, and gospel music".
Every year, an important musician from Virginia is added to the folk music associations Country Music Hall of Fame.
Every year, a state competition is held to find the most outstanding musicians and bands in the state of Virginia.
Key figures on the music scene are recognized by becoming recipients of the Special Recognition Award.
You can be a VFMA supporter today. You can donate to our non-profit organization or donate directly to the Youth Heritage Scholarship Fund. We rely solely on donations or gifts and anything made at our festivals and shows. Your donations, support, and attendance is greatly appreciated. Come on out and pick, grin, and sing with us!