Increasingly revered as Arizona’s Energizer bunny for the arts, Anni Beach of Jam Pak Blues ‘N’ Grass Neighborhood Band in Chandler somehow kept it all going during the pandemic. When she couldn’t meet and rehearse in person with her music students, she somehow figured out how to do it over the internet and kept all those great young’uns involved.
Fittingly, Anni was named Mentor of the Year for 2020 by the International Bluegrass Musicians Association, receiving the honor during the organization’s annual Momentum Awards ceremony. So deserving! She has won many other accolades as well, along with countless lifelong friends and admirers.
Still going strong well into her 70s, this amazing lady has touched many – old and young – but none more important than the hundreds of kids she has shepherded through her Jam Pak program, all of whom have learned how to play music from her over the years.
Ms. Beach is also author of two unique books, Don’t Throw Away Your Stick Till You Cross the River about her late husband and co-conspirator Vincent Beach, and Home Grown Bluegrass: A Guide to Making People Happy with Music as a recounting and near-operations manual for how to start an amazing nonprofit endeavor on a shoestring.