Growing up in Walnut Cove, NC, Alan Bibey was surrounded by music. His dad and his mother's brothers were bluegrass musicians and his earliest memories are of attending festivals and fiddlers conventions. At age 5, after attending a Bill Monroe concert in nearby Walkertown, NC., Alan came home and immediately began chopping chords on the mandolin with his dad.
In the following years Alan played fiddlers conventions and contests all over the southeast. He played in two different bands with his dad, and at age 12 they cut their first record called "Southern Tradition." He then had the opportunity to join his first professional band at age 14. Interstate Exchange was based in Mt. Airy, NC. The group consisted of Barry Berrier on guitar, Mitch Freeman on bass, and later Sammy Shelor on banjo.
He continued to perform with Interstate Exchange for three years. In 1982 Alan won the mandolin contest at the World's Fair in Knoxville, TN. at the age of 17. During this period Alan had played various shows with Wes Golding, his dad Wayne Golding and Eric Ellis. They later formed the group Wes Golding & Sure-Fire with the same lineup with the exception of Wes' wife Trudy on the bass.
Early 1985 found Alan working a full-time day job, going to school full-time and still playing with Sure-Fire. Jimmy Haley and terry Baucom came to a Wes Golding & Sure-Fire show in Roanoke along the first of the year and told Alan they were leaving Doyle lawson & Quicksilver and asked if he'd be interested in taking Doyle's place with the rest of the band. After a lot of thought Alan decided to put everything else on hold and play music full-time. They performed as The New Quicksilver for three years until legal battles over the name "Quicksilver" led to the band's demise. Their recording "Ready For The Times" was originally released on Cross Current Records and then re-released, with a few new tunes added, as Baucom, Bibey, Graham & Haley on Rebel Records.
For a year or so Alan freelanced around the area until he was contacted by Ray Deaton and Russell Moore about forming a new group. They got together with Mike Hartgrove, who was playing with Russell and Ray at the time and decided to form the group IIIrd Tyme Out. Realizing they needed a banjo player Alan recommended his good friend and former band mate in the New Quicksilver, Terry Baucom.
After 3 years and two highly acclaimed projects with IIIrd Tyme Out, Alan went through some very trying personal hardships and had to leave the band to play in a theater show called "Southern Country Nights" in Myrtle Beach, SC. He played mandolin, guitar, fiddle and banjo in this show until it closed in January of 1995. He then moved on to the Carolina Opry, also at Myrtle Beach, SC. While playing at these shows Alan received a call from Jimmy Gaudreau about participating in a project called "The Young Mando Monsters" featuring some of the most talented mandolin players of that time.
He then got the call from Lou Reid about recording and playing with Lou Reid's band Carolina with Jimmy Haley on guitar, Gena Britt on banjo, Lou on bass, and Alan on mandolin.
In late 1996 Alan left LR&C to be involved with BlueRidge. This became a reunion of sorts for the original New Quicksilver with Terry Baucom, Randy Graham, Jimmy Haley and Alan playing together again.
In 2000 Alan recorded his first solo project "In The Blue Room" which was met with critical acclaim and was voted "Best Instrumental Project of the Year" by County Sales. Also in 2000, he was asked by Mel Bay to be a part of the book "Greatest Mandolin Players of the Twentieth Century." The BlueRidge project "Side By Side" which was released in 2003 on Sugar Hill Records, reached #2 on the Bluegrass Unlimited charts, was voted the #2 CD of the year by Bluegrass Now, and was nominated for a Grammy. A stylist who turned heads as an original member of The New Quicksilver, IIIrd Tyme Out , BlueRidge and the new Super-Group Grasstowne, his tasteful innovations and pristine execution earned him inclusion in The Young Mando Monsters project and Mel Bay's mandolin book "The Greatest Mandolin Players Of The Twentieth Century."
In 2004 The Gibson Company put into production The Alan Bibey Signature Series line of mandolins, reaffirming his status as one of the most influential mandolinists in bluegrass and acoustic music history!
On December 1st, 2006, Alan joined long-time friends Steve Gulley and Phil Leadbetter to form the new group Grasstowne. They have since brought in Jason Davis and Jamey Booher. In just 3 months, they recorded and released their debut project "The Road Headin' Home" on Pinecastle Records. By the end of 2007 the CD reached #1 on the Bluegrass Unlimited Charts.
Alan has been nominated for awards each year at SPBGMA (The Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music of America) and most recently won "Mandolin Player Of The Year" for 2007. He has also been nominated at the IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association) Awards and has most recently won for "Album of The Year", "Instrumental Recording Of The Year" and "Recorded Event Of The Year." He has instructional books and videos/dvd's available through AcuTab and Mel Bay. In 2006 he was featured on the cover of Mandolin Magazine.
Since first hitting the scene in the early 1980's, Alan Bibey has made a name for himself as one of the most creative and technically gifted mandolinists in bluegrass and acoustic music.