Vince Gill says it simply, and maybe best: “I’d rather hear Del McCoury sing ‘Are You Teasing Me’ than just about anything.” For fifty years, Del McCoury’s music has defined authenticity for hard core bluegrass fans, as well as a growing number of fans only vaguely familiar with the genre. “To keep the purity that you need to do this kind of music, and the drive, and the energy, takes a special kind of guy,” said fan Elvis Costello. Already the recipient of nine IBMA Entertainer of the Year awards, a GRAMMY in 2006 and the prestigious National Heritage Award in 2010, Del McCoury was inducted into the International Bluegrass Hall Of Fame in 2011.
In Tim O’Brien’s music, things come together. The uncanny intersection of traditional and contemporary elements in his songwriting, his tireless dedication to a vast and still-expanding array of instruments, and his ongoing commitment to place himself in as many unique and challenging musical scenarios as possible has made him a key figure in today’s thriving roots music scene – and well beyond it. O’Brien’s presence – be it as a bandleader, songwriter, mentor, instrumentalist, or vocalist – has been strongly felt not only in his own rich music, but in the many recordings of his songs by such artists as the Dixie Chicks, Garth Brooks, Dierks Bentley, Nickel Creek, Kathy Mattea, the New Grass Revival, and the Seldom Scene, and in his recorded collaborations with Steve Martin, the Chieftains, and innumerable others.
GRAMMY award winning multi-instrumentalist Sam Bush was recently honored by his home state of Kentucky for his contributions to newgrass music and invited to perform on the Senate floor. It’s one of many achievements for this distinguished mandolinist, who helped originate the newgrass style via his influential band New Grass Revival before a colorful solo career. He’s received an AMA Lifetime Achievement Award and many IBMA awards. He frequently collaborates with Bela Fleck, David Grisman, and Emmylou Harris, among others.
“Miraculous” — NPR
With a reputation for presenting the traditional New Orleans sound, they are taking a more contemporary approach these days – recruiting younger players and allowing other elements and collaborations into their performances. But as PHJB modernizes, leader Ben Jaffe makes sure they keep the old-time faith – hiring musicians with strong links to the pioneers of jazz. Jim James of My Morning Jacket asks, “The music will speak forever. Will people stop listening to Beethoven, will people stop listening to Bob Dylan, will people stop listening to the Preservation Hall Jazz Band?”
The Steel Wheels are truly an Americana band, rooted in musical styles that explore the territories between blues and bluegrass, old-time sing-alongs and foot-stompin’ fiddle tunes. They are subtle innovators who respect the past but whistle their own tunes, layering in rich textures and decidedly modern energy to forge a new sound. TSW are the honorable hosts of this fine festival, and you’ll see them performing all weekend long in various sets.
From Broken Arrow, Oklahoma comes JD McPherson, an artist with an unaffected take on vital American music and a voice that channels the spirit of Little Richard and James Brown. McPherson’s debut album, Signs & Signifiers (Rounder), finds this renaissance man/hepcat seamlessly meshing the old and the new, the primal and the sophisticated, on a work that will satisfy traditional American rock ‘n roll and R&B purists while also exhibiting McPherson’s rarefied gift for mixing and matching disparate stylistic shapes and textures. Recorded on analog equipment through vintage microphones and a 1960s Berlant 1/4 inch tape machine, Signs & Signifiers marks the arrival of an authentic, gutsy true American artist.
The Duhks reunite! Featuring original members Jessee Havey, Scott Senior, Tania Elizabeth, Jordan McConnell, and founder Leonard Podolak, “Canada’s premier neo-tradsters romp from world-beat to blues, urban-pop to old-timey, with wild-eyed invention, haunting traditionalism, and spine-rattling groove.” (Scott Alarik, The Boston Globe) GRAMMY nominees and JUNO award winners, seeing The Duhks live is nothing short of a spiritual experience. A syncopated bluesy banjo number seamlessly follows a Brazilian samba; an old-time jaunt nestles comfortably next to a gospel performance by vocalist Jessee Havey – her soulful voice piercing like the heart tattoo on her chest. One of the most musically adventurous bands to come from the roots scene in the past decade, The Duhks’ return to the stage is definitely a cause for celebration.
The John Jorgenson Quintet features guitarist John Jorgenson, a founding member of the Desert Rose Band, the Hellecasters, and six-year member of Elton John’s band. Artists ranging from Barbra Streisand to Bonnie Raitt to Earl Scruggs have sought out Jorgenson’s guitar work. John Jorgenson was also chosen to portray Django Reinhardt in the feature film, Head in the Clouds. At a John Jorgenson Quintet performance, audiences are amazed by John’s dazzling guitar work as well as his mastery as a clarinet player and vocalist. Whether playing his own accessible compositions or classic standards, John and his band make music that is equally romantic and ecstatic, played with virtuosity and soul.
Long recognized and praised as a creative force in acoustic music, Claire Lynch is a pioneer who continually pushes the boundaries of the bluegrass genre. The current Claire Lynch Band is a powerful juggernaut, a quartet that has the innate ability to perfectly interpret the beauty, subtlety, and genre-defying sophistication of Claire’s music. Claire’s career is fittingly bookended by two IBMA Female Vocalist of the Year awards: in 2010, in recognition of her current work with the Claire Lynch Band, and in 1997, for her influential work with the Front Porch String Band, and as a solo artist. Blazing her own trail in the mid 70′s when there were few role models for a young woman in the genre, Claire Lynch made history when she led the Front Porch String Band, which evolved in the 80’s and 90’s into “one of the sharpest and most exciting post-modern bluegrass bands on the circuit.” She formed her own Claire Lynch Band in 2005 and has consistently been a top pick of prestigious publications, critics and audiences across the nation ever since.
Since their start in 2007, Yarn’s original Americana sound has developed into music that seekers of the unique see as the soundtrack to their lives. Yarn’s first four albums were recognized by the AMA’s and R&R radio charts, spending time in the top 5 at their highest point. Yarn has become one of the hardest-working and harder-touring bands for this generation’s digital natives and new music followers. 2013 brings this GRAMMY-nominated roots band into the music revolution, inspired by today’s music devotee’s hunger for artists to believe in and follow, they are giving it to the fans everyday in every way possible. Yarn’s devotion to their fans is realized in online and social sharing of their music, whether it’s daily video posts, premiering fresh songs on local radio, or performing live in small town venues across the country. No strangers to the Shenandoah Valley, they bring roots music to American music lovers, and the music lovers are responding.
Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, and now calling Colorado home, Gregory Alan Isakov has been traveling all his life. Songs that hone a masterful quality beyond his years, tell a story of miles and landscapes, and the search for a sense of place. Music has been a stabilizing and constant force. “I’ve always had this sense about music and writing, that I sort of have to do it. Like I’ll implode without it. I probably wouldn’t do it if I felt any other way.” His song-craft lends to the deepest lyrical masterpieces, with hints of his influences, Leonard Cohen and Bruce Springsteen. He has been described as “strong, subtle, a lyrical genius” but the source of his writing often remains a mystery to him. “My songs have nothing to do with me; they have a life of their own. A lot of times I won’t know what a song is about when I’m writing it. It just has a certain feeling about it.” Gregory has played numerous music festivals and venues across the US, Canada, and Europe. When he is not on the road or writing, he is in his garden. A degree in horticulture might seem contradictory to a life spent in motion, but Gregory finds balance in the quiet concentration of the work, creating roots that keep him connected to home.
Since her official 2006 debut, Jewell has surveyed a wide range of traditional musical styles, from the folk and jug band leanings of her early recordings, through an album-length homage to Loretta Lynn and the country gospel of her work with The Sacred Shakers, right up to 2009′s Sea of Tears, which bristled with the electricity of ’60s UK garage rock and Chicago blues. Her latest, Queen of the Minor Key,draws on everything from classic country to early R&B, with an emphasis on sounds from the seamier side of the tracks. Eilen Jewell is the Queen of the Minor Key. Sad songs are her wealth and finery. Lend her your ears, and you will quickly hear why her humble subjects admire and adore her more with each passing year.
Larry Keel is described by some reviewers as the most powerful, innovative and all-out exhilarating acoustic flat-picking guitarist performing today. Keel absorbed the best lessons from his Bluegrass family upbringing, both sides deeply steeped in the rich mountain music culture and heritage of Southwest Virginia. From there, he has always integrated that solid musical grounding and natural-born talent with his own incomparable approach to flat-picking the guitar and composing original music. He’s also got a knack for choosing interesting and appealing material from all realms of music with guts, whether it’s a tune written by a fellow song-writer/musician friend, or a tasty cover from any number of genres all over the map. And his fierce, high-spirited energy also appeals to young rockers, jammers and alt-country pickers and fans who are equally drawn to Keel’s deep rumbling voice, his earthy and imaginative song-writing, and his down-home-gritty-good-time charm.
The Wiyos have been rolling for over a decade. They were one of the first “old-timey” bands to emerge on the national scene in the first wave of acoustic bands riding the renewed popularity of early swing jazz, rural folk, old-time blues and Appalachian music. Their relentless touring in the US and Europe, and numerous critically acclaimed albums and EPs landed them a full 28-day summer tour as openers of the 2009 Bob Dylan Show. The Wiyos were also featured in the BBC television documentary, “Folk America – Hollerers, Stompers and Old-Time Ramblers”. Scotland’s The Herald reviewed one of the 2012 release shows of Twist in Glasgow and called it [everything from] “junkyard blues to Cuban neighborhood via surf song harmonies and backwoods Appalachia… a fascinating travelogue”.
Wayne Hancock is that rare breed of traditionalist, one who imbues his retro obsessions with such high energy and passion that his songs never feel like museum pieces he’s trying desperately to preserve. Hancock is most often compared to Hank Williams, and he can indeed be a hardcore honky tonker, but there’s more to him than that: he also displays a genuine affinity for stomping rockabilly, Western swing, blues, and old-timey country à la Jimmie Rodgers. Plus, he also throws in the occasional pop standard in the manner of Willie Nelson’s classic Stardust album. Hancock’s devotion to classic country sounds, coupled with his strong aversion to the Nashville hit-making machine, earned him an ardent following among alternative country fans. And Hank III will be the first to tell you, “Wayne Hancock has more Hank Sr in him than either I or Hank Williams Jr. He is the real deal.”
Pokey LaFarge is a musician, songwriter, bandleader, entertainer, innovator and preservationist, whose well-rounded arsenal of talents has placed him at the forefront of American music. Over the last decade, Pokey has won the hearts of music lovers across the globe with his creative mix of early jazz, string ragtime, country blues and western swing, all while writing songs that ring true and fine in both spirit and sound. His music transcends the confines of genre, continually challenging the notion that tradition-bearers fail to push musical boundaries. Cleverly striding between numerous forms of traditional American music, Pokey has crafted a genre all his own, marked in its accessible ingenuity. Rather than merely conjuring up half-forgotten imagery of days past, Pokey is a lyrical storyteller…One moment he shouts a line and the next he croons above his archtop guitar, backed by an ornate, acoustic instrumentation that allows for nothing less than masterful instrumental skill.
Combining the emotional honesty and intelligence of a singer/songwriter with the swagger and enthusiasm of a rock & roller, Virginia-bred Scott Miller first made a name for himself as guitarist, vocalist and songwriter with the superb pop/rock band the V-Roys, before establishing himself as a solo artist to watch on his first album with his ad hoc group the Commonwealths, Thus Always to Tyrants. His latest release, 2012’s CoDependents, is a duo project with fiddler player Rayna Gellert.
Pearl and the Beard is three voices, one cello, one guitar, one glockenspiel, one melodica, several drums, one accordion, ninety-six teeth, and one soul. The band’s genre-bending and expectation-defying sound has since burst the trio into the national music scene and beyond, allowing them to traipse the United States on a multitude of national tours and across the pond for a hugely successful inaugural UK tour in 2011. They’ve caught the attention of The Boston Globe, Filter Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and their haunting music video for “The Lament of Coronado Brown” even made its debut on NPR’s acclaimed music site, All Songs Considered. Pearl and the Beard’s live show is like nothing you’ve ever experienced. The band captivates their audience from first note to last, leaving fans and press alike completely engrossed in the world they’ve created with their soaring and sensual songs.
Asheville, NC’s bluegrass band Town Mountain released their fourth album, Leave the Bottle, in September 2012. They’ve become one of the preeminent torchbearers of their craft, facing a promising future. “Centered around strong, soulful vocals, and poised to stay put,” says Woody Platt of the Steep Canyon Rangers, “Town Mountain are true to bluegrass in all the right ways and this new project keeps them firmly connected to the traditions of the genre, while also allowing them to reach out into the broad horizon of string band music. Leave the Bottle comes highly recommended.” Always contributing to the evolution of the bluegrass form, they toss influences as varied as surf-rock, gospel, and honky-tonk country into their field of play.
I write songs to release the pain. Life is filled with pain. It’s felt by all people, yet no one can say they have more than the other. It’s immeasurable. I hope when people hear my music it releases their pain – allows them to be free, to breathe again –as prophetically cliché as that sounds. The music I write, in my mind, is quintessentially American. Not in a “G.W. Bush” kind of a way, but rather lives and breathes in the landscape of America. Sometimes soulful and sometimes stark. Sometimes hard, and sometimes lush. I like to think I write beautiful songs about death, sad songs about love, hopeful songs about life. What I would consider kind of secular spiritual music. I’ve been doing this a long time. The guys I’m lucky enough to call my band have as well. They are Tracy Epperson, Mike Smirnoff, and Bobby Thompson. This year we’ll be touring as much as we can, and plan to digitally release an album sometime before summer, which could mean winter.
For more than three decades now, Robin & Linda Williams have made it their mission to perform the music that they love, “a robust blend of bluegrass, folk, old-time and acoustic country that combines wryly observant lyrics with a wide-ranging melodicism.” Today some might call it Americana, but these two revered music masters were living and breathing this elixir 20 years before that label was turned into a radio format. Their stirring concerts have earned them a huge body of fans over the years. But as gifted songwriters Robin and Linda have earned an even rarer honor, the devotion and deep respect of their musical peers. As The Washington Post put it, “[They] are able to sum up a life in a few details with moving completeness.” The list of artists who have covered their original songs include some of the greats of country music, names like Emmylou Harris, Tom T. Hall, George Hamilton IV, Tim & Mollie O’Brien, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Kathy Mattea and The Seldom Scene.
Lost Bayou Ramblers was born deep in South Louisiana performing old style, predominantly acoustic Cajun music at clubs and festivals across the US, Europe, and Canada. After years of playing traditional style, the Lost Bayou Ramblers found themselves needing to grow. To create a new sound that combined not just the sounds of their heritage, but all the musical influences they grew up loving. It began with the recording of their new album Mammoth Waltz at Dockside Studios in Maurice, La. The idea was to incorporate more influences, sounds, technology, and stylings with the traditional Cajun instrumentation. The resulting 11 tracks speak for themselves. Whether you are a rock purist, a Cajun purist, or someone looking for something more adventurous from both genres, Lost Bayou delivers.
Miss Tess is a New York City based songwriter and performing musician, who tours regularly with her band, as Miss Tess and The Talkbacks. In addition to Tess’ tasty licks and prowess on her 1940s archtop guitar, the festival lineup includes Will Graefe on guitar, Thomas Bryan Eaton on pedal steel, Larry Cook on upright bass, and Matt Meyer on drums. Inspired by styles of vintage swing, blues, country, and early rock-n-roll, Miss Tess draws comparisons to artists such as Patsy Cline, Willie Nelson, Peggy Lee, and Chuck Berry, but maintains a style all of her own. She has just released a brand new album, Sweet Talk, now out on rootsy label Signature Sounds. While still bearing hallmarks of the simmering, jazz-inflected sound that has made Tess and her former band the Bon Ton Parade a club and festival favorite, Sweet Talk introduces a more personal mix of influences. By blending her knack for melodic and rhythmic improvisation and interplay with elements of honky-tonk, western swing, and 50′s pop standards, she and her multifaceted supporting band have arrived at a style simultaneously refreshing and hauntingly familiar. Listeners and critics agree. “I don’t know of anyone else right now touring in the Americana scene that has such an eclectic, jazzy, old school and interesting vibe,” says Clementine Cox on NoDepression.com. “There’s an authenticity present in Miss Tess’s music. It is not contrived, not too far a stretch for the skeptical imagination. She is real. And she is rare.”
Her lexicon is incredible and her voice, well, she’s a teacher.” – Bon Iver
“She continues to be one of my favorite singers and songwriters.
She absolutely knocks me out.” – Bonnie Raitt
“Her strong but vulnerable voice, her impeccable phrasing and her gently masterful guitar work make her an underexposed treasure.” – Stephen Thompson, NPR Music
“One of our favorite singers storming SXSW this year.” (2012) – TIME Magazine
“…prodigiously talented with elegant, deeply felt songs” – Paste Magazine
Sarah Siskind has been called “the best female singer/songwriter in America today” (Steve Binder, legendary TV director/producer) and “an artist you must hear now” by Spin Magazine. She has toured with Bon Iver (he has also famously covered her “Lovin’s For Fools”) and The Swell Season, had songs recorded by Alison Krauss (the GRAMMY nominated “Simple Love”), Madi Diaz and many more. Armed with a striking vocal style and solid guitar-work, mostly on her beloved vintage electric Gibson, Sarah is a regular NPR performer with features on NPR’s Tiny Desk Concerts, World Cafe with David Dye, All Songs Considered, Song Of The Day and most recently NPR’s Mountain Stage.
It’s a special treat when Danny Schmidt and Carrie Elkin, who normally tour separately and solo, get to share the stage together. If the chemistry seems especially sparkful, they come by it honestly, as they are a rare breed: a romantic partnership in real life, not just musical life. And the two together on stage makes for a classic case of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. Danny Schmidt is best known for his riveting poetic lyrics. And gypsy spirit Carrie Elkin is best known for her incredibly soulful and dynamic vocals. Together, the respective strengths they each bring individually, merge into a much greater whole . . . a performance of great energy and spirit.
Growing up with parents who “dropped out” their chosen lifestyle to raise four girls in a lovingly cobbled-together combination of a small farmhouse on the North Dakota plains, a bus on the California Coast, and a hot springs commune in rural New Mexico, scraping together dimes and hand-me-downs, Ana Egge learned that her life was truly hers to create. Seeing Ana perform live for the first time, you are immediately struck by the combination of this uncompromising fearlessness, her confidence in her place on stage and the earthy wit and kindness that is the lens she uses to see the world. “Ana Egge isn’t your run-of-the-mill alternative-country singer. Using unique production and rock-based chord progressions, Egge has made a name for herself as a Gillian Welch figure with a rocker attitude, which once prompted Lucinda Williams to call her ‘the Nina Simone of folk’. Her latest album Bad Blood, produced by Steve Earle, gives new life to the folk genre, especially on the title track: Egge’s soft-spoken lyrics float lucidly beneath a driving bass-heavy beat, tremolo guitars and spastic and distorted slide guitar.” –Spinner.com
Jonathan Byrd is a preacher’s son, a Gulf War veteran, and a Kerrville New Folk award winner from seven generations of North Carolinians. A Jonathan Byrd show is musical theater, bringing together the Texas songwriting tradition with southern storytelling and hot guitar picking in the line of North Carolina greats Doc Watson and Tony Rice. A stalwart of modern folk music, Byrd has released five solo albums with a surprising variety of musical directions, and an acoustic collaboration with fellow songwriter Diana Jones.
Staunton, VA native and bearer of the coveted Telluride Troubadour Award (2009), folksinger Nathan Moore has been astounding audiences nationwide with his songs, his honesty and his storytelling magic for nearly two decades. And the well-spring of songs from “…a musician that is in a constant state of becoming, always in the present with wide-eyed curiosity,” (State of Mind) keeps flowing. As Jambase’s Aaron Case wrote, “Nathan Moore…is one of the greatest songwriters we have and the faucet is always on pouring fresh songs out like water.” The versatility of Moore’s catalogue and performing experiences is sometimes unfathomable. He’s been in a jam band, a string band, a rock band and now is on the rise as a solo singer/songwriter. He’s recorded twenty-one albums and shared the stage with an impressive list of talented artists (My Morning Jacket, Rickie Lee Jones, Greg Brown, Rambling Jack Elliot, Cheryl Crowe…) at venues and festivals all over the country.
Dead right, honest songwriting delivered in a hauntingly beautiful yet gritty, neo-traditional Americana wrapper. Doug and Telisha write songs about a place where old time religion, superstition, run down bars, gravel parking lots and boarded up factories all mingle together. Doug and Telisha are based out of East Nashville, the new Bohemian Mecca of the South. They’re a restless sort, though, and more than anything, they call the road their home. The past few years have been filled with hundreds of shows and thousands of miles for Doug and Telisha. They’ve traveled from Florida to Alaska and Michigan to Texas, hitting 47 US states and six Canadian provinces. They’ve played with some of their most beloved heroes – Lucinda Williams, Darrell Scott, Charlie Louvin, and Joe Ely – and been on stage at Anderson Fair, The Birchmere, The Carolina Theater, Madison Square Park and Floydfest.
Caleb Stine, like his Baltimore home, keeps it simple. Hardworking, genuine, and unafraid to tell it like it is, Stine has released 5 albums of original songs. No Depression says his latest,I Wasn’t Built For A Life Like This “places Caleb among some of the best songwriters of this time and could possibly make him the 21st Century’s Townes Van Zandt.”
New Country Rehab cuts through the clutter of watered-down musical imitations with a modern, high-voltage, alt-country sound. Combining sharp innovation and a deep respect and knowledge of timeless musical themes and motifs, New Country Rehab’s powerful music is full of love, loss, longing and joy. – Nigel Williamson, UNCUT
The Judy Chops are a group of tight-knit friends who formed from the ashes of Charlottesville’s Bourbon Specials and Harrisonburg’s Heart Gets Monkey. Since their first show in January of 2009, the band has rapidly become one of the most talked about acts in the Shenandoah Valley/Central VA area, and has toured throughout VA and beyond. The band released their first acoustic demo in 2009, and followed up with a full length album in 2010, with a third release in the works for 2013! Averaging over 150 shows per year, the group’s tight musicianship and dynamic stage presence has been honed through live shows and music festivals, culminating in a truly unique musical experience.
Inspired by the Blue Ridge Mountains and the rich musical traditions tied to them, bandleader Tara Mills describes her music as, “original blue ridge mountain folk”. Writing and singing most of her life, it wasn’t long before Tara picked up a guitar and taught herself how to express the melodies in her head through her songs and hauntingly beautiful lyrics. Influenced by bluegrass, old country, and traditional mountain folk, she creates an original sound that captures true human feeling and emotion. Tara and bandmates John Howard and Turtle Zwadlo intertwine their styles, influence, and harmonies, to create a perfect balance of folk, bluegrass, and roots music.
Loves It was born in the vibrant honky tonkin’ community of Austin, TX in 2010. Vaughn Walters and Jenny Parrott (Shotgun Party), each veterans of the road, left their other bands to hit the ground running as a duo. Their homemade melodies and rhythms are inspired by folk, country, gospel and early punk. Loves It plays with a veneration for tradition and a determination to bring a modern voice to their favorite sounds. In their first year, they played 197 shows, 8 countries, had a terrible car wreck with an 18 wheeler, learned fiddle, made experimental recordings in Berlin with Boris Hauf, and experienced too many adventures to be told here. Kinky Friedman calls their debut album Yay “an American original, another step on the road to the stars.”
The Brian Patrick Band embodies everything that’s great about American Music, creating a sound that lies somewhere between Roots Rock and Alt Country. Their exceptional song-writing skills are showcased in spirited performances. They incorporate many of the flavors of great American Music such as Rock, Soul, Country, Blues, and Folk, all delivered with the fervor of a great Rock & Roll band. This Central Virginia Band captivates audiences with stellar original songs, tight vocal harmonies, and beautifully textured arrangements.
Their unique sound defined by their raw energy & Smith’s unabashedly genuine songwriting & voice makes this band one worth not only listening to but experiencing live. Completely independent of any outside label or management, they are a self-produced well-oiled machine. They even wrote this bio. Smith has opened for such acts as Nathan Moore, The Barr Brothers (at Rockwood Music Hall in NYC), Paul Curreri, Trent Wagler, Fastball, Emmitt-Nershi Band and Corey Smith (at Wilson Hall in Harrisonburg, VA). Smith has a catalog of over 500 original songs, has released 7 full length albums since October 2009, and has performed up and down the East Coast. Smith & the Wild Hearts have shared the stage with Trampled by Turtles and Old Crow Medicine Show (FloydFest X), Trevor Hall, Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band, Sons of Bill & The Steel Wheels.
Hound Dog Hill has been making music “in the old way” since 2003, drawing from the Shenandoah Valley’s rich musical heritage. The band has evolved into a good-time rollicking Americana String band. Hound Dog Hill plays bluegrass, old time, blues, and jug band music with enthusiasm, soul and experimental abandon, and their high energy shows bring to mind the travelling shows, rowdy jug bands, and carnival barkers from America’s past. Led on banjo by Cutch Tuttle -who’s prone to whooping and hollering- Hound Dog Hill’s strength lies in its original material which celebrates and pays homage to the old-time string band sound. Every song comes on like an old steam-powered engine, billowing smoke and tearing down the track.
Carl Anderson has quickly become a staple at Virginia festivals, logging two appearances each at Campout East and The Festy Experience plus Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion, Misty Mountain Music Fest and Crozet Music Festival. He was selected as a finalist for Telluride Bluegrass Festival’s Telluride Troubadour songwriting contest and recently recorded a Daytrotter session. Although still relatively young, Carl has been writing and recording music for years and his songs speak of emotion uncharacteristic to the average twenty-something. Having solidified a powerful backing band, Carl is putting his effort toward the follow-up to his first full album, Wolftown.
The Travelin’ Hillbillies are a group of brothers and friends that are bound together by the love for music in the souls of listeners. From the mountainous regions of Rockingham County, their original music spreads from bluegrass to blues, jazz to jam band. They love the music they get to share, and all the people who enjoy it.
High energy old-time fiddle and banjo tunes; impassioned songs of life, love, lust, loss, and a lot more from the mountains of the Virginias and Carolinas…that’s what you get from these four guys from around Charlottesville and one from Keezletown. They mostly all met at fiddlers’ conventions throughout the region – funny how people drive hours and hours to see their neighbors.