Imagine that you grew up in a remote Texastown with a population of about three thousand. On Saturday nights you played drums in your dad's honky-tonk band, and on Sunday mornings you went to church with your grandfather, who was the choir director
Listening to a Littlest Birds album is like walking into an antique shop and gradually realizing something is amiss: The elegant pieces of furniture are so unmarred they might be new; they even smell that way.
The headline of an article in the prestigious Bluegrass Unlimited magazine sums up the band HillBenders' musical mission in a nutshell: "Making Bluegrass hip again, one day at a time." As a result, it's not surprising that the quintet recently appeared at an event in Missouri titled "This Ain't Your Mama's Bluegrass."
Celtic music can be an arcane realm with a vocabulary of its own. Where else can a band's list of instruments alone run to more than a dozen items, distinguishing between a "tin whistle" and a "low whistle" and including a device known as a "bodhran"? (Which, incidentally, is a small framed drum that looks like a cousin of the tambourine.)
The name itself, Blue Canyon Boys, carries echoes of bands from an earlier century. And the audience for the group's Sunday, August 4 concert at the upcoming Beartrap Summer Festival can be forgiven if they're convinced they've been transported to the golden era when a series of "brother acts" ruled the stage at the Grand Ol' Opry: the Delmores, the Louvins, the Monroes, the Stanleys
The familiar slogan "think globally, act locally" was not on the agenda of the band known as Screen Door Porch when they scheduled their regional tour earlier this year--but it certainly worked out that way.
What do you get when you stir together a sister/sisterBluegrassduo, a brother/sister act with classical inclinations, a street musician, and two state fiddling championships? A young new Arizona group with the striking name Run Boy Run (no commas, please) who have, in the past year alone, chalked up two achievements that even more established bands would take pride in:
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