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Willie Sugarcapps Performs at The Asheville Music Hall
Friday, January 31, 2014

Brigitte DeMeyer Opens
$10 adv / $12 door; doors 8pm/ show 9pm; 21+
31 Patton Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801
www.AshevilleMusicHall.com

Way down in lower Alabama, almost every weekend for the past two years, folks have been coming together for a music gathering called The Frog Pond at Blue Moon Farm. One part house concert, one part Levon Helm’s Midnight Ramble, the affair has hosted some of the country’s finest songwriters, pickers, bluesman and troubadours ranging from Mary Gauthier to Alvin Youngblood Hart, Malcolm Holcombe to Randall Bramblett, Sergio Webb to George Porter, Jr. It was here that frequent encounters between recurring artists—Grayson Capps, Will Kimbrough, Corky Hughes and the duo Sugarcane Jane featuring Savana Lee and Anthony Crawford—led to the birth of a band, the aptly named Willie Sugarcapps.

At first it was simply songwriter-in-the-round and jam session-styled collaborations, but it quickly grew to become something more. There was chemistry between the five distinct musicians that inspired a repertoire of songs demanding to be documented. They recruited Capps’ longtime partner and Grammy Award-winning producer/engineer Trina Shoemaker to record them, which resulted in the self-titled, debut album, Willie Sugarcapps [ Released 8/20/13 The Royal Potato Family]. The collection presents ten impeccably crafted songs imbued by relaxed performances, angelic harmonies and country Zen sentiment. Band members often take turns singing lead as they switch up between fiddle, banjo, mandolin, lap steel, bass and even ukulele.

“Willie Sugarcapps is a homecoming for all of us,” explains Will Kimbrough. “It’s coming full circle back to the beginning of why we do this in the first place and the joy of what happens when you play and sing with people who are alike in spirit and mind.”

Their collective musical experiences mingle together to create something magically original and spiritually honest. It’s a comfort to know that music in the hands of Willie Sugarcapps still happens for no other reason than purely the sake of the music itself.

Relix writes “…their update on a traditional sound is so damn comfortable and fun that it feels positively refreshing.” All Music goes on to call the band “…raw and immediate, yet warm, full, and inviting, all while seeming effortlessly rendered. Willie Sugarcapps is the very definition of Americana.”

For more information and the most up to date tour schedule, please visit www.williesugarcapps.com.

Watch Willie Sugarcapps perform “Energy”

About Brigitte DeMeyer:

Brigitte DeMeyer is a very visible artist in the Americana movement. Her work has stirred accolades in national media. She has been tapped to open for Bob Dylan, among others, and performs frequently at home and abroad. She writes songs as weavers thread tapestries, her most vivid colors being a Southern feel, a churchy soulfulness in her vocals, and a way with words that bears comparison to literature as easily as to the best contemporary lyrics.

With album number six on the horizon for the acclaimed independent singer-songwriter, “Savannah Road” (due out in early 2014), DeMeyer has built a solid foundation with her first five albums, collaborating with giants of the Americana world-world class drummer/producer Brady Blade, Buddy Miller, Sam Bush, and more recently, guitarist/songwriter Will Kimbrough—and has shown herself to have a wonderfully natural feel for soul-steeped, blues-infused roots music. For more information on Bridgitte, please visit www.brigittedemeyer.com

Watch Brigitte DeMeyer and Friends “Say You Will Be Mine”

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Newly signed to Rebel Records, Dehlia Low echoes the sounds of early country with a strong bluegrass flavor, crafting a fresh originality that feels like home in this new album produced by the Infamous Stringdusters’ Travis Book…

Dehlia Low pushes bluegrass squarely into the Americana genre, combining their tenacious, authentic vocal style with extraordinary instrumental prowess in original songs that feel at once old and new.  Their newest project Ravens and Crows will be their first release on the venerable Rebel Records label (Ralph Stanley, Steep Canyon Rangers) on August 2, 2011.

The vocal harmony and instrumentation on the album reflect a deep connection to traditional music with modern arrangements and relevant, smart songwriting.  Fans of Dehlia Low immediately latch onto the compelling, nostalgic vocals of Anya Hinkle, the group’s lead singer and fiddler, uniquely paired with guitarist Stacy Claude’s clear, unyielding singing.  Greg Stiglets, on bass, has the edgy country vocals reminiscent of Steve Earle’s early days.  Aaron Ballance frames their sound through his virtuosic and expressive resophonic guitar playing that is punctuated and textured by Bryan Clendenin’s inventive and powerful mandolin.

The project, their fourth record to date, was recorded and mixed close to home in Asheville, NC at Echo Mountain Recording.  “We were thrilled to get into the studio and get these songs recorded, and grateful to the wonderful folks at Rebel for making the record possible,” said Hinkle.  “Each song has a story behind it that is personal for each one of us.  For me, it is a privilege to be able to share my thoughts, the melodies that run through my head, and my influences as a reflection of those who inspire me in this record.  To stand in front of the incredible mics at Echo thinking about sharing those songs with the world was very emotional for me.  After laying down “Living is Easy” at around midnight on a cold March evening with the rest of the band in the booth, I could hardly sleep.  I felt like I was already dreaming anyway.”

The album was produced Travis Book, a member of the International Bluegrass Music Association multi-award winners and Grammy-nominated The Infamous Stringdusters.  A singer, songwriter, bass player and lifelong “band guy,” Book was the perfect fit.  “The stars really aligned to have Travis come out to Asheville and work on this project during a break in the Dusters’ busy touring schedule,” said Claude.  “He has a terrific ear and tremendous experience with arranging music in the studio.  He was on the same page with us immediately in developing the songs and arrangements we brought to the project.  His positive energy made all the details fall into place.  The whole experience was a great lesson in faith and fun, and you can really hear that on the album.”

About the record, Book says, “the band and I are traveling the same path, creating music with friends that speaks from our experience, ignoring convention and following our ears.  The traditional aesthetic and down-to-earth nature of the music initially drew me to the project, but the raw creativity and uniqueness of the members and the seamless integration of their influences and biases were what made this project really special.”

The record is the latest release on Rebel Records.  Rebel’s president Mark Freeman says, “Rebel Records is thrilled to have Dehlia Low as a part of the Rebel family. The Asheville, North Carolina-area has seen the emergence of a number of amazing roots-oriented groups over the last few years and Dehlia Low is certainly one of those bands at the forefront of the scene!  They project a highly energetic, contemporary sound that is fresh yet still very much rooted in tradition.  I have no doubt their distinctive singing and original material will quickly win over new audiences everywhere.”

The ten original songs are filled with compelling poetry that conveys a sense of time and place wholly familiar yet hard to categorize.  Hinkle’s songwriting ranges from a coming-of-age gallop in “State of Jefferson,” to southern sounds and mythology in “Goin’ Down” and “Ravens and Crows,” to the mesmerizing, bluesy “Drifting on a Lonesome Sea.”  Stiglets’s wordplay and cadence are Dylanesque in “Thunder,” while his imagery and melody are both intriguing and heartbreaking in “Ride” and “Better Left Unsaid”– all in sharp contrast to the hard-edged, bluegrassy “$40 Chain.”   Clendenin’s “Change Up” showcases the instrumental work of the group.  Of the two covers on the album, the band swings Willie Nelson’s “What Do You Think Of Her Now” behind Claude’s vocals, while taking “Cannonball Blues” to bare bones.

Ravens and Crows follows two previous studio albums and one live album that have been released since the band formed in 2007.  Their inaugural EP Dehlia Low and full-length studio album Tellico both scored in the top 20 of WNCW 88.7FM’s top 100 new releases of 2009 and 2010, respectively, and garnered praise from Bluegrass Unlimited, SingOut!, No Depression and others.  The buzz led to an exciting tour in 2010 in support of Tellico, with appearances some of the most prestigious festivals in the U.S., including Merlefest and the Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival, where they shared the stage with the Stringdusters, Seldom Scene, and Alison Krauss and Union Station.  In 2011, Dehlia Low will be taking their “Appalachiagrassicana” sound across the U.S. and Canada in support of the new album.

Photos by Sandlin Gaither

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Featuring Justin Ray on trumpet, Steve Alford on clarinets, Jacob Rodriguez on saxophones, Mike Holstein on bass, Ben Bjorlie on drums

Spork! is a 5-piece jazz ensemble from Asheville, NC that combines unique instrumentation, high-energy musicianship and widely varying influences to create a totally new sound. A sound deeply rooted in the jazz tradition, but coupled with the raw power of rock or the sly grooves of hip hop. Trumpeter Justin Ray, clarinetist Steve Alford, and saxophonist Jacob Rodriguez make up the front line; playing horn lines with Tower of Power-like precision before taking off on solo flights that bring memories of Miles and Coltrane. Bassist Mike Holstein is a wizard, filling the space with bass lines, but also somehow conjuring guitar riffs and piano chords from his instrument all at the same time. Drummer Ben Bjorlie is the glue, providing exactly what is needed at any given moment, from frenzied solos to deep pocket grooves. These musicians come together to create the Spork! experience.

Spork! was born when Ray and Rodriguez moved to Asheville from New York City. They were quickly accepted into Ashevilleʼs thriving indie rock/original music scene, and Ray soon began to look for the musicians he needed to perform his own compositions. Enter Alford, who had recently arrived in North Carolina from Chicago and itʼs one-of-a-kind avant-garde jazz community; North Carolina native Holstein, a giant among the jazz musicians of the southeast; and Bjorlie, a drummer equally comfortable in jazz, rock, funk, and the host of other influences that compromise the Spork! sound.

Since its inception, Spork! has been a favorite among musicians of all types. Their first gigs at clubs around Asheville were populated almost exclusively by members of the music community. Their audiences have continued to grow, mostly through word of mouth. They hope to reach even more fans through the upcoming release of their self-titled 2 disc live recording on May 26th, 2011. The recording captures performances at two different Asheville clubs (The Rocket Club and The Magnetic Field) with the group at its funky and frenetic best.

Spork! will continue to record and perform after the release of its debut double volume CD recorded live in Asheville. Collaborations with other artists and groups are currently taking shape, including performances with a string quartet and a DJ in the continuing attempt to bring more influences under the Spork! umbrella.

Find out more about Spork! and see some great videos at http://www.facebook.com/Sporkband.

Spork!
CD release Party
Thursday, May 26th, 2011
MoDaddy’s Bar

9pm, $5
828-258-1550
77-B Biltmore Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801
www.modaddysbar.com

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Galen Kipar Project. Photo by Jake Pelham- Folktography.

Effortlessly crafting a fusion of folk, classical, jazz, and blues, the Galen Kipar Project has been hailed as “complex yet accessible” and “cohesive and poignant” with “experimental folk masterpieces.” Based in Asheville, GKP recently released their fourth album in five years The Scenic Route which features the unique sonorous sound that has become the band’s trademark. GKP is vocalist Galen Kipar on guitars & harmonica, Lyndsay Pruett on violin & vocals, Jeremy Young on drum kit, Ben Portwood on upright bass & vocals, along with with frequent guest Aaron Ballance on dobro and lap steel. “This is folk and blues done so well, with bits of jazz and funk thrown in making it that much more enjoyable,” states Origivation Magazine.

Galen Kipar Project did a recent interview Jeremiah Greer Live at their show at the Lexington Ave Brewery (The LAB) in Asheville, NC. Check out the interview as well as clip from the show here:

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Dehlia Low pushes bluegrass squarely into the emerging Americana genre, combining their tenacious, authentic vocal style with extraordinary instrumental prowess in original songs that feel at once both old and new. Their upcoming album, to be released this summer, will be their first on the venerable Rebel Records label (Ralph Stanley, Steep Canyon Rangers), and is an eagerly-anticipated follow up to their acclaimed 2009 independent studio release “Tellico.” Since stepping off the stage at Merlefest in 2010, the distinctively Appalachian country/bluegrass sound of Dehlia Low has transcended their native Blue Ridge, bringing the band across the US and Canada on their exciting 2011 tour.

Photo by Sandlin Gaither

Dehlia Low performs in NY, PA & VA this April!

***
Sat, April 16th ~ Bena Country Store Hayes, VA
Sun, April 17th ~ Sellersville Theatre w The Steel WheelsSellersville, PA
Wed, April 20th ~ Sportsman’s TavernBuffalo, NY
Thurs, April 21st ~Abilene’s Rochester, NY
Fri, April 22nd ~ Wellsville Creative Arts CenterWellsville, NY
Sat, April 23rd ~ The MockingbirdStaunton, VA

***

Dehlia Low came together in late 2007 as part of Asheville, North Carolina’s roots music renaissance. Singers Anya Hinkle (from Blacksburg, VA on fiddle) and Stacy Claude (from Atlanta, GA on guitar) pulled together a group of talented pickers from the region: Aaron Ballance on dobro (Winston-Salem, NC), Bryan Clendenin on mandolin (Hurricane, WV) and Greg Stiglets on bass (Jackson, MS). The group’s sound is focused on original music rooted in bluegrass but with a distinctive country/folk feel true to their southern Appalachian roots.

Dehlia Low is pleased to announce their newest project, a studio album to be released in summer 2011 through the oldest and most respected bluegrass record label, Rebel Records. The project will be recorded in Asheville and produced by Travis Book of Grammy-nominated and IBMA emerging artist winners The Infamous Stringdusters. The group is currently planning an exciting international tour around the release, with details available at www.dehlialow.com.

Photo by Sandlin Gaither

Dehlia low on the web:
www.dehlialow.com
twitter.com/dehlialow
www.reverbnation.com/dehlialow
www.facebook.com/pages/Dehlia-Low

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LKNB Photo by Vikas Nambiar

Larry Keel and Natural Bridge have a fun weekend in store with shows in Atlanta, Savannah and Greenville, SC! They start off on Thursday, March 3rd in Atlanta at the Red Light Cafe. Friday’s show is at the Live Wire Music Hall in Savannah, GA and they head n over to Greenville, SC for a show at Gottrocks on Saturday, March 5th!

Jenny Keel will be doing a LIVE radio interview TONIGHT (Wed, March 2nd) on Radio Free Georgia WRFG 89.3 FM at 8:45pm EST. Listen in online at www.wrfg.org

The Savannah Current writes,

Keel is one of the pre-eminent flat-picking acoustic guitarists in the entire world. Anywhere. He holds his own with the likes of (his good buddy) Tony Rice. And it’s not basic bluegrass, the way Bill Monroe played it – Keel and the band (which includes his wife Jenny on standup bass) also play a jaw-dropping amalgam of gypsy folk and Appalachian instrumental music. This is acoustic music, pure and performed with intensity and flying-finger verisimilitude.

One more thing: The Virginia-bred Keel devotes half of his official website to fishing news and tips (that’s his other passion). He ain’t a sweet-singing vocalist like Ricky Skaggs or Vince Gill – he’s got a gravelly, weathered voice that lets you know, right from the get-go, that between that and the fishing, the flatpicking and the mountain-man beard, he’s the real deal.

~ written by Bill DeYoung

The Hartford Examiner states, “Flatpicking Guitar master Larry Keel is a dedicated force in preserving and creating American Mountain Music. Delivering powerful and honest performances, Keel and his four-piece bluegrass band Natural Bridge are a breath of fresh air in the traditional bluegrass market of today.”

Also check out the writeups in Connect Savannah and GoUpstate.com!

Jenny Keel did a wonderful interview with Sarah Morgan, the Atlanta Jamband Examiner. Here are some excerpts:

Pickin’ and grinnin’ doesn’t get more descriptive than with Larry Keel & Natural Bridge. Larry Keel may be a guitar master but his “backup” band isn’t subpar. The Natural Bridge includes Mark Schimick tearing up the mandolin, Will Lee going to town on a 5 string banjo, and Jenny Keel beating down the bass. The bluegrass maestros are playing this Thursday night at Red Light Café. A trip to Atlanta is a trip home for Jenny Keel.

Growing up in Atlanta, Keel says she listened to more classic rock, southern rock and jazz than bluegrass. It wouldn’t be until she moved to Virginia to attend college that she was fully exposed to the genre.

“When I got up here, with the snap of your fingers you could sit in or check out any old time jam, Keel says.”You could take walks and there’s always something going on. That’s how I met Larry. I went to see one of my buddies picking. Low and behold there’s Larry on stage with him, and I was “who are you – in my town? Why don’t I know you?” Yeah I stalked him right from there.”

. . .   . . .    . . .

Larry and Jenny Keel. Photo by Bright Life Photography.

While Keel says being able to play together helps with the grind of the road, she had to learn how to play first.

“It solves the problem of homesickness and yearning to be back home with the family unit,” Keel says. “We’re our own family unit, together 24/7, and we wanted it that way from the beginning, when we met and fell in love.

. . .   . . .    . . .

Larry put her to the test during her lessons.

“He said ‘OK, you’ve been messing around with the bass and everything, it’s time to jump into the fire.’ And that’s what happened. We knew we wanted to be together, that was absolutely the goal however it was going to happen. And turns out, I was able to play in the band with him.”

Those quickly learned bass skills can be easily distinguished on their 2009 album Backwoods. Keel says she would like to learn the banjo and guitar more, but like most people she has to battle time.

“I’m so busy with the touring, and when we do come home it’s just a big circus juggling act of management, business, paperwork, report, not to mention household stuff,” she explains. “I have a home, a cat, have to do laundry, have to get vehicles ready to get back on the road…the old cliché, if I just had more time in the day. Sounds so Western Civilization. The Chinese, that’s not part of their culture, they think they have all the time in the world – and their right. I’m not stressed by it, but yeah, it seems to leave me short for things I want to do.”

One thing that there is always time for is music. Keel says performing is a chance to connect to other people.

“The goal every time is to connect, share the music and be a team…to create the best music possible, the best vibe, and have a great time,” she says. “Be it 2000 strangers in an auditorium or music hall, our goal is to get everyone on the same page through the music, and be comfortable, and fired up… or just transported.  Whatever the emotion of the song calls for, if it’s scary or just wide open, joyous…anywhere, anytime that’s what we’re going for. “

. . .    . . .    . . .

Are you going? Tell me Sarah on Twitter @djsarahspin. Keep up to date on all the latest jam band happenings in Atlanta by hitting the “subscribe” button.

READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE on Examiner.com: Larry Keel & Natural Bridge At Red Light Cafe – Atlanta jam bands | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/jam-bands-in-atlanta/larry-keel-natural-bridge-at-red-light-cafe#ixzz1FSuY0Mgx

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Extract 17. Photo by Rob Gardner

Stop. Listen. Dynamic changes happen simultaneously with nuanced timbre shifts, while the notes, chords, and poly-rhythms travel past you. Extract 17 is not a jam band, or math rock or even a hybrid of anything. They are four musicians of remarkable talent, pushing each other and themselves to make something wonderful. Equal parts Mahavishnu Orchestra, Strength In Numbers and original innovation, Extract 17 plays a palate of original electric instrumental compositions focused on both the spirit of adventure and the beauty of arrangement. You can see them live for *FREE* every Tuesday in March at Modaddy’s Bar in Asheville.

In the past year, the four musicians that comprise Extract 17, Jay Sanders, Bill Cardine, Andy Pond and Ian Cunningham, have been composing, arranging, and experimenting with a variety of provocative new sounds. Their repertoire features tunes written by each member of the group and a select list of covers from some of their biggest influences including Bill Frisell, MMW, and Hank Williams.

As a bass player, what characterizes Jay Sanders‘ music is an overwhelming sense of space, time and genre. His compositions tend towards the melodic and sublime while improvisations can go from the most peaceful melody to full-scale free jazz and noise music. Attention to style and unique versatility are the hallmarks of his playing. Sanders is best known for his work with Acoustic Syndicate and Donna The Buffalo.

Bill Cardine brings his innate sense of musicianship, melody and texture with his muse instrument of choice, the slide guitar. Jerry Douglas has said of Cardine “I couldn’t have picked a better example for them of where the Dobro is now or what the possibilities are with the instrument.” His innovative work on the Dobro, Moog Slide Guitar, Chaturangui, Weissenborn and Electric Steel guitars has lead him as both a performer and educator around the world, as well as to some of our country’s most revered venues and major festivals. Internationally, Cardine is known for his work with the Biscuit Burners; he is also the newest member of Acoustic Syndicate.

Andy Pond is one of the most exciting progressive-acoustic banjoists on the scene today: melodic and tasteful with a raw edge of improvisation. His approach to the banjo is all encompassing and includes Middle eastern/Balkan flavours, newgrass and dixieland grooves as well as funky dance beats. For almost two decades, Pond has been the driving force behind the Snake Oil Medicine Show, is half of the Pond Brothers, and the lead of CX1.

Ian Cunningham‘s drumming boldly combines the best parts of rock, jazz, African and things completely different and unknown into a powerful beat that is the perfect landscape for Extract 17. Cunningham is a formidable drummer and presence in the Asheville music scene; and as the pulsating foundation for UNC Asheville’s African Dance and Drumming classes, he excels at bridging the worlds of music.

In September of 2010, Sanders, Cardine and Pond performed a series of shows with the legendary Jeff Sipe on drums including memorable performances at the LAAFF Festival, Pisgah Brewing’s beautiful outdoor stage, the Pour House in Charleston, and Asheville’s juke-joint MoDaddy’s. 2011 finds the quartet breaking ground in new directions with the addition of Ian Cunningham on drums. This new lineup will debut as part of MoDaddy’s monthly residency series, playing every Tuesday in March. The shows are all free and begin around 9:30. Enjoy being carried away into a vast soundscape of innovative instrumental music.

Show details at a Glance:

Extract 17
Sanders-Cardine-Pond-Cunningham
Tuesdays in March
MoDaddys

9:30pm
*FREE SHOWS*
828-258-1550
77-B Biltmore Avenue
Asheville, NC 28801
www.modaddysbar.com

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