Watch & Listen

Venice, CA-based roots/jazz collective that merges old school bluegrass, swamp-gospel, jug-band, jump blues and the hot swing of the 1930’s to form a spicy roots cocktail.

Sarah Jarosz (born May 23, 1991 in Austin, Texas) is a Grammy Award nominated American singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. Jarosz picked up the mandolin at the age of 10 and by 2005 she was jamming onstage with bluegrass icons David Grisman and Ricky Skaggs at the age of 14.

Jarosz also plays guitar, banjo and piano and wrote the majority of the music on her albums. Her music is largely contemporary and progressive bluegrass but includes folk, old-timey, country and folk rock. Jarosz has been frequently compared to Gillian Welch. She began attending the New England Conservatory of Music in the fall of 2009 where she studies contemporary improvisation.

During her senior year of high school, Jarosz signed with Sugar Hill Records who released her debut album “Song Up In Her Head” on June 16, 2009. The album earned her a Grammy Award nomination for Best Country Instrumental Performance for the track "Mansinneedof". "Song Up In Her Head" went to #1 on the Billboard Bluegrass chart and crossed over to the Indie chart peaking at #21, and the Hot 200 (pop) chart peaking at #158.

Her second album, "Follow Me Down", was released on May 17, 2011. In addition to nine original tracks it includes a cover of Radiohead's "The Tourist" recorded in a session with the Punch Brothers and Bob Dylan's "Ring Them Bells". The album peaked at #2 on Billboard's Bluegrass and crossed over to four other charts, reaching #4 (Folk), #16 (Indie), #26 (Rock) and #98 (Hot 200).

On January 15, 2016 after the announcement of Ben Eldridge's retirement from the band, Rickie Simpkins became the newest member of the Seldom Scene. Rickie started his musical career with "The Heights of Grass" and then continued professionally with groups like; "The Virginia Squires", "Tony Rice Unit", And then on to "Emmylou Harris' The Red Dirt Boys". Rickie is one of the most powerful multi instrumentalists on the planet. Rickie plays Banjo and Fiddle and sings with the Seldom Scene.
DUDLEY CONNELL plays a masterful guitar and provides powerful lead vocals for The Scene, which has a reputation for challenging the bounds of Bluegrass; and Connell's musical virtuosity has pushed the group beyond these bounds. Audiences delight in Connell's renditions of traditional songs like "Old Train", folk ballads such as "Blue Diamond Mine", and blues songs like "Rollin' and Tumblin'". Connell is a former member of The Johnson Mountain Boys.
Playing dobro for The Scene is one of the most respected dobro players on the bluegrass circuit today, FRED TRAVERS. He is also an accomplished vocalist who brings solid lead and harmony to The Scene. Travers is a former member of the Gary Ferguson Band and the Paul Adkins Band. Fred is beloved for his tender vocals on Seldom Scene favorite's Walk Through This World With Me, and From This Moment On.
RONNIE SIMPKINS plays rock-steady bass for the group and provides the bass vocals in The Scene's quartets as well. Simpkins has been performing Bluegrass music since childhood and is a former member of The Tony Rice Unit. LOU REID, who plays mandolin for The Scene and provides the tenor vocals, is also a former member of Ricky Skaggs Band, Quicksilver, and he currently fronts his own group Carolina. On lead, or when providing harmony, Reid's vocals are the epitome of the powerful, "high, lonesome" tenor that is the signature of Bluegrass music.

"There's a tender heart beating for you..."

Cynicism comes easy, but having a soft heart takes real guts. Sam Outlaw's new album Tenderheart dares to tread gently and look inward, with unapologetic sentiment and un-ironic nods to country music's greatest neon rainbow chasers.

Since the release of his 2015 debut Angeleno, Outlaw remains one of LA's only modern country singers to earn international acclaim. And with his follow-up Tenderheart he shows an impressive refinement of his artistic identity. Sonically, the album further elaborates Outlaw's "SoCal Country" sound: a sun-bleached, Baja-influenced twang that deftly points to country's neo-traditionalists and LA's legendary singer-songwriters. Thematically Tenderheart is a thesis on self-discovery and the power of love - a course set with the opening chords of "Everyone's Looking For Home." The opening track is a cinematic, mariachi-laced meditation on Outlaw's own conflicted quest for peace amongst the chaos of his chosen path.

Along the way he also takes a look around, and Tenderheart's revelations are most potent when filtered through Outlaw's distinctive Los Angeles vantage point. "Bottomless Mimosas" is emotionally hollowing in its portrayal of west coast existentialism while "Bougainvillea, I Think" and "Dry In The Sun" round out this trio of ‘Los Angeles songs' that explore the city's faded beauty and define "SoCal Country" beyond instrumentation.

"Trouble," one of the album's standouts, makes being bad sound pretty damn good with determined ‘Side A' swagger and kicks off a song cycle that chronicles a heart's bend, break and mend. "She's Playing Hard To Get (Rid Of)" showcases acerbic wit in teary three-four time, setting the scene for "Two Broken Hearts" - a wounded lovers' getaway story with an open ending. Over the course of these thirteen songs it becomes increasingly apparent why his clever intertwining of country tropes and crisp modernism has so impressed country music fans, critics and songwriters alike. (Alt-country pioneer Ryan Adams just recently praised Outlaw, calling his work "beyond great songwriting".)

Angeleno's critical acclaim also led to 18 months of international touring. He entertained thousands of festival-goers with a prime slot at Stagecoach, made four trips to Europe, toured Australia twice and played several hundred gigs in the USA. After all those miles it's fitting that Tenderheart bottles the energy of the songs that have become mainstays of his live show. Fan-favorites like "Diamond Ring" and honky-tonk sing-along "All My Life" finally get proper studio treatment, along with "Look At You Now," a regular highlight of his acoustic tours overseas - where Outlaw is nominated for AmericanaUK's International Album of the Year alongside Sturgill Simpson and Margo Price.

Not one to mess with a winning combination, Sam called on many of the same musicians that made Angeleno such a success: harmony singer Molly Jenson, pedal steel pro Jeremy Long and guitarist Danny Garcia, along with Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes) and Bo Koster (My Morning Jacket). Produced by Martin Pradler and Outlaw and recorded in the San Fernando Valley, Tenderheart also features Erwin Vasquez and Mariachi Teocuitatlan, a local mariachi group who appeared in the video for Angeleno's title track.

Now two years into his new life, Outlaw has learned that great dreams can only be achieved at great cost. And at its core, Tenderheart is the outcome of another lesson learned: if your heart stays true, the sacrifice is worth it.

Mike Savino is not your grandaddy’s banjo player, and Tall Tall Trees is definitely not your average indie-folk outfit from NYC. A pioneer in the the world of experimental and psychedelic banjo music, Mike Savino has released two records and one EP on his own label Good Neighbor Records, Tall Tall Trees (2009), moment (2012), and The Seasonal EP (2014). Since 2012 Tall Tall Trees has been touring relentlessly, mystifying audiences with his “continually refreshing and innovative approach to the banjo” (Paste Magazine). Often performing solo, Savino’s modern take on the one-man band involves running his homemade instrument, dubbed the Banjotron 5000 through a slab of effects and loopers, bowing, drumming, and strumming out multi-textured arrangements to support his lyrically driven songs.
In Tall Tall Trees by Ben Rouseaddition to Tall Tall Trees, Savino has been touring the world collaborating with indie-pop violinist, and of Montreal alum, Kishi Bashi and has appeared at Austin City Limits, Newport Folk Festival, and on Late Night with David Letterman. Savino is currently prepping the release of his third full length Tall Tall Trees record which is slated for early 2017.

"There's a tender heart beating for you..."

Cynicism comes easy, but having a soft heart takes real guts. Sam Outlaw's new album Tenderheart dares to tread gently and look inward, with unapologetic sentiment and un-ironic nods to country music's greatest neon rainbow chasers.

Since the release of his 2015 debut Angeleno, Outlaw remains one of LA's only modern country singers to earn international acclaim. And with his follow-up Tenderheart he shows an impressive refinement of his artistic identity. Sonically, the album further elaborates Outlaw's "SoCal Country" sound: a sun-bleached, Baja-influenced twang that deftly points to country's neo-traditionalists and LA's legendary singer-songwriters. Thematically Tenderheart is a thesis on self-discovery and the power of love - a course set with the opening chords of "Everyone's Looking For Home." The opening track is a cinematic, mariachi-laced meditation on Outlaw's own conflicted quest for peace amongst the chaos of his chosen path.

Along the way he also takes a look around, and Tenderheart's revelations are most potent when filtered through Outlaw's distinctive Los Angeles vantage point. "Bottomless Mimosas" is emotionally hollowing in its portrayal of west coast existentialism while "Bougainvillea, I Think" and "Dry In The Sun" round out this trio of ‘Los Angeles songs' that explore the city's faded beauty and define "SoCal Country" beyond instrumentation.

"Trouble," one of the album's standouts, makes being bad sound pretty damn good with determined ‘Side A' swagger and kicks off a song cycle that chronicles a heart's bend, break and mend. "She's Playing Hard To Get (Rid Of)" showcases acerbic wit in teary three-four time, setting the scene for "Two Broken Hearts" - a wounded lovers' getaway story with an open ending. Over the course of these thirteen songs it becomes increasingly apparent why his clever intertwining of country tropes and crisp modernism has so impressed country music fans, critics and songwriters alike. (Alt-country pioneer Ryan Adams just recently praised Outlaw, calling his work "beyond great songwriting".)

Angeleno's critical acclaim also led to 18 months of international touring. He entertained thousands of festival-goers with a prime slot at Stagecoach, made four trips to Europe, toured Australia twice and played several hundred gigs in the USA. After all those miles it's fitting that Tenderheart bottles the energy of the songs that have become mainstays of his live show. Fan-favorites like "Diamond Ring" and honky-tonk sing-along "All My Life" finally get proper studio treatment, along with "Look At You Now," a regular highlight of his acoustic tours overseas - where Outlaw is nominated for AmericanaUK's International Album of the Year alongside Sturgill Simpson and Margo Price.

Not one to mess with a winning combination, Sam called on many of the same musicians that made Angeleno such a success: harmony singer Molly Jenson, pedal steel pro Jeremy Long and guitarist Danny Garcia, along with Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes) and Bo Koster (My Morning Jacket). Produced by Martin Pradler and Outlaw and recorded in the San Fernando Valley, Tenderheart also features Erwin Vasquez and Mariachi Teocuitatlan, a local mariachi group who appeared in the video for Angeleno's title track.

Now two years into his new life, Outlaw has learned that great dreams can only be achieved at great cost. And at its core, Tenderheart is the outcome of another lesson learned: if your heart stays true, the sacrifice is worth it.

Mike Savino is not your grandaddy’s banjo player, and Tall Tall Trees is definitely not your average indie-folk outfit from NYC. A pioneer in the the world of experimental and psychedelic banjo music, Mike Savino has released two records and one EP on his own label Good Neighbor Records, Tall Tall Trees (2009), moment (2012), and The Seasonal EP (2014). Since 2012 Tall Tall Trees has been touring relentlessly, mystifying audiences with his “continually refreshing and innovative approach to the banjo” (Paste Magazine). Often performing solo, Savino’s modern take on the one-man band involves running his homemade instrument, dubbed the Banjotron 5000 through a slab of effects and loopers, bowing, drumming, and strumming out multi-textured arrangements to support his lyrically driven songs.
In Tall Tall Trees by Ben Rouseaddition to Tall Tall Trees, Savino has been touring the world collaborating with indie-pop violinist, and of Montreal alum, Kishi Bashi and has appeared at Austin City Limits, Newport Folk Festival, and on Late Night with David Letterman. Savino is currently prepping the release of his third full length Tall Tall Trees record which is slated for early 2017.

Come and meet the family you never knew you had. Miles to Dayton’s music happens at a personal level, their message of love blending elements of folk, rock, classical, and funk into an irresistible invitation. The M2D recipe is simple: four-part vocal harmony, clever songwriting, improvisational violin and cello, and an infectious rhythm section that stirs up the creative stew.

At the heart of their unique marriage of styles lies a real-life marriage: vocalist Krista Preddice shares the microphone with husband Jonathan Preddice, who, in addition to being the principal songwriter for the group, also shines on guitar, cello, accordion, and trumpet. Bassist Dave March (Krista’s brother) and dynamic violinists Leanne Strom and Alisa Rabbitt (Jon’s sister) add depth to the vocal harmonies, with Dave’s low, soulful bass and the double violin soaring classical virtuosity providing the sonic bookends for the M2D sound. Drummer Brian Kroll, propels the music forward with an exciting and funky edge.

Having built a large grass roots following of fans young and old, Miles to Dayton has headlined performances at the Patchogue Theater and sold out the Boulton Center, with notable gigs at the Paramount Theatre, Great South Bay Music Festival and the NoFo Rock and Folk Festival. They’ve been the featured artist at the Acoustic Long Island Podcast and Summer Concert, emerging artist at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, and have performed in intimate listening rooms such as Club Passim in Boston, and the Living Room in NYC.

Equally at home in the acoustic or full band setup, m2d has shared the stage with the likes of The Infamous Stringdusters, Rhett Miller, The Subdudes, Jorma Kaukonen, The Dirt Farmer Band, Tom Paxton, Southside Johnny and the Asbury Jukes, and Richie Havens, to name a few.

Recent Highlights include:

Featured in Oprah Magazine, ValsList , the Long Island Pulse and the Lefsetz Letter.
Opened for The Infamous Stringdusters, Southside Johnny, Rhett Miller, Amy Helm + Larry Campbell and the Dirt Farmers
Performed at the Patchogue Theater, The Paramount,
Great South Bay Music Festival, NOFO Rock and Folk Fest, Black Potatoe Festival, Bradstock!,
Emerging artist at the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival 2012
Quad Showcase at NorthEast Regional Folk Alliance 2012
Formal Showcase at NorthEast Regional Folk Alliance 2013
On the Air at WFUV, WEHM, WUSB, WRCN....


"I’ve got multiple invites to go to gigs tomorrow night, I’ve said no to all, the acts have even got major label deals, but if someone told me Miles To Dayton was in town, I’d be THERE! Because their music touched me, I was energized by it."

- Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter



“Miles to Dayton has the ability to blend folk, rock and progressive rock into a distinct sound that, while intricate in its form, seems effortless in the execution of its parts. It is this trademark infusion of acoustic and electric instruments that keeps their music full of contrasts and energy.”

- David Dircks, Host of AcousticLongIsland.com


"Miles To Dayton is the next break out act to emerge from the fertile Long Island music scene! Their sound (breaking the boundaries between rock, folk, pop and classical) is music for the discerning listener who enjoys artistry that combines excellent musicianship, intricate vocal stylings and articulate songwriting. M2D's live show is more than a concert...it is an event. A Miles To Dayton performance is one of strong stage presence in a setting that welcomes audiences of all ages."

- Norman Prusslin, Founding General Manager WUSB-FM, Stony Brook, N.Y./ President Emeritus, Intercollegiate Broadcasting System/ Co-Founder, Long Island Music Hall of Fame


"Their latest CD 'Pass It On' is in my opinion the best Indie release of 2011 and is nothing short of a sonic masterpiece.”

- Ralph Antignano, Producer, Homegrown Music Café


"Miles to Dayton crosses a lot of musical boundaries from folk to rock and appeals to a broad audience that spans several generations."

- Christopher Capobianco, member/Board of Directors of the Patchogue Theater for the Performing Arts

Eastbound Freight

Eastbound Freight Bluegrass Band has been performing throughout Long Island and the New York Metropolitan area for 25 years. Their concert venues have included the Inter Media Arts Center in Huntington NY, the Harry Chapin Memorial Stage also in Huntington, The Lincoln Center Out-Of-Doors Festival in New York City and many others. They have performed live radio broadcasts on WKCR, WBAZ, and WUSB, and their recordings have been featured on National Public Radio’s Acoustic Connections program.

The band members (see Band Bios) share a life-long connection to the music and a love for the big bluegrass sound of the original groups: Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys, Flatt & Scruggs, The Stanley Brothers, Jimmy Martin & the Sunny Mountain Boys, and others. Their repertoire includes tunes popularized by these groups as well as many original songs by banjo player Bill DeTurk.

Eastbound Freight Bluegrass performs at festivals, country fairs, and libraries throughout the region. During the summer they perform evening concerts in parks from Stony Brook to the North & South Forks of Long Island. In the fall, you're likely to see the band at the vineyards of the East End of Long Island, entertaining folks most weekends during the harvest season. The band’s first release, Don’t Blame Me!, won accolades in Bluegrass Unlimited and received an achievement award from Billboard.

Buddy Merriam and Back Roads

Born 10/7/52 in Hartford, Connecticut, he formed Buddy Merriam and Back Roads in 1980 out of his love and respect for traditional Bluegrass music. He became close friends with the Father of Bluegrass music, Bill Monroe, and got to learn and eventually perform with him.
On Sept. 19,2015 Buddy was honored to receive the "Long Island Sound Award" from the LI Music Hall of Fame "For Outstanding Contributions to Long Island's Musical Heritage." Buddy's second book of original mandolin music "Back Roads Mandolin Vol. 2" will be released in October of this year as well.

Buddy brought Back Roads down to the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville to perform a few times. They've also performed at the Grand Opening of the BLUEGRASS MUSEUM AND HALL OF FAME and Country Music's Fan Fair in Nashville, TN. The group has played at most of the Northeast Bluegrass Festivals (including Grey Fox &Podunk) and at Long Island venues like Hecksher Park in Huntington, Bald Hill Cultural Center, Agawam Park in Southampton, and concerts for LITMA, Huntington Folk Music Society and the Museums at Stony Brook Folk & Fiddle Festival.

They were also featured at the International Bluegrass Music Association's WORLD OF BLUEGRASS SHOW in Owensboro, KY and Fan Fest in Louisville in 10/04. In Nov. of 2004 & 2007 the band did a successful tour of Ireland, Scotland & England.

Featured in Mandolin Magazine, Bluegrass Unlimited, CMT's "Bluegrass Sound", Flatpicking Magazine,WKET TV, PBS "Jubilee", PBS "Farming the Future", Independent Films; "Bluegrass Journey", "Bobs Rolling Reefer", "Iowa State Fair",and "Bradstock-The Movie and"The Wes Houston Show", Local publications; Newsday, Long Island Pulse, North Shore Sun, Good Times Magazine.

Buddy has 7 CD's released on Lily Pad Records and a book of 30 original mandolin tunes (Back Roads Mandolin) newly released in 2011 with TAB. Vol. 2 will be released in 2014 with 30 more original tunes.
He host's the popular weekly Blue Grass Time radio show on WUSB 90.1 FM in Stony Brook, NY. since 1991. www.wusb.fm for live streaming. all shows are archived for one month.
Buddy’s 2009 Release, “Buddy Merriam-Back Roads Mandolin” features 14 of his original mandolin tunes; bluegrass, waltzs, gypsy jazz and some contemporary interpretation of his very original style. He has composed over 1000 instrumentals presently being transcribed and recorded.
Buddy is just putting the finishing touches on his latest CD "The Farm"of original vocal & intsrumental tunes including a couple of Buddy's favorite Bill Monroe songs. Release date is sometime mid October 1, 2014

Buddy is proud that the year 2014 marks his 34th year heading his band.

Buddy performs & records on a Monteleone Grand Artist and a Gilchrist F5 mandolin with D'Addario EXP 74 strings and Planet Waves accessories. He also endorses MI-SI mandolin pickups, LR Baggs picup and preamp.
Brian Chabza - Fiddle

Brian1.jpgBorn and raised in Mount Sinai New York, multi-instrumentalist Brian Chabza has been fiddling for 24 of his 32 years. As a member of various succesful Long Island based bands, and as a private instructor, Brian has been playing fiddle/violin professionally since 1998, and is super excited to have joined Back Roads in the summer of 2012.

Brian's interest in Bluegrass music began in 1996 after hearing Stuart Duncan for the first time playing fiddle on a Bela Fleck album with Sam Bush. That was all he needed to get himself started on his own journey in Bluegrass. Heavily influenced along the way by Buddy, Bill Monroe, Kenny Baker, Bobby Hicks, Vassar Clements, Buddy Spicher, Mark O'Connor, Darol Anger, and more current fiddlers like Casey Driessen, Gabe Witcher and Nicky Sanders.

Brian brings devotion and enthusiasm to his fiddle playing that is obvious to anyone listening. Brian plays a five string Bob Kogut fiddle and uses DPA, and MI-SI mic and pickup systems. As a new father of twins, Brian doesn't have much free time, but if he gets a chance he likes to flat pick his Martin guitar or Weber mandolin.

We would like to thank him for his devotion and time put forth to bring "The Farm" to life in his recording studio at Sound Beach Music, Miller Place, NY

Ward Cloughen - Double Bass/vocals/harmony

Ward.jpgBorn November 17, 1978, in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Grew up most of his early years in a Lutheran church where his father was the Minister. His mother was a Registered Nurse. Brought up by his father on big band jazz and his mother on classic country but still loved the harmonies from church. His first experience with bluegrass from memory was seeing a bluegrass band performing at a shopping mall. As the Waylon Jennings lyric goes he "got his first guitar when he was 14."

He learned chords and theory from Ralph Tobias at a small music shop outside of Reading, PA. Eventually he moved to Long Island for college. After taking a few years off of music he started working at a restaurant - Shandon Court in East Islip, NY. Listening to the live bands every night got him interested again in performing. He started playing guitar and singing again and honing his craft.

10 years later Buddy Merriam asked if he would be interested in joining his bluegrass band - playing upright bass - something he had done jamming with some friends a couple times. Jumping at the chance he bought a 1937 blonde Kay upright and fell in love.

He is also an ordained minister through the Universal Life Church and has performed multiple weddings. Studying bluegrass bass and upright bass in general his influences include: Barry Bales, David Spicher, Mike Bubb, Travis Book, Willie Dixon, Larry Taylor, Jack Bruce, Marshall Grant and Tony Palumbo.

He finds performing with Buddy's band inspiring. "The guys in the band are nothing but top-notch musicians and the kindest people." In nothing less than 4 months of being in the band he's already has radio play for a song that he wrote and finds that very humbling. And he's looking forward to nothing but great things for the group. "Thank you Buddy!"

Kathy DeVine - Guitar & Vocals

Kathy_re_size_1_resized.jpg

Kathy DeVine has re joined the group on vocals & rhythm guitar for Buddy's 35th year singing some of the bands favorite songs from the past and some great new songs. She has recorded one of Buddy's favorite songs written by Diana Christian, "My Blue Eyes From Heaven" along with Hazel Dickens "My Hearts Own Love" and the popular "In These Hills" -, written by friend Susan Bach and included on the latest "The Farm" CD.


It is fantastic to welcome her back to the Buddy Merriam & Back Roads show for 2015!

© 2017 Buddy Merriam

Gravity Jazz Quartet

Gene Casey

GENE CASEY formed the Lone Sharks after moving to Long Island’s East End in 1988, having received his baptism performing in the NYC / NJ area (Mudd Club, CBGBs, Maxwell’s, et. al) the waning days of punk/new wave. The Lone Sharks became a mainstay in the late 1990s Hamptons music scene, when bars were plentiful and audiences robust and loyal. Throughout the 90s and into the new century Gene and the evolving line-up of Sharks men were the house band at The Wild Rose Cafe, a Bridgehampton night spot where packed houses danced to the roots rock and swing.

Gene’s original music emerged periodically to great acclaim and local and international indie radio play. Several of Gene’s roots-drenched songs have been used on the soundtracks to television and feature films, including “Justified” and “Sons of Anarchy” ; the 2012 thriller “The Tall Man” starring Jessica Biel, the 2013 release “The Killing Season” starring Robert DeNiro, and Rob Reiner’s acclaimed “Being Charlie”.

March 2017 saw the release of Gene’s latest CD, “Guitar In The Rain” an album celebrating the roots of contemporary Americana with original songs that evoke the romantic sweep of 60s pop, classic C&W and the raw untamed spirit of early rock & roll. Selections from the album and those preceding were featured at a wildly successful concert at the prestigious Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center.

In 2014 Gene and the Lone Sharks were inducted into the Dan’s Papers “Best of the Best” Hall of Fame, having been honored for the better part of 20 Years as favorite musicians/band. In 2015, Gene Casey received the LISA, aka , the Long Island Sound Award by the Long Island Music Hall of Fame, for his contributions to the Island’s musical landscape. In 2017, the Northforker.com (the on-line arm of the Suffolk Times) named Gene and the group “People of the Year” for 2016.

M2D Trio

Pluck & Rail is the acoustic intersection of Andrew Sussman of the prog-rock heavyweights, Frogg Café, and George Gierer of the folkabilly band, South County. George bought his first guitar at age 17 and moved to Austin, TX, where he soaked up the sounds of the south and was forever changed. After hearing hearing Eddie Van Halen at the age of 15, the classically-trained cellist Sussman starting spinning Bach into the blues and Beethoven into Zappa.

Pluck & Rail’s debut album Trigger is an eclectic song series telling tales of misfits and mishaps that would make Tom Waits smile. A rare acoustic album that navigates the waters of folk, blues, country and sometimes punk, George and Andy harmonize and sing of the darker side of life: bodysnatching, addiction, divorce, hospitals and graveyards. Pluck & Rail believe that in our bumps and bruises we find our true beauty. Trigger is the sonic equivalent of a best-selling page-turner— come on along for a brilliant 37 minute ride!

No Depression calls Bill Scorzari "a force. His songwriting is stellar, his picking above par and his voice fits his songs perfectly." Bill Scorzari is a New York-based singer-songwriter, often likened to Sam Baker, Tom Waits, Bruce Springsteen and Kris Kristofferson. March 10, 2017 marked the release of Through These Waves, his second full-length record, produced by Jonah Tolchin (Yep Roc) and engineered, mixed, and mastered at the Bomb Shelter in Nashville, TN. John Platt (WFUV) says of the artist and the album, "Bill Scorzari has a lived-in voice that says, 'Listen to these songs.' They spring from the earth and the ocean with an open heart and the wisdom of experience." The album features a cast of musicians including Joachim Cooder, Laur Joamets, Will Kimbrough, Chris Scruggs, Eamon McLoughlin, Jon Estes, Brent Burke, Kim Richey, Kyle Tuttle and Danny Roaman. In a recent interview, Tolchin calls Bill Scorzari, “one of the greatest songwriters I’ve ever heard.” With sincere and robust lyrics, Scorzari’s raspy vocals usher the listener breezily into his world.

He-Bird, She-Bird

Stir up a gravel-silk-and-honey vocal blend, add strings and wings, and you’ve got He-Bird, She-Bird. This harmony-driven Americana trio from Long Island, NY brings a rich and heartfelt sound to their stand-out original songs and spirited cover interpretations. The band is thrilled to announce the June 1, 2017 release of its debut album, He-Bird, She-Bird.

Todd Evans is a longtime advocate and curator of live local music and a director of The Bluegrass Club of Long Island (BCLI), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The first band he performed with was The Clam Diggers in fifth grade, and many years later, he continues to learn through several music-related projects and configurations. Ask him what his musical approach is and he’ll tell you, “If you listen real closely to the song, it’ll tell you what to do.”

California native Terri Hall has studied piano, voice, and saxophone, and has sung with every choir and chorus that would have her. After moving east, she got up out of the alto section and began playing and singing at local jams, where she found her musical soul mates. A natural-born storyteller, Terri holds a degree in History with an emphasis in Ethnomusicology; she has set her sights on giving a TED Talk.

Christine Kellar has been transfixed and transported by vocal harmonies for as long as she can remember. She enjoys writing songs and charting vocal arrangements, and aims one day to publish choral pieces and stage a children’s musical. Among her previous musical projects is Dance on the Planet, an album of original children’s music.

He-Bird, She-Bird performs at venues ranging from large fairs and festivals to intimate house concerts. Check out the distinctive sound of He-Bird, She-Bird -- people are flocking to see them!

Based on Long Island, Kirsten Maxwell has made great strides since diving head first into her career. She first stepped onto the stage at age 5 at a small opera house in NYC. Kirsten would perform there up until High School where her focus shifted to musical theater. Simultaneously, she started learning guitar and writing her own songs. Kirsten graduated from College in 2014 with a degree in Creative Writing and a new love — folk music.

Today, Kirsten is often compared to Joan Baez, Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell. “I never thought I’d ever hear a voice as angelic and mesmerizing as I did when I first started listening to Joan Baez some 50 years ago, but then I heard the voice, the songs and melodies of Kirsten Maxwell,” says Jon Stein, host of Hootenanny Café on WTBQ.

However, Kirsten’s appeal goes well-beyond her vocal abilities. She gives everything to her live performances and has been described as “making love to the audience”. Although her self-taught guitar chops are minimal, she plays with such delicacy and taste that the guitar seems to be extension of her body. Her delivery creates a level of intimacy that welcomes new audiences in like old friends. With a quick wit and commanding stage presence, Kirsten gives the impression of being more accomplished than her 24 years.

In April 2015, she independently released her debut album, Crimson. It has been met with great success and fans await her highly anticipated EP, to be released this Spring.

Hank Stone

It's no surprise that HANK STONE has been hailed as one of Long Island’s best songwriters. His memorable hooks and melodies, “two notes and you know it’s Hank” guitar style and uncanny ability to tell a story with a song make the emotional impact of his music both immediate and compelling.
Long-time friend TODD EVANS brings on the spice and hot sauce with a style that combines jazz, swing and world music textures. His eclectic song choices and rich baritone voice provide the perfect “ying” to Hank’s self-penned “yang.”
BOB WESTCOTT is a talented songwriter, singer, and fingerpicker himself, having made his name in the Greenwich Village scene, but is content to hold the bass seat here. Hank hopes to get him to sing a few of his own tunes as well.
GARY SETTODUCATTO has played drums and percussion with the EVT Band (formerly Corrientes), and brings a varied World Music vibe to the proceedings.
BILL AYASSE can be found picking on his mandolin and bowing his fiddle in various Bluegrass ensembles, including Eastbound Freight, as well as with the legendary progressive band Frogg Cafe. It's an honor to have him join the Hank Stone Band when his schedule permits, adding some Americana flavor.

Together, Hank, Todd, Bob, Gary, and Bill have found synergy - the whole is indeed greater than the sum of its parts. So come out to hear them sing songs of love and loss... of despair and hope... of railroads and sailing ships..

$25 and $65

Tickets

Parking available at the Montauk Point State Park lots with overflow parking at Camp Hero State Park and other off-site locations. Shuttle bus provided between parking lots and venue. Please check the website for more information. Parking is limited, so please arrive early for best parking.

http://www.greateasternmusicfestival.com

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