Andrew Hardin

Andrew Hardin began his musical career as a drummer at age eight, and began playing the guitar as a teenager living in Hawaii. Hardin played progressive country in California in the mid-seventies, major-label rock with the Dingoes from Australia on A&M Records, and hard-core blues with ex-John Lee Hooker partner Eddie Kirkland. Andrew was working as a cab driver in New York City in 1980 when he met Tom Russell, who was also driving cab. Russell picked up Grateful Dead lyricist Robert Hunter one evening, which led to a gig opening for Hunter at the Lonestar Cafe in New York. Russell and Hardin formed a band shortly thereafter, and began touring locally and internationally, eventually playing all over the world and recording over twenty albums. Andrew Hardin and Tom Russell performed as an acoustic duo from the early 90's through 2005, appearing at major music festivals in the U.S., Canada, and Europe, and joining tours with Nanci Griffith and John Prine. Hardin has accompanied Russell twice on "Late Night with David Letterman."
Hardin's role as co-producer of the Tom Russell Band recordings of the mid-eighties led to a career producing other major and independent label acts in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Hardin produced the 2002 recording "In Demand" by Norwegian singer Paal Flaata for Universal Music. Hardin has also performed over the years with artists such as Dave Alvin, Ian Tyson, Katy Moffatt, Nanci Griffith, Eliza Gilkyson, and Ray Wylie Hubbard. Andrew is featured soloing on the 2002 Nanci Griffith DVD "Winter Marquee." Andrew played the riveting electric guitar solo on "Welcome Back," the opening cut and single off Eliza Gilkyson's 2002 CD "Lost and Found."
In 2005, Andrew released "Blue Acoustic," a collection of instrumental acoustic guitar duets with songwriters Dave Alvin, Ray Wylie Hubbard,

Eliza Gilkyson, and Tom Russell, cowboy singer Don Edwards, and bassist Washtub Jerry. Also available are "Just Like This Train," a collection of vocals and instrumentals from 2002, and a newly remastered "Coney Island Moon," featuring guitar great Albert Lee.
Andrew's guitar style incorporates influences as diverse as Roy Buchanan, Clarence White, Ry Cooder, Gabby Pahinui, and Grady Martin; that is to say it contains elements of blues, rock, R&B, country, tropical, and Spanish-flavored music.

Michael Hearne

How do you say "Acoustic Southwestern Americana Musical Guitar Genius" in just two words? Michael Hearne, that's how. Since the 1970s, this native Dallas Texan has strolled down a musical path inspired by the great folk and country singer-songwriters who typify and have characterized the Americana "roots" scene. Even minus the undeniable influence of the musical giants he admires and respects to this day, Michael simply had no choice when it came to deciding to be who he is.

This prodigious musical talent was blatantly obvious in Hearne as a young kid. With minimal formal training as a child, coupled with hours of music immersion and hardcore practice, his destiny was forever tangled in "wire and wood." Hearne had his hands on his first real guitar by age seven and by 12, Michael was a fixture at parties and local homespun events, not realizing that this period was actually dress rehearsal for what would prove to be an ever-evolving and rewarding musical career.

Michael continues to leave an indelible mark on his audiences not only with his signature "Michael Hearne" guitar sound, but also with songs and stories that are rich in lyrical prose, imagery and humor.

He is a songwriter's songwriter, cut from the same cloth that propels an artist on a committed journey to experiencing life as a series of creative events and fulfilments. Even though the musical high road is typically scattered with twists of fate and a few u-turns along the way (all of which make for great lyrics), Michael continues to forge ahead by just keeping on doing what he loves.

Longevity has yielded Hearne a vast fan base that is solid and ever expanding. Anyone who has ever grooved to one of Hearne's impeccable guitar leads or kicked up their heels to one of the many two stepping tunes played by him or with his band, South by Southwest, has also probably been caught singing along at some point in the night, note for note, with that beautifully distinctive voice that can never be mistaken for anyone else.

Hearne's never met an audience he didn't like and fans quickly become repeat offenders on the house concert, music festival, and club scenes, as both the man and the music are extraordinarily genuine, inspirational, and entertaining.

His newest CD, The High Road to Taos, has received critical acclaim, with some discriminating reviewers declaring it to be his finest work to date.

"Michael Hearne's record embodies all that I love about New Mexico. Between his whiskey velvet voice, the evocative songwriting and gorgeous musical production, I found myself profoundly aching for my favorite place in the world" – Eliza Gilkyson

"Once in a while there comes a recording I never tire of playing. 'My Funny Valentine' by Chat Baker comes to mind. 'Come Away With Me' by Norah Jones is another. It's like they were recorded only yesterday even though it might be years since they were first released. In January of 2008, I heard Michael Hearne's 'High Road To Taos' and I knew from the second or third time I played it, and that's been a lot of plays ago, that this was one of those records I'll always play and every time I do it will be as fascinating, alluring and inspiring as the first time I played it. It's a very real classic and it's my hope it gets the wide audience it so richly deserves." – Keith Sykes

Just after its release in December 2007, The High Road to Taos landed a coveted position on the KTAOS Top Ten recordings chart for that year. Michael Hearne is now being heard around the world thanks to the World Wide Web, old-fashioned regional and national airwaves and because of the legion of loyal fans who continue to request and support "Taos's own, Mr. Michael Hearne." A dedicated and eclectic fan base, which spills across borders and state lines and represents a smorgasbord of musical tastes, keeps Hearne perfectly aligned with the spotlight.

"His voice, style and outstanding musicianship blend into one beautiful gem. It's no wonder Michael's work will stand the test of time, as he remains the artist who captures the musical essence of the southwest. Like it's second nature. That's because it is."

A consistent winner of the "Best of Taos" awards for performer and singer for the past 10 years, Hearne's songwriting credits are impressive. Awards include Song of the Year, Album of the Year, and Best Production at the 2001 New Mexico MIC AWARDS, for "A Taos Christmas Eve," 2002. He has penned songs for Jerry Jeff Walker and Gary P. Nunn ("Lesson to be Learned from Love") and his New Mexico anthem, "New Mexico Rain," recorded by his uncle and aunt, Bill and Bonnie Hearne, and country music legend Johnny Rodriguez.

His critically acclaimed CD "Sight and Sound" – 11 songs written about 11 different works of art – won seven awards at The New Mexico Music Awards, making him the biggest winner in their history. This CD includes the song The Songwriter, co-written with Grammy winners Mentor Williams and Andy Byrd. Michael Hearne has also written songs with his good friends Shake Russell, Keith Sykes, and many others.

He and his band South By Southwest (a.k.a. SxSW) are best described as country swing/southwestern Americana. Loyal fans who continue to pack dance halls, clubs and house concert venues listen and two step the night away to Hearne and the sounds of long time band members Carmen Acciaioli, a musical master of the steel guitar, fiddle, mandolin, dobro, and hammered dulcimer; and the extremely talented Zeke Severenson on stand up and electric bass.

Fats Kaplin

Born and raised in New York City, influenced by jazz, gypsy, and traditional string band music, Fats Kaplin had already been featured on legendary recordings and extensive tours by the time he was 18 years old.

Now, living in Nashville, he is one of the music industry�s leading multi-instrumentalists (fiddle, steel, accordion, mandolin, guitar and so on).

Fats grew up in an apartment in Manhattan and remembers falling asleep to the sound of salsa music rising up the airshaft, Johnny Pineapple�s Hawaiian Revue seeping through the steam pipes from the apartment below, and Cantor Ackerman practicing next door. It was in this melting pot that Fats� musical tastes were formed.

Though Fats was raised in a family of artists he lay down his sketch pad at an early age and picked up a banjo. Then a fiddle. Then a whole assortment of instruments quickly followed. Intrigued by the folk scene that was developing in New York in the 1960s, Fats grew up learning to play by listening to old recordings of string bands, early jazz and other world music.

At age 17 Fats went on the road and recorded two duo albums with country blues guitarist Roy Bookbinder for the Blue Goose label. After playing for several years in numerous New York early jazz and old timey outfits (and a stint as a craps dealer at the age of 21 in Las Vegas), Fats joined the Tom Russell band in the mid 1980s. They recorded and toured extensively.

In 1992 Fats moved to Nashville at the urging of Kevin Welch. He joined Kevin�s band The Overtones which also included Mike Henderson, Glenn Worf, Harry Stinson and Kieran Kane. Fats was quickly sought out by artists as diverse as The Tractors, The Manhattan Transfer, Pure Prairie League, Mark Knopfler, Nanci Griffith, The Mavericks, Suzy Boggus, Buddy Miller, Waylon Jennings, Garth Brooks, Bad Company, Jason and the Scorchers, Peter Rowan, Paul Burch, The Dead Reckoners and many others to record and tour. He has received recognition including nominations as instrumentalist of the year by both the Nashville and Austin Music Awards.

In 2004, he collaborated with Kieran Kane and Kevin Welch on You Can't Save Everybody, and with them again in 2006 on Lost John Dean, both of which hit number one on the Americana Radio Chart. Now known as Kane Welch Kaplin, their newest self-titled release, Kane Welch Kaplin, is out in September, 2007.

Fats and his wife Kristi Rose, with whom he also writes and records, have created the musical genre known as Pulp Country and have released two critically acclaimed albums, This Is Pulp Country! and Kristi Rose, Live In Holland. He has also recently been recording a great deal of his own original instrumental music. They live in a rambling old bungalow in the heart of Nashville, where visitors are met by the aroma of great Italian cooking, the strains of old 78s, rooms filled with musical instruments from around the world, and what they like to think of as congenial wit. Fats continues to compose, record and tour.

In 2010, Fats and Kristi Rose put out a Christmas album, I Wonder as I Wander. This lovely album is a beautiful mix of instrumentals and vocal pieces, and is available at

For more information on Fats, visit Pulp Country.



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