Thursday, November 13, 2014

Progressive Bluegrass Comes to Davis Square November 19

Word of notloB's Davis Square Theatre series is getting around, and as a result we continue to book stellar artists (Rushad Eggleston (10/9), Mr Sun (11/30)), the latest being David Grier, Michael Barnett & Dominick Leslie!

Wednesday, November 19, 8pm
Davis Square Theatre, 255 Elm Street, Somerville
Tickets through eventbrite.

David Grier stands at the forefront of progressive bluegrass guitarists, following in the footsteps of Clarence White and Tony Rice. Three-time winner of the Best Guitar Player of the Year award by the Bluegrass International Music Association, Grier began playing guitar at age eight. His father, Lamar Grier, played banjo with Bill Monroe's Blue Grass Boys and Grier had an opportunity to learn from a number of musicians, inclu
ding legendary guitarist Clarence White. Although surrounded by bluegrass musicians, Grier counts Ry Cooder, Jimi Hendrix, and Eric Clapton as influences.
Grier played bluegrass with the the Country Gazette and Doug Dillard in the '80s, but he began recording his own projects in 1988 with Freewheeling followed by 1991's Climbing the Walls with mandolin player Mike Compton. By the mid-'90s Grier had become a valued session player, working with quality musicians like fiddler Stuart Duncan, banjoist Tony Furtado, and working on projects like the Grammy-winning Great Dobro Sessions.
Grier has shown a willingness to play in a variety of styles, and he has refused to be confined to any musical genre. From the potpourri of his 1995 release Lone Soldier to the progressive bluegrass of Psychograss' Like Minds, Grier has continued to develop as an artist. Both of these projects, plus 1997's Panorama, have been purely instrumental projects, a feast for lovers of acoustic music.
In 1998, Hootenanny was released on his own recording label, Dreadnought, and the following year he recorded the jazzier Phillips, Grier & Flinner with mandolin player Matt Flinner and bassist Todd Phillips. He has been recognized by Acoustic Guitar as one of the ten most influential artists of the '90s. Grier's inventive and occasionally unorthodox style along with his ability to hop from genre to genre continue to keep his music fresh and vital.
Ronnie D. Lankford, Jr.

Howdy! Mike Here… 
I Feel Like I’m Living A Dream!
I’ve been having a blast travelin’ and performing around the country and internationally with heroes of mine. Having grown up in Nashville, I have a special place in my heart for bluegrass and country music. Fiddle camps-- Mark O’Connor String Conference, Christian Howes’ Creative String Camp, Mt. Shasta Fiddle Camp---have provided a tremendous source of inspiration and exposure to incredible players from a wide variety of genres. The great bluegrass fiddler Aubrey Haynie inspired me to record my first CD “Lost Indian” when I was 14. One summer at Crystal Plohman’s ‘International Fiddle Camp’ at Vanderbilt, I had the great honor of working with Bobby Hicks, Buddy Spicher, and Vassar Clemens, three of the finest people and fiddlers there have ever been. They willingly showed me everything I could get my ears on. 
A year or two after the camp when I was 15, Bobby introduced me to the legendary Jesse McReynolds. I had the incredible opportunity to tour with Jesse and his Virginia Boys including regular weekend performances on the Grand Ole Opry. Touring around on Jesse’s bus at such a young age was a very humbling experience and really brought the music and legacy of Jim and Jesse alive for me. Jesse is one of the great bluegrass pioneers and his humble spirit and musical originality has been a huge personal and musical influence on me. 
After I moved to Massachusetts from Nashville, I collaborated on several projects. I became good friends with Boston based mandolinist, Joe Walsh, who introduced me to one of New England’s renowned folk bands, Northern Lights. Together we toured with Northern Lights and recorded “One Day” in 2007. Through that project, I met the great folk singer, Jonathan Edwards, who later invited me to record on his project “My Love Will Keep”. Even earlier, I collaborated with banjoist Gordon Stone. Gordon really helped me develop my improvisation, and got me playing out as part of the Gordon Stone Trio. Our CD “Rhymes with Orange” won Vermont’s 2006 Album of the Year Award. Through Gordon, I met guitarist/mandolinist/singer Michael Daves. After a few years of mandolin lessons and scattered performances together, Michael introduced me to Tony Trischka, one of the most influential banjo players in roots music. I have had the honor of touring with Tony on his “Double Banjo Bluegrass” project and “Territory.” Through the “Double Banjo” project, I shared the stage with the great Bela Fleck, comedian/banjoist Steve Martin, and Greg Liszt (banjoist of Crooked Still /Bruce Springsteen fame). 
Soon after, Greg conceived The Deadly Gentlemen, We have recorded “The Bastard Masterpiece,” our first album in 2008 and completed “Carry Me To Home” in 2010 with current band members including myself, Greg, Stash Wyslouch, Dominick Leslie, and Sam Grisman. Sam connected me with his dad, David Grisman, who in 2009 decided to change his David Grisman Quintet (DGQ) to a Sextet because he wanted to bring the fiddle back into his music. David has been a huge inspiration to me, and has taught me a lot about the history of bluegrass as well as what it means to be a good all-around musician. I’ve had some BIG shoes to fill of past fiddle greats in the history of the DGQ: Vassar Clemens, Stephan Grappelli, Darol Anger, Mark O’Connor… all heroes of mine. Grant Gordy, the DGQ guitarist, and I have also been playing together is his own quartet. Stayed tuned. These days, between tours, living in Boston and intermittently attending Berklee College of Music has provided a chance to hang out and play music with some of the finest musicians of this generation’s acoustic music scene. 
Don’t wake me up!
In 2007, Mike Barnett was the recipient of the Daniel Pearl Memorial Violin, created by Jonathan Cooper and given at the Mark O’Connor String Conference. Mike plays a Cooper violin today.

Colorado native Dominick Leslie has been around live music all his life and thanks to his dad, he has been playing since he was old enough to hold an instrument. He attended his first bluegrass festival at the age of five months and grew up listening to and jamming with his dad's bluegrass band. At the age of four he acquired a ukulele tuned like the bottom four strings of a guitar and as the years passed Dominick developed a deep passion for music. This love for music was apparent at an early age as Dominick's abilities progressed rapidly on guitar, fiddle and mandolin. Eventually Dominick switched his focus completely to the mandolin and by the time he was 12, he was writing his own music and practicing every day. Just a few years later at 15, he recorded his first solo CD "Signs of Courage" which received rave reviews from Bluegrass Unlimited Magazine. In 2004, Dominick became the youngest contestant ever to win the Rockygrass mandolin contest. Since then he has placed first in the Merlefest mandolin contest and second in the Walnut Valley International Mandolin contest. Dominick was also featured in Mike Marshall's Young American Mandolin Ensemble. This elite group of seven young musicians was invited to perform with Mike at the Mandolines de Lunel festival in France in October 2007. Dominick also had the unique opportunity to study with mandolin virtuosos David Grisman, Mike Marshall, Chris Thile, Don Stiernberg, Andy Statman, Mike Compton and Hamilton de Holanda at the Mandolin Symposium and since then his bluegrass roots have evolved into current interests in jazz, classical and other "world" music, hence his enrollment in the Berklee College of Music in 2008. Dominick is currently a member of the Boston based group The Deadly Gentlemen, and can occasionally be seen performing with The Grant Gordy Quartet, Noam Pikelny and Friends and a few other spontaneous acoustic groups. Whether writing a new piece, learning a tune or performing with his confreres, Dominick will always share his love of music with others and enjoy playing the mandolin.

Tickets through eventbrite.


No comments: