Foghorn

 The Foghorn Stringband is the present day gold standard for real-deal hard-hitting, genuine old-time American string band music, with eight albums, thousands of shows, over 15 years of touring under their belts, and an entirely new generation of roots musicians following their lead. The Foghorn Stringband is comprised of four master performers and historians:

Caleb Klauder (vocals, mandolin, fiddle) from Orcas Island, Washington

Reeb Willms (vocals, guitar) from rural Farmer, Washington

Nadine Landry (vocals, upright bass) from the Gaspé Coast, Eastern Quebec

Stephen ‘Sammy’ Lind (vocals, fiddle, banjo) from Minneapolis, Minnesota

Each member of Foghorn Stringband exemplifies the best of the roots music traditions from their respective native cultures. Caleb Klauder’s wistful, keening vocals and rapid-fire mandolin picking are as influenced by Southern roots music as much as they are by his upbringing in the sea islands of coastal Washington State. Reeb Willms hails from the wind swept Eastern farmlands of Washington. Her musical family and rural upbringing are are on display with every note she sings and every heart she breaks. Nadine Landry’s roots lie in the rural backroads of Acadian Québec, and her high lonesome vocals have delighted audiences the world over. Her earth-shaking bass playing is the rumbling backbone of the Foghorn sound. Minnesotan Stephen ‘Sammy’Lind, simply put, is the old-time fiddler of his generation whose tone and voice are as old as the same hills that gave birth to this music. Together, these four have forged a sound like no other.

Steam Machine

Steam Machine sits somewhere between the full, round, sounds of American old-time stringband music and the raw drive of early bluegrass. With clean, powerful fiddling and rolling three finger banjo they highlight unique and beautiful Midwestern repertoire alongside tunes and songs from Appalachia. A rock-solid rhythm section and honest, unprocessed singing round out their sound. All four band members are actively involved in perpetuating roots music and dance traditions as players, teachers, and organizers in their home communities and wherever they The band is:

AJ Srubas- fiddle

Aaron Tacke - banjo, vocals

Rina Rossi- guitar, vocals, square dance calling

Nokosee Fields- bass

The Corn Potato String Band

The Corn Potatos have delighted audiences with their driving fiddle tunes and harmonious singing across the US, Canada, Europe, Mexico, and India. They are multi-instrumentalists dedicated to continuing the music and dance traditions of the Central and Southern US. In addition to being champion fiddlers they play banjo, guitar, bass and mandolin and deftly handle many different antiquated styles including ballads,“ho-downs,” country “rags” and southern gospel, specializing in twin fiddling and double banjo tunes. Aaron Jonah Lewis (Detroit, MI) is a multi-instrumentalist, performer and educator. Lindsay McCaw plays fiddle, banjo, guitar, accordion and piano. 

Patti Kusturok 

At the age of four, Patti began to learn playing the fiddle, and has a resume that reads like that of an Olympic champion. A few to her credit includes the Canadian Junior Champion (1985), 3-time Champion at the famous Pembroke, ON competition, 6 time Manitoba Champion, 3 time Grand North American Champion, and in 1994, 1995 and again in 1996, Patti won the prestigious Canadian Grand Masters Fiddling Championship in Ottawa, ON. Patti was the first woman in the history of Canada to ever win and was the very first person from Western Canada to attain the crown.Patti is known across the country in the fiddle music world and with her humble demeanour and personable stage presence allows the audience to soak in the music and connect with her in a special way. Patti has a razor sharp wit and when she starts playing her fiddle the musical spirits instantly come alive in whatever room she’s playing!!

After being one of the most sought after old time dance players in her home province of Manitoba, Patti has taken that amazing feel and drive, mixed it up with a little humour, and put together a fun and entertaining show that will have you laughing and stomping your feet, with maybe even a tear or two as you allow yourself to remember the good old days of having a kitchen party until the wee hours.

Bob Bovee and Pop Wagner

Bob is a Nebraska native whose family sang and played the old-time songs. Many of the western and railroad songs he does were learned from his grandmother and uncle. He plays banjo and autoharp, sings and yodels, and can drive a dance band with his guitar and harmonica. Bob is well known and loved for his dry and witty stage humor. 

Pop has quite the reputation as a singer, picker, fiddler, lasso twirler, poet and downright funny guy.He appeared quite frequently on Public Radio's A Prairie Home Companion during the show's formative years and for the last five decades he has worked his cowboy magic throughout 44 states and ten countries.His cowboy anthems crackle with the warmth of a prairie campfire and his old time fiddle tunes set toes a-tappin' while he serves up spellbinding rope tricks and tall stories--all with a good dose of friendly humor.

 

Branded Bluegrass

Branded Bluegrass is a band from central Indiana with a catalog of music deeply rooted in traditional bluegrass and gospel, with a flair for some contemporary bluegrass, classic country, and even a little bit of rock-n-roll now and then.  Branded is made up of Larry Norfleet, providing powerful rhythm on guitar, as well as lead vocals and a defined songwriting prowess.  Jesse Norfleet adds his hard-driving banjo while also adding lonesome fills and exciting leads with the dobro or joining in on fiddle now and again.  Tristen Norfleet, who plays numerous instruments, offers his mandolin skills with some great chops and Monroe-like leads.  Mike Martin drives the boys on doghouse bass and sometimes plays the mountain dulcimer.  Gil Benson joins the band as one of the most respected fiddle players in the region.

Bleu Django

Early in the new millenium, Indianapolis guitarist Bob Foster, an ardent fan of big band swing music and the finger-picking guitar style of Chet Akins, sat down to play someDjango Reinhardt tunes with Mooresville resident Daryl Jones, one of the midwest’s finest flatpickers. Both had been intrigued for some time with the music of Reinhardt, Stephane Grappelli and their famous 1930s combo, the Quintette of the Hot Club of France. Bob had even formed a fan club, Club de Django, in hopes of finding other gypsy jazz aficionados in the Midwest. A few years later, they received a phone call from Carolyn Dutton of Nashville, Indiana, a jazz/swing violinist who recently had returned to her native Indiana after working for 30 years as a professional musician in New York City. Carolyn, who had just finished getting a Master’s degree in jazz studies at Indiana University, had during her long career performed and/or recorded with artists ranging from Doc Cheatum to Dan Hicks to JohnSebastian—but had never really had a chance to immerse herself in the Hot Club style that had been her love since she first heard Grappelli recordings in the 1970s.  Bleu Django is joined by Jesse Wittman on bass.

The Matchsellers

As featured on NPR’s Mountain Stage Radio Show, The Bluegrass Situation and Bluegrass Today, the Matchsellers are Warsaw, Indiana native Andrew Morris and Julie Bates of Kansas City, Missouri. Their exciting, gritty, and often hilarious stage show has been developed over 6 years of touring across the US and Europe. The two met while working as American Cultural Ambassadors in Germany via the FulbrightProgram and began exploring traditional American music from abroad. Since then, they have collected influences from various styles of American folk music including Bluegrass, Old-Time, Western Swing,Cajun, Gospel, Hambone, Fiddlesticks and others. Their work has delved into subjects as academic as"German-American Musical Exchange" and as wild as "Science Fiction Bluegrass".

Kountry Kernals

Paying homage to the founders and fathers of the IndianaFiddlers’Gathering, the Kountry Kernals traditionally open eachG athering on Friday night. Currently the band is made up ofJohnRicks, Walt Wilson, Kevin Brown, Chuck Klinker, and John Watson. The band plays old-time country music as it was heard in the 1920s. Many of its former members have performed at most every Gathering since its inception in 1973.

Bahler's Golden Age Band

Bahler's "Golden Age" Band fronted by Brad Bahler on mandolin/banjo, John Bahler (guitar, mandolin), Karen Bahler (upright bass), David Bahler (fiddle, banjo) and Alec Hurtubise (banjo).They play music from the "Golden Age" of rural music at the roots of Bluegrass, Brother Duets,Early Country music, Western Swing and Gospel with a special emphasis on vocal harmony and"working the microphone" with their instruments. It's an entertaining show that takes the audience through a nice variety of traditional music. Bahler's "Golden Age" Band will also bef eatured at Sunday morning's Gospel Concert at 10am, which often features a segment on SacredHarp Singing.

Mark Lyons

Popular children's performer Mark Lyons from Chicago will return for our 10am SaturdayMorning Children's Concert at the main stage.He'll have the kids (and adults) singing, jumping and dancing!

Tamara Loewenthal

Tamara Loewenthal has been performing and teaching various styles of American and Celtic step dance for over 30 years. Growing up in the Appalachian foothills of southwestern Pennsylvania, Tamara fell in love with clogging as a young adult and has been flatfooting ever since. A founding member of the nationally acclaimed dance company Rhythm in Shoes, she has toured across the United States, Canada, Great Britain, and Japan. She has won awards for her clogging, including a blue ribbon at the Mt. Airy, NC, Fiddler's Convention. Tamara is an accomplished French Canadian step dancer and received a prestigious Arts Council ofIndianapolis Creative Renewal Fellowship to study with masters in this field. Tamara will lead and call the Saturday night Dance.

Big Possum String Band

Big Possum Stringband is the 21st century’s answer to the question, “whatever happened to Appalachian music?” Formed in 2017, the Possums are young, excited, and passionate about the rich legacy of traditional music of the American South. Contest winners Tessa Dillon (fiddle) and Seth Swingle (banjo) are joined by multi-instrumentalist Evan Collins to make oldtime country music’s hottest new band. Fresh off their 1st place win at the 2018 Clifftop festival (generally regarded as the most prestigious contest in the genre), the Possums are bringing their mix of breakdowns, showpieces, ballads and rounder songs to audiences around the nation and the world. With three-part harmonies, electrifying fiddle breaks and a pounding square-dance beat, the Big Possum will have you stamping, yelling and dancing along.

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