The music lineup for Winter Village so far includes the Gibson Brothers (Friday), Della Mae (Saturday) and Chris Stuart & Janet Beazley (Friday – Sunday). Conventional wisdom suggests that it is not always sensible to hire a band two years in a row. But, I thought we should break the rules and bring the Gibson Brothers back after their great Friday shows and workshops last year. It is hard to resist a great New York state band that writes, sings and plays as well as Leigh and Eric and their fine band. And after they were hired, they also happened to win the 2012 IBMA Entertainer of the Year and Gospel Song of the Year.Workshops will begin on Friday at 1pm with afternoon instrumental and vocal workshops by both the Gibson Brothers and Stuart-Beazley. At 4pm, a Winter Village tradition returns, with an unplugged performance/workshop by the Gibson Brothers where they give us an inside look at how they arrange material and provide intimate, and as yet undisclosed secrets, of their glamorous life on the bluegrass highway. Friday night show will feature a set by Chris and Janet and two sets by the Gibson Brothers.
I saw Della Mae at the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival this year. While there is some novelty in an all-women band from the Northeast playing bluegrass, I was won over by the quality of the their singing and songs, their instrumental prowess, and their infectious energy and enthusiasm for the music. They have arrived on the bluegrass music scene and I am thrilled they will arrive in Ithaca on Saturday for a couple of shows and workshops. They were nominated for 2012 IBMA Emerging Artist of the Year and recently returned from a 6 week State Department Tour of the Middle East. Another 2012 Emerging Artist Nominee, Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen, will be performing and teaching workshops on Saturday. Frank is an amazing mandolin player and musician, former bandleader of the Navy Band’s Country Current. His band, Dirty Kitchen, features Mike Munford one of the great banjo players in bluegrass. I am delighted to bring songwriter extraordinaire Chris Stuart , along with his musical partner Janet Beazley, back to Ithaca to perform at Winter Village. Chris was a founding member, main songwriter and bandleader of the original Cornerstone unit and moved to California in 1995 to form Chris Stuart and Backcountry. He and Janet are known not only for their writing and performing, but for their excellent workshops. They will be teaching songwriting, harmony singing and instrumental workshops throughout the weekend. A recent addition to the festival lineup is Paris Texas featuring flatpickin’ phenom Bobby Henrie, joined by David Cavage (banjo) and Steve Belcher (bass) of the Hickory Project, and yours truly on mandolin and fiddle. Dee Specker and other guests will join us to open the concert sets on Saturday afternoon at La Tourelle.
Thanks and hope you can come.