News/Thoughts

Americana Music Profiles

Return To Roots

Raised in rural Montgomery County, Virginia, Steve Thomas’s early years as a young boy were mostly isolated – spent living on a working farm with seven brothers and sisters. But like many growing up in a rural setting, music was the main source of entertainment. The Southern Appalachians were a great location for music, and Steve learned early on that ...

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The Family Sowell

One of the favorite style of acts among bluegrass fans these days is sibling harmony and family bands. Knoxville, Tennessee is the home base for one of those up and coming groups; The Family Sowell. The brother/sister ensemble ranges from ages 23 down to 13. Jacob, Joshua, twin sisters – Naomi and Abigail, John-Mark, and Justin all share in the ...

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Americana, Classic Country Roots

Colorado musician Lee Sims turned a middle school talent show performance into a musical career that resulted in a Colorado Entertainer of the year award in 2001; Colorado Country Music Hall of Fame Entertainer of the year in 2003; and a three time Golden Music Award Winner in Nashville, TN. Lee’s dad served in military and was in charge of ...

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Frances Mooney

Frances Mooney has been playing music for over 50 years. This Atlanta Country Music Hall of Famer was a high profile singer and bass player with The Bluegrass Generation in the Louisville, KY bluegrass scene in the mid-70s during the early days of Ricky Skaggs and Vince Gill. Both actually contributed to a few of the early Bluegrass Generation albums. Born and ...

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Americana Down Under

It was an incapacitating car accident in his late teens that moved Perth, Western Australian artist Andy Michaels to pick up a guitar. The result was a fusion of eclectic tastes and melodic sounds featuring hints of folk, country, Americana and contemporary pop. His latest project, Incendiary Heart, a 14-track, pop leaning mixture, with nostalgic influences from the 70s and ...

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The River Ratz

The River Ratz, a four-piece Acoustic Americana Band hailing from Charlotte, North Carolina, says they were born in Bluegrass, and bred in Rock ‘n Roll. With deep roots in Bluegrass music, they perform a wide variety of musical styles which includes not only bluegrass music, but also country, rock, Cajun, Irish, blues and folk. Husband and wife, Steve and Margie ...

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Song Interpreter

Christine Lavin called Mara Levine, “one of the best singers of her generation,” and David Amram called the international touring artist and jewelry designer a “Golden Voice.” Mara considers herself to be a song interpreter, and is considered by many to be an exceptional song-finder. Rather than penning original songs, Mara picks songs that she loves, but invisions them sounding ...

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400 Songs And Counting

After years of working with and for other artists, Australian musician Rod McCormack decided it was finally time to release a project of his own. His debut CD, Fingerprints, is schedule to be released September 20th. Rod got to check an item off his bucket list recently by performing an album release show at the famed Station Inn in Nashville, ...

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Living The Life Of Music

Dewey and Leslie Brown are truly living the life of music. Dewey, a fiddler, played in Dr. Ralph Stanley’s band as a Clinch Mountain Boy for 12 years, until Ralph’s death in 2016. Dewey started playing in high school with the band Blue Ridge. In 1999 Dewey won first place at the Old Time Fiddler’s Convention in Galax, VA. He ...

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Nylon Strings and a World of Possibilities

Zack Walther was a child of the 80s. When given the choice of band, choir, or art in elementary school, on the advice of his best friend at the time, they chose choir. “I was in it from then on,” he said. Zack grew up singing in the school choir and learning to play piano by ear on his brother’s ...

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