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Music for kids and their adults
Acoustic, Americana and Roots
Exploring the musical legacy of Prince and beyond
It was roughly a decade ago that Pert Near Sandstone first gathered around a microphone in a Minneapolis basement to record their debut album, Up And Down The River. So much has happened since then: highs and lows, personal struggles and artistic triumphs, new faces and new sounds.
The winding road they've traveled over the years makes it all the more meaningful for the band to come full circle on their dazzling latest release, Discovery Of Honey (2016), which finds them once again recording in a basement and reuniting with founding member Ryan Young, who's spent the past seven years touring the world playing fiddle with bluegrass stars Trampled By Turtles. "Besides playing with us, Ryan was also our first recording engineer back when we were just starting out," says mandolin/fiddle player Nate Sipe. "Working with him again on the new album, we were able to recapture that feeling of lightning in a bottle from the early days."
"We all learned how to do this together," adds banjo player Kevin Kniebel. "We have more tools in our kit now and we've evolved as musicians and songwriters, but what hasn't changed is the chemistry between us." That chemistry has been abundantly clear from the very first days of Pert Near Sandstone, when the band—whose current lineup features Sipe and Kniebel, founding guitarist J Lenz, bassist Justin Bruhn, and clog & fiddle player Matt Cartier—burst onto the American roots music scene in a flurry of fiddling, picking, and stomping.
Dobro master and 14-time GRAMMY winner Jerry Douglas is to the resonator guitar what Jimi Hendrix was to the electric guitar, elevating, transforming, and reinventing the instrument in countless ways. Additionally, Douglas is a freewheeling, forward-thinking recording and touring artist whose output incorporates elements of country, bluegrass, rock, jazz, blues, and Celtic into his distinctive musical vision.
Useful Jenkins is a contemporary acoustic band with a bluegrass foundation. They use their grass-roots to readily tap into other genres such as folk, funk, rock, and hip hop. Their music generates emotion and sends a message to a wide range of listeners, giving them an eclectic group of followers from all walks of life. Useful Jenkins thrives on energy; they flourish in the moment and have an unmatched resonance with the crowd. The band is made up of an acoustic guitar, mandolin, violin, cello, and electric bass. 3-part vocal harmonies accompany the wall of stringed instruments, leaving listeners with a strong, clean, and unique sound.