Airs Thursday, August 7 at 8 p.m. Nearly a quarter of a century ago, banjo master Bela Fleck formed a band that drew on bluegrass, jazz, blues and rock, combining the talents of four unique musicians that play acoustic and electric instruments. They call themselves the Flecktones, and the dexterity they use to make their instruments roar, and the obvious joy that they share in doing so, explains the group's longevity and their loyal fan base. Tune in for part one of a 2012 SMF performance by the original lineup of the Flecktones, including pianist and harmonica player Howard Levy.
Airs Thursday, May 8 at 8 p.m. For many people, college is a place to study subjects that will prepare you for the next step in life, as well as a time to create new friendships. Such was the case for Woody Platt, Mike Guggino, Graham Sharp and Charles Humphrey, who began playing music together in 1999 while studying at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Fourteen years later and with the addition of one more musician, the five members of the Steep Canyon Rangers have become known as one of the finest bluegrass ensembles in our time.
Airs Thursday, October 10 at 8 p.m. When immigrants from Great Britain and Ireland arrived in the Appalachian region of the United States in the 18th century, they brought with them the musical traditions of their homelands. These traditions were extended, refined and combined into a variety of American roots music styles, including a distinct musical form called bluegrass. In this episode, we listen to one of the finest bluegrass ensembles in our time, Russell Moore & IIIrd Tyme Out.
Airs Thursday, August 8 at 8 p.m. On paper, it wouldn't appear that the mixture of a traditional New Orleans jazz group and a classic bluegrass band on the same stage would make for a musical extravaganza. But when the Preservation Hall Jazz Band and the Del McCoury Band decided to make a recording and follow it up with a national tour, the result was the essence of the term "Americana". In this episode, we listen to a seamless blend of soul-lifting traditional harmonies as the high and lonesome sound of the Appalachians comes together with the hot and lively jazz of New Orleans.
Airs Thursday, July 11 at 8 p.m. Throughout a lifetime of performing and composing, Edgar Meyer has turned the double bass into a modern virtuoso instrument that is equally at home in classical music and in the American vernacular. Mandolin master Mike Marshall has been blending genres in acoustic music for more than 30 years, performing and recording with players in bluegrass, classical, jazz and Brazilian music - so it's no surprise that Marshall and Meyer have developed a fully realized concept of the mandolin/bass duo, presenting a repertoire that spans the globe. Tune in for highlights from their 2012 performance in the Charles H. Morris Center at the 2012 Savannah Music Festival.