Encounters in Germany
The BIB editor reports:
Just over a week ago Carol and I were in south-west Germany, enjoying the 12th International Bühl Bluegrass Festival (2-3 May). Among the many delights of being there was seeing Tumbling Bones (USA), after a three-week tour in Ireland, play an hour-and-a-half on the main concert stage and receive a standing ovation and several encores from a packed audience. They have since resumed touring in Britain, with this big and well deserved feather in their caps.
Playing fiddle with Tumbling Bones at Bühl, as he was doing throughout their tour in Ireland, was Aaron Jonah Lewis, who will be back here with his own old-time outfit, the Corn Potato String Band, for a tour beginning at the 8th Westport Folk & Bluegrass Festival and continuing through the latter half of June. More on them later; meanwhile, the dates are on the BIB calendar.
Also very well received on the main concert programme at Bühl were the John Lowell Band (USA), a contemporary bluegrass group based in Montana, whose tour of eight dates in Ireland begins this coming Tuesday. The band will consist of John Lowell (guitar, vocals), Julie Elkins (banjo, vocals), Tom Murphy (mandolin, vocals), and Ben Somers (bass, vocals) - all seasoned and respected performers with years of touring and recording experience behind them. They combine stellar picking, tight and powerful harmonies, and fine songwriting with an exceptional sense of group dynamics and balance. Their dates in Ireland are:
Tues. 13th: Rory Gallagher Music Library, Grand Parade, Cork, 11.30 a.m.; tel. 021 4924919
O'Neills bar, Main St., Buttevant, Co. Cork, 9.00 p.m.; tel. 087 8168692 (Bluegrass session; musicians welcome)
Wed. 14th: Mill Bar, Sixmilebridge, Co. Clare, 9.00 p.m.; tel. 086 8599615 / 086 8464509
Thurs. 15th: St John's Arts Centre, Listowel, Co. Kerry, 8.00 p.m.; tel. 068 22566
Fri. 16th: Tigh an Cheoil, Ballinagaul, Ring, Co. Waterford, 9.00 p.m.; tel. 087 0640542 / 087 9898560
Sat. 17th: Courthouse Arts Centre, Tinahely, Co. Wicklow, 8.30 p.m.; tel. 0402 38529
Sun. 18th: Roadside Tavern, Lisdoonvarna, Co. Clare, 9.00 p.m.; tel. 087 8300069
Mon. 19th: Village Arts Centre, Kilworth, Co. Cork, 8.15 p.m.; tel. 087 7921771
For further information, 'phone 087 7921771.