May 3rd, 2014
Peter Rowan Bluegrass Band
“I have always followed Bill Monroe’s advice — if you can play bluegrass you can play anything. I’ve never worried too much about which category I fit in. At some point, I realized the songs I write take me in that bluegrass direction.”
- Peter Rowan, The Knoxville Journal
Peter Rowan: guitar, (most) lead vocals
Keith Little: banjo, vocals
Michael Witcher: dobro, vocals
Chris Henry: mandolin, vocals
Paul Knight: acoustic bass
"Like the sight of a well-groomed baseball field, the styling of a Fender Stratocaster, or the strength of a 1965 Ford Mustang, the sound of Peter Rowan’s voice to me represents freedom, and a particularly American brand at that. Half-controlled, half-wild, that voice can convey the high lonesomeness of bluegrass (Rowan was indeed once a lead singer/guitarist for Bill Monroe himself) as well as the liberation of the sort of rock that has influenced bluegrass."
- Aaron Keith Harris, Lonesome Road Review
Peter Rowan has long been a force in contemporary music, making the old homestead ring with surprising new sounds through his brilliant songwriting, soulful singing, and commanding shows. He is internationally-known for his music on more than 50 albums and decades of memorable performances in a variety of stylistic settings -- impressionistic folk, Tex-Mex, "Reggae-billy," Afro-Cuban-Caribbean, fusion rock, Celtic -- but it is with bluegrass that he has made some of his most enduring music. Peter was a member of Bill Monroe & the Bluegrass Boys, Old & In the Way, and Muleskinner, and has collaborated extensively with a number of notable bluegrassers, including the Nashville Bluegrass Band, Tony Rice, Ricky Skaggs, David Grisman, Jerry Douglas, Vassar Clements, Richard Greene, Tex Logan, Bill Keith, Druha Trava, and, now, a truly great bluegrass band.
Keith Little began playing bluegrass as a teenager — first with the mighty Vern Williams Band, then with High Country. Keith moved to Nashville, where he was a member of The Country Gentlemen and Lonesome Standard Time, as well as the bands of Ricky Skaggs and Dolly Parton. Keith has been awarded a Lifetime Membership by the California Bluegrass Association, is a member of the David Grisman Bluegrass Experience as well as co-leading a duo with Jim Nunally, and is in-demand at west coast music camps.
Michael Witcher began playing professionally as a teenager with brother Gabe and father Dennis in their Southern California bluegrass band, The Witcher Brothers. Known for his rich tone and lyrical phrasing, he has also recorded or toured with Dwight Yoakam, Laurie Lewis, John Paul Jones, Dolly Parton, The Gibson Brothers, Chris Jones, Sara Watkins, and Joan Osborn, among others.
Chris Henry is the newest member of the band, even as he continues to lead his own group, Hardcore Grass. He was born into bluegrass, the son of Murphy Hicks Henry & Red Henry, younger brother of Casey Henry, and played in the family band for years -- and both his adventurous classic sides fit perfectly in this group. David Grisman has opined that Chris "sounds like Frank Wakefield from 100 years in the future!"
Paul Knight is not only a highly-regarded sound engineer (who provides the aural delights at most RBA shows), but also is a veteran bass player who has performed and recorded with Laurie Lewis, Sandy Rothman, Papermill Creek Rounders, Perfect Strangers, David Thom Band, Coyote Ridge, Judith Edelman, and the Mike Stadler-Mary Gibbons Band, among others. He also leads a monthly series of performances with the area’s top acoustic musicians.
"Peter Rowan has taken the energy, freshness, and synthesis of rock and roll, and brought it to hillbilly music."
- Jon Weisberger, Country Standard Time
Peter Rowan Leads the Master Class With Old School
“In the end, bluegrass is about the old school. It’s raw, acoustic sound from instruments that have to be coaxed and loved to bring the sound out.” - Peter Rowan
"Walls Of Time"
"Land Of the Navajo"
TICKETS: $22/advance, $25/door