The Yonder Mountain String Band hails from Colorado, a state that supports a very active bluegrass and traditional acoustic music arena. Yonder Mountain String Band plays mostly original songs written and arranged in a fairly traditional bluegrass style but with an emphasis on open-ended, up-tempo acoustic music peppered with improvisational jams.

Yonder Mountain String Band will pick and jam live on stage at the Wild Duck Music Hall Friday, November 2. Tickets are on sale now at all Fastixx Outlets, The Wild Duck Main Bar and eugene.com.

Also known as YMSB, the bluegrass-pickers combine the sounds of traditional bluegrass signatures with high-octane instrumental arrangements into compelling original songs to create, as the band calls it, “highly resonated bluegrass for the high country.” The band artfully combines traditional bluegrass with non-traditional “newgrass,” a form of acoustic music made famous by the now defunct band New Grass Revival in the late 1970’s.

Besides headlining at the Telluride Bluegrass Festival in Colorado for the first time this year, YMSB also headlined the recent Dexter Lake Music Festival in Oregon this past summer. As with many recently formed “jam” bands, YMSB is very popular on the festival and club circuit.

The band features Jeff Austin on mandolin, Dave Johnston on banjo, Adam Aijala on guitar and Ben Kauffman on bass, although many a traditional bluegrass musician have sat in for a set or three, including David Grisman, Darol Anger and Mike Marshall.

Yonder Mountain String Band’s history traces back to long acoustic jams in small venues and coffee houses throughout Colorado, where Austin and Johnston met Kauffman and Aijala. A dedication to touring, a passion for picking, and a unique bluegrass sound provided the catalyst for YMSB to evolve out of the small bars and coffee houses into larger venues.

With this recent transition into concert halls, YMSB quickly built a musical reputation founded in bluegrass, with high lonesome harmonies and fast-paced picking that twists through extended jams that redefine the quick solos and brevity of traditional bluegrass music.

Check out when Yonder Mountain is coming to your town!
[Published on: 10/23/01]

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