Latest Greensky Bluegrass Articles
JamBase contributor Sarah Hagerman shares her take on the all-star “What The Night Brings” tribute to Jeff Austin that took place on Monday night at the 1stBank Center in Broomfield, Colorado.
Greensky Bluegrass’ held a “Totally Bitchin’ ’80s Halloween Party” filled with debut covers, bust outs and more last night at the Chicago Theatre.
Greensky Bluegrass welcomed Lindsay Lou and members of Railroad Earth during their set at RRE’s Hangtown Music Festival on Saturday.
The Infamous Stringdusters’ Chris Pandolfi hosts the new Osiris podcast, ‘Inside The Musician’s Brain With Chris Pandolfi’ with the first two episodes featuring special guests Paul Hoffman of Greensky Bluegrass and Billy Strings, respectively.
Pro-shot video featuring Greensky Bluegrass and Aoife O’Donovan’s cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Atlantic City” from this year’s FreshGrass Festival has surfaced.
Greensky Bluegrass will present volume three of their “Totally Bitchin’ ’80s Halloween Party” on October 31 at the Chicago Theatre.
More Greensky Bluegrass Articles
Latest Greensky Bluegrass Setlist
Greensky Bluegrass at Avondale Brewing Company
- Into the Rafters
- Living Over
- Beauty and Pain
- A Letter to Seymour
- All for Money
- I'd Probably Kill You
- Little Maggie
- One Way Out
- Cathedral Eyes
- I Second That Emotion
- Send Me Your Address from Heaven
- Room Without a Roof
- Fixin' to Ruin
- Handle With Care
- Old Barns
About Greensky Bluegrass
Greensky Bluegrass is Anders Beck (dobro), Michael Arlen Bont (banjo), Dave Bruzza (guitar), Mike Devol (upright bass) and Paul Hoffman (mandolin).
For more than a decade and a half, the members of Greensky Bluegrass have created their own version of bluegrass music, mixing the acoustic stomp of a stringband with the rule-breaking spirit of rock & roll. They redefine that sound once again with their sixth album, Shouted, Written Down & Quoted.
Like the band’s own name, Shouted, Written Down & Quoted is a collection of opposites, full of dark psychedelic swirls, bright bursts of acoustic guitar, soundscapes, solos, freethinking improvisation, and plenty of sharp, focused songwriting. It’s wild and wide-ranging, showing off the diversity Greensky Bluegrass brings to every live show. At the same time, Shouted, Written Down & Quoted is unmistakably a studio album, recorded during two different sessions — one at Echo Mountain Studio in Asheville, North Carolina; the other at the Mountain House Recording Studio in Nedarland, Colorado — that comprise the band’s longest block of recording time ever. The result is an 11-track album whose songs cast a wide net, mixing the full-throttle energy of a Greensky Bluegrass concert with the nuanced approach of a band that’s still eager to explore.
“You can call us an acoustic ensemble, or a drum-less rock band, or a rock & roll bluegrass band,” says mandolin player Paul Hoffman, who, along with guitarist Dave Bruzza, handles most of the album’s writing duties. “All of that shifting identity has taught us to cover a lot of ground. There’s a flow to this album, just like there’s a flow to our setlists. There are some aggressive, rocking moments. Some bouncy, funky moments. An acoustic think piece or two. It’s a balance of moods and textures that we create as a band, almost like a mix tape.”
Formed in 2000 in Kalamazoo, Michigan, Greensky Bluegrass kicked off their career playing living rooms and open mic nights across the Midwest. By 2005, they were touring nationally, and by 2006, they were playing the first in a long series of appearances at the annual Telluride Bluegrass Festival. Bandmates Hoffman, Bruzza, dobro player Anders Beck, banjoist Michael Arlen Bont, and upright bassist Mike Devol spent most of the following decade on the road, fine-tuning a live show modeled not after the toned-down production of traditional bluegrass music, but the full-on spectacle of rock.
“We play two sets of music every night with a big light show, and really care about creating a large scale production,” notes Bruzza, adding that, “the goal isn’t just to play important music. We want to cultivate an experience, where people can escape from their everyday lives for a minute and put their worries aside.”
Playing as many as 175 shows per year, Greensky Bluegrass have graduated to headlining status at some of the country’s most iconic venues, selling out amphitheaters like Red Rocks and world-class auditoriums like the Ryman. They’ve become a regular name on the festival circuit, too, adding Bonnaroo, the New Orleans Jazz Festival, Austin City Limits, Forecastle, and Outside Lands to their touring schedule. Supported by a grassroots audience whose members often travel for hours to see the band, Greensky Bluegrass are still a proudly independent act, enjoying the success of a major-label act — including a Number One debut on the Billboard Bluegrass chart for their fifth album, 2014’s If Sorrows Swim — without giving up complete control of their own business.
Released on the band’s label, Big Blue Zoo, Shouted, Written Down & Quoted kicks off with “Miss September,” a song that splits its focus between Hoffman’s mid-tempo melodies and the band’s instrumental solos. Most of the album’s tracks strike a similar balance, showcasing a group whose vocal hooks and flat-picking skills share the spotlight equally. Meanwhile, the guys stretch their legs on “Living Over” — an improvised, seven-minute knockout that’s already become a live staple — and show surprising restraint with “While Waiting,” a slower song whose ebb-and-flow arrangement often finds no more than two bandmates playing at once. “Room Without a Roof” features some of the group’s most layered production to date, with electric instruments adding some thick sonic padding, while “More of Me” cranks up the drama, with Hoffman singing about heartache over a bed of minor-key guitar arpeggios.
“We tend to have a darker sense to ours songs than most acoustic bands,” Bruzza adds, “but we still have light moments, too. We’re trying to explore the textures and sounds we can make, while still having the instrumentation of a bluegrass band. There aren’t many rules. We’ll run a dobro though an amp on a song like ‘Past My Prime.’ We can get pretty epic. This album is a crazy carnival one minute, and it’s a psychedelic Pink Floyd jam the next.”
Equal parts dark, driving, and dynamic, Shouted, Written Down & Quoted is Greensky Bluegrass at their best, fusing the fiery fretwork of their live shows with the focus of a true songwriting outfit.
‘GarciaLive Volume 12’ features a Jerry Garcia and Merl Saunders performance from January 23, 1973 at the Boarding House in San Francisco.
Amanda Shires confirmed an extensive tour to start 2020 that includes support from L.A. Edwards.
The first installment of ‘After Midnight,’ a five-episode episode original narrative podcast celebrating the 20th anniversary of Phish’s Big Cypress Millennium Eve festival in Florida’s Everglades has arrived.
Twiddle announced an extensive 2020 winter tour that ends with ALO joining for a pair of co-headlining dates.
The String Cheese Incident and additional artists are aboard for the 2020 Hog Farm Hangout festival in Laytonville, California.