High & Rising (2 Nights)

We are beyond thrilled to share that we have been adopted as the Band Host for the River Falls Bluegrass, Bourbon & Brews Festival April 22-24!  We have teamed up with the River Falls Area Chamber of Commerce and Tattersall Distilling and are going to throw the best bluegrass festival this town has ever seen! As the host, High & Rising will play Friday & Saturday nights of the fest, and we can’t wait to show River Falls what all our bluegrass friends can do!!”

Out of the north midwest and the banks of the mighty Mississippi River grew this “Groovy Grass” band of music makers. High & Rising most often plays as a quartet, with a unique combination of instruments that bring a fresh groovy sound to the Bluegrass & Folk American scene.
The quartet, led by Laura Farley (upright bass/vocals) and supported by Jym Farley (acoustic guitar), Ben Rohde (percussion) and Harrison Olk (Banjo) have quickly made a name for themselves through their prolific songwriting and performances along-side many notable musicians in the upper midwest music scene.

High & Rising recently released their critically-acclaimed debut album HOWL, featuring artists: Adam Greuel & Davey Lynch of Horseshoes & Hand Grenades; Chris Castino of The Big Wu; Ernest Brusubardis IV & Ryan Ogburn of Chicken Wire Empire; Augie Dougherty of Armchair Boogie; Craig Baumann of The People Brothers Band; Rick Krueuziger of The Pat Watters Band; Leo Albertoni of Old Soul Society; and Kenny Leiser of Joseph Huber.

Pert Near Sandstone

It was roughly a decade ago that Pert Near Sandstone first gathered around a microphone in a Minneapolis basement to record their debut album, ‘Up And Down The River.’ So much has happened since then: highs and lows, personal struggles and artistic triumphs, new faces and new sounds. The winding road they’ve traveled over the years makes it all the more meaningful for the band to come full circle on their dazzling new release, ‘Discovery Of Honey,’ which finds them once again recording in a basement and reuniting with founding member Ryan Young, who’s spent the past seven years touring the world playing fiddle with bluegrass stars Trampled By Turtles.
“Besides playing with us, Ryan was also our first recording engineer back when we were just starting out,” says mandolin/fiddle player Nate Sipe. “Working with him again on the new album, we were able to recapture that feeling of lightning in a bottle from the early days.”

Dead Horses

Dead Horses isn’t a band in the conventional sense. Rather, it’s an intimate, folk-inspired conversation between two close friends. At its core, the participants are guitarist/singer Sarah Vos and bassist Daniel Wolff. The Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based pair’s dialogue continues with an eclectic five-song EP, Birds (released February 7), which includes the band’s previously released singles “Family Tapes,” “Mighty Storm,” and “Birds Can Write The Chorus.”

Dead Horses weave together a vibrant patchwork of classic and contemporary influences that span trad roots, indie- folk, and other experimental musical idioms. Through it all, the union of Sarah’s emotive songwriting with Dan’s intrepid bass playing transcends the singer-songwriter-with-backup-musicians paradigm.

To date, Dead Horses has released three studio albums, an Audiotree Live Session, three singles, and a two-song EP. Along the way, the duo has charted on the Americana Top 50 radio charts, accrued over 20 million spins on Spotify, and earned placements on several Spotify, Amazon and Apple Music “Americana” playlists. A Rolling Stone “Artist You Should Know,” Dead Horses has received profiles from Billboard to Noisey, and have toured extensively, including appearances at Red Rocks Amphitheater and an invitation to open for legendary UK rockers The Who.

Them Coulee Boys

Them Coulee Boys craft a brand of Americana that blends folk, punk, bluegrass, and rock & roll. They sing their conversational songs in 4 part harmony, often with a banjo stomp and rhythm section punch that drives the audience onto the dance floor and into community. Their trusty van has propelled them thousands of miles across the country and into the hearts of strangers, who tend to leave each show as family. It’s music that creates community through the shared experience of joy and giving a shit.

The story is true. Soren Staff and Beau Janke met as counselors at a bible camp in northern Wisconsin in 2011. Having both grown up amidst a stretch of glacial melt-carved river valleys in the upper Midwest (called coulees by French fur trappers), they were fast friends. At camp, another counselor took to teasing them saying “them coulee boys are at it again.” The name stuck. Spending their weeks playing songs with kids around a campfire led to weekends figuring out an Avett Brothers tune or classic country song. In 2013, they added Soren’s brother Jens on mandolin, and a rough-around-the-edges, stomping 3-piece folk band played their first show as Them Coulee Boys. Four years later Neil Krause joined to play acoustic and electric bass, and in 2019 when Stas Hable joined on drums, TCB evolved into the full-on americana rock band they are today. The live band straddles the line between pure and genuine ballads and a sweaty, leaping take on countrified rock-n-roll.

Adam Greuel & Friends

There’s certainly some great joy in exploring the unknown, right? Scary at times, perhaps a bit messy momentarily, but certainly exciting as all heck. In Adam Greuel & Friends, Adam brings together a smorgasbord of friends for an often rather improvisational set of musical exploration. With Adam’s roots in bluegrass, country, rock n’ roll, and blues, the music tends to roll into a direction probably best described as “Americana”. In that same token, Adam’s general music curiosity lends itself to a more “open” approach where various band member’s and their musical curiosities contribute to the ensemble’s sound. To Adam, finding joy in music and sharing that with the crowd is one of the most fulfilling components of being a performing artist. At the River Falls Bluegrass, Bourbon, & Blues Festival, Adam’s group is affectionately dubbed “Adam Greuel & the Rendezvous” and, well, you’re just going to have to come, see what happens, and take the ride.

Chris Castino (WuGrass) and the Fightin’ Popes Of Science (Members of Kind Country)

For the last 20+ years Chris has written songs for his band The Big Wu. He successfully written material that is condusive to loud guitars, blues hollerin’, and dancing. The current version of the Big Wu is suited for tunes that are equal parts Meters and Floyd, which is an exciting mix for a songwriter like chris. But his latest songs are folk songs, in nature. This is his authentic self; drednaughts, fiddles, three part harmonies. It’s built on the timeless joys and lamentations of our precarious worlds.

Chris would like to thank his musical teachers (whether they know it or not): Hunter/Garcia, Muddy Waters, George Harrison, Paul Simon, Duke Ellington, Jim Croce, Irving Berlin, Merle Haggard, Gram Parsons, John Hartford, Ray Charles, Joni Mitchell, Lorenz Hart, Yip Harburg, Everly Bros, Clapton, Robert Johnson, Paul Williams, Bob Marley, Buck Owens, Jimi, Justin Vernon, Tribe, Cat Stevens, Leadbelly, Sam Bush, Gregory Porter, JJ Cale, Mark Knopfler, Harry Nilsson, Freddy King, Glen Campbell, SRV, Lonnie Johnson, Peter Rowan, Dan Penn, Gordon Lightfoot, Willie Dixon, Emmylou Harris, Tim O’Brien, Willie Nelson, Rakim, Donny Hathaway, Laura Nero, Bob Dylan, Rodney Crowell, Peter Gabriel, Carol King, Neil Young, Prince, Dom Castino, Dean Magraw, The Feelin, JT Bates, Ben Kaufmann, Jeff Austin, Benny Galloway, Dave Simonett, Adam Greuel, Brian Gallagher, Casey O’Brien, Greazy Meal, The Gear Daddies, Mango Jam, Detroit, The Honeydogs, Mikey Larsen…

Rucksack Revolution

Bio’s sure are a funny thing. Sometimes the band writes them for themselves, other times they pay a bunch of money to have a professional do it. Well, instead of that whole hoopla, I’m just going to explain why I think Sarah and I find serious amounts of joy in making music together. We met back in the early days of Dead Horses and Horseshoes & Hand Grenades. Those are our two “main bands”, ya know, our day jobs. Anyhow, we immediately hit it off and became friends. I think there was a sense of musical and life curiosity, as well as mutual respect, that drew us together. That feeling led to us hanging out at my college rental house in Stevens Point. We started playing music together and there was this wonderful and immediate sense of chemistry. The floors were wooden, and I think that made the sound sparkle a little bit too. That really was the first night of “Rucksack Revolution”. Since then, our friendship and our music have grown and created some great nights of music and magic. Sometimes we play songs we’ve recently written, other times we play songs from Dead Horses or Horseshoes, and sometimes we even play songs we’ve never played for anyone before. Sometimes we feel real high, sometimes we feel real low. I think we take comfort and pride in the acceptance that we have for one another and I think that creates a relaxed feeling that can lead to some beautiful sounds. In the spring and summer of 2021, we decided to go to a recording studio and lay down some music that was uniquely us. It feels like that experience drew us musically closer yet and I feel great, and grateful, about what we created. People are always asking about the future and the past, but sometimes it’s best to just see what is, right now. When we get together, we try to embrace that moment and hope that the folks that come around can join us in that. I think Sarah’s a wonderful songwriter, a great human, and a dear friend. I really, really enjoy making music with her. How’s that for a damn bio? -Adam Greuel

Joseph Huber

Joseph Huber hails from the state of Wisconsin, and seems to bring forth the varied voices of whatever it may be that lies dormant within either the fertile soil or the callous concrete of that world. It has been said, “You don’t just like Joseph Huber’s music. You feel it’s something that the rest of the world needs to hear, and how criminal it is that it isn’t spreading far and wide.” That sentiment could be related to the fact that the voices which Huber unearths are subtle and take more than a hurried listen to truly absorb. A person who appears reserved and matter-of-fact in everyday speech brings forth songs that are anything but that.
As the singer, songwriter, performer, recorder and producer of all of his own material, Huber has his hands full, but never seems to miss a beat. And his own ‘solo’ material has now certainly surpassed the output of his past efforts, both in volume and substance. As one of the founding member of the .357 String Band–a group that would probably fit better in today’s ‘Americana-saturated’ environment than in the early to middle aughts–he’s gradually honed a sound that seems to fill a very real gap within the still-emerging genre. Having progressed, Huber continues moving onward and upward captivating folks with his sincere and well-crafted songs under his own name along with the impeccable musicianship of his fellow touring partners. Whether it’s irresistible, fiddle-driven, dancing tunes or honest, heart-wrenching “songwriter” songs, Huber’s songs and shows spans the spectrum of ‘Roots’ music while preferring not to stay within the boundaries of any strict genre classification.
His lyricism and introspective writing style has received high acclaim from music enthusiasts looking for a more substantive substitute to much of today’s music. Maintaining a solid touring schedule, playing all throughout both the U.S. and all around Europe, Huber continues to gain positive press, including being listed on L.A. Weekly’s ’10 More Country Artists To Listen To.’ Blue Ridge Outdoor writes, “Songwriters like Townes Van Zandt, Chris Smither, and John Prine can marvel listeners in the simplest of acoustic settings,…From time to time, I stumble upon a new singer/songwriter whose work warrants comparison to the luminaries on this list. …Huber’s songwriting has me comparing him to my favorites above.” He’s had the pleasure of sharing the stage with many artists including Tyler Childers; Hackensaw Boys; Scott H Biram; The Tillers; Possessed By Paul James; Dave Simonett; Robert Earl Keen; Ben Nichols; The Tossers; Charlie Parr; Amy Lavere; Horseshoes & Hand Grenades; Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band; Henhouse Prowlers; Keller Williams, and more…
As of now, Huber has delivered five solo records: ‘Bury Me Where I Fall’ (2010); ‘Tongues Of Fire’ (2012), ‘The Hanging Road’ (2014); and ‘The Suffering Stage’ (2017). Now, 2019 gives us ‘Moondog’–a record of variety and transition that seems to scream, “What else!” The only constant throughout is the lyrical precision, while musically it moseys and roves wherever it will with the promise that Huber always has more on his mind and more up his sleeve.

Feed The Dog

Feed the Dog is an eclectic and action-packed, experimental jam-grass act. The midwest based 4-piece masterfully blends soul-pleasing songwriting rich in imagery and storytelling with a genre bending, shake-your-hips, instrumental flair. Their high energy performances are driven by the unique and progressive approach of each player: imaginative melodies with graceful ambiance skillfully crafted on the violin, tireless beats both dynamic and soulful confidently assembled on the drums, driving low end with finesse and intention forged on the bass guitar, and unique approach to playing the acoustic guitar blending fast picking bluegrass runs with the strength of blues and rock to evoke an emotional contrast between melancholy and hopeful.

The band started in July of 2015 and has been relentlessly playing festivals, theaters, and clubs alongside regional and national touring acts.

“Ding Dang” the band’s third full length album released September 2021, out now.

Miles Over Mountains

Hailing from McHenry, IL Miles Over Mountains plays a modernized style of progressive bluegrass covering a wide spectrum of genres, dynamics, and feeling. Their live catalogue draws from their studio albums “Five Star Heart Breaker” (2015), “Ballads & Burners” (2017), and “Work Harder Not Smarter” (2020). The band has been performing, touring, and making records since early 2014 playing an average of 150+ shows per year throughout the Midwest region and beyond. The band looks with excitement and hungry ambition towards the 2021 tour season, coming to a town near you!

The group features Phil Hoffman (upright bass), Caleb Peters (guitar), Sean Shiel (mandolin) and the welcome addition of Pete Smith(banjo) and Shawn Drake(fiddle) in 2021. Collectively the members of the group have thousands of shows under their belt, giving their songs, sound, and performances a musical maturity that echoes their collective years of passion and experience.

The MilBillies

WAMI nominated New Artist of the Year (2020), The MilBillies are a 5-piece string band that trades vocals like a fifth of bourbon and solos like a bull on a rope, slinging high-energy bluegrass stripped raw with Americana grit.

Good Morning Bedlam

Good Morning Bedlam has become an innovative force in the midwest folk scene. Their shows are known for their contagious energy, with members careening about the stage. With tight soaring three part harmonies, and thumping kick-drum, they captivate their audience night after night. Every song is a unique twist on what is generally dubbed as folk music. “We want to surprise our audience from song to song. Rather than creating our music to fit a genre, we allow it to be an outpouring of our own stories and unique sound,” says Isaak, frontman of GMB. You will be treated to a haunting waltz, whistling, jazz scatting, and the euphoria of the violin melodies. When it comes to their lyrical storytelling, Isaak says, “We’re desperate to connect to people through the common human experiences that we write about and the exuberance of our live show. People have a lot of choices of how they’ll kick-back, so we intend to deliver a show where they can be free–to share in whatever they need to–joy, grief, anger, gratefulness, or bedlam!”

Good Morning Bedlam played a 200 plus show tour in 2019 before the COVID-19 shutdown, claiming the first-place title at the John Hartford Memorial Festival Band Competition, and were finalists at the NWSS Band Competition. GMB has played at festivals alongside artists such as Shakey Graves, Sam Bush, Jason Isabell, The Infamous Stringdusters, Trampled By Turtles and others. In 2021 GMB ran a successful Kickstarter in July of 2021 for their much anticipated third full-length record ‘Lulu’ where fans from around the world pledged a total of $34,000. GMB has been featured on Bluegrass Today, Relix Magazine, Glide Magazine, Entertainment Tonight, and Under the Radar Magazine.

Dig Deep

Formed in 2015 in the dead center of the thriving Midwest roots music scene in Stevens Point, WI, the four members of Dig Deep drew inspiration from their shared appreciation for traditional bluegrass and country music, their love of rock and roll, and their combined decades of hard gigging in the punk/metal scenes, local bars and roadhouses, and regional festivals. Three releases and 600+ shows later, they have firmly established themselves as an utterly unique and powerful force in the roots world.
With a body of work that showcases their vision, craft, heart, and clout as songwriters and instrumentalists, Dig Deep has earned a reputation for their well-honed and hard-edged sound that goes far beyond bluegrass, as well as their blistering and boisterous live performances that give audiences much more than a string band show.

Buffalo Galaxy

Exploring deep space with light speed bluegrass!

Buffalo Galaxy brings gravity to their songwriting, energy to their live shows and moments of weightlessness with improvisations.

Elements of bluegrass, country, jam and jazz coalesce and Buffalo Galaxy burns bright in the bluegrass universe!

Barefoot Bluegrass

Harrison Olk (Cascade Crescendo, Tin Can Gin, Kind Country, High & Rising) and Jon Miller (Feed The Dog, Ginstrings, Kind Country) have joined forces to bring you a unique and enjoyable musical experience. Rooted in the genres of bluegrass and jam music, Harrison (banjo) and Jon (guitar) bring you modern renditions of classic bluegrass and folk songs, along with heartfelt originals that are sure to please your musical palate. Collectively, these two have many years of touring experience, performing for audiences around the country and sharing their musical influence with many.

Black River Revue

We are a group of friends from Superior, Wisconsin and Duluth, Minnesota who share a love for all different genres of music. Using a bluegrass instrumentation we have crafted our own sound made up of mostly original music which can be heard on our debut album “Garbage Pickin” (released in April of 2013). Our sophomore album “Spring Thaw” (released June 2014) adds another year of songwriting and live performance experience. With our sights held on the future we will continue to grow our catalog of original tunes for new albums and we will keep putting our twist on classic traditional songs and cover tunes that we love. We hope to see you out at shows and thank everyone for their continued support.

The Chris Silver Bluegrass Band

Chris Silver plays roots music, but it doesn’t stop there. Chris’ music is transcendent and his originals travel a huge landscape of experience and place. He has created a new sound with traditional roots music at the core. As a musical risk taker, his focus has been on his original sound, adding layers not usually found in traditional music providing a rich texture to his music including slide guitar and intricate global rhythms. Chris is as comfortable with his Vintage Martin D-18 as he is with his Fender Tele. His eclectic approach in playing his original acoustic, blues, folk and jam band music has shaped Silver’s songs to the point that they could be compared to Ry Cooder’s early ’70s work. In a given set, you are as likely to hear a song by Lowell George, The Meters, Bill Monroe, and of course, his own compositions. Chris spent five years touring with the acclaimed bluegrass band Stoney Lonesome, and when Kate MacKenzie left the band in 1994, she asked Chris to tour with her. Chris and Kate toured coast-to-coast for three years playing major festivals including The World Expo in Japan, The Strawberry Music Festival in California, The Delaware Valley Bluegrass Festival, and numerous appearances on National Public Radio’s A Prairie Home Companion. One thing is for sure, his energy is infectious and he’ll leave you wanting more.

Potluck String Band

Potluck String Band is an organically grown Band of Festivarians that plays in bluegrass festival campgrounds and many different venues and events in the Midwest and Colorado. PSB creates a “Natural Habitat for Pickers” around their campfire at festivals, where musicians can meet new and old friends and pick til the sun comes up! Bring a Song, Bring a Log, Bring a Chair… See Ya There!

Northsoul

Two Voices and Twelve Strings Strong

The acoustic rock and folkified pop from the rising star of Fondy emits northern soul.

The foundation of Northsoul has Travis Worth on upright bass and vocals, Trevor Lindgren on mandolin and vocals. Travis and Trevor are Fond du Lac, Wisconsin natives with a rich and varied history of collaboration. Northsoul can be found in all sorts of venue arrangements, engaged in a quest to make positive impact and foster community.

Join in!

Everett Smithson Band

The band was formed in 2005 and included Everett Smithson on harp and vocals, Phil Schmid on guitar, Jeremy Johnson on drums and Bill Black on stand up bass. The sidemen had played together for a long time and had toured with Big George Jackson, Gary Primich, RJ Mischo, Kim Wilson, Bo Diddley, the Senders and many others. They could lay down some tasteful grooves and their red hot instrumentals were always a crowd pleaser!

In 2006 Everett’s wife Kathy Smithson hopped on board with her accordions and added a creole sound while mixing it up with tunes by Wanda Jackson, Lavern Baker, Memphis Minnie and the list goes on. In 2018 Milwaukee native Victor Span – alumni of Bryan Lee, Nick Moss, Reverend Raven, among many others – added his talents on drums and Jeremy Johnson added his guitar skills to bring the band where they are today! Everett, Phil and Kathleen have added many originals to the set list over the years, which can be heard on any of their five CDs, including 2018s “Tall Tales”.

Texas Toast

Texas Toast is a psychedelic country band that features touring musicians from Jaybone Bell and Restless Light, The People Brothers Band, Barbaro and Karate Chop Silence who have all made their home in beautiful Winona, MN.

What started as a country band turned into an exploration into the music by combining all of our various influences including R&B, Psychedelic Jam, Folk, and Pop/Dance while remaining in tune with the aspects of classic country music. Texas Toast features original music combined with covers of our influences. Stay tuned for our debut EP and future show announcements!

Danny Frank & the Smoky Gold

Danny Frank & The Smoky Gold combines soulful lead vocals with rich harmonies and virtuosic instrumentalism, into a genre-blending Americana sound that is captivating, invigorating, and sure to get your toe tapping!

After two decades of writing songs, years of performing as a solo artist, and the recent release of his debut album Smoky Gold, singer-songwriter Danny Frank has curated an all-star cast of seasoned musicians that fully compliments his skillfully-crafted works. Based in Duluth, MN, “The Smoky Gold” is comprised of banjo player Harrison Olk (High & Rising, Tin Can Gin, Cascade Crescendo, Kind Country Band), bassist Ian Kvale (Black River Revue), and fiddle savant Erin Aldridge (Concert Master – Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra). Danny Frank & The Smoky Gold’s unique sound blends soulful lead vocals with rich harmonies and virtuosic instrumentalism. Steeped in musical traditions of folk, bluegrass, country, classic rock, and blues, Danny Frank & The Smoky Gold offers a genre-blending Americana sound that is captivating, invigorating, and sure to get your toe tapping.

Sherri & Barry Byrne

The rhythm section behind a few past and present La Crosse, Wisconsin area bands over the past 18 years, Sherri on bass and Barry on guitar, have spent the last eight years helping hold things together in Pigtown Fling Stringband. Prior to this adventure with Casey & Jessie, they were the founding members of Amadans, an Irish Pub Rock Band, that also continues to play in the area. They both were also members of Bottom of the Barrel String Band and Simple Rogues.

The pandemic has brought about big changes in their music. Having had an over abundance of time together and limited performance opportunities early on, they decided to learn a new variety of music, songs spanning across the decades and genres to share as a two piece husband and wife act. Bringing their own eclectic mix of what they call “Music by Way of Backroads”, Barry & Sherri perform anything from early ragtime, bluegrass, rock and blues through music of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s (and beyond).

The Foxgloves

The Foxgloves are an all-female band with songs you won’t be able to stop humming. Their engaging presence, rich instrumentation, compelling storytelling songwriting, four-part harmonies, and creatively reimagined covers render them a force to be reckoned with. This powerful band is making moves you’ll want to witness. A little bit of country, a little bit of folk, a little bit of classical, and a whole lot of heart — your toes will tap of their own accord.

The Roller Family Band

We are a large family, homeschooling bluegrass/southern gospel band from New Richmond Wisconsin. We enjoy serving the Lord by sharing our faith through song.
In the early years of our marriage God placed a special burden on our hearts to get rid of broadcast tv. Because of obedience to that conviction God blessed us with the extra time and heart to start a family music ministry. We can testify to the knitting of our hearts together and the close family friendships that have occurred as we labor in love together for Gods glory!
Psalm 100:1-2
Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.
Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

Schedule

Review the line-up for a detailed listing of the bands performing throughout this foot stompin’ music weekend!

Stay & Play

River Falls is located just 30 minutes east of St. Paul, Minnesota and about 45 minutes from the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport. Enjoy a stroll along historic Main Street as you visit each participating venue. Several unique lodging opportunities are available to meet your needs!

Beer, Wine & Bourbon Tastings

Don’t miss out on various tastings held throughout the weekend. This year we’ve added a special Bourbon tasting! Sample the best beer, wine, cider, and bourbon in the area between live music sets.

Premier Sponsor

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River Falls Area
Chamber of Commerce & Tourism Bureau
215 West Maple Street
River Falls, WI 54022
(715) 425-2533
info@rfchamber.com

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