Aug. 11, 2014. Following up on their recent rousing performance at Music Fest in Sugar Grove, this high-energy quintet from Louisville, Kent. will hit the stage at the Harvest House Performing Arts Venue at 7:30 p.m.
The 23 Strong Band is described as a band that plays fun, fuel-injected, original Americana music that dangerously weaves across the lanes of modern acoustic music – windows down, accelerator to the floor, on a joyride into the unknown with one eye on the vintage sounds in the rearview mirror. It’s a bluegrass attack fueled by high-octane rock n’ roll energy and triple-distilled old-timey roots.
In describing how The 23 String Band got their name, Dave Howard, the mandolin player, is quoted as saying “There are three types of musicians, ones who can count and ones who can’t.” So goes the old joke that kind of explains how The 23 Strong Band got their name. “Our original group had 23 strings,” Howard said, who is among the band’s three founding members. “But now we offer additional strings at no extra charge. We pass the savings along to the listener,” he said with a laugh.
This quintet also includes original members, banjo player Curtis Wilson and guitarist Chris Shouse. The band’s origins go back to an impromptu jam session about five years ago.
“It was one of those ‘Hey, I like the way you sing; hey, I like the way you play; hey, let’s form a band’ kind of things,” Howard said.
Though they were having fun and making great music, Howard said the group really began to gel when fiddle player Scott Moore and bass player T. Martin Stam joined the fold. All five members share a profound love of what Howard calls “hillbilly” music, the deeply-rooted traditional music that has been bred in the Appalachian hills for two centuries.
Things really began to take off for The 23 String Band after the band’s sophomore album, Catch 23, was released in 2011. That same year the band booked their first big tour, which encompassed a month in the Rocky Mountains, where they took home top honors at the Rockygrass competition. Since then, the band has continued to tour nationally in the summer and working on their upcoming CD – titled 23SB, to be released this week.
Silas House, bestselling author, said, “The 23 String Band is the best band to come out of Eastern Kentucky in a long while. Their shows are electrifying, their songwriting is top-notch and their vocals are as tight as the cork in a jug of moonshine. They’re my favorite band from the region.”
Rodney Sutton, JSHMH director, commented, “I was truly impressed with The 23 String Band’s performance at MusicFest in Sugar Grove last month. The band engaged the audience from the beginning and their enthusiasm for their new approach to traditional sounding mountain bluegrass and old-time music led to a standing ovation, no easy feat for an afternoon set on a rainy day. It’s easy to see how 23SB has that special knack to appeal to all age groups and leave audiences wanting more, whether at a seated venue or a huge outdoor festival,” Sutton said.
Joe Shannon’s Mountain Home Music would like to acknowledge the sponsors for this week’s concert: WETS-89.5, Harvest House Performing Arts Venue, Stick Boy Bread Company and Merida H and John H Steele. JSMHM is also proud to be included as a site on the Blue RIdge Music Trails of North Carolina.
The Harvest House is located at 247 Boone Heights Dr. in Boone. Tickets are $20 in advance and $22 at the door. Student tickets are $11. This is indeed a child-friendly concert. Children age 12 and under receive free admission. Prices include the new NC state tax. Advance tickets may be purchased online through the Mountain Home Music website at www.MountainHomeMusic.com. Tickets may also be purchased at the Mast General Store (Boone and Valle Crucis), Fred’s Mercantile on Beech Mountain and at Pandora’s Mailbox a