All posts tagged: Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen

Beer and Bluegrass

Beer and bluegrass.  Betcha never thought of that combination before. Yeah, right. At a festival that took “parking lot picking” to its logical conclusion (i.e., it was held in a parking lot next to the Clarendon Courthouse Metro Station), Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen rode to the rescue when the organizers of the Clarendon Arts & Crafts Beer Festival’s Acoustic Music tent were struggling with a bad sound system and horrible logistics (the sets were almost an hour late in starting). When the Dirty Kitchen band finally began their set  in the tent’s lengthening shadows, we were only ten minutes away from the festival’s posted closing hour. Somehow, with six Virginia Craft Brewers and about a dozen local food trucks to choose from, it didn’t seem to matter! The artist who was really shortchanged in the logistical and sound mess was Christie Lenee. This finger-style guitar tapper was new to me, but she has obviously been making waves in the acoustic music world for a while. Her inventive sound reminded me of Michael Hedges, but …

Congratulations 2014 International Bluegrass Award Winners

It took 10 months, but the 2014 International Bluegrass Awards caught up with my Best of Bluegrass 2013 post from December. Turns out, my picks were prescient. The International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) awards were presented on Thursday evening in Raleigh, NC.  Three of my five choices from the end of the year were winners at the IBMA showcase. Let’s begin with congratulations to Claire Lynch for winning the “Song of the Year” award for Dear Sister.  I recognized this as a special song back in 2012, and have loved this tale taken from letters written before the Civil War Battle of Stones River in my hometown of Murfreesboro. Claire co-wrote this lovely tune with Louisa Branscomb. It is one of her best ever, and highly deserving of the award. Thursday was a big night for banjo phenom Noam Pikelny. His Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny Baker Plays Bill Monroe – one of my picks in December – won Album of the Year at IBMA. This is not just a terrific concept album, it is a terrific album period. …

Frank Solivan Stirs the Pot

If you had to be inside on a drop dead gorgeous Sunday afternoon in Washington, I couldn’t imagine a better place than sitting in the sun-drenched hall of Cedar Lane Unitarian Universalist Church listening to the incredible musicianship of Frank Solivan & Dirty Kitchen. The Dirty Kitchen Band is on a roll.  Besides making the More to Come… Best of Bluegrass 2013 list (a high honor indeed!), banjoist Mike Munford is the 2013 International Bluegrass Music Association (IMBA) Banjo player of the year, while guitarist Christ Luquette is the IBMA Instrumentalist of the Year Momentum Award winner.  Bluegrass Today said that with their second release (On the Edge), “Frank Solivan and Dirty Kitchen could now be reaching the kind of name recognition that puts them into any conversation about the elite contemporary bands.”  And what other band is fronted by a chef who will whip up a special meal for you prior to the concert (and hence the name). Their two-hour show as part of the Concerts at Cedar Lane series showcased tunes old and …

Best Bluegrass of 2013

This year brought us some very good bluegrass music – much of it coming out of Alison Brown’s Compass Records in Nashville. In looking at the different albums that came to my attention in 2013, three of my top five bluegrass releases of the year came from this eclectic roots music label which has been stretching boundaries and introducing the world to exciting new artists for almost two decades. First up in the More to Come… “Best of Bluegrass 2013” list is the wonderful Claire Lynch and her Dear Sister project (and not just because she signed my CD cover).  This is a great group of songs that include tunes I began writing about almost two years ago.  The title track comes from letters written before the Civil War battle of Stones River – fought near my hometown of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. I’ll Be Alright Tomorrow is a new working of the Osborne Brothers classic, that sounds just right in the hands of the newly minted 2013 International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Female Vocalist of the Year. …