on The Cosmic American Jamboree
Thursday June 16, 2011, Noon-2pm
Tune in for a special Cosmic American Jamboree, when the Tumbling Bones stop by for a live appearance. In the area to do a concert this Saturday, June 16, at the Mockingbird in Staunton, along with Boston, MA prog bluegrass band Joy Kills Sorrow, the Tumbling Bones trio will rattle things up during the program with some live music and conversation.
The Tumbling Bones are purveyors of traditional American music who value, above all, grit. The twenty-somethings who make up the trio - Peter Winne, Jake Hoffman, and Sam McDougle - have been callousing their hands and pushing their vocal chords for years as they’ve toured, recorded, and breathed folk music. Their raw, though lucid, take on old American music has taken them across the world. The Tumbling Bones used to play in stringband-turned-indie rock outfit The Powder Kegs, and their time with that band took them from street-performing in Copenhagen and Berlin to venues along the east coast to an acclaimed 2007 performance on NPR’s “A Prairie Home Companion with Garrison Keillor” (they played on the show’s “People in Their Twenties Talent Competition” and won first prize).
This January, nearly three years since they had last played together in a band, Winne, Hoffman, and McDougle trekked from their respective homes in Virginia, Philadelphia, and Maine to a basement studio in upstate New York for an impromptu recording session. In one long night of rehearsal and one day of recording the trio rekindled their old rapport and tapped-in to a cohesive sound that can only be cultivated from countless hours spent on stage, in the practice space, and on the road together.
The resulting EP - 'Risk Not Your Soul' - combines fiery American spirituals (“Banks of Jordan”), driving fiddle tunes (“Sally Johnson”), wistful folk ballads (“East VA Blues”), and rusty country blues (“St. Louis Blues”). Peter Winne’s deep baritone lead, Jake Hoffman’s cutting tenor, and Sam McDougle’s fiddle and percussion are faithful to old styles, but the Tumbling Bones can’t help injecting modern sensibilities into their music, however subtly. Taken together, the record showcases the band’s versatility while staying true to their insistence that traditional American music be presented with a strong dose of grit and emotional intensity, even in the 21st century.