Arizona Wildflowers coming east for World of Bluegrass

The Arizona Wildflowers, the Dietrich family of Casa Grande, AZ, will be making their first ever trip to perform on the Youth Stage at the World of Bluegrass next month in Raleigh, NC. Six siblings, from six to 15 years old, have become an experienced bluegrass and western swing band, performing far from their home in southern Arizona.

Only the three oldest girls will be playing at WoB, band leader Ranelle, who is turning 15, on fiddle, guitar, and mandolin; Brie, at 13, who plays guitar and fiddle; and Aspen, 11, on fiddle. All three sisters sing, and their sibling harmony is already quite developed. Ranelle is in charge of arranging the vocal parts, and is already an eight-time fiddle champion in her various age groups growing up. She is the current Junior State Old Time Fiddle Champion of Arizona and Kentucky.

Their mom, Tiffany, manages the band and has played bass with the group, though she will leave it to the kids on stage at IBMA. Recently Sawyer, age 8, has joined the band on bass, and will accompany his sisters in Raleigh.

All three sisters started fiddle at age three, and their teacher, Peter Roland, introduced them to The Quebe Sisters when they were still quite young. The girls quickly saw themselves in that same mold, playing fiddles and singing close harmony, and the results are quite impressive.

As the eldest, Ranelle taught her younger siblings all their parts, and recorded an accompaniment guitar part which they played to in the video.

She said that the experience of mentoring her sisters has showed the importance of keeping at it, even when it seems hard.

“I would like to encourage anyone just starting out on an instrument, that if you work each day, even a little, you can be certain that you will reach your musical goals. Never give up!”

Not long after the Wildflowers developed an interest in swing music, they opened a show for Michael Martin Murphey, and fell in love with the bluegrass sound. Tiffany tells us that he has continued to be a positive influence in the girls’ lives, and stays in touch to keep them motivated to stay with it.

Brie says that she loves performing with her siblings, and has high hopes for the future.

“My dream is to someday play on The Grand Ole Opry.”

Now with Sawyer in the Wildflowers, they have a fuller sound.

Sawyer says that it has been tough watching his sisters performing in front of large crowds while he had to wait his turn.

“I’ve wanted to be part of the band as long as I can remember! I’m most excited to get to play at IBMA!”

Aspen says that it’s the community aspect of bluegrass and acoustic music that she likes best.

“I am so thankful for all the friends we’ve made through the years who we never would have met if it weren’t for music.”

They also enjoy singing bluegrass gospel music.

Six year old Isley plays fiddle with the Arizona Wildflowers from time to time, and also can’t wait to become a full time member.

If you’ll be at this year’s World of Bluegrass, be sure to check out The Arizona Wildflowers on Friday September 29, 2023 at 2:15 p.m. on the Youth Stage.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.