Steep Canyon Rangers & the New Ballards Branch Bogtrotters

Steep Canyon Rangers and the New Ballards Branch Bogtrotters are coming to the Blue Ridge Music Center on Saturday July 14 at 7 p.m.!

The Steep Canyon Rangers’ trajectory has taken them from college friends enjoying cabin jam session to a Grammy winning group helping to define North Carolina’s sound. A bluegrass band at their core, the Steep Canyon Rangers music is as danceable as the most progressive, party-oriented string band. They are equally comfortable translating their songs for accompaniment by a full symphony and backing Steve Martin on stage. In 2016, the group welcomed new member Barrett Smith (bass) to the long-time lineup of Woody Platt (guitar, vocals), Graham Sharp (banjo, vocals), Mike Guggino (mandolin, vocals), Nicki Sanders (fiddle), and Mike Ashworth (cajón box kit).

In their 30 years together, the New Ballards Branch Bogtrotters have earned the top old-time band prize at the Galax Old Fiddlers’ Convention eight times. The band plays in the traditional Appalachian string-band style, often for square dances around the region. Eddie Bond, the band’s fiddler, is also a fine vocalist, and he knows many of the old mountain ballads dating back generations. Rounding out the group are Dennis Hall (guitar, vocals), John Ellis (banjo), Carolyn Beverly (mandolin), and Bonnie Bond (bass, vocals).