The acoustic music scene in Boston has changed quite a bit this past ten years or so. Already a hub for gifted, young classical and jazz musicians studying at the city’s premiere universities, the recent willingness of both Berklee and the New England Conservatory to accept students on a bluegrass or new acoustic path has spread the net even wider, drawing more and more talented teen artists to Bean Town.
After graduation, many of them stick around to continue with bands they may have started in college, or to participate in the rich musical tapestry that is woven by the particular concentration of young musicians the city boasts of.
Bluegrass has seen two strong contenders emerge from this stew in the past few years, following the rise of Crooked Still. Mile Twelve and Lonely Heartstring Band both emerged from Boston’s young acoustic scene, and another bunch, Twisted Pine, has a debut album due this summer.
Like their forebears, Twisted Pine takes a bluegrass instrument approach to music that might be best described as contemporary pop in form. You get the punch of the bluegrass rhythm section, without percussion, applied to a song and melody structure more in tune with that to which the wider pop music audience aligns.
The band consists of Dan Bui on mandolin, Kathleen Parks on fiddle, Chris Sartori on bass, and Rachel Sumner on guitar. They met at Berklee and have been together long enough to have won competitions at FreshGrass and Thomas Point Beach in 2014. They have since dropped the banjo and have signed with Signature Sounds.
See what you think in this introductory video with a taste of what is likely to be the first single, Hold On Me.
The self-titled album is due July 14 from Signature Sounds. Pre-orders are enabled now online.