Stuart Duncan and Noam Pikelny at ROMP 2014 – photo by Jenny Sevcick
Fans of banjo and fiddle music will remember when Noam Pikelny and Stuart Duncan toured the US as a duo in 2014. These two masters of their instruments performed full concerts using just banjo and fiddle, and the occasional voice, and were warmly received wherever they played by adoring audiences. No, it may not have been for everyone, but those who caught one of their shows will never forget it.
The duet tour came in response to Noam’s highly successful 2013 album, Noam Pikelny Plays Kenny Baker Plays Bill Monroe. A tour-de-force for Pikelny, and a technical masterpiece of banjo music, the record found him playing note-for-note transcriptions of Kenny Baker’s classic 1976 LP that forms the back half of the title. Kenny’s album is widely regarded as the finest example of Monroe’s fiddle music ever recorded, but Noam did Baker one better by learning all of his fiddle solos on the banjo, in the original keys, and playing them on his record.
Recognized anew as an interpreter of fiddle music, Noam partnered with Duncan for a tour during a hiatus in both of their schedules, and the shows sold out across the country.
And now, the opportunity exists again to see these powerhouse instrumentalists in 2019 when the Noam & Stuart tour rides again.
After introductory concerts this weekend (Lexington and Atlanta), the two fiddle pals will do a run of shows in the second half of February, 2019. Tickets for many of these shows are available now through Noam’s web site.
If you have even a passing interest in banjo/fiddle duets, part of the backbone of traditional Appalachian music, don’t miss an opportunity to see this pair in concert.