The Clark Brothers emerge victorious!

We interrupt our Christmas programming for this final NGAB report comes from Casey Henry, a banjo player and writer living in Nashville, TN. She performed the past few years with her brother, Chris, in The Two Stringers, now disbanded.

The Clark Brothers - Austin, Ashley and AdamThe family with undeniable bluegrass roots took home the top place on Fox’s Next Great American Band. Their prize: a record deal with 19 Recordings, the label of the company that produced the show.

The finale of a light-hearted Christmas-themed show was the announcement of the top band. The last two standing were the Clarks and Sixwire. All three boys fell on the floor after their name was called. Ashley commented, "We just came from the house‚Ķplaying from the living room to the stage and we’re freaking out right now." Austin thanked their Mom and Dad, though you really couldn’t hear it over the roar of the crowd. Dicko said, "Week after week you brought the magic." Sheila said, "I prayed for this moment," and John quipped " I knew it all along." He continued in a more serious vein, "Your passion for what you do is so real. That kind of sincerity can’t be faked."

We also got to see Cliff Wagner back, in all his glory, singing…wait for it…Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer.

I’m so happy and excited for the Clarks. It just goes to show, you never can tell where someone is going to end up in life. When you’re playing Harry Grant’s Windgap festival with a family with eleven kids who sing gospel, pay attention, because they might be the next big reality show winners. Even though the music they play now is not bluegrass per se, they come from bluegrass, and anything that helps to raise the profile of bluegrass is good in my book.

And there was a brief shot of a sign someone held up in the audience that read, “We need more mandolin baby!”