The Likely Culprits will make their official band debut, Saturday night at the world famous Station Inn, in Nashville, TN.
This new group consists of Ashby Frank (mandolin, vocals), Deanie Richardson (fiddle), Melonie Cannon (vocals), Garnet Imes Bowman (vocals), Brandon Bostic (guitar, vocals), Austin Ward (upright bass), and Dave Racine (sitting in on drums… yes I said drums!). Though most of the members have a strong background in bluegrass and acoustic music, the direction of this band is more in the Amerciana/Acoustic Country vein.
Ashby said the band is the product of some discussions he and Deanie had about getting together and making music with some friends who didn’t get to play out very often. Deanie mentioned Garnet and Melonie, both of whom have done a lot of recording, but were not currently performing, and thought it was shame to let their talents lie fallow. Ashby had known Brandon for a while, and pulled him into the project. Austin had just moved to Nashville from California, and was available to fill the bass slot.
I recently had the opportunity to hear the band at a “live practice” in front of some friends and family in Springfield, TN. When talking with the guys and gals that night, it became clear that each of them were having a great time in this new ensemble. Ashby said that it was great fun to play material that he does’t get a chance to perform in other bands.
“Most bluegrass musicians listen to each other’s music, but never get to play it.”
Frank is currently working with Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper, and had toured previously with Marty Raybon, Alecia Nugent, and Special Consenus, among others. Deanie has played with Patty Loveless, Dale Ann Bradley, and Vince Gill, and is set to go out with The Chieftains this spring. Brandon is currently singing and playing with Blue Moon Rising.
Ashby was clear that this is just a side project for everyone. No one is leaving their post in any of their respective bands. For the time being, they are focused on playing gigs in and around Nashville, and getting into the studio to start a recording project. They have begun to gather material, and have even pried a few from Garnet’s husband, Ronnie Bowman. They also recently performed live on Marcia Campbell’s overnight radio show on WSM.
You can keep up with the Culprits on their Facebook page, who invite everyone to come share their first performance Saturday night at 9:00 p.m.