Toy Hearts on YouTube

Toy Hearts - Sophia Johnson, Stewart Johnson, Bradley Blackwell, Hannah Johnson, Howard GregoryToy Hearts, one of Britain’s top bluegrass acts, has a new video on YouTube.

It’s the title track of their current CD, When I Cut Loose, recorded earlier this month at the Ely Folk Festival in Ely Cambridgeshire, UK.

The group is a “grown up” family band, based around banjo picker Stewart Johnson and his two daughters, Hannah on mandolin and Sophia on guitar. In addition, Bradley Blackwell is on bass and Howard Gregory on fiddle.

We spoke recently with Sophia, who was featured in the July/August issue of Flatpicking Guitar Magazine. She shared a few words about the video, and the band’s plans for the rest of this year.

“That song was written by me, my sister and my dad – its our attempt to add to the ‘train song’ genre!!

The Toy Hearts will be coming over to the USA for a 5 week tour starting at the beginning of September.

We will be starting at the Tristate bluegrass festival in Kendalville, IA, then driving and gigging through St Louis, Oklahoma City and on into Texas. We are playing at the Bluegrass Heritage Festival in Arlington TX, then spending 2 weeks gigging in Texas before finally going up to Nashville for IBMA. We already have 5 after hours showcases confirmed.”

Sophia also told us that she had just quit her day job to manage Toy Hearts full time. Bluegrass is thriving in the UK, it seems.

You can find out more about the band on their web site or MySpace page.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.