1. The Greencards
Bluegrass generally isn’t something that I’m into or know anything about, but the Greencards are definitely an exception. Recently, they’ve incorporated more influences into their music and have created a great new sound while still keeping true to who they are.
Fascination is the title track from the Greencards's newest album and it's powerful with no unnecessary flash, just the Greencards doing their thing—but with a great melody line like that, how much production do you really need? This song is constantly stuck in my head. As for Davey Jones, it would be cliché to call it haunting, but really. Haunting. Listen to the whole song, and pay special attention to 2:33 in the video. That moment makes this song brilliant and its epic lyrics certainly don’t hurt. The rest of their album, Fascination, is equally fantastic, so even if you’re not a huge fan of bluegrass, still give it a try. I’m bummed that I missed the show they did at The Barns, but who knows? Hopefully they’ll come back again next year.
2. Huey Lewis & the News
Favorite song: It’s Alright
Apparently Huey Lewis & the News were in Back to the Future with their song Power of Love, but I didn’t remember that at all. Instead, the song It's Alright popped up on my Rockapella Pandora station. It’s Alright is Huey Lewis & the News’s doo-wop a capella cover of a Curtis Mayfield & the Impressions song. It’s definitely made these dreary almost-spring months bearable, and also functions as a perfect summer song.
I’m a huge fan of a capella and am also on a huge 80's kick right now, so I was delighted to discover that Huey Lewis & the News fulfill both of those needs. I was worried that I'd miss them when they come to Wolf Trap, but they’ll be performing at the Filene Center in the summer, so it’s alright.
Favorite song: Asturias
To make up for that terrible word-play at the end of entry no. 2, I present a virtuoso violinist playing a song written for the piano on a violin. As a violinist, I am definitely impressed.
My favorite part about this performance is how interesting it is to watch. Watching a symphony can definitely be less than compelling (this is coming from someone in a symphony). Then there’s Barrage—a violin ensemble known not only for crazy fiddle skills, but also for dancing, leaping, and singing on stage while playing. There’s less of that in this particular video simply because the song is hard enough to play as is, but judging by these pictures, Barrage is definitely worth seeing AND hearing. Luckily, they have two performances on February 23 and 24. Even better, the performance is in The Barns, so while the performers are whirling around the stage, the audience will be close enough to see the hairs in their bows breaking.
And those are my top 3 favorite acts that I’ve discovered since I started at Wolf Trap. How about you guys? What are some great acts you've discovered recently? Share your stories with us!