Yonder Mountain String Band

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The Travelin’ McCourys do not stand still. They are on the road—and online—entertaining audiences with live shows that include some of the best musicians and singers from all genres. It’s always different, always exciting, and always great music.

On the night before New Year’s Eve with so many good musical choices in the area, there was no place I would have rather been than in the cozy confines of the ornate Boulder Theater seeing one of the best bluegrass bands of our generation. It is always a hometown New Year’s Eve run for these young bluegrass legends. The other hometown bluegrass winners of Rockygrass’ Best New Band Competition, The Railsplitters opened the show.

For nearly 18 years, Yonder Mountain String Band has redefined bluegrass music, expanding the traditional acoustic genre beyond its previously established boundaries by steadily pushing the envelope into the realms of rock n’ roll and improvisation. YMSB has always played music of their own design, in the process attracting a devout coterie of fans that often resembles a tight knit family on an epic musical journey as Yonder traverses the country with an ever-rigorous tour schedule.

Yonder Mountain String Band (YMSB) and Drive-By Truckers bring the best of bluegrass and southern rock to Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Saturday, August 20, 2016 for a blowout summer celebration with the rich jazz tradition of New Orleans with special guest Preservation Hall Jazz Band.

Grateful Web caught up with Dave Johnston of Yonder Mountain String Band just in time to talk about 2016 so far and the upcoming Red Rocks show on August 20th, 2016.  They will headline with Preservation Hall Jazz Band and the Drive-By Truckers in support.  

GW: So you are in the studio today, that is very cool.  Can you tell me more about that?

For 18 years, Yonder Mountain String Band has redefined bluegrass music, expanding the traditional acoustic genre beyond its previously established boundaries by steadily pushing the envelope into the realms of rock n' roll and improvisation. YMSB has always played music of their own design, in the process attracting a devout coterie of fans that often resembles a tight knit family on an epic musical journey as Yonder traverses the country with an ever-rigorous tour schedule.

I had the privilege of attending my favorite festival of the year for the fifth year in a row, and I am here to tell you about the best place on Earth. I would travel across several oceans to get to this festival. It is one that if you haven’t experienced, it should be placed on your bucket list. I’d like to start this tale of Dark Star Jubilee, held at Legend Valley, in Thornville Ohio, each Memorial Day weekend, with some words from the band, written in each schedule passed out:

In the past when I have been 3 days deep into a festival, seeing the Sunday day pass folks show up is like looking at a crystal clear waterfall.  They look so clean and refreshing.  Their energy quenches my soul, making me believe that I have a reserve tank of energy to make it through the last day here in never never land.  The juice is worth the squeeze when it comes down to it. These Sunday funday folks are here to revive the shows and bring balance and harmony to whatever mishaps and ales you have acquired along the way in the name of fun.

It was red noses all around on May 22 in Southern Sonoma County, as thousands converged at the Mountain Event Center to celebrate Wavy Gravy in merriment and song on the occasion of his 80th birthday.  

For nearly 17 years, Yonder Mountain String Band has redefined bluegrass music, expanding the traditional acoustic genre beyond its previously established boundaries by steadily pushing the envelope into the realms of rock n' roll and improvisation. YMSB has always played music of their own design, in the process attracting a devout coterie of fans that often resembles a tight knit family on an epic musical journey as Yonder traverses the country with an ever-rigorous tour schedule.