Tony Trischka’s EarlJam: A Tribute to Earl Scruggs
January 27, 2024 @ 7:30 pm
Common Ground Downtown
Venue: South Carroll High School
Tony Trischka is considered the consummate banjo artist and perhaps the most influential banjo player in the roots music world. For more than 50 years, his stylings have inspired a whole generation of bluegrass and acoustic musicians with the many voices he has brought to the instrument. In this new concert, Tony will be honoring the music of Earl Scruggs, pioneer of the three-finger banjo style and one of the two most important musicians in bluegrass. Together with his ace band—Michael Daves on vocals and guitar, bassist Jared Engel, fiddler Brittany Haas and sometimes Maddie Witler on mandolin — they will trace the story of Scruggs from his childhood to his final years. Plus, Tony will debut note-for-note solos from some recently acquired rare recordings of jam sessions with Scruggs and John Hartford.
“Earl is my North Star, a lifetime pathway. And I’m not alone,” says Trischka, a banjo innovator and educator who has influenced everyone from Béla Fleck to Steve Martin. “Through his music, this shy kid from Flint Hill, North Carolina went on to enrich countless thousands of lives. At the age of 13, when I first heard 16 notes of Scruggs style banjo playing, I put down my folk guitar and mercilessly pestered my parents to buy me a banjo. Once in my hands, that 5-string became my obsession and has been for close to 60 years.” He adds, “The depth of his genius becomes ever more apparent when I transcribe his solos, which I’ve been doing my entire musical life and with renewed vigor. Discovering new twists and turns in his playing is pure joy and in fact the inspiration for this tribute show.”
“Tony Trischka is known as the father of modern bluegrass.” – New York Times