The Reunion Band - Classic Bluegrass in Woods Hole
Presented by Woods Hole Folk Music Society (WHFMS)
November 4, 2012
The Boston-based Reunion Band is renowned for its strong traditional bluegrass sound and tight vocal harmonies. Veteran musicians Richard Brown (mandolin), Dave Dillon (rhythm guitar), and Margaret Gerteis (acoustic bass) played together in several bands over the years before launching the Reunion Band in 2002. Richard Underwood (banjo) of the internationally acclaimed Johnson Mountain Boys joined the group in 2009, and rising star Laura Orshaw (fiddle) became its newest member in 2012. The band has performed at the ROMP bluegrass festival in Kentucky, the Joe Val Bluegrass Festival in Massachusetts, and at festivals and music venues throughout New England and beyond. Guitarist Dave Dillon is widely recognized as one of the top rhythm guitarists in bluegrass today. Dave has performed and recorded with Don Stover, Herb Applin, and Joe Val & the New England Bluegrass Boys. His contributions to the bluegrass scene earned him the Boston Bluegrass Union's Heritage Award in 2008. Dave also anchors the Reunion Band's vocal arrangements as the group's lead singer. Monroe-style mandolinist Richie Brown currently serves on the board of directors of the International Bluegrass Music Museum in Owensboro, Kentucky. Richie is also associate director of the Museum's bluegrass mandolin camp and a regular faculty member of Mandolin Camp North. He has contributed several original instrumental compositions to the Reunion Band's repertoire and sings lead and baritone on harmony trios. Bass player Margaret Gerteis is a veteran of several New England bands, including the Stony Lonesome Band, where she first played with Richie and Dave, and Apple Country in Connecticut. She has also performed with Hazel Dickens and is a cofounder of the Boston Bluegrass Union. Margaret sings high lead and adds tenor harmony to the group's vocal arrangements. Originally from the Washington, DC area, Richard Underwood is well known in the bluegrass world for his classic hard-driving banjo picking. He earned his reputation with national and international audiences playing with the Johnson Mountain Boys in the 1980s, and has performed and recorded with such artists as Hazel Dickens, The McCoury Brothers, Bob and Dan Paisley, and Scott Brannon. Also a solid singer, Richard sings lead on several of the Reunion Band's arrangements. Fiddler and vocalist Laura Orshaw, described by Bluegrass Unlimited as a “significant emerging artist“ in traditional American music, is an exciting addition to the Boston-area bluegrass scene. Laura began singing and playing at age 10 as part of a musical family in northeastern Pennsylvania, recording two solo fiddle projects while still in her early teens. Throughout her teens, she performed classic bluegrass music across the Northeast as a member of the Lonesome Road Ramblers. Praise for Ms. Orshaw's playing comes from far and wide; Dirty Linen Magazine calls her "a fiddler of seemingly boundless energy ... with finesse, style and a contagious joy." Upcoming WHFMS performances include: November 18, Blues troubadour Roy Book Binder; January 13, singers Claudia Schmidt and Sally Rogers; January 27, singer & songwriter Bill Staines; March 10, fiddler Dennis Stroughmatt and l'Esprit Creole; and several more concerts to be announced. The Woods Hole Folk Music Society is a nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering enjoyment of folk music in all its forms. Concerts are generally held on the first and third Sunday of each month from October through April. They are made possible by support from its members, season subscribers, volunteers, and performers.