"Already a peer/fan favorite, McKinley and the Lonesome Sound are guaranteed to attract a wealth of new listeners with their official debut album, which will likely inspire plenty of end-of-year love as well." - Brian Baker, CityBeat
Storytellers from Greater Cincinnati with distinct Kentucky swagger.
Inspired by American songwriters, Wilder is rooted in tales of the common man, flanked by great melodies and three part harmonies. Formed by Kelly Thomas and Randy Steffen in 2014, around a simple idea... write songs that stand on their own. In the time since, the group has grown to add some texture. Wilder gained some outstanding musicians in guitarist Zach Rowe, bassist John Schmidt, and drummers Kevin Hogle & Christopher Alley.
The Matchsellers are Warsaw, Indiana native Andrew Morris and Julie Bates of Kansas City, Missouri. Their exciting, gritty, and often hilarious stage show has been developed over three years of relentless touring across the US and Europe. Though deeply rooted in bluegrass and old time tradition, the pair’s respective backgrounds in electric blues guitar and classical violin– as well as a penchant for the absurd– offer a refreshing point of view. The group has been featured on various NPR and international radio stations as well as blogs including The Bluegrass Situation, Dying For Bad Music and more.
Bates and Morris met in 2012 while teaching abroad in Leipzig, Germany. They found common ground in the music of their homeland, and hobby turned to profession when they hit the road permanently a year later. Their second full-length album, Songs We Made Up, features the duo’s excellent musicianship, tight vocal harmonies, and wacky world view, ranging from beautiful waltzes to stolen crackers. Watch out for them this year at the Folk Alliance International Conference (MO), the Red Dirt Ball (OK), the John Hartford Memorial Festival (IN), the Wood Tick Festival (MI), the Tri-State Bluegrass Festival (IN), or town near you!