CHUCK BRODSKY's songwriting pokes fun at political corruption, road rage, mischief he made as a kid, even dumping garbage in the river; he sings about unsung heroes and forgotten but incredible people…odd characters from the game of baseball, migrant fruit pickers, the Goat Man, a clown, or “Radio,” a developmentally disabled man and the love showered on him for 40 years at a high school in South Carolina (this song was used in the 2003 movie “Radio”). In addition to being fixtures on the Dr. Demento show, his songs have been recorded by Kathy Mattea, David Wilcox, Sara Hickman, Chuck Pyle, and many others, and his tune “Blow ‘em Away” was selected by Christine Lavin for Shanachie's 1996 “Laugh Tracks” album. He's appeared on nationally syndicated radio programs “Mountain Stage,” “Acoustic Cafe,” and “River City Folk,” and has performed three concerts of his celebrated baseball story songs at the National Baseball Hall of Fame. This down to earth musical storyteller, with his dry, barb-witted social commentary combined with a deep underlying compassion, knows that the best stories are the little things in the lives of everyday people trying to muddle through with some grace. His great gift as a writer is to infuse these stories with humanity and humor, making them resonate profoundly with his listeners. His spoken introductions to his songs can be as spellbinding as his colorful lyrics, which he brings to life with a well-travelled voice and a delivery that's natural and conversational. His groove-oriented strumming and fingerpicking draw on influences from the mountains of western North Carolina where he now lives, and from lots of different good old traditional folk stuff of all kinds.
From such inauspicious beginnings, JOHN MCCUTCHEON has emerged as one of our most respected and loved folksingers. As an instrumentalist, he is a master of a dozen different traditional instruments, most notably the rare and beautiful hammer dulcimer. His songwriting has been hailed by critics and singers around the globe. His thirty-five recordings have garnered every imaginable honor, including six Grammy nominations. He has produced over twenty albums of other artists, from traditional fiddlers to contemporary singer-songwriters to educational and documentary works. His books and instructional materials have introduced budding players to the joys of their own musicality. And his commitment to grassroots political organizations has put him on the front lines of many of the issues important to communities and workers.
Even before graduating summa cum laude from Minnesota’s St. John’s University, this Wisconsin native literally “headed for the hills,” forgoing a college lecture hall for the classroom of the eastern Kentucky coal camps, union halls, country churches, and square dance halls. His apprenticeship to many of the legendary figures of Appalachian music imbedded a love of not only home-made music, but a sense of community and rootedness. The result is music...whether traditional or from his huge catalog of original songs...with the profound mark of place, family, and strength. It also created a storytelling style that has been compared to Will Rogers and Garrison Keillor.
The Washington Post described John as “Folk Music’s Rustic Renaissance Man,” a moniker flawed only by its understatement. “Calling John McCutcheon a ‘folksinger’ is like saying Deion Sanders is just a football player...” (Dallas Morning News). Besides his usual circuit of major concert halls and theaters, John is equally at home in an elementary school auditorium, a festival stage or at a farm rally. He launched the first-ever joint tour of a Russian and an American folksinger with 1991’s US-USSR Friendship Tour, playing to packed houses in both countries. The past several years alone have seen him headline five different festivals in Australia, tour Nicaragua on behalf of a children’s literacy program, record four albums of songs and music, give a featured concert at the AFL/CIO Convention, author a second children’s book, score four videos, talk about songwriting with authors on XMRadio’s Bob Edwards Show, produce three recordings to benefit a community organizing group, tour Chile on behalf of a women’s health initiative, garner six Grammy nominations, debut his work with symphony orchestras and serve as the president of Local 1000, the fastest-growing Local in the American Federation of Musicians.
If you're a Braves fan, then you've probably heard MATTHEW KAMINSKI entertain the crowd on the organ! He's a Jazz Organist (a Hammond Organ / Leslie Speaker endorsee), Pianist, Accordionist, and Organist for the Atlanta Braves. He's been featured in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, NPR’s “Weekend Edition”, and Fox 5's "Good Morning Atlanta". Furthermore, he has been voted the “Sprint All Together Fan” by www.mlb.com and the “Best Entertainment Group” by www.gameops.com. A recording artist for Summit / Chicken Coup Records, Matthew’s debut album, “Taking My Time”, has garnered admirable reviews in “Down Beat” and “Jazz Times” magazines.