Based out of Nashville, TN, Missy Raines is considered to be one of the most respected, popular, and trailblazing figures in bluegrass today. A seven-time winner of the IBMA Bass Player of the Year award, and a member of Allison Krauss’ first all-female bluegrass band, she has backed greats such as Claire Lynch, Mac Weisman, Kenny Baker, and Peter Rowan. Raines now leads her own innovative and genre-bending trio, which is a rich, jazz-tinged combination of her bluegrass roots and thick Americana, featuring George Jackson on the fiddle and Ben Garnett on acoustic guitar. With a smoky and seductive alto, Missy Raines heads up this trio featuring mandolin/fiddle, upright bass, and acoustic guitar. The territory the trio covers is broad and the compass is set by Raines, planted center stage, directing with her bass every bit as much as she's playing it. Missy Raines is set to release her third album for Compass Records this October, Royal Traveller, produced by Alison Brown, where the sounds are lush, the groove is thick, and the songs memorable.
Very few musicians of any stripe so personify a musical genre as completely as Tony Furtado embodies Americana roots music. Furtado is an evocative and soulful singer, a wide-ranging songwriter, and a virtuoso multi-instrumentalist, adept on banjo, cello-banjo, slide guitar, and baritone ukulele. A native of Pleasanton, California, who now makes his home in Portland, Oregon, Tony Furtado took up the banjo at age 12, inspired by the Beverly Hillbillies TV show and a sixth grade music report. He first attracted national attention in 1987, when he won the National Bluegrass Banjo Championship in Winfield, Kansas. Not long after that, Furtado opted for the life of a full-time professional musician, joining Laurie Lewis & Grant Street. A second victory at Winfield, in 1991, bookended his years with Grant Street.
In 1990, Furtado signed a recording deal with Rounder Records, one of the country’s preeminent independent record companies. Beginning with Swamped in 1990, he recorded six critically acclaimed albums for the label, collaborating with such master musicians as Alison Krauss, Jerry Douglas, Tim O’Brien, Stuart Duncan, Kelly Joe Phelps, and Mike Marshall. During this period, Tony also performed and recorded with the band Sugarbeat and the Rounder Banjo Extravaganza with Tony Trischka and Tom Adams. Beginning in the late 1990s—influenced by such musical heroes as Ry Cooder, David Lindley, and Taj Mahal—Furtado added slide guitar, singing, and songwriting to his musical toolbox and began leading his own band. He is a tireless road musician who performs in a dizzying variety of formats: solo, in a duo/trio, or with his full five-person band. He especially values the opportunities he has had to tour with such legendary musicians as Gregg Allman and with such esteemed slide guitarists as David Lindley, Derek Trucks, and Sonny Landreth.