I specialize in playing and singing Old-Time, Bluegrass, and Classic Country songs. My repertoire of nearly 80 songs extends back into the mid-1800's (and a few much earlier). With a strong basis in the recordings of the Original Carter Family (circa 1928-1945), I perform the songs that our elders knew from childhood, or learned from their parents. Most shows I give become sing-alongs when classic songs like "Will the Circle Be Unbroken," "You Are My Sunshine," "I'll Fly Away," or "Hey, Good-Lookin'!" get rolling.
I try to honor any request, even if it's only a few lines or a chorus of a song that I may never have sung before, but if I have a snatch of the tune in my memory, I'll do what I can with it, to fulfill those requests. Sometimes just hearing a line or two of a long-remembered favorite song is enough to satisfy a hunger for those memories stirred by music.
I am a multi-instrumentalist (banjo, mandolin, autoharp), but focus on guitar as the best accompaniment for my shows, since it is my first instrument and my best choice for diversity. I have a strong contralto singing voice and do not carry a sound system, thus eliminating any lengthy 'set up' time. I usually come in with just a guitar case, a stool, and a single sheet of song titles to guide my show. With a good memory and a substantial repertoire, I rarely use a sheet of lyrics and prefer to perform from memory. When learning a new song, I will use a print-out a few times until it's 'stuck' in my head. I would much rather make eye contact with the audience than with a printed page.
I enjoy talking with residents between songs, adding bits of history or other observations about the songs, and getting some feedback from folks who associate certain songs with their past. I enjoy engaging in conversations briefly before segueing to the next tune. I try to keep the energy 'upbeat' and rarely do a slow song, unless it's a good love song or a request. I usually include 2 or 3 old-time gospel songs in each set, but they do not predominate so that residents of all faiths can enjoy the entertainment.
Being a native Ohioan, I work from south-central Ohio. I basically charge $50 per hour within Fairfield county, and $75 in surrounding counties to cover traveling expenses. Distances beyond that would be determined on an individual basis. I am very reliable and a good communicator when it comes to bookings and scheduling. I have performed in facilities over 4 counties for the past 6 years. References are available if needed - just ask.
I have 47 years experience as a guitarist, have been performing since age 12 publicly, and am very relaxed and comfortable in front of an audience. I also front the local band Second Wind Old-Time Bluegrass as singer/lead guitar/mandolin. People know me as "Wolf" when I'm with the band (it's a stage nick-name and part of the 'theme' of the band).
As a Living History entertainer, I also appear at historically-oriented events in costume and with era-appropriate instruments and songs. I wrote the winning song for the Rock Mill Songwriter's Contest in 2012, a ballad about the history of Rock Mill in Fairfield County, and I am now a volunteer with the Historical Parks Department.
Please consider booking me for your old-time, foot-stompin' sing-along show. For more information about Second Wind Old-Time Bluegrass band, do a search for the band name or 'second wind grass.'