Jeff Austin Band
Sun · April 8, 2018
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pm
$15.00 - $18.00
Tickets at the Door
This event is minors under 18 with parent or legal guardian
Esteemed mandolin player and co-founder of Yonder Mountain String Band, Jeff Austin has shared the stage with such artists as Del McCoury, Jerry Douglas, Sam Bush, and Phil Lesh. With the launch of his solo career in 2014, Austin is now building on the foundations of previous ventures while honing his own sound and charting new courses.https://www.dspshows.com/event/1651926/
The career of the Colorado-based artist has already seen him break through jam and bluegrass scenes, play stages from The Fillmore Auditorium to Red Rocks Amphitheater, and outdoor events like Telluride Bluegrass Festival and Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival, among many others. But with the launch of his solo career in 2014, Austin is now building on the foundations of previous ventures while honing his own sound and charting new courses.
“I’ve learned a lot from the people I’ve played with,” says Austin who has shared stages with such luminaries as Del McCoury, Jerry Douglas, Sam Bush, Earle Scruggs, Jon Fishman, and Phil Lesh. And it’s artists such as these who have helped crystalize Austin’s idea of what he wants to do as he moves forward with his eponymous project. “From both the rock side and the bluegrass side,” he explains, “I’ve learned a lot about song structure, solo ideas, playing with guts, and being who you are.”
Although he considers the Jeff Austin Band his primary focus, the mandolinist and singer is also known for embracing collaborations. In 2004, he released a full-length album with Chris Castino (The Big Wu) that featured guest appearances by Noam Pikelny, Darol Anger, and Sally Van Meter. Just two short years later in 2006, Austin teamed with Keller Williams and Keith Moseley to record a live album of bluegrass takes on Grateful Dead covers. The project, released under the name Grateful Grass, benefited the Rex Foundation. And most recently, Austin revived 30db - his project with Brendan Bayliss of Umphrey’s McGee.
In truth, Austin only began playing the mandolin a few years before co-founding progressive bluegrass outfit Yonder Mountain String Band, a group with whom he parted ways in 2014. And, picking prowess aside, Austin has always considered his voice to be his first instrument. He was drawn to singing from a young age, pursuing musical theater in high school and college. That passion is still evident in his approach to song craft.
Austin draws from those varied roots and readily admits to still loving musicals, being fascinated by Madrigal singers, and tuning-in to a wide range of vocal powerhouses. He channels all of these influences into his solo career, while also seeking personal innovation. For his newest project, Austin sought out musicians on the cutting-edge of the acoustic and jazz music circles. Artists proficient in theory and technique, but not afraid to lend themselves to some “far-out arrangements.” The result is some of Austin’s most structured, yet exciting, compositions to date with an approach that fits within his own evolving journey and personal motto, "The work continues."
Although there is a strong undercurrent of momentum and innovation that course through Austin’s newest project, there is also a connection to the past with the bandleader revisiting selections from his back catalog. Offerings include “Dawn’s Early Light,” “Snow in the Pines,” and others dating back to the 1990s. What matters, Austin points out, is that those songs evoke strong emotional responses both from the audience and himself. Played by this new ensemble, those songs feel revitalized and fresh.
When it comes to dynamics and structure, Austin taps the variety of sounds and styles he's absorbed from theater, jamming, nearly twenty years of performance, and his love of experiencing live music as a fan. It’s that inner concert enthusiast that binds him to his own audience and a powerful exchange between the stage and the crowd. “I hope they take with them exactly what I hope they leave with us,” he says. “And that’s inspiration.”
Aaron is from Naples, NY and has been a professional musician since age 16. From performing on stage, recording in the studio and teaching lessons, he has found his place in music . Throughout a multitude of different genre adventures and instrumentation, he has found home in traditional Appalachian old time music, classic bluegrass sounds, and the blues - all fused into a new sound of the next generation, while paying tribute to the traditions of our ancestors.
Aaron grew up in a musical family and began playing piano at age four. Throughout childhood, he picked up other instruments such as drums, bass, guitar, trumpet, organ, harmonica, and more. Coming from a musical family he was surrounded by all types of music from a very young age. From folk and bluegrass to rock and blues, these early years were the foundation of a long musical journey. Later in May 2006, Aaron joined Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, a local Rochester Original Roots Reggae and Dub band. He played a multitude of instruments for the group including Rhodes, Clavinet, Hammond B3 Organ, slide guitar, harmonica, wurlitzer, lap steel, guitar, and banjo. In a span of six years. During this era, Panda put out two live albums - "Live Up! Vol.1 & 2", and two studio albums - "In These Times" & "Country." Giant Panda toured constantly all over the country logging nearly half a million miles on the road. Panda later released "Steady" and "Bright Days" which feature Aaron on many instruments and harmony vocals. Throughout these years on the road and little time at home, Aaron dove heavily into Old Time and Bluegrass music, learning the traditional practices of clawhammer banjo, bottleneck slide guitar, dobro, flatpicking guitar, blues harp, old time fiddle and upright bass. Sacred steel music on the Hammond Organ and Lap Steel guitar was heavy in motion for the next musical touring adventure.
In March 2013, Aaron began touring with internationally renowned pedal-steel funk/soul guitarist Robert Randolph & The Family Band playing Hammond B3 Organ, Keyboards, Guitar and sang backup vocals for the group. During this time, he shared the stage with Buddy Guy, Taj Mahal, Anders Osbourne, The Slide Brothers, and more as well as performing on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with David Letterman, and the Kelly and Michael show. The group toured through Europe in early summer 2013 as well as a heavily scheduled album release tour of "Lickety Split" on the mainland United States.
Since early winter 2013, Aaron has taken an extended hiatus from touring to pursue several musical projects as well as diverse original songwriting. He has been the frontman and principal songwriter of the local group The Cabin Killers who have performed at many regional venues and festivals. Aaron also spends time working on several Bluegrass and Old Time musical projects with members of The Henrie Brothers. He can be found playing regionally with bands such as The Cabin Killers, Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad, The Campbell Brothers, Axis Armada, Richie Stearns & Rosie Newton, South Hill Cider String Band, The Prickers and The Henrie Brothers, just to name a few.
702 Willow Ave
Ithaca, NY, 14850