7th Annual Shasta String Celebration

This All-Star concert will feature Folk master Jody Stecher, 5-time Grammy winning percussionist, inventor & composer Roy (Futureman) Wooten (Bela Fleck and the Flecktones), Bluegrass guitar legend & composer Scott Nygaard, Appalachian music masters John Herrmann and John Engle, jazz/bluegrass/Bengali folk banjoist and composer Ben Krakauer, and many special guests, for the 7th annual Shasta String Celebration.
 
A host of musical masters and innovators young and old will convene, fresh from a week of inter-generational musical exploration, embarking on a journey of collaborations to be heard nowhere else. This show is the musical fruit of the 13th annual Shasta Music Summit, where seasoned musicians commune with colleagues from neighboring (and sometimes distant) traditions, while nurturing a host of creative young string players.
 
Grand National Fiddle Champions and Northern California natives Tashina and Tristan Clarridge have grown up in the company of these musicians, making literally dozens of Berkeley appearances with Darol Anger, Crooked Still, Laurie Lewis, Bill Evans, Scott Nygaard, Mike Marshall and their own trio The Bee Eaters.
 
“My sister and I were privileged to grow up in an unusual way, which prepared us for the way this event unfolds. We’d backpack for weeks at a time, or drive 2500 miles to go meet some musicians and get a lesson and go to a fiddle camp. It was a really simple and beautiful way of life, and we want to bring to others something of what we've experienced,” says Tristan. “This project isn't a business, it's a community. These are some of the musical friends we've made as we travel through life.”
 
ABOUT THE PERFORMERS
Roy [Futureman] Wooten is a modern day Renaissance man, a groundbreaking drummer, an inventor, composer, and a five-time Grammy Award-winning member of Béla Fleck and the Flecktones. Audiences first became curious when he appeared in 1988 playing a "Drumitar" – his own invention, using a unique hand drumming technique which allows him to play the drum set electronically with his hands and fingers instead of drum sticks.

Futureman's rhythmic, melodic, harmonic and symphonic explorations led him to compose a new kind of music and a series of large musical works. With this new approach to melody, Futureman created his own original ballet dedicated to the many stages of Matriarchy, entitled "Evolution d' Amour," along with a prequel Symphonic work dedicated to Le Comte de Saint Germain, "The Secret of Kings." He composed an "Aesthetic Mathematics" translation of Pi and the golden ratio into a rhythmic and symphonic musical message, and also an 8-movement symphonic work and a screenplay for his passion project, "CHEVALIER - To Play & To Fight," a story celebrating the extraordinary life and times of a mixed-raced 18th century composer, conductor, virtuoso violinist and sword fighter who rose from slavery to legendary status.
 
For the past half century, Jody Stecher's deep and vivid music has inspired four generations of musicians and music lovers on five continents. A renowned singer and multi-instrumentalist regarded as one of America's leading traditional Folk artists, Jody has collaborated with David Grisman, Jerry Garcia, Peter Rowan, Alasdair Fraser, Krishna Bhatt and Kate Brislin, to name a few. His Grammy-nominated, Indy Award-winning recordings span bluegrass, traditional old-time and Indian classical music. Jody is known for his ability to capture the essence and core of traditional music and to crystalize the spiritual essence of a song while making it his own. He has been called "a creative master," "achingly expressive" and "a national treasure." David Bromberg said, "Jody Stecher was basically my teacher. He opened my ears to more beautiful music than anyone else ever did... more than I ever knew existed. He is also one of my favorite musicians on Earth to play with. I have never known anyone so intensely and completely enveloped in music. It's my suspicion that if you drained all the music out of Jody, you could carry what was left around in an eye dropper."  

"A high, hotly honed voice, sometimes cutting through melodies like a scythe, sometimes unfolding like fine old velvet, warm and worn just right, beyond his years. His guitar, fiddle and mandolin playing are the stuff for which the critical cliches 'soulful' and 'masterful' were invented. Singing like the ghost of himself, lost in the foggy ruins of time and dreams, Stecher lands the most elusive catch of all – the truth." - No Depression
 
Scott Nygaard is highly regarded as one of the most inventive and original guitarists in bluegrass and acoustic music. His solos, a seamless amalgam of bluegrass, folk, and jazz influences, shift easily from breathtaking virtuosity to soulful melodic musings and his accompaniment is always intriguing, supportive and propulsive. 

“As adept at creating magnetic rhythms as he is knocking off stunning solos, Nygaard is possibly the best acoustic guitarist to come along in bluegrass music since Tony Rice.” —Edmonton (Alberta) Journal  

“Nygaard’s flat-picking is so fluid and clever the crowd keeps squinting at his hands, checking to make sure there are only two.” - Oakland Tribune  
 
Ben Krakauer is a phenomenal banjoist and composer with a strikingly original style, drawing on his deep love of bluegrass, new acoustic music (he toured with David Grisman), jazz, and traditional Bengali folk music. 
 
A true master of Appalachian mountain music, John Herrmann has traveled the world performing for over thirty years, with extensive touring in France, Germany, Italy and Japan. Equally adept on banjo, fiddle, mandolin, bass and guitar, he has recorded at least fifty records on labels such as Rounder, County, and Sugar Hill (most notably with Art Stamper and Ralph Blizard), and performed numerous times at the Smithsonian Folk Festival, and the National Heritage Award Ceremony.

North Carolina fiddler John Engle is a master of the fiddling style of the legendary Tommy Jarrell and others.
 
At the forefront of a folk-cello revolution, Tristan Clarridge has been steeped his whole life in the musical traditions of Bluegrass, Baroque, Jazz, Irish, and Appalachian mountain music.
He is a member of internationally acclaimed Crooked Still, and The Bee Eaters, who are known for their uniquely blended tapestry of sound, which the Boston Globe described as, “chamber music's finely calibrated arrangements with bluegrass's playful virtuosity and pop music's melodic resourcefulness." He has also toured with Nickel Creek’s Sean Watkins, Natalie MacMaster, Mike Marshall, Bruce Molsky and as a longtime member of Darol Anger’s Republic of Strings.

Tickets are $26 in advance and $30 at the door. Youth 25 and under are ½ price!

Advance tickets are available at the link below, or you may purchase your tickets at the door the night of the show. Doors open one half hour before show time. We accept cash only at the door (ATMs are nearby).

The Back Room is an all-ages, BYOB (for those 21+) space, dedicated to (mostly) acoustic music of all kinds. You are welcome to bring your own adult beverage with no additional corkage fee. If you need more information, or have any questions, please call us: #510-654-3808. Thank you for your support!