“Just a few words about Banjo Nickaru & Western Scooches, an amazing group which a lot of us dreamed would happen some day where the different genres of music all get together and they all fit together because everybody is great at their genre and also has the ability to be with the other genres in harmony. That’s what they call making music.
Great gourmet cooking and great music is made when things are combined in a beautiful, nutritious, soulful way. It’s not cross over because there is no place to cross over in music you’re already there if you’re a real musician. People listening, being creative, and always wanting to combine what you’ve been gifted with with others, and this group does that. Without any retoric, what Stravinsky said, “Music expresses itself,” and when you hear them, you’ll be blown away.
It’s an answer to a lot of people from an older generation, which is myself since I’m turning 86, dreaming that some day all of these musics would be together. That’s what Charlie Parker told me he would hope to hear, someday, when I was doing my symphony music and trying to play jazz horn, that all music would come together. Bud Freeman, a great saxophone player from the 20’s, before he passed away told me that he hoped all musicians would find a common ground. Any group that does that deserves appreciation and attention and respect.
And I think this group will open up the doors for people who love bluegrass, Gullah-Geechee, African, African American, scat singing, improvising, traditional fold music of the past, all combining to make some great, classical, sincere, built-to-last music from the heart for today.
They played up a storm! They are terrific. And anybody could come. This is the kind of thing that you could bring your 5 year old child and your Great Grandmother and everyone will dig it. Just a joy to hear you, play with you. I recommend everyone come to hear this group wherever they are, and get their CD.”
– David Amram
We met David Amram at NERFA 2016. David, 86, with a twinkle in his eye, a friend of Charlie Parker and more, and a deep love of music of all traditions, joined us in the lobby and at two of our showcases, talked about us in his discussion about folk music and history, and recorded this testimonial which I transcribed about the deep value of our group. Thanks David! We love the light you shine, your open mind, and your deep love and curiosity for music!