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Thursday, March 13 • 10:00pm - 10:30pm
The Wilders

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This talented group, formed in 1996, is regularly regarded as "the band to see" wherever they go. Led by singer, guitarist and country wisecracker, Ike Sheldon, the band grounds itself firmly in the early formative years of recorded country music. Featured in each performance are the hard driving old time fiddle tunes presided over by multi-award-winning fiddler, Betse Ellis. Her infectious fiddling is often the cause of spontaneous dancing by both the audience and the band! The Wilders' playlist is peppered with original country, bluegrass, hillbilly songs, and fiddle tunes, and also includes many of the classic country favorites heard in the early days of the Grand Ol' Opry radio show. Songs by Hall of Famers Jimmie Rogers, Roy Acuff and the Carter Family are presented in a faithful yet original light. Anchored by the insurgent walking bass lines of Nate Gawron, the band resurrects 1940's and 50's honky-tonk heroes like Hank Williams and Lefty Frizzell, providing each tune with all the swinging electricity found in the originals without plugging in a single instrument. The finishing touch for the band's sound is produced by the slippery dobro, chugging clawhammer banjo and plunky mandolin of jack-of-all-trades, Phil Wade. While Sheldon and Ellis handle the bulk of the vocal chores, the whole group can sometimes be heard harmonizing on a beautiful old gospel tune. The band has burned up concerts and festivals across the nation and beyond, leaving delighted and exhausted crowds in their wake. They have made repeat appearances at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield Kansas, Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival in Ancramdale, New York, and debuted at such festivals as Wintergrass and Telluride in 2005. In the summer of 2002, the band was featured with singer/songwriter Iris DeMent on Garrison Keillor's "Prairie Home Companion" on National Public Radio. The band performed live at the Kennedy Center in the summer of 2004, and the video of this performance is archived online. In 2005, The Wilders were invited guests on Michael Jonathan's "Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour"; this show is also archived online. In addition, the band's recordings are regularly featured on numerous folk and bluegrass radio shows far and wide. The Wilders are completely unique among bands playing old time country music. They know the importance of variety in their performances and always strive to give the crowd the best show they could ask for. They multiply their musical skills with a sheer will to give out the most energy they can -- and they do it all with honesty and a genuine enthusiasm for the music.

Thursday March 13, 2008 10:00pm - 10:30pm CDT
The Ale House 310 E 6th St (Alley Entrance)

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