It’s hard to believe that the legendary bluegrass band Hot Rize were established as far back as 1978. Whilst modern young bluegrass artists, including flighty mandolinist Chris Thile, hold them in the highest regard they in turn were influenced by the old-timers that shaped the genre including Bill Monroe and his boys Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs whose three-fingered banjo style became a cornerstone that shaped the future sound of bluegrass. Made up of Nick Forster, Tim O’Brien, Pete Wernick and Bryan Sutton this appears to be their only UK stop-off from looking at their current tour schedule which will find them hot-footing from Tønder Festival to Dorset for Purbeck Valley Folk Festival.
For those wondering, they take their name from the leavening ingredient found in Martha White flour and cornmeal products. Hot Rize was introduced in the 1950’s and was pretty big news as it made baking quicker. Whilst that name is synonymous with Southern cooking it also had early strong ties to the Grand Ole Opry who with an advertising budget of only $25 per week in the 1940’s broadened its advertising by sponsoring Nashville’s famous Grand Ole Opry—the country’s longest-running live radio broadcast. In the ’50s Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs also toured with the Martha White Bluegrass Express, one that took to the road again in 2000, this time with Rhonda Vincent and her band on board.
Getting back to band, here they are performing ‘A Cowboy’s Life’ live above New York City’s East River. The song features on their latest album When I’m Free:
Organiser Catherine Burke believes Hot Rize will be the ultimate addition to the family-friendly festival:
“We are more excited than you can even imagine to announce that Hot Rize will be completing the list of headliners at Purbeck this year. These guys are the absolute cream of bluegrass instrumentalists and singers, they’re just awesome.
“Between them they have won loads of IBMA awards, Grammys, started two bluegrass tuition schools and they are simply brilliant.”
So as Hot Rize join headline acts Chris Difford, Justin Currie, Richard Thompson, Stornoway, Kathryn Tickell, Megson, Martha Tilston & the Scientists, Phillip Henry and Hannah Martin and The Moulettes…well what you say? I’ll see you there!
Bursting with good music and family fun galore, the Purbeck Valley Folk Festival, is set to be the highlight of the summer. Legendary acts rub shoulders with upcoming talent amidst the beautiful hillside surroundings of the Purbeck Valley Folk Festival located on the A351 (Valley Road) between Corfe Castle and Swanage.
Festival-goers are also in for a special treat, as Saturday’s Songwriting Circle will see headliners Chris Difford and Justin Currie taking part. This is an intimate opportunity to hear the stories behind the songs from the musicians themselves.
Tickets are selling fast for this year’s festival, which takes place on 27-30 August. Weekend tickets (Fri-Sun) include free camping and are on sale now at just £100 (youth £50, children over three £20). A limited number of Festival day tickets are also now on sale at £50 per day (£25 youth, £10 child).