Authentic bluegrass music in the ‘40s style!
Fresh from a second ground breaking, triumphant tour of the United States, Bluegrass Parkway has just achieved the pinnacle of their performance career so far. Headlining three major festivals along with the cream of American bluegrass talent, the band has now established a firm foundation in the US market. These festival appearances, along with a series of very successful concert performances have combined to strengthen the band’s reputation as Australia’s most highly credentialed and experienced bluegrass band. See discography here>
What has helped set the band apart from many others is the priority they have placed upon presenting Bluegrass music in its most authentic form. Bluegrass Parkway has just celebrated their twenty third anniversary and, since the early part of 1994, they have performed around a single microphone, as was the norm for the pioneers of the genre in the 1940s. This came about after the band produced a presentation for the Toodyay Folk Festival in which they showed how bluegrass legends such as Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys and the Stanley Brothers played Bluegrass music in the early days. The response from audiences was so positive that the band made the decision to keep doing it that way; besides, it was so much fun!
At any Bluegrass Parkway performance the audience can enjoy a taste of bluegrass music 1940s style, strong three and four part harmonies as well as witnessing some pretty fancy footwork!
Bluegrass Parkway can claim a special link to the home of Bluegrass music, Kentucky USA. Maria Duff plays bass in the band and hails from the heart of Bluegrass territory, Lexington Kentucky. She was a casual member of the West Australian Symphony Orchestra for twelve years and teaches Suzuki violin. Maria has teamed up with Donal for some classic Monroe twin fiddle tunes.
Paul Duff has become renowned as one of Australia's premier mandolin builders, exporting the vast majority of his instruments to satisfy an ever-increasing demand from the United States. Paul met Maria in the early eighties while touring America gaining experience in musical instrument building.
The strong, tasteful banjo playing in the band is delivered through the very experienced hands of Mick O'Neill. Mick has also become a favourite with audiences because of his bass singing in the quartet. Mick’s experience and expertise in microphones and acoustic engineering is an essential part of creating the Bluegrass Parkway sound.
Donal Baylor has added to the authentic nature of the band’s sound with playing that draws upon his vast experience and understanding of the essential bluegrass fiddle repertoire. Donal’s knowledge of Bill Monroe’s fiddlers and their individual styles offers the audience a rare glimpse of how strong an influence they were on his music.
Guy Paris is our newest member of the band; well almost, having been a member in the early 90s and recently rejoining. Guy is an experienced guitarist and banjo picker as well as having a great baritone voice. He has previously performed in legendary Perth bluegrass band Bungarra and the jug band Honky Nuts.
See discography here>