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Steep Canyon Rangers sing best in bluegrass, Sept. 28

The Steep Canyon Rangers will be performing progressive bluegrass at the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center Saturday, Sept. 28 at 7:30 p.m. (Courtesy)

The Steep Canyon Rangers will be performing progressive bluegrass at the Yavapai College Performing Arts Center Saturday, Sept. 28 at 7:30 p.m. (Courtesy)

Progressive bluegrass — that driving, soulful fusion of country, folk, gospel and rock — will roll across the Prescott stage this month through the fingers, fiddles and voices of one of the world’s finest bands. Steep Canyon Rangers, the Grammy-winning ambassadors of bluegrass, will bring their catchy stories and singular sound to Yavapai College Performing Arts Center, Saturday, Sept. 28, at 7:30 p.m.

Most famous for their collaboration with comedian/banjoist Steve Martin, Steep Canyon Rangers recorded three critically acclaimed albums with him – The Crow: New Songs for the Five-String Banjo (2009), Rare Bird Alert (2009) and Long-Awaited Album (2017). They also toured with Martin and New Bohemians singer Edie Brickell, but Steep Canyon Rangers had already fostered a rich musical legacy of their own.

Founded by a simple love of bluegrass music, Steep Canyon Rangers sprang from a few talented music students jamming together in 2000 at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Graham Sharp, Charles Humphrey III and Woody Platt considered their jam sessions as simple fun until they graduated and found day jobs. As they added mandolin player Mike Guggino, box kit player Mike Ashworth, bass player Barrett Smith and fiddler Nicky Sanders, and honed their signature sound, they discovered they’d never need day jobs.

Steep Canyon Rangers have been described as “Traditional Bluegrass,” “Progressive Bluegrass” and “country.” The truth is, they are so eclectic in style and collaborative as musicians the most accurate description for them is “really good.” In 19 years of performing, they have recorded ten albums – including 2013’s Nobody Knows You, which won the Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album – and their latest album, Out in the Open.

Steep Canyon Rangers’ musical versatility does not mask a compelling signature style that sings a story well, and draws you in with its dancing fiddle and lively banjos riffs. For bluegrass fans, and those who thought they knew the music, Steep Canyon Rangers offer a delightful evening.

Tickets for Steep Canyon Rangers start at $32. For tickets or more information, please contact the YCPAC Box Office, 1100 E. Sheldon Street, Prescott, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, or call 928-776-2000 or visit www.ycpac.com.

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