Natalie Merchant/Mostly String Bands

10 p.m. to Midnight Host: Steve Winters

How does one get from pop star Natalie Merchant to string bands? It’s a circuitous route, but Merchant (of solo and 10,000 Maniacs fame) has just recorded an album that is firmly embedded in traditional and contemporary folk and acoustic music. It’s a stunning work that includes, among several accompanists, Richie Stearns and Judy Hyman of The Horseflies, a string band from upstate New York that was playing neo-string band music back in the mid-1980s. Merchant’s album was the starting point for this show that also reaches back into the folk archives for two historical sets.

Also from the world of pop music comes Deni Bonet, an electric violin player, who is now working on a more acoustic-flavored album. She is appearing in Connecticut this weekend.

We closed up the night with two recent old-timey releases, one from North Carolina musicians and the other by pickers from California.

  • Artist, "Title", Album, Label

  • The Horseflies, “Human Fly”, Human Fly, MCA


  • Natalie Merchant, “Sally Ann”, “Crazy Man Michael”, “Down On Penney’s Farm”, The House Carpenter’s Daughter, Myth America Records


  • The Horseflies, “Pretty Little Girl”, In The Dance Tent, Live and Kickin’ Records


  • Natalie Merchant, “The House Carpenter”, The House Carpenter’s Daughter. Myth America Records,


  • Deni Bonet, “Alone”, Work-in-Progress sampler, Yukon Records

  • Deni Bonet, “The Girlfriends Of Dorian Gray”, “The Goddamn Violin Solo”, Bigger Is Always Better, Yukon Records


  • Memphis Jug Band, “Rukus Juice And Chittlin’”, Folks He Sure Do Pull Some Bow, Old Hat

  • Clifford Hayes’ Louisville Stompers, “Dance Hall Shuffle”, Folks He Sure Do Pull Some Bow, Old Hat

  • South Memphis Jug Band, “Doctor Medicine”, Folks He Sure Do Pull Some Bow, Old Hat


  • Gid Tanner & Skillet Lickers, “Ida Red”, “Soldier’s Joy”, “On Tanner’s Farm”, Ragged But Right, RCA


  • Beverly Smith & Carl Jones, “Kitty Waltz”, “Mississippi Moon”, “The Last Reel Kiss”, “Blue-eyed Boy”, Moving Lightly Through The World


  • Piney Creek Weasels, “D Medley”, Off To California, Weaseltone
How To Reach Them:

Natalie Merchant
The Horseflies
Deni Bonet
Old Hat Records
Beverly Smith & Carl Jones
Piney Creek Weasels