Dry Branch Fire Squad to perform March 31 at Court Square Theater

court square theatreDry Branch Fire Squad brings its traditional-style bluegrass to Court Square Theater Sunday, March 31 at 7 pm. Known for showy performances and off-the-cuff humor between songs, this band has been pleasing crowds for more than four decades.

The four members of Dry Branch Fire Squad have many things in common: a strong work ethic, varied interests, close ties to family, and success in professional endeavors outside the field of music. Plus, each member brings nearly boundless energy and enthusiasm, along with solid musical experiences to the band’s bluegrass sound.

Brian Aldridge is an artist at enunciating exciting harmony lines that give expression to the soulfulness and meaning of bluegrass and old-time music. He also has a knack for finding just the right runs that give body to the band’s lyrics with both his guitar and mandolin. His father was the great banjoist, Howard Aldridge; and Brian got steeped early on in the music of folks like Bill Monroe, Sid Campbell, and Frank Wakefield – who came to his house to play music with his father.

Tom Boyd is “to the manor born” (as the old saying goes) if ​manor were ​manner and that manner were MUSIC. Tom started singing in church with his parents and just never stopped, although he did eventually fledge. Tom sings all the parts, and in DBFS he is best known for his wonderful high baritone (though he sings tenor just as often). He is an expert banjoist and Dobro player who has performed over the last 40 years with the likes of Larry Sparks, The Allen Brothers, Mac Wiseman, Hylo Brown, Jack Casey and many others. He has recorded with not only those folks, but also Chubby Wise, Ricky Skaggs, and even was a stalwart on Ron Thomason’s first solo album back in 1972.

Jeff Byrd has an impressive professional musical resume as a bass player who sings bass, baritone, and lead. He has performed and/or recorded with The King’s Journeymen, Higher Ground, the Jennie Lynn Band and Jetts Creek along with short stints with several other bands.

Ron Thomason started out as a child and never got over it. His early years above the Clinch River in Russell County, VA, were tied with all the succeeding ones for being the most enjoyable of his life. His professional music career started at the age of 13, and since then he has played and/or recorded with The Clinch Mountain Boys, The Wilson Brothers, Joe Isaacs, Ricky Skaggs and Keith Whitley, and a host of others. He started DBFS in 1976 and is known to enjoy music-making more now than ever.

Court Square Theater hosts Dry Branch Fire Squad Sunday, March 31. Doors open at 6:00 PM, with the show beginning at 7:00 PM. Tickets are $16 advance and $19 at the door. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit valleyarts.org or call 540.433.9189.


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