October 19, 2012
Jimmy Ryan opens
From the first notes struck together in 2002 through a 31-date tour with Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson, up to and beyond their fifth studio album in 2011, The Greencards have won steadily escalating acclaim for their multi-dimensional Americana vision. ¶ Opening this show will be Jimmy Ryan. Years before anyone ever heard of a genre called “alt-country,” Jimmy Ryan had founded a great band called the Blood Oranges and pioneered this style of rootsy, country-tinged, back to basics rock ’n’ roll that spawned a whole host of followers and disciples.
The Greencards are a progressive bluegrass band that formed in Austin, Texas, and are currently based in Nashville, Tennessee. The band was founded in 2002 in Texas by Eamon McLoughlin, an Englishman, and Australians Kym Warner and Carol Young. The musicians originally performed in local Austin bars, and soon found increasing acclaim. They released their first album, Movin’ On, in 2003 and it was the recipient of local Texas awards and charted on Americana radio stations. Weather and Water, and Viridian, on the Dualtone record label. Their fourth album, Fascination, was released on Sugar Hill in 2009. Country Music Television named their follow-up, Weather and Water, as one of the ten best bluegrass albums of 2005, and The Greencards were invited to tour with Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson in the same year.
Viridian would go on to take the number one position on Billboard magazine’s Bluegrass Music Chart, making The Greencards the first international band to ever do so. Viridian was a critically praised album, and was nominated for Best Country Album by the Australian Recording Industry Association. The track “Mucky the Duck” was nominated for a Grammy Award at the 50th Grammy Awards. Many music critics cite their latest CD, The Brick Album, as their best album yet — the album that truly demonstrates their skills. The Greencards are noted for their playing of American bluegrass with a worldly feel, and for their incorporation of other genres of music.
Often labeled as part of, and said to be representative of, the “newgrass” movement, they draw from Irish folk music, gypsy music, rock ’n’ roll, folk balladry, and Latin American musical sources. The Greencards’ sound has been compared to progressive American folk rock, and they have been credited with helping to expand bluegrass music. Eamon McLoughlin left the band in December 2009, and was replaced by Tyler Andal, a talented 22-year old fiddle player from White House, TN. Carl Miner, originally from Oregon, joined the group in May 2010, playing acoustic guitar. Carl won the 1999 National Flatpicking Championship at the Walnut Valley Festival.
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Jimmy Ryan spent his early life attending and playing at local bluegrass festivals. His unique sound and style emanate from playing with such a diverse group of bluegrass fiddlers and pickers, mixed with his love of rock and roll. Most noted for his left-handed imaginative mandolin playing, Jimmy Ryan’s old-timey voice and masterful songwriting reflect a seasoned musician indeed.
He began his professional music career in a punk band Decentz and a traditional bluegrass band Pine Island, but he is probably best known for founding and fronting the bluegrass tinged rock band, The Blood Oranges in the late 80’s. “Years before anyone had invented the label ‘alt-country,’ The Blood Oranges helped pioneer the style, with Ryan as lead singer and songwriter,” claims Miles of Music. Jimmy has been playing mandolin for over 30 years. In addition to fronting The Blood Oranges, Wooden Leg and his own solo outing Jimmy Ryan & Hayride, Jimmy’s mando can be heard on albums by Catie Curtis, Morphine, Melissa Ferrick, Mary Gauthier, Laura Cantrell, Warren Zevon, and many others.
- On their fifth, and best recording, The Brick Album, The Greencards are better than ever. The Greencards have elevated Americana with great vocals, great playing and songs that are strictly theirs. AMERICAN SONGWRITER
- The Greencards are a little island of truth and beauty in a sea of artifice and mediocrity. What a fine group, and what a great collection of songs. Rosanne Cash
- Laid back tunes that land in a sweet spot halfway between Americana and bluegrass. TIME MAGAZINE
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- Jimmy Ryan sings like he means it. Performing Songwriter
- Jimmy Ryan is one of those names woven into the fabric of Americana music. . . . His contributions are considerable. No Depression
- Boston, not nationally known for its country scene, has one of the most talented mandolin players anywhere. I am of course talking about Jimmy Ryan, the left-handed mandolin madman who with a new album out, still is kicking like a mule. . . . I naturally gravitate to the front of the crowd as they start “Face Up,” which displays [Jimmy’s] lightning quick mando-chops and fret accuracy. The ballad “John Brown” follows suit and “oohs” and “ahhs” are heard from the audience ensued by a wave of applause. . . . Bill Monroe, eat your heart out. Kier Byrnes, The Noise