Named after the first person of European descent born in the new world, the Virginia Dare Devils’ moniker conjures the image of a culturally blended lifestyle that honors the amazing spirit of this legendary woman. Born in what is currently present day costal North Carolina, Virginia Dare is said, in legend, to have wholeheartedly embraced the primitive culture of the Croatoan people after being abducted by them in 1590 along with the rest the settlers of what is known today as “The Lost Colony.”
Bobby Miller: Mandolin-Lead Vocals
Born in Georgia in the sixties, you can imagine the type of psychedelic radio pop that he was exposed to. After moving to Matthews, NC in 1974, he was exposed to his first note of Bluegrass music. Some how ending up landing in a suburban home next door to Country Music legend and Grand Old Opry Host George Hamilton IV. "I'd stand on my back proch way past my bedtime and listen to the sounds of banjo and fiddle." He, of course, was into David Bowie and The Doors and such. Later in life, after hearing Old and In The Way, all that changed. He took right to it and before he knew it, he was on stage and sharing his music with as many friends as possible. After moving to Monroe, Ga., Bobby began studying guitar, Mandolin and Fiddle at the late age of 28. That lead to his time with the Atlanta groups Cornfusion and a year with The Ralph Roddenbery Band. Then came the big move to Asheville, NC, and his touring with the Bluegrass/Americana group Boss Hawg. Shortly after, in 2008, he formed The Virginia Dare Devils. After playing regional festivals and clubs for a year, and honing the music to a sharp edge,they began work on their first recording, Brother Adieu.
Rick Cooper: Upright Bass-Backup Vocals
Griff Martin: Guitar-Backup Vocals
Griff is widely accepted as one of the hottest young bluegrass guitar players in the region. His fluid and inventive style has been sharply honed from his early beginnings as a classical pianist to his current accomplishments as a Bluegrass guitar player. He has played and still does on occasion with such Bluegrass touring acts as The Darren Nicholson Band, and Buncombe Turnpike. His musical talent has taken him nationwide as well as overseas. In addition to his accomplished guitar playing, he may be found playing Bluegrass Banjo, Mandolin and even Electric Guitar.
Jason Flournoy: Banjo
Jason began his brilliant musical career with the Colorado based Shanti Groove. After touring the country with Shanti Groove, he attracted the attention of flatpicking genius Larry Keel which led to a six year stint as the banjo player for Larry Keel and Natural Bridge. Jason's solid melodic style fit's like a glove.
Tim Gardner: Fiddle
Hailing from Brevard, NC comes from primarily an old-time fiddle background, but has also ventured into other genres that include country, Celtic, swing, classical, and of course, bluegrass. He learned many of the fiddle and dance tunes in his repertoire from his parents, Lo and Mary Gordon, who are well-established figures in the old-time music community. Tim has traveled to fiddler’s conventions performing with his family since he was the age of seven and has won or placed in many fiddle competitions throughout North Carolina and in his native state of Florida. In addition to being a recording engineer and session musician, Tim frequently takes side work performing and/or recording with various WNC artists including Shannon Whitworth, Bobby Powell & Tim Jones, Allison Williams, Lyndsay Wojcik and Nikki Talley. During the day, Tim works for his dad at Cedar Mountain Banjos building some of the finest open-back banjos on the market. One of his banjos is featured on A Greater Storm, which he plays on "Dance Around the Daisies".
of Brevard, NC comes from primarily an old-time fiddle background, but has also ventured into other genres that include country, Celtic, swing, classical, and of course, bluegrass. He learned many of the fiddle and dance tunes in his repertoire from his parents, Lo and Mary Gordon, who are well-established figures in the old-time music community. Tim has traveled to fiddler’s conventions performing with his family since he was the age of seven and has won or placed in many fiddle competitions throughout North Carolina and in his native state of Florida. In addition to being a recording engineer and session musician, Tim frequently takes side work performing and/or recording with various WNC artists including Shannon Whitworth, Bobby Powell & Tim Jones, Allison Williams, Lyndsay Wojcik and Nikki Talley. During the day, Tim works for his dad at Cedar Mountain Banjos building some of the finest open-back banjos on the market. One of his banjos is featured on A Greater Storm, which he plays on "Dance Around the Daisies".
Rick Cooper: Upright Bass
Rick, or Coop, as he is known, is one of the premier multi instrumentalists on the scene today. He is a graduate of the Bluegrass program at East Tennessee State University and has been with such bands as THe Clear Liquor Pickers, Carolina Call Time, and Silver Dagger. Not only is Coop a fantastic bass player, he placed third in the Rocky Grass guitar competition two years in a row.
Bobby Miller - Mandolin/Vocals
Griff Martin - Guitar/Vocals
Tim Gardner - Fiddle
Rick Cooper - upright bass/vocals
Jason Flournoy - Banjo
Brother Adieu-Risin' Shine Music.
Another great Asheville bluegrass band emerges.
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The Appalachian mountains were the birthplace of bluegrass, and in the last couple of decades Ashevi...The Appalachian mountains were the birthplace of bluegrass, and in the last couple of decades Asheville, N.C., has been fertile ground for the formation of some of the best bluegrass bands existing today.
Score another one for Asheville, as Bobby Miller and the Virginia Dare Devils have released their first album of traditional bluegrass after several years of wowing audiences in the region. The band is led by mandolin master Bobby Miller, a Georgia boy who ended up in Asheville by way of Virginia. Along the way, he learned of the tale of Virginia Dare, the first person of English descent born in the New World. Inspired by the legend (read about it in the liner notes), he named his new band after her.
Virginia would be proud, as the Dare Devils are one heck of a band. “Brother, Adieu” is the first album from this group of stellar musicians, and it delivers in grand style. Produced by Miller and fellow Dare Devil Dobro master Billy Cardine, this collection of traditional bluegrass tunes, original music, and a couple of choice covers showcases the talents of each musician in the band, who combine to create a very special blend of styles that takes the band beyond traditional into the exceptional.
These guys aren’t just great players, they are emotionally invested in the music, as you can practically hear the joy coming off their instruments. A band’s love of their music is often intangible, but the Dare Devils approach traditional songs with such reverence and enthusiasm it is apparent they are deeply involved with their songs. The originals are well-written and significant, and their covers of John Hartford’s “Scotland/I’m Still Here” and The Beatles’ “She Said She Said” show great creativity in their arrangements and deep admiration for the respective composers in their remarkable treatments.
All in all, Bobby Miller and the Virginia Dare Devils have created, in “Brother, Adieu,” the finest album of bluegrass music I’ve heard this year.
Bobby Miller and The Virginia Dare Devils-Brother, Adieu
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This debut CD from local bluegrass group, the Virginia Daredevils is a very welcome addition to my C...This debut CD from local bluegrass group, the Virginia Daredevils is a very welcome addition to my CD collection. Sad to say, I have stacks of local/regional band's records on my bookshelf gathering some dust, but this one got ripped right to the iPod. The Daredevils are the brainchild of Bobby Miller on mandolin and vocals, who's musical resume is long and esteemed. The four other core members are Griff Martin (Guitar/Vocals), Bill Cardine (Dobro), Billy Constable (Banjo), and Stefan Custodi (Upright Bass.) The guest musician list on the album is impressive and includes Bobby Hicks and Don Lewis.
The CD starts off strong with a bouncy three minute track. Judging from the title "Clayton Lunsford Died" I expected a murder ballad, or a sad waltz, but was surprised to hear Miller and Martin harmonizing about the celebration of life at the protagonists funeral. I was already intrigued with the CD...
Equally divided between vocal tunes and instrumental numbers, the album has a very nice flow to it. Each instrumentalist get a chance to shine, and the interplay between all of the soloist is captivating. Martin's guitar playing, both rhythmically and lead, is impressive and dead on. Miller seems to be channeling John Hartford at times, particularly on the track "Boots on Betsy" though sounding distinctly like himself on the one John Hartford cover included on the album, "Scotland/I'm Still Here."
The title track, "Brother Adieu" is the standout track. This is a traditional song that's been done hundreds of ways by hundreds of bands, but Miller and the DareDevils managed to bring something uniquely their own to this recording. With a dissonant melody line that has an unexpected progression, and the spot on harmonies by Mary Lucey Cardine (who's vocals many of you have probably missed since the disbanding of the Biscuit Burners) perfectly complementing Millers resonant lead, the Daredevils completely reinvent this song, and have solidified it for me as the best version I've heard.
Brother Adieu falls into that vague 'New Appalachian Country' genre... bluegrass, newgrass, old time, progressive... and distinctly Appalachian. This is the CD I want in my car stereo as I drive along the Blueridge Parkway, just outside of Asheville.
Bobby Miller and The Virginia Dare Devils-Brother, Adieu
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The new release by Bobby Miller and the Virginia Dare Devils is finally here! The Virginia Dare Dev...The new release by Bobby Miller and the Virginia Dare Devils is finally here! The Virginia Dare Devils deliver a precise and beautiful sound which tends more towards the traditional/classical end of the contemporary bluegrass genre. This is a delightful and refreshing collection of songs and instrumentals by a talented group of master musicians. It has already found a cozy spot in my collection. I've been listening over and over since downloading and enjoying every minute of it. Thanks for this one, Bobby Miller!
The Virginia Dare Devils are: Bobby Miller lead vocals and Mandolin, Griff Martin vocals and guitar, Bill Cardine dobro, Billy Constable banjo, and Stefan Custodi bass. Several other well known Asheville musicians appear as guests on the recording.
Download these 11 songs of bluegrass bliss by the stellar Asheville-area group for only 9.99 at Digstation Download.
El Cumbanchero, Father Adieu, Clayton Lunsford Died, Cather's Dance, Stefan's Aristocracy, She Said, She Said, Ride The Wild Turkey, Hangman's Reel, Coleman's Lullaby, Scotland/I'm Still Here, Pretty Little Indian, Boots on Betsy, Ruben's Train, He's Just Like You.
There are no upcoming dates at this time.