Contrarians
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Contrarians

Charleston, West Virginia, United States | SELF

Charleston, West Virginia, United States | SELF
Band Country Bluegrass

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Discography

Contrarians: CD released December 2008. Available on CD Baby, I-tunes and other download sites. Listen to some cuts at http://myspace.com/contrarianswv

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Bio

A four-piece band, the Contrarians of West Virginia play contradance and square dance music as well as classic swing and original songs backed by fiddles, guitar, mandolin, piano, tenor banjo, upright bass, and a bluesy trumpet (and, beginning in 2009, sax!)

A Contrarians event delivers dazzling melody - including some great original tunes - along with a solid yet imaginative approach to rhythm. The band has consistently "wowed the crowd" at dances and dance weekends throughout Ohio-Kentucky-West Virginia and beyond. Their self-titled CD, released in late 2007, shows "why the band is in great demand at Contradances from Washington DC to Cleveland...." according to Paul Gartner of the Charleston Gazette.

They have played every major dance and several dance weekends in WV, KY, and OH, as well as several in NC, PA, SC, TN, and VA.

Hailing from West Virginia, the Contrarians are comfortable in a variety of styles and traditions: Celtic, New England, swing, and of course, old-time (Appalachian). They also write original material. With rhythmic variety, occasional glimpses of ethnic music, and unique improvisations, dancers let loose and never lose interest in the music.

"It’s rare for a band that is not on the road constantly to achieve this level of expertise," says Ron Buchanan, a renowned dance caller who travels nationwide from his home in Pittsburgh, "but I’ve known some of these guys for over twenty years since they were playing in string bands that traveled to festivals all over the country. Most of them make their living in other ways, but their first love is the music."

Margo Blevin, former director of Augusta Heritage Workshops, wrote of the Contrarians at Wild Wonderful Weekend in January, 2003, "The comments were entirely enthusiastic and complimentary. We particuarly appreciated the incredible job you did with the band workshop. Adding that was a big question mark, as we had no idea if musicians were coming and would take the workshop. It was definitely one of the highlights of the weekend, as were all the dances from the first to the very last."

Praise for the Contrarians CD

Spend a few minutes listening to this self-titled CD — the band’s first — and you can hear why The Contrarians are in demand at contra dances from Washington, D.C., to Cleveland, Lexington, Ky., and Jonesboro, Tenn.

Paul Gartner reviewing for the Charleston Gazette

The Contrarians CD is absolutely fantastic! I've told all my friends about it and plan on stealing lots from it. It's so great to put on so many original tunes.
Congratulations!!

David Atcher, Musician and Dance Organizer, Lexington, KY

Your new CD is a superb display of music. I have been listening over and over.

David Wiley, Dance Organizer, Jonesborough, TN

The Contrarians hail from the Mountain State of West Virginia. As their name implies, they are a contradance band and they take a decidedly more aggressive approach to dance music...The CD concludes with Paul’s “Waltz to Remember” with its Central European style. It’s an elegant way to draw to a close a collection of fine traditional and contemporary dance tunes from the Contrarians, a quartet of very talented musicians.

Tom Druckenmiller for SingOut! Magazine

I just spent 11 hours driving roundtrip alone to call in Berea, KY. I listened to your cd 4 times. Mighty fine!!!

Doug Singleton, Dance Caller, Atlanta, GA