Peter Ostroushko

Peter Ostroushko

BandFolkAmericana

Peter Ostroushko has come to be regarded as one of the finest mandolin and fiddle players in acoustic music. His recording contributions stand favorably alongside great Nashville session men of his generation. He’s played with Jethro Burns, Emmylou Harris, Willie Nelson, Norman Blake, and more.

Biography

Peter Ostroushko has come to be regarded as one of the finest mandolin and fiddle players in acoustic music. His tours have taken him to the stages of clubs, performing arts centers, music festivals and theatres across North America and Europe, and he has earned an international reputation as a versatile and dazzling master of instrumentation and composition. His recording contributions stand favorably alongside great Nashville session men of his generation. He’s played with Jethro Burns, Emmylou Harris, Willie Nelson, Chet Atkins, Johnny Gimble, but his hometown Minneapolis’ music scene has provided a fabulous variety of musical styles in which Peter remains enequaled: folk (Greg Brown, John Hartford, Taj Mahal, Robin & Linda Williams), bluegrass (Norman and Nancy Blake, Tim O’Brien and Hot Rize), jazz, classical, and even rock: Peter’s first
recording session was an uncredited mandolin set on Bob Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks, and his work is featured on Robin Holcomb’s 1992 release Rockabye (Elektra).
Where Peter is at his most passionate is when Peter plays Ostroushko — a rich ethnic mix at the heart of which is his Ukrainian heritage. His term for his gumbo of musical styles is “sluz duz,” a phrase borrowed from his mother meaning, roughly “over the edge” or “off his rocker.” Indeed, Peter is something of a first-generation hero in the Ukrainian community of North America. To his surprise, one town even held a parade in his honor!) Not surprisingly, Peter’s resume is dizzying in size and scope. He’s played lead ukulele with the Minnesota Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Sir Neville Mariner. He’s barked like a dog on The David Lettermen Show. He’s appeared on Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood (whose other rare musical guests have included Wynton Marsalis and Yo-Yo Ma). He’s composed and performed scores for a number of theatrical productions including The Children’s Theater in Minneapolis (with whom he traveled to Edinburgh’s famed Fringe Festival), the ACT Theatre,
and the public television special airing in 1993, The Dakota Conflict. He’s appeared on radio and television music shows including Mountain Stage, Good Evening, Prairie Home Companion, Nashville Network, Lonesome Pine Special and Austin City Limits.
Recordings include his 1992 release Duo with Dean Magraw (named one of the Ten Best Albums of the Year 1991 by TowerPulse! Magazine), his brilliant 1989 release Blue Mesa; Buddies of Swing (featuring Jethro Burns, Johnny Gimble, Red Maddock, and Butch Thompson); Peter Ostroushko presents The Mando Boys (those four recordings available on
Red House Records); Down the Streets of My Old Neighborhood and Sluz Duz(both available on Rounder Records). He has recorded on over 100 other records. “Go out of your way to see Pete…” advises Jethro Burns. That’s advice well taken.

Discography

Peter Joins the Circus, 2008
Postcards, 2006
Heartland Holiday: Live at the Fitzgerald, 2005
Minnesota: A History of the Land, 2005
by Laura MacKenzie, Joel Sayles, Diane Tremaine & Peter Ostroushko
Coming Down from Red Lodge, 2003
Meeting on Southern Soil, 2001
by Peter Ostroushko and Norman Blake
Sacred Heart, 2000
Pilgrims on the Heart Road, 1997
Heart of the Heartland, 1995
Duo, 1991
Buddies of Swing, 1987
The Mando Boys, 1986

Set List

Varies. Normal: two-45 minute sets with intermission