The Falderals
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The Falderals


Band Americana Folk




"Falderals 'Radio' a taste of true American folk music"

The Falderals are a true American folk duet comprised of husband and wife team Andy and Rebecca Andestic of St. Paul, Minn. Though they are both from the Midwest, they met in Armenia and continued to perform as street musicians in Chicago and then settled in St. Paul in 2005. Their music is a blend of the 1960s era storytelling folk styles of Joan Baez and Bob Dylan, along with the counterculture folk rock movement that featured groups such as Peter, Paul and Mary, and the Byrds.

Their new CD, “Radio,” was released in April and is the group’s third. When listening to a group play, it is obvious when they have been performing together for years, or not. There is no hesitation in this production. The instrumentation is bold and beautifully decorated with resonator guitar licks, compliments of special guest recording artist Shane Akers. The couple’s vocals are filled with emotion and Rebecca’s harmonies along with special guest Kari Shaw are dead on. The song writing is true to the spirit of what I have learned to call Modern American Folk. The topics are reflective of the condition of the human spirit.

Often, I feel that groups will put their best song of a recording on the first track. This is no exception. The song “Quick to Steal” catches your attention immediately with a Mumford and Sons styling. The lyrics “… to steal the wounded heart from the beggars twisted hands” is reflective of how deep the writing is. The title track, “Radio,” is second on the disk and I believe that Rebecca is speaking directly to me with the lyrics “… the sunrise comes quickly, but I rise so slow.” It is a beautiful ballad that speaks of poverty and the struggles of a life helped by the generosity of others — the need to escape and find a better life. It is my favorite of the recording.

If I had a complaint about the disc — and it would be a common issue with folk music — it is that after a while everything starts to have a sameness to it. This is always an issue when there is limited instrumentation. You could say that you are listening to the personality of the artist, which is true, but that doesn’t fix the problem of getting lulled into the sound.

I would give Andrew and Rebecca a ringing four out of five notes, and if you enjoy folk music, you will need this recording in your collection.

If you would like to learn more about The Falderals, you can visit their website at They will also be performing live on my radio show, “Home Town Sounds” 3-4 p.m. Saturday on WWJC, 850 AM. They can also be heard Saturday night at Beaner’s Coffee House in Duluth. The show begins at 8 p.m. and there is a $5 cover at the door. - Superior Telegram


EP: Welcome to our Living Room, 2002
LP: self-titled The Falderals, 2006
LP: Radio, 2011
forthcoming LP: Witness, 2014



Andrew and Rebecca met in Peace Corps and soon started collaborating on songs around campfires. They eventually recorded their first album in an old Russian recording studio. The two married and started performing around Chicago as registered street musicians (they still have the badges to prove it). Lured to the Twin Cities in 2005, they now play regularly around town and have recently branched out to other cities in the Midwest. Their third child never a missed a gig (for nine months), despite the loud thump of Rebecca’s acoustic bass just inches from her head.

The Falderals take their name from an old nonsense folk lyric (“fal-de-ral-diddle-o-day”) and trace their sound to Andy’s childhood obsession with The Kingston Trio (their greatest hits was the only album his parents didn’t sell off in a rummage sale). With Andy on his 000-15 Mahogany Martin (the same guitar Woody Guthrie preferred), along with some harmonica and a kick drum, and Rebecca on her over-sized acoustic bass, they strum, sing, and pound their way through a melodic songbook of original Americana tunes.

With their third album, Radio, The Falderals have created a song cycle that’s bursting with harmony and heartache, songs so raw and intimate that you can feel the tremble in their voices and the blisters forming on their fingers. The Falderals have been hailed as ”new folk for old souls” and are praised for their “smooth as silk vocals, pleasing lyrics, and tight playing.” (KFAI Radio, Live from Studio-5, Doug the Thug) The Superior Telegram declared “[The] Falderals ‘Radio’ a taste of true American folk music.”

Radio opens with the blazing, neo-bluegrass foot-stomper “Quick to Steal,” then immediately tumbles into the somber and rich “Radio,” a simple song that channels John Prine’s ”Angel from Montgomery.” Several upbeat slices of Americana follow, including the tongue and cheek “Don’t Feed the Band” and the contagious barroom sing-a-long “Oh My My (Sound Advice). With “Warm Things” and “Old Man on a Train,” The Falderals update the timeless heartbreak ballad. The whole album feels like they decided to setup in your kitchen and play their hearts out for you. Special guest Shane Akers (of The Dollys and Sister Shaw, to a name a few of the bands he supports) adds a haunting and playful layer of dobro. And special guest Kari Shaw (of The Dollys and Sister Shaw) adds a rich layer of harmonies on “Radio,” “Koan,” and “Don’t Feed the Band.”

They’ll tug at your heart strings with their buttered harmonies and foot-stomping instrumentation, taking you on journeys through ghost towns and wooded bike trails, from corner bars to bright-lighted cities. And while you travel with them, you’ll somehow feel right at home.