The Trespassers

The Trespassers


The Trespassers are a string band from the Sierra Nevada Mountains in California. Their original, Americana music is most often inspired by their love of the West. They are known for intense poetry, flat-picking guitar, old-time banjo, unconventional double bass, soaring fiddle, and 3-part harmony.


The Trespassers have been playing original, acoustic music together for five and a half years. We are most often described as a Bluegrass band, simply because of our instrumentation, but our influence stems from many genres. Ben's songwriting is gritty and gutsy, and, though we are a string band, his compositions take us through rock, blues, gypsy jazz, and country. Andy's original songs are most often inspired by old-time music, but instead of an Appalachian feel, they have a Western twist. Andy also writes melodic banjo and fiddle tunes, heartwarming folk songs, and all sorts of dancehall numbers. While the two of them write almost all of our original music, BennyLee and Sarah add spice, flavor, and flare with the double bass and fiddle. Most songs include two and three-part harmonies. We have a great time bringing the unexpected, causing ears and minds to listen closely to the intense poetry at the same times as feet are stomping and hips shaking to the driving rhythm. Having been together quite a while we have become like brothers and sister, and the road has taken us throughout California. We have played at Strawberry Music Festival, Joshua Tree Roots Music Festival, and the Poster Room at The Fillmore, but some of our favorite shows have taken place at The Mobil gas station in Lee Vining, Mountain Sage nursery in Groveland, Divided Sky in Lake Tahoe, and the Bug Hostel in Mariposa. We love to be in the mountains, we love to play for people who enjoy singing along and dancing. Our music presents stories of adventure and tales of natural destruction and decline, and our listeners are inspired by our joy and our motivation to bring change. We will remain rooted in the Sierra Nevada and continue to bring our music to all who appreciate its diversity and honesty.


Golden Vein

Written By: Ben Goger

Golden Vein

You look like gold to me, purest golden vein
Buried deep in the mountain steep
And down to the Thule grass plain

When I was a young man, westward I did ride
To seek my bonnie fair fortune
Down by the ocean side
Merchants there and traders, trading for silver and gold
Building their city upon the backs
Of those whose stories aren’t told

Lost in mist of pleasure, peeling at my pain
I leveled my sights on wrong and right
Scratched a name off a list on a page
California, oh that was your name
What happened to the good and true
The valley smog chokes the wind and the rain


We have released two studio albums in addition to a few homemade discs. In 2006 we released "The High Lonesome Rambler" with 12 original songs including the title track and "Fringe Dweller." In 2009 we released "Western Front," which has 14 original tracks about California, including "Golden Vein" and our song for winter.

Set List

We have an extensive and diverse list of songs. We know at least 150 songs that range from traditional bluegrass to original string-band rock. During a typical show we will play two sets that range from 1 1/2 to 2 hours, and we will play an assortment of original songs and covers. Our audience will most likely here some old-time music, gypsy jazz, driving rock originals, traditional bluegrass, country ballads, melodic folk, two-step and other dance numbers, and a few other surprises. If our fingers didn't wear out first we could play a whole day's worth of music.