Saturday, August 23
Performances by Sierra Hull, Dex Romweber Duo and Flaco Jimenez with Los Texmaniacs
Lectures by authors Peter Guralnick & Holly George-Warren (UNC ’78)
10 a.m.- 10:30 a.m.: Roundtable on the history of the Cat’s Cradle
10:45 a.m.- 11:30 a.m.: Holly George-Warren
11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Peter Guralnick (Keynote)
1 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.: Dex Romweber Duo
2 p.m.- 2:45 p.m.: Sierra Hull
3 p.m.- 4p.m.: Flaco Jimenez w/ Los Texmaniacs
Cat’s Cradle, 300 E. Main St. Carrboro, NC.
Free and open to the public, tickets are required.
Sierra Hull, one of the true virtuosos in acoustic music, has been in the spotlight since playing with Alison Krauss at age 13 at the Grand Ole Opry. Now with six International Bluegrass Music Award “Mandolinist of the Year” nominations, she’s one of the biggest stars in bluegrass.
Boundaries—age, genre or otherwise—don’t hamper an artist like Sierra Hull. As a player, a singer and a songwriter, Sierra has remarkable range, the potential to win over ears unfamiliar with Bill Monroe and give performances of broad cultural importance, as she’s done at Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center and the National Prayer Breakfast. In May 2011, Sierra completed a two-year degree at Berklee College of Music in Boston on a full, Presidential Scholarship. Matt Glaser—head of Berklee’s American Roots Music Program—put it this way: “She has no limitations as a musician.”
“I can’t say enough about Sierra Hull…Sierra is truly a beautiful and talented gift to this world, so special and unique. Daybreak is an awakening.”
Flaco Jiménez + Los Texmaniacs
Few if any artists in conjunto and Tejano music have received the level of critical acclaim Flacohas enjoyed over the course of a career that’s spanned seven decades, and it’s certain that no one has taken the accordion-fueled Tex-Mex sound to a larger audience than he has. Without compromising his musical vision, has introduced the traditional conjunto sound to mainstream pop and country listeners thanks to his collaborations with the Texas Tornados, Dwight Yoakam, and the Mavericks, and he is celebrated by adventurous rock fans through his work with Ry Cooder, Carlos Santana, Doug Sahm, and the Rolling Stones. Max Baca was 7 when he met Flaco at a concert; 20 years later, he became his bajo sexto player. Flaco brought Max into the Texas Tornados, whose combination of country, rock and conjunto has inspired Max’s Los Texmaniacs.
Founded in ’97 by Baca, one of the preeminent bajo sexto players in the world, Los Texmaniacs have been anointed the ‘new kings of Tex-Mex’ by Flaco himself. A bajo sexto (sixth bass) is a twelve string guitar-like instrument, which customarily provides rhythm accompaniment for the button accordion, thus creating the core of the conjunto sound. On the bajo, Max does all that and way more, using the instrument to push the TexManiacs sound to another level of vibrancy altogether. Max and the Texmaniacs earned a Grammy for their 2009 release: Borders Y Bailes (Smithsonian Folkways).
“What B.B. King is to the blues, or George Jones is to traditional country, Grammy-winning accordionist Flaco Jimenez is to the world of Tex-Mex Conjunto.” — Ramiro Burr, “The Billboard Guide to Tejano and Mexican Music”
Dex Romweber is nothing less than an icon of the American music underground. The former frontman for the world famous psycho-surf-rockabilly-garage-punk combo Flat Duo Jets, released his first of nine albums in 1990 to rave reviews worldwide. He starred alongside R.E.M. and The B-52s in the 1987 cult classic film “Athens, GA Inside Out”. His first national tour in 1990 was as opening act for The Cramps. He was showcased on MTV’s The Cutting Edge and 120 Minutes, starred in the Flat Duo Jets videos “Wild Wild Lover” and “Radioactive Man”, made a stunning performance on Late Night with David Letterman, and has shared the stage with dozens of other rock icons including Iggy Pop and the White Stripes.The Dex Romweber Duo also features Dex’s celebrated sibling Sara Romweber (Mitch Easter, Lets Active, Snatches of Pink) on drums. Together the two have been performing electrifying concerts all over the US, including touring with Cat Power, Neko Case, The Legendary Shack Shakers, Southern Culture On The Skids and the Squirrel Nut Zippers.The Dex Romweber Duo’s first Bloodshot album, Ruins of Berlin, features vocal duets between Dex and Cat Power, Neko Case and Exene Cervenka and a guitar duet with Rick Miller of Southern Culture On The Skids. It was produced by John Plymale (Meat Puppets, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Corrosion Of Conformity).
“Dex Romweber was and is a huge influence on my music. I owned all of his records as a teenager, and was thrilled at the fact that we were able to play together recently on tour. His attitude towards music is remarkable. His songwriting, along with his love of classic American music from the south, be it rockabilly, country or R&B, is one of the best kept secrets of the rock n roll underground.” – Jack White, White Stripes.
“The Dex Romweber Duo specializes in music plucked with the soul and faith of a Sunday morning revival, a fluid mix of blues, surf-rock, rockabilly, proto-rock & roll and garage.” – Riverfront Times
Peter Guralnick has been called “a national resource” by critic Nat Hentoff for work that has argued passionately and persuasively for the vitality of this country’s intertwined black and white musical traditions. His books include the prize-winning two-volume biography of Elvis Presley, Last Train to Memphis and Careless Love. Of the first Bob Dylan wrote, “Elvis steps from the pages. You can feel him breathe. This book cancels out all others.” He won a Grammy for his liner notes for Sam Cooke Live at the Harlem Square Club and wrote and coproduced the documentary Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock ‘n’ Roll as well as writing the scripts for the Grammy-winning documentary Sam Cooke/Legend and Martin Scorsese’s blues documentary Feel Like Going Home. He is a recent inductee in the Blues Hall of Fame. Other books include an acclaimed trilogy on American roots music, Sweet Soul Music, Lost Highway, and Feel Like Going Home; the biographical inquiry Searching for Robert Johnson; and the novel, Nighthawk Blues. His latest book, Dream Boogie: The Triumph of Sam Cooke, has been hailed as “monumental, panoramic, an epic tale told against a backdrop of brilliant, shimmering music, intense personal melodrama, and vast social changes.” He is currently working on a biography of Sam Phillips.
Holly George-Warren is an award-winning writer, editor, producer, and music consultant. She has contributed to more than two dozen books about rock and roll, including The New Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock & Roll, The Rolling Stone Book of Women in Rock, and The Rolling Stone Illustrated History of Rock & Roll. She’s also written for the New York Times, the Village Voice, the Journal of Country Music, and Rolling Stone. Ms. George-Warren lives in upstate New York with her family. Her latest work is A Man Called Destruction: The Life and Music of Alex Chilton, From Box Tops to Big Star to Backdoor Man.