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Tony Hale and Blackwater

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Brian Aldridge of Springfield, Ohio (son of Howard Aldridge, banjo player for Bill Monroe in the 1960s), has 50 years of experience in Bluegrass. From his earlier days with Timely Arrival to present day with Dry Branch Fire Squad, Brian has travelled from the east to the west coast playing all of the major venues and festivals, bringing his own style of mandolin playing and harmony to the Bluegrass community, as well as to Blackwater.



Larry Griffith of Middletown, Ohio, was introduced to Bluegrass as a boy, waking up to Moon Mullins’ morning show with “Blackjack” by J.D. Crowe on WPFB. Larry has been in Bluegrass for 40 years, beginning with Jim Hardin and The Bluegrass Statesmen. In later years, with his 1939 Kay C-1 bass, he played with Buckeye Ridge at many venues up and down the east coast, including The Renfro Valley Barn Dance. His driving bass and high tenor is reminiscent of the traditional style Blackwater strives to capture.



Wayne Haddix of Lebanon, Ohio (son of Herchel Haddix a staple in the Dayton Bluegrass/Gospel community), playing music since his early childhood, brings a rhythm and vocal combination to Blackwater that is pleasing to the crowd. He has stood on many stages with New Mountain Heritage and with The Haddix Family. Wayne has travelled the States playing Bluegrass and Gospel music for over 50 years.



Evan Lanier of Carlisle, Ohio (grandson of well-known bass player Noel Bolen), was surrounded at a young age by the greatest musicians of the Dayton/Cincinnati area. Evan was steeped in the tradition and artistry of Bluegrass. From travelling the Midwest with Evan Lanier and The Bluegrass Express, to travelling the US and Canada with The Kody Norris Show, as well as with Larry Sparks and The Lonesome Ramblers, Evan has over 20 years of experience in music. His driving banjo and exceptional guitar picking is foundational to Blackwater.



Tony Hale of Monroe, Ohio (nephew of accomplished guitar player Ernie Sexton), has 20 years of musical experience. Early beginnings found him learning to play bass with his afore mentioned uncle in Paul Blevins’ band of Middletown, Ohio. He continued with Bluegrass but found inspiration while singing in a southern gospel quartet. His passion of songwriting has taken him back to his early memories on Blackwater Creek in Morgan County, Kentucky where generations of his family made their home. Tony's drive to unite old time gospel and bluegrass complements his clear and precise vocal ability.

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