Michael Daves & Alex Hargreaves
Heralded as “a leading light of the New York bluegrass scene” by the New York Times, Daves has garnered attention for his work with Chris Thile, Steve Martin, Tony Trischka, and Rosanne Cash in addition to his solo performances.
Daves' most recent project is a two-album set, Orchids and Violence, released February 2016 on Nonesuch Records. Both discs are self-produced and have identical track listing of mostly traditional bluegrass songs. The first features straightforward interpretations of them and was recorded live to tape in a 19th-century church by Daves and a band of roots-music innovators: bassist Mike Bub, violinist Brittany Haas, mandolinist Sarah Jarosz, and banjo player and Punch Brother Noam Pikelny. The second disc was recorded in Daves's home studio and includes bass, drums, and electric guitar, mostly played by Daves, and takes a raw, experimental rock approach to the same old-time material.
Daves previously recorded bluegrass standards on Sleep with One Eye Open, his Nonesuch debut, a duo session with mandolinist Chris Thile (Punch Brothers, Nickel Creek) that earned the pair a 2011 Grammy nomination. The duo makes for "a rip-roaring partnership," writes the New York Times. "Bluegrass, in their hands, gets roughed up in the best possible way, with skill and fervor, and a touch of abandon."
Since 2006 Daves has maintained a weekly residency on Tuesday nights at The Rockwood Music Hall in Manhattan where he continues to draw a devout following, and uses the informal setting to showcase special guest appearances with a who’s who of bluegrass musicians including Noam Pikelny, Chris Eldridge, Sarah Jarosz, and Aoife O’Donovan.
Daves is also an in-demand teacher and noted booster of NYC’s thriving bluegrass music community. In addition to offering private instruction and group classes in Brooklyn (as well as the occasional festival or music camp workshop) Daves recently launched an online school in bluegrass vocals on ArtistWorks.com, the leading music learning website.
Newest member of the world renowned, Grammy award-winning, Turtle Island Quartet, Alex Hargreaves is an innovative, cross-genre violinist described as “one of the greatest improvising violinists in America today” by virtuoso mandolinist/composer Mike Marshall, and “the best young jazz violinist in America” by Matt Glaser, artistic director of Berklee College of Music, American Roots Program. Since 2008, Alex has been performing regularly on stages around the world, including Austin City Limits, Panama Jazz Festival, A Prairie Home Companion, Grand Ole Opry, Cambridge (UK) Folk Festival, Newport Jazz and Folk Festivals, Bonnaroo, Telluride Bluegrass Festival, as well as in France, Italy, Spain, and South Korea. He joined the Turtle Island Quartet in January, 2016
From 2007-2014, Alex toured with Grammy-nominated singer/multi-instrumentalist, Sarah Jarosz, appearing on her three critically acclaimed albums, Song Up In Her Head, Follow Me Down and Build Me Up From Bones (Sugar Hill Records), as well as being featured on her Grammy-nominated instrumental, "Mansinneedof." In between, he has also toured with Jerry Douglas, David Grisman, Bela Fleck, Danilo Perez, Darol Anger, Noam Pikelny, Leftover Salmon and has performed with many others including Mark O’Connor, Chris Thile, Brian Blade, Tim O’Brien and Sam Bush.
Throughout his career, Alex has received countless honors including the Daniel Pearl Memorial Violin from Mark O’Connor’s Strings Conference, and the Alternative Styles Award from the American Strings Teachers Association (ASTA). He is the youngest ever (age 15) to win the Grand Champion division at the National Oldtime Fiddlers' Contest in Weiser, Idaho, and won the 2009 Grand Masters Fiddle Championship in Nashville. At the 2010 Monterey Jazz Festival, Alex was awarded the Jimmy Lyons Scholarship, a full tuition scholarship to the Berklee College of Music.
Alex’s debut album, Prelude (Adventure Music, 2010), features Mike Marshall, Grant Gordy and Paul Kowert, along with special guests Bela Fleck and Noam Pikelny. His playing on Prelude has been acclaimed by critics and musicians alike. “[Alex] plays with wit, authority and soulfulness belying his years,” comments David Grisman, adding “in my opinion, he's destined to be one of the fiddle giants of the 21st century.
In pursuit of his passion for jazz and improvisational music, Alex completed the prestigious Berklee Global Jazz Institute at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. Recently, Alex recorded and toured with longtime friends and musical collaborators Dominick Leslie, Nathaniel Smith and Samson Grisman. Their EP The Brotet, was released in June 2014 and features all original music by the band. Currently living in Brooklyn, NY, Alex performs regularly with a range of artists including Michael Daves, Roy Williams, Grant Gordy, Eddie Barbash, and Jacob Jolliff.