Written By | Nina Cammarata
Leftover Salmon is an American jam band originally formed in 1989 and would appear to have a revolving door of members since then. The two remaining original members are Vince Herman (vocals, guitar, and occasionally washboard) and Drew Emmitt (vocals, mandolin, fiddle, and electric guitar). They take pride in their 2010 addition of Andy Thorn on the banjo (and occasional vocals) because what would an American jam band be with out a banjo, right? Since 2000 we have Greg Garrison on bass (and vocals) and since 2013 we have Alwyn Robinson on Drums. The newest addition arriving 2016 is Erik Deutsch on the keyboard.
This large group plays a mix of bluegrass, rock, country and Cajun/zydeco music that I
wasn’t expecting to like but, boy, does this American jam band JAM. Through my lens right behind the amps I could see the passion these guys have for their music and the good energy they wanted to send out into the world and as I looked behind me I could see the crowd was feeling it as well. The venue was full of people dancing and having a good time.
Another thing that surprised me was how many people showed up early just to see the
opener, The Infamous String dusters. This band is much younger, forming in 2006. They have been described as a more progressive bluegrass/American jam band and are attributed to pushing the music genre forward. That being said, to my untrained bluegrass ears, their music style seemed pretty dang similar to Leftover Salmon. But it’s the same music genre so why shouldn’t it? Regardless, they rocked the stage and the crowed loved it! They even invited one of the members of Leftover Salmon to play with them during their set. Like the guys in Leftover Salmon, the Infamous String dusters gang was having a great time on stage.
Bluegrass players treat their concerts like a hangout with friends and it is such a genuine good feeling of community and soulful music. I can’t say I’ll listen to bluegrass/American jam bands in my free time from now on but definitely worth the experience.