MARSHFIELD — Fairland Bluegrass Band returns to Chestnut Center for the Arts for its annual spring concert on Saturday, March 21, at 7:30 p.m. This five-piece family band, hailing from the Green Bay region, has been entertaining Midwest audiences since 2008.
“Bluegrass music is not just a genre. It’s a true American art form,” said Dan Rass, father and founder of Fairland Bluegrass. “We believe if people simply want to hear music, they will put in a CD. But if they will put down hard-earned cash to see a band, they should leave having been a part of an experience. With Fairland Bluegrass Band, audiences can expect heartfelt ballads and hard driving bluegrass standards, finding themselves transported to a mountaintop somewhere in Kentucky.”
The group offers harmonies that can only be achieved with a blend of family voices. Solos, duets, and trios all add to the diversity of the program. Also included in the repertoire are bluegrass gospel selections.
Rass started playing guitar on his father’s 1935 Dobro when he was 6. As he grew older, he made use of his ear for music by playing “anything with strings” in local country bands and recording sessions. After 35 years, he decided to go back to his roots, the bluegrass music on which he was raised. Only this time he had his grown family at his side.
Teri Rass spent much of her married life watching husband Dan perform with various artists and groups until one day she decided she would like to sing too. Soon after, her birthday present was a bass guitar.
Calyn Saindon, Teri and Dan’s middle daughter, has played the banjo for 12 years. She particularly enjoys singing harmony with her husband, Neil. “I think our voices blend well, and he’s so easy to sing with,” said Calyn.
Neil Saindon sings high tenor and is a formidable talent as a songwriter. A number of songs in the band’s set list are his.
Hana, the youngest of the Rass daughters, started playing fiddle at age 7. She began with classical lessons but switched to bluegrass after just six months. Hana cites her father, among many other famous bluegrass artists, as a continued inspiration for her fiddle playing.
“I love every moment my fingers touch those strings or I open my mouth to sing,” Hana said.
The advance ticket price is $10 for adults and $8 for seniors and students, at the door: $13/$10. To reserve advance tickets—available untilnoon on Friday, March 20—contact the Chestnut Center for the Arts at 715-389-8999 or firstname.lastname@example.org. The Center is located in downtown Marshfield at the corner of Third Street and Chestnut Avenue.