Dom Flemons is originally from Phoenix, Arizona and currently lives in the Chicago area with his family. He has branded the moniker The American Songster® since his repertoire of music covers over 100 years of early American popular music. Flemons is a songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer, actor, slam poet, music scholar, historian, and record collector. He is considered an expert player on the banjo, guitar, harmonica, jug, percussion, quills, fife and rhythm bones. Flemons was selected for the prestigious 2020 United States Artists Fellowship Award for the Traditional Arts category which was generously supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
In 2020, Dom Flemons re-issued his album titled Prospect Hill: “The American Songster Omnibus on Omnivore Recordings. The two CD album features three parts: the original Prospect Hill album, the 2015 EP What Got Over, and The Drum Major Instinct which includes twelve previously unissued instrumental tracks. His original song “I Can’t Do It Anymore” was released on a limited edition wax cylinder recording. Recently, he released a cover of the Elmore James classic “Shake Your Money Maker”, recorded at Sun Studio in Memphis, alongside Rev. Peyton’s Big Damn Band and featured guest, legendary guitarist Steve Cropper. He played his six-string banjo (Big Head Joe), Quills, and Bones on Tyler Childers groundbreaking album Long Violent History and played jug alongside Branford Marsalis on the soundtrack to Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom on Netflix.
In 2019, Flemons was chosen to be a “Spotlight Artist” at the Soundtrack of America event curated by the World Renowned Quincy Jones and EMMY Award Winning Director Steve McQueen. He was featured in the Bank of America and Ken Burns ‘Country Music’ commercial that airs regularly on PBS. Also, Flemons had a successful international solo tour in Spain, France, Belgium, Holland, and served as an U.S representative at the YodelFest in Munich, Germany.
In 2018, Flemons released a solo album titled Dom Flemons Presents Black Cowboys on Smithsonian Folkways and received a GRAMMY Nomination for “Best Folk Album” at the 61st GRAMMY Awards. This recording is part of the African American Legacy Recordings series, co-produced with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.
The Black Cowboys album peaked at #4 and has spent over 55 weeks on the BILLBOARD Bluegrass Charts and Flemons was nominated for “Artist of The Year” at the International Folk Music Awards, “Best Acoustic Album” at the Blues Music Awards, and “Best Folk Album” at the Liberia Awards. He won a Wammie Awards for “Best Folk Album”, won a Living Blues Award for “New Recordings/ Traditional & Acoustic album”, and received the ASCAP Foundation Paul Williams “Loved the Liner Notes” Award.
Flemons had his major solo debut on the Grand Ole Opry, on a night with Carrie Underwood and Old Crow Medicine Show and was included in the American Currents Class of 2018 exhibit at the Country Music Hall of Fame Exhibit alongside Reba McEntire, Jeannie Seely, Chris Stapleton, Carrie Underwood, Keith Urban, Kane Brown, Dan Auerbach, Dan + Shay, John Prine and more.
At the 2018 National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Mid-America Awards Flemons was nominated for TWO EMMY’s for PBS Episode: Songcraft Presents Dom Flemons and for the co-written song “Good Old Days” with Songwriter Ben Arthur.
He was the first Artist-in-Residence at the “Making American Music Internship Program” at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in the summer of 2018.
In 2017, Flemons served as the only U.S. performer at the Rainforest Music Festival in Kuching, Malaysia. He was featured on David Holt’s State of Music on PBS and performed as bluesman Joe Hill Louis on CMT’s original television show “Sun Records”.
In 2016, a duo album with British musician Martin Simpson titled “Ever Popular Favourites”was released on Fledg’ling Records. He launched a podcast, American Songster Radio, with two seasons on WUNC Public Radio and filmed two instructional DVD’s through Stefan Grossman’s Guitar Workshop.
In 2007, Flemons had an acting role as a Juke Joint Musician in and recorded songs for the Golden Globe nominated, Oprah Winfrey executive produced, Denzel Washington directed feature film The Great Debaters, starring Denzel and Forest Whitaker.
In 2005, Flemons co-founded the Carolina Chocolate Drops who won a GRAMMY for “Best Traditional Folk Album” in 2010 and were nominated for “Best Folk Album” in 2012. He left the group to pursue his solo career in 2014. In 2016 the Carolina Chocolate Drops were inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame and are featured in the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Flemons has archived the legacy of the CCD’s in his personal collection at the Southern Folklife Center at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, NC and at the National Museum of African American Music in Nashville, TN.
Flemons currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Steve Martin Banjo Prize, Music Maker Relief Foundation and is a Governor on the Board of Directors for the Washington, D.C Chapter of the Recording Academy.
Dom Flemons Merch Store: https://stores.portmerch.com/domflemons/
Letitia VanSant’s lyrics are as personal as they are political, tracing questions of power into the human heart. With sparse indie folk arrangements fortifying a distinctly intimate vocal style, her stage presence is down-to-earth and immediate. Paste Magazine named her among 10 Artists to Watch in 2020, BBC Radio says she is “a fascinating new artist,” and PopMatters called her “a consummate reflection of a rising Americana star.” Her songwriting has earned several awards, including the Kerrville New Folk Songwriting Competition. VanSant’s debut album Gut It to the Studs established her as an emerging talent on the Americana scene and propelled her on her first UK/European tour. Its follow-up Circadian was released February 21, 2020.
“The Fly Birds: Free range mountain sirens. Personal, passionate, petulant, praising; longing, losing, lamenting, lazing; crowing, crooning, caring and craving… it’s all there when The Fly Birds perform.”
The Fly Birds are an award winning musical embodiment of Alternative Bluegrass & Appalachia based out of Winchester, Virginia. They’ve migrated the music industry for 6 years, their voices and melodies soaring to new heights together. This unique and original band is comprised of Elizabeth Baker on banjo, Mary Dunlap on bass, Sarah Twigg on guitar and Crystal Shipley on fiddle. They released their first full length original album “The Band is Causing Problems” in 2020 and just released their second album “The Band is Playing Covers” in 2023. Together they make a memorable sound certain to make you tap your feet and sing along!
*1st place bluegrass band at 2021 Watermelon Pickers Fest
*1st place winners of the 2019 DCBU Mid Atlantic Bluegrass Band Contest
From their earliest self-released EPs to 2021’s Cast-Iron Pansexual—the album that earned praise from Rolling Stone and American Songwriter for its examination of faith, sexual identity, and self-acceptance—Adeem the Artist has continued to build a following by blending Appalachian musical influences and poetic flair with a healthy dose of comedic instinct.
“Humor has always been a part of my life,” explains the Eastern Tennessee-based songwriter, citing comedians Andy Kaufman and Sarah Silverman as artistic influences in addition to musicians like John Prine and Blind Boy Fuller. Growing up, first in North Carolina and later in Syracuse, New York, Adeem quickly realized that with the right delivery, dark jokes could offer a socially acceptable way to open up about the tough stuff. “My parents are both from a lot of generational trauma, and I was born right at the heart of it,” they say. “Humor is just how we survived.”
Adeem’s twang-studded gospel represents a worldview too often excluded from modern country music, one that converts shame into celebration. It turns out, folks like the sound of embracing the parts of ourselves we’re told to bury—so much so that when Adeem turned to fans to support the follow-up album to Cast-Iron Pansexual, thousands obliged. Dubbing it a “redneck fundraiser,” the seventh-generation Carolinian raised the money to release White Trash Revelry by asking for one dollar at a time through social media. “With four quarters and a Venmo,” they joked, “baby, you can make this dream come true.” Adeem emerged from the fundraiser $15,000 later with a name for their new record label—Four Quarters Records—and the resolve to write an unapologetic next chapter.
White Trash Revelry delivers, tempering Adeem’s beloved comedic sensibilities with vulnerable moments and highly specific personal details. Tender strings and clear vocals on “Middle of a Heart” give way to nuanced storytelling about small-town rites of passage and mixed messages about love, violence, and honor. And “Heritage of Arrogance” tackles larger societal issues, struggling to reconcile open-minded intentions with the deeply flawed and historical narratives too often peddled by white Southerners. But the album’s namesake revelry is around every corner, too.
“They play country songs in heaven, but in hell we play ‘em loud,” they sing on the standout single “Going to Hell.” Regardless of your thoughts on the afterlife, Adeem sings with an easy-going charisma that makes it easy to want to follow them—to heaven, to hell, or to some raucous, welcoming party in between.
Nora Brown plays traditional music with a focus on Southern Appalachian banjo and guitar playing. She has played numerous venues and festivals in the US and Europe including the Newport Folk Festival, the Philadelphia Folk Festival, the Trans-Pecos Festival of Love in Marfa Texas, and Folk Holidays in the Czech Republic. She has performed on NPR’s Tiny Desk, TED Salon, WNYC’s Dolly Parton’s America Podcast and an official showcase at the 2022 Americana Fest in Nashville. Since 2019 she has released 3 albums on Brooklyn’s own Jalopy Records Label and all records have charted on the Billboard Bluegrass Charts during the first week of release. The New Yorker called her most recent record Long Time To Be Gone – “A disarming collection of traditional laments and exquisite banjo instrumentals”.