FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Bluegrass Music's Fastest Rising Band, Mountain Heart,
Brings High Energy Music to Daytona Beach
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Feb. 1, 2005) - Award-winning ensemble Mountain Heart brings their distinctive style of bluegrass music to Daytona Beach for two nights: March 18 and 19 at SMT Downtown, 176 N. Beach St. Each concert begins at 7:30 p.m.
Mountain Heart is the third group to headline the 2004-2005 Florida International Festival (FIF) "Encore Series." This marks the second year for the "Encore Series," a special showcase for favorite artists from past Florida International Festivals and popular groups and performers who cannot visit Daytona Beach during the summer. Local audiences became acquainted with Mountain Heart when the group raised the roof as the opening act for Ricky Skaggs at the 2003 Florida International Festival.
Six bluegrass musicians - all from vastly different backgrounds and upbringings - each influenced by a host of varied musical sounds and styles, including everything from Lynyrd Skynyrd, Stevie Ray Vaughn, James Taylor, and The Dave Mathews Band to George Jones, Bill Monroe, Flatt & Scruggs, Alison Krauss & Union Station, and Ricky Skaggs make up the individual, dynamic sound of Mountain Heart.
Formed in 1999, with guitarist Steve Gulley, banjo player Barry Abernathy and mandolin player Adam Steffey as founding members, fiddler Jim Van Cleve, guitarist Clay Jones and bassist Jason Moore complete the Mountain Heart lineup.
Mountain Heart immediately made a big splash in bluegrass circles when they won the 1999 International Bluegrass Music Association's (IBMA) Emerging Artist of the Year Award. Their second CD, a gospel collection called The Journey, earned the 2002 Gospel Recorded Performance of the Year from the IBMA. And Adam Steffey won the Mandolin Player of the Year award.
After two CDs on the Doobie Shea label, the group moved to Ricky Skagg's Skaggs Family Records label and produced No Other Way in 2002.
Their most recently released and highly anticipated CD -- Force of Nature - has received rave reviews. Beyond their appeal to bluegrass fans, Force of Nature emphatically demonstrates the group's impressive musical aptitude and song-writing maturity.
The CD captures an entertaining and eclectic mix of music that is the trademark sound and style of Mountain Heart - aggressive, quick-picking instrumentals, strong modern ballads, radio friendly hits and a bit of Gospel.
The band's blend of six distinctive musical personalities is what personifies Mountain Heart. Guitarist Jones says, "There's a rock-and-roll kind of edge to what we do. I just call it high-test fuel."
The "Encore" season closes with Grammy® winner Wynton Marsalis, Friday, April 8, 2005, at the Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Center, 698 W. International Speedway Blvd., Daytona Beach.
Tickets for Mountain Heart are $30 for side seats, $34 for center seats and $40 for table seats and may be purchased by calling the Box Office at (386) 257-7790; visiting us Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 210 S. Beach St. or by visiting our website at www.fif-lso.org.
Central Florida Cultural Endeavors, Inc. is a non-profit organization that presents a wide variety of cultural events in Volusia and Flagler counties, including a winter season of chamber music. The most important CFCE project is the Florida International Festival (July 15-31, 2005), featuring the London Symphony Orchestra.