My first band of choice for Local Music Month is the Roe Family Singers, one of my favorite Twin Cities bands. What started as the husband and wife duo of Kim and Quillan Roe has expanded to an 8-member crew of old-timey fabulousness, complete with autoharp, washboard, banjo, saw, mandolin, harmonica, bass, fiddle, and dulcimer, just to name a few! Their sound comes from a different time and place, heavily influenced by old American folk, bluegrass, and roots music. If I imagine a family vacation to old Appalachia with the Carter family, it sounds a lot like the Roe Family Singers.
You can catch the every Monday night at the 331 Club, a great little corner bar up in NE Minneapolis. Playing a combination of their own songs and covering classic old-timey tunes from Hank Williams to Joan Carter Cash to old American folk, they are always a total pleasure to watch. And they are darn nice. Really. I've met members of the band, and these are good people. Always free and always guaranteed to please, I totally recommend hitting up one of these shows. The Roe Family Singers will also be playing the opening weekend of the Art Shanty Projects on Medicine Lake (January 18, 2 pm, Black Box Shanty). If you've never been, the Art Shanty Projects are a funky, fun, and frosty art event that isn't to be missed! I can't think of anything more quintessentially Minnesotan.
I'm choosing the song "Shallow Grave", from their 2005 self-released EP Andronicus. There's nothing quite like a song about a jilted woman killing her husband, especially when it includes the bone-chilling whir of a saw.
Support those local artists!