"Tony Trischka's Early Roman Kings: The Music of Bob Dylan” features music from over half a century of insanely creative music – from the very beginning to the present, with a whole lot in between. As Jimmy Carter said at the 2015 Music Cares Grammy event, where Dylan received the Person of the Year Award: “There’s no doubt his words on peace and human rights are much more incisive and much more powerful and much more permanent than those of any President of the United States”. That side of his mercurial career and many others will be mined for hidden gems as well as the mother lode hits.
Early Roman Kings are: Tony Trischka/banjo, pedal steel; Stash Wyslouch/guitar, vocals; Sean Trischka/drums, vocals; Jared Engel/bass.
Tony Trischka is considered to be one of the most influential banjo players in the roots music world. A 2012 United States Artists Friends Fellow, Trischka has, for more than 45 years, inspired generations of bluegrass and acoustic musicians with the many innovative and historical voices he has brought to the instrument.
A native of Syracuse, NY, Trischka's interest in the five-string banjo was sparked by the Kingston Trio's "Charlie and the MTA" in 1963, the very same year, as a young teen, he was introduced to Bob Dylan – literally and figuratively. Trischka’s banjo teacher brought him to a Dylan show in Syracuse, and he has remained a huge fan ever since.
A multiple Grammy nominee, Trischka has recorded 17 solo albums in addition to another 17 group albums, and has appeared on countless recordings by other artists. He has collaborated with banjoists Bela Fleck, Steve Martin, Earl Scruggs, Pete Seeger, Alison Brown and Noam Pikelny, among others, and has worked with as diverse a group as Tony Rice, David Grisman, Mike Seeger, Charles Osgood, John Goodman, Larry Campbell, Michael Daves, John Denver, William S. Burroughs and the Korean Symphony.
The 2011 PBS documentary Give Me the Banjo was co-produced by Trischka, who was also the film’s Musical Director. In the same year, he produced Steve Martin’s Grammy nominated Rare Bird Alert (Rounder), which features performances by Paul McCartney, the Dixie Chicks and the Steep Canyon Rangers.
As Band Leader and performer for The Public Theatre’s Shakespeare in the Park 2012 production of As You Like It, he placed the banjo in an even rarer context. (Mr. Trischka did not wear tights.)
In 2014 he released two albums, Rounder Records’ Great Big World and his second collection of holiday tunes, Of a Winter’s Night, a self-released album recorded live at Levon Helm’s barn.
Tony continues to maintain a national and international touring schedule. For these “Early Roman Kings: The Music of Bob Dylan” shows, he is thrilled to play some tunes by a musical hero he met over 50 years ago, in honor of the artist’s 75th birthday. He’s equally thrilled to be enjoying this experience with Sean Trischka, Stash Wyslouch, and Jared Engel, brilliant musicians and fun guys!
Boston-based Stash Wyslouch is one of bluegrass’ great young genre-bending pioneers. He got his start as a guitarist in metal bands before immersing himself in the structures of roots music as a member of progressive bluegrass act, The Deadly Gentlemen. Now paving his own way as a solo artist with a new group, Bluegrass and Metal collide to form an original, honest and thoughtful sound. His debut album, “Stash!” (2015), features 19 original songs and a stellar band including Sean Trischka on Drums and Vocals, Duncan Wickel on Fiddle and Noam Wiesenberg on Bass.
Since graduating from the Berklee College of Music in 2010, Stash has toured with a variety of acts, most notably with The Deadly Gentlemen. He also went on a US-State department sponsored tour with The Earth Stringband in 2011, becoming the first all-American band to play in the Southeast Asian country of Timor-Leste.
Stash has shared the stage with The Del McCoury band, David Grisman, The Yonder Mountain Stringband, Sarah Jarosz, Chris Thile, Peter Rowan, Michael Daves, Darol Anger, Greensky Bluegrass, The Infamous Stringdusters, and more.
“Drummist” and singer-songwriter Sean Trischka, a 2015 Berklee College of Music graduate, was raised in a musically-rich household. To quote his website:
My name is Sean Trischka. I write songs, sing, play the drums, and wear pants. I'm currently living in Boston, MA (hometown of Whitey Bulger and birthplace of New Kids On The Block).
In the past few years I've been fortunate enough to perform and/or record with The Deadly Gentlemen, Oteil Burbridge (The Allman Brothers Band), members of Lake Street Dive, Darol Anger, Sam Bush, Victor Wooten, Julian Lage and many others.
Yes, my mother is the Assunta Trischka. I get asked that a lot so I figured I'd just clear it up now.
Here’s what Stash says: "Sean Trischka grew up with banjo as his soundtrack, smashes the shit out of the drums, and writes catchy tunes that stick in your head like Beyonce’s last hit. On his first record as a band leader, “The Shuffle,” Sean stirs up a melting pot of brilliant musicians creating a groovy dancing sound with soulful vocals and lyrics, pulsing rhythm guitar and soaring melodies and harmonies."
Jared Engel is an upright bassist and four-string banjoist who is in high demand in the New York Metropolitan area. His involvement in a wide array of musical groups is astonishing, as he is equally at home in all of them: Bluegrass, Appalachian Old Time and so much jazz: New Orleans style, traditional, hot jazz, swing, you name it. He performs intimate venues and at large, world-renowned music festivals. Where there’s great music, there’s Jared Engel. Like the other Early Roman Kings, he’s performed with each of them, but never all together as a group – he’s stoked to be doing it now to the tunes of Bob Dylan.