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They’ve become quite the cluster of musical talent, known for mixing bluegrass, country, rock and roll, the Americana band Yarn took the stage at Growler’s American Grill & Venue in Roanoke Saturday, Feb. 2.
“It’s a mesh, anything that doesn’t fit on the radio I guess is called Americana these days,” jokes lead guitarist Blake Christiana. Christiana, Rod Hohl (electric guitar and singer), Andrew Hendryx (mandolin and harmonica), Robert “Bobby” Bonhomme (drums), and Rick Bugel (upright bass) are the five members of Yarn who started on their band endeavor in 2007.
The band originated in Greenwich Village in New York City, where they all commonly played on Bleeckers Street at Kenny’s Castaways. These days Yarn is traveling all over the country performing in rock clubs, theaters even outdoor festivals. Together the fabulous five cram into their van with their equipment taking them to their next destination.
Following them from performance to the next is what the band has come to call the “Yarmy.” All of their supporters and biggest fans make up the Yarmy and in 2012 they helped the band raise funds to produce their latest record, Almost Home.
“They want us to survive and to keep creating music, so they will bring us into their homes, let us sleep in their beds, cook for us…the level of generosity is unbelievable,” says Christiana on their Bio page [yarnmusic.net].
Almost Home was produced by Bil VornDick a multi-Grammy winner who has worked with other renowned artists such as Ralph Stanley and Bob Dylan. Their first four albums were acknowledged by the AMA’s and R&R radio charts where they made the top five.
Prior to their performance at Growlers, the band provided a ‘Meet and Greet’ at Ripple in Roanoke to get to know some of the Roanoke community. The local band, The Floorboards were their shall you say, opening act, that Yarn had never had the pleasure of working with before.
Yarn writes all of their own music based off daily life struggles, relationships gone bad, heavy nights of partying and some standard country lyrics. The band’s first couple of records were acoustic but Yarn’s live shows have always been electric.
“The latest release is a lot more electric but we give a vast array of sounds so whatever your pleasure, we should have it,” said Christiana.
Yarn has been previously featured on CMT where they performed and taped a live performance of “Annie (Concrete Country)” in downtown Nashville. Christiana reminisced on the experience and said the band had an awesome time filming right off of Broadway with a crowd formation and cars driving by on the street.
The band will be performing nearby as part of Floyd Fest in July for the third year in a row. Yarn’s next show is Thursday Feb. 7, at the Jefferson Theater in Charlottesville, Va.