CATHY FINK & MARCY MARXER present one of their favorite band configurations, THE WHYNOTS? Vocal harmonies and instrumental virtuosity intersect in unique ways that blend Folk, Old-Time Stringband, Ragtime, and Americana styles. Steel Tenor Guitar meets Fiddle.
Five-String Banjo meets Ukulele. Upright Bass & Guitar meet the mighty Musical Washboard. Tin Pan Alley visits a square dance in a Southern holler and an elegant composed string quartet is joined by exquisite harmony singing. When Cathy & Marcy get together with Jane Rothfield and Ralph Gordon, there is fun to be had, and WHYNOT? Their contemporary exploration of old American musical sounds with roots from Africa to Wales allows for spontaneous fun, musical whimsy and soulful respect for tradition.
Cathy & Marcy met Jane Rothfield in the early 1980’s. They have jammed and performed together throughout the last 30+ years with signature concerts at the Old Songs Festival, Philadelphia Folk Festival, Folklore Society of Greater Washington, Institute of Musical Traditions and the Appalachian String Band Festival. Ralph Gordon has performed with Cathy & Marcy since 1984. He plays on over fifteen of their albums and their live performances include the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Wolf Trap Filene Center, Smithsonian Institution and The Library of Congress.
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Cathy & Marcy have been in the forefront of the artists who straddle the lines between bluegrass and old time music. They spearheaded the bluegrass super group “Blue Rose” in 1988, influencing a generation of new female artists and creating a unique sound that won accolades from fans and media alike. They produce an annual OLD TIME BANJO FESTIVAL in the DC/MD/VA area that has hosted Mike Seeger, Roni Stoneman, Tony Trischka, Bruce Molsky, The Old 78′s and Adam Hurt amongst others. They also host a Ukulele & Guitar Summit with five days of workshops, lessons and concerts for one hundred students. The concerts draw as many as 2500 people.
Cathy & Marcy have been active in American roots music education and are widely known as one of the top groups touring and performing for family audiences. Their commitment to acoustic roots music is unparelled, along with their formidable musical skills and love of a good time with an audience. Media features include Bluegrass Unlimited, People Magazine, The Washington Post, LA Times, Flatpicking Magazine and even TV Guide!
Jane Rothfield is an internationally known fiddler, clawhammer banjo player and composer. Comfortable in multiple fiddle styles, Scottish music, Square/Contra Dance repertoire and tight harmony singing, Jane’s musical heart and soul demonstrate her exquisite technique and expression. She‘s been featured on NPR’s A Thistle and Shamrock, Mountain Stage and Folk Stage! She hosts “Janie’s Jumpstart”, a series of workshops teaching fiddle, banjo, guitar and ensemble music.
Ralph Gordon is a classically trained upright bassist. He studied music at West Virginia University and the Manhattan School of Music. His tour credits include the New Jersey Symphony, Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians and the ground breaking folk ensemble,Trapezoid. As a studio musician, Ralph has recorded with over 250 artists. He teaches bass and performance classes at summer and weekend camps across the country.
The WHYNOTS? specialize in enjoying every minute of playing music together and engaging every audience. Equally at home on a festival main stage, a small community concert, a music camp or at the Berklee College of Music, there is joy to be had and life to be experienced.