For this iteration of our biannual Rockport Folk Summit we are veering into the bluesier side of the roots spectrum, presenting the gritty hill country groove of the Tarbox Ramblers and the soulful sounds of Jesse Dee.

Tarbox Ramblers

Taking listeners to a place where Appalachian music, backwoods blues and rock ‘n’ roll meet in powerful, ever-changing combinations, The Tarbox Ramblers channel the ghosts of Charlie Patton, Bo Diddley and the torch singers of countless long-gone dives and roadhouses.

Led by the gravelly-voiced guitarist Michael Tarbox, the Ramblers’ caveman rhythms, hillbilly violin and charismatic barbwire guitar led The Washington Post to call them “a force of nature.” Yet the Ramblers can be a surprisingly lyrical band, playing more than a few lushly atmospheric songs that testify to bandleader Michael Tarbox’s growing strength as a writer. Listen to The Tarbox Ramblers and you’ll hear musicians with an abiding sense of all that’s dangerous, dark and fun in American music. Guided by the spirit of Billie Holiday, Lightnin’ Hopkins, Geeshie Wiley and Dock Boggs, to name a few, their work values authentic emotion above all. The band’s rough-hewn sound is the perfect vehicle for getting their message across.

The Tarbox Ramblers have released two albums on the Rounder label, toured throughout North America and Europe, and shared the stage with Robert Plant, Alison Krauss and more. For this night, they will be presenting as an acoustic trio format with Michael Tarbox on guitar and vocals, Jim Haggerty playing standup bass; and Daniel Kellar on violin.

“Intoxicatingly original”- Boston Globe