Old Country Church
Old-time country duet singing became popular in the 1920's and 1930's in the rural southland with acts such as the Delmore, Louvin, and Monroe Brothers (including the future "father of bluegrass" Bill Monroe). Paring the prevalent large string band down to it's "essential" elements, harmony singing with guitar and mandolin (or second guitar) accompaniment, this beautiful music immediately caught on with the masses, at one time even topping the charts in America. Unfortunately, this wonderful tradition is all but lost today, carried on by less than a handful of practitioners across the country, including the Macrae Brothers. Here is their story... The passing on of oral traditions is a hallmark of folk culture. The Macrae Brothers have just such a tale to tell. Upon returning home to California from graduate study in Louisiana, where he was also "schooled" in the brother duet trade, Matt Dudman wished to start a 'brother-duet' act of his own. The mandolinist soon happened upon Jake Quesenberry, a first generation brother duet and bluegrass singing Kentuckian. As such, Jake represents a tie to the past, possessing a significant repertoire of almost lost songs, in addition to his many original songs. Matt made it his 'mission' to coax all those great songs out of Jake and help carry the brother duet tradition on into the new millennium. Upon Jake's conversion from bluegrass back to the old duet style in 1997, the Macrae Brothers were born. With Jake as guitarist and (extremely charismatic) front-man, the duo quickly made a name for itself performing at the major festivals and clubs in Northern California, demonstrating the roots of bluegrass music for the International Bluegrass Music Association, and releasing three well received recordings. Along the way, Matt and Jake have often been joined by other musicians, such as Dobroist Sandy Rothman, mandolinist Dave Earl, and several bass players, including Jerry Campbell. The Macrae Brothers guarantee an entertaining show filled with humor, stories and best of all, nice old songs with beautiful close harmony. They also promise that this wonderful tradition will remain alive for generations to come.