The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show
Best known for their highly entertaining Retro stage show The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show keeps the sprit of the past alive with their authentic delivery of Bluegrass & Classic Country Music. Real Country Music as they like to put it. The band not only entertains but captures in essence every aspect of an almost forgotten approach to playing music. Deeply rooted in Original Bluegrass Music from the 1940’s the Texas based group tastefully incorporates the shuffle beat of Texas Dance Music into the mix creating a band sound with a rhythmical swing, bounce and cadence like no other. This combined with their Old School style of performance around a single RCA 44 ribbon microphone ranks them as one of the most unique musical acts in any genre.
One of the most identifiable and recognizable names in today’s acoustic music scene The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show will soon celebrate their 20th year as an Old Fashion Entertainment Entity. Officially starting in 1993 the band worked diligently paying their dues, eventually gaining national recognition in 1999 when the group signed with bluegrass record label Rebel Records. Their debut release went to the top of the charts resulting in the group becoming a household name literally overnight. The single Where the smoke goes up (and the money goes down) gave them instant recognition with a song and a sound they could easily be identified with.
Similar chart success followed with their second CD release In Full Color (2001) with songs like It’s fall again ,Cold cold love and Misery loves company. Their third recording for the label Worries on my mind (2003) brought further recognition to the band with the CD receiving airplay and charting action in various alternative music markets. The single Worries on my mind went to the number one spot in both the Bluegrass Music charts as well as the Americana/Roots Music charts placing above many well known artist as Robert Earl Keen, Lyle Lovett, Rodney Crowell, Emmy Lou Harris, Del McCoury, Patty Loveless and Marty Stuart to name a few. The single also made it to number 40 in the Top 40 Texas Music Charts in 2004.
In 2011 Texas Music Magazine named the Worries on my mind CD as number two in the Top Ten Bluegrass Albums of all time just behind the Dixie Chicks album Thank Heavens for Dale Evans.
As the group anticipates it’s 20th year The KSBC Show continues to reach back as evident in their latest Pinecastle Records release Take me back. The fast paced 13 track album featuring the current band line up made it’s chart debut in the Roots Music Report Top 50 Bluegrass Charts at number 42 of the week ending 8/10/12 just four weeks after the release date. The following week it was number 39. It is also listed in the August issue of BMP (Bluegrass Music Profiles) as number 8 in the BMP National Top 10 Bluegrass CD’s chart.
In addition to wide spread radio airplay the group continues to receive world wide exposure on RFD-TV as periodic guest on the popular Cumberland Highlanders as well as the new one hour program Crossing the Cumberlands on the newly formed Rural-TV network. These television productions are responsible for a large growth in fans of Bluegrass Music . First timers come from all over the country each year for the huge Bluegrass Celebration at Bill Monroe‘s Home place high on Jerusalem Ridge near Rosine, Kentucky. This television exposure has brought a mass new awareness to the band as and has dramatically increased their drawing power.
Karl Shiflett also carry’s the distinguished title of Ambassador of Bill Monroe’s Bluegrass Festival in Bean Blossom, Indiana. During his time as a sideman with the Legendary Sullivan Family Karl became good friends with Mr. Monroe. When The KSBC Show was first organized in 1993 Mr. Monroe booked the band at Bean Blossom and gave them encouragement. This appointment was accepted graciously.
Among their achievements and acknowledgements The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show have not gone unnoticed by Industry peers as they have been recognized at various times throughout their career by organizations like IBMA (International Bluegrass Music Association) and SPBGMA (Society for the Preservation of Bluegrass Music in America) for their musical contributions to the industry as well as their efforts to preserve a classic musical art form.
The current band line-up for The Karl Shiflett & Big Country Show includes:
Karl Shiflett- lead vocals and rhythm guitar
Kris Shiflett- acoustic upright bass
Billy Hurt Jr. - fiddle and vocals
Brennen Ernst- banjo and vocals
C. J. Lewandowski- mandolin and vocals
Dany Bureau- scrub-board
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