The Grammy-winning Steep Canyon Rangers have been redefining the boundaries of bluegrass music for two decades, topping the charts with 11 albums and touring with renowned banjoist (and comedian) Steve Martin. We caught up with band member Mike Guggino to ask about their new album and March 30 show at Irvine Barclay Theatre.
Why is bluegrass so much fun?
Bluegrass is fun because so much of it is upbeat, fast and exciting. Even the slower stuff is fun because that usually allows space for lush harmony singing.
What were your expectations when you formed the band in 2000?
Back then we were in college and just wanted to play music and have fun. It wasn’t until things got rolling for a few years that we started setting some goals as a band.
What’s your proudest accomplishment?
One of the things we talk about is how we have stayed together for so many years. I can’t believe we are closing in on a quarter of a century with this band! I guess winning a Grammy in 2012 was pretty fantastic, too.
What can we expect to hear at your Barclay performance?
We just recently finished working on a new studio album that will be released later this year. I think we will be playing lots of songs from that new record, including ‘Morning Shift,’ ‘Harvest Queen’ and ‘Hominy Valley.’