Following Their Passions

Bow-D at FC Celebration

Bow-Dacious Performance in Home Town Celebration

The Daily Illini featured some home boys close to my heart.

Our two youngest have been playing music for several years.  They started out in the Bow-Dacious String Band playing fiddle and cello, then added mandolin and banjo playing to their talents.  Their love for bluegrass and folk music came about via Urbana’s Community Center for the Arts.  The founder and director knows how to make learning fun, while accomplishments are enjoyable for those who play and those who listen.

The collaborations between young musicians, along with their mentors’ encouragement, evolved to this new club at the University of Illinois.  The other set of twins mentioned in the article – the Fulton boys – have known Kelly and Grady for years via their various 4-H activities.  Can’t get better than this in following your passions.

Pickin’ Illini pluck, play in bluegrass collaboration By Annabeth Carlson

Fulton explained that it was always his and his brother’s dream to form a bluegrass club at the University, and with the help of fellow members and twins Grady and Kelly Ryan, both sophomores in ACES, they were able to make it happen.

At the weekly meetings, the most popular part among current members is the jam sessions. In addition to “Folsom Prison Blues,” the members covered “Wagon Wheel” by Darius Rucker and “Tell It To Me” by Old Crow Medicine Show.

“We teach each other new stuff, maybe learn some new music that we’ve never heard before,” Fulton said.

Grady sweet corn festival

Jamming at a festival


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