Playing Americana and country roots music, the Shannon Whitworth Band comes to the Katharine Cornell Theatre on Saturday, Oct. 11, at 8 p.m. The band features original song-writing, banjo, pedal steel, dobro, fiddle and mandolin, all forming a creative foundation for sweet, sultry female vocals.
After four years of touring nationwide with the The Biscuit Burners, Shannon Whitworth is striking out on her own. Her musical life began with picking circles in the back of a vacuum repair shop in Boone, N.C. with men twice her age. Ms. Whitworth made her mark with her captivating voice and definitive songs as a founding member of The Biscuit Burners. On her former band’s 2004 release, her ballad, Come On Darlin’, was chosen as the iPod Hotpick bluegrass song of the year of 2004, while the album was chosen in the top 10 bluegrass albums of the year by the Chicago Tribune.
Fans of Southern roots music now can enjoy the heartfelt innocence of her debut solo release, No Expectations. The album features Shannon on clawhammer banjo and guitar playing 10 of her most recent compositions, accompanied by John Stickley on guitar and mandolin; Matthew Smith on pedal steel, dobro and guitar; Seth Kauffman on drums and Jake Hopping on bass.
Living in the mountains of western North Carolina, Ms. Whitworth has spent the past 10 years focusing her efforts on mountain, bluegrass and country music. These traditional styles have led her to develop a distinctive sound that is clearly rooted in the music of the South. Martin Anderson of WNCW suggests that Ms. Whitworth has “forged a bridge between bluegrass and Americana” creating a “definitive sound of the mountains of western North Carolina.”
At the heart of it all is Shannon’s voice, vartiously described as “pure, with a dark, smoky, sadness” and “as instantly recognizable as that of Shelby Lynn and Alison Krauss.”