The Nob Hill Boys come to Charlotte’s Web

The Nob Hill Boys come to Charlotte’s Web


The Nob Hill Boys, a modern bluegrass group whose commitment to tradition is clear in all its performances, come to entertain Charlotte’s Web audiences at 8 p.m., Friday, May 16, at the Mendelssohn Club, 415 N. Church St.

In a style reminiscent of bluegrass music in the 1940s and ’50s, this Wisconsin-based quintet evokes in audiences a rare sense of continuity in American folk culture. Using material that reaches back to the roots of bluegrass, the group still strives to perform in a manner that is focused on the current scene, making it natural and enjoyable. Indispensable to this sound are the exceptional vocal harmonies in their stage show and on their recordings. Approaching their fifth anniversary as a band, The Nob Hill Boys work hard to remind us that the musical heart of America is alive and well.

On banjo and vocals, John Peik brings more than 20 years of experience playing bluegrass and gospel music. Dan O’Brien, a student of diverse musical styles at home and abroad, sings lead and harmony and plays guitar. On vocals and mandolin, John Fabke brings a unique depth to his playing and composing through his love of old-time music. His songwriting talent recently won him a spot in the IBMA Songwriters’ Showcase 2002. Fiddler Paul Kienitz has played with many bluegrass bands in southern Wisconsin and now brings his talent to the Boys. Joshua Perkins, a student of bluegrass and Irish music, rounds out the band on bass and vocals.

Since they began playing together, this band has been nominated annually for the Wisconsin Area Industry Music awards and were finalists in the 1999 SPBG-MA International Band Contest in Nashville, Tenn. They have enjoyed repeat performances on television and radio, including appearing on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion, and have been invited to open for bands such as Ricky Skaggs and Tim O’Brien’s The Crossing.

Critics have lauded them. “That’s beautiful singing, gentlemen, that was just absolutely great,” raved Garrison Keillor. Bill Malone in Wisconsin Academy Review said, “The Nob Hill Boys… make music that can easily compete with the performances of musicians anywhere in America.”

Tickets are $12 in advance or $15 at the door. Tickets are available at the Mendelssohn Club, 415 N. Church St., 964-9713; Rockford Area Arts Council, 713 E. State St., 963-6765; The Postal Shoppe, Edgebrook Center, 397-7301; and Tin Whistle, N. Main & Auburn, 963-0270; or by mail with check and SASE, 10928 N. Main, Rockton, IL 61072. For Web information, call 964-2238.

Enjoy The Rock River Times? Help spread the word!