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The Barefoot Boys: Bio

The Boys and Their Music

You'll relish this Hudson Valley stringband's rollicking renditions of regional folksongs, mountain ballads, square dance tunes, and instrumental medleys. Specializing in traditional music from the Hudson/Catskill/ Adirondack regions, they're also likely to play sea songs, ragtime tunes, novelty numbers, and even more recently songs from people like Pete Seeger that reflect life from long ago. Rich and Tom have been performing as a duo since 1993, and over the years they've played at Caffe' Lena, Clearwater's "Great Hudson Revival" Festival, Sonny Ochs' "Helping Hands" Concert Series, Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, and First Night events in Albany and Saratoga Springs, NY, to name just a few.

In recent years, they've sometimes added a bass player for a fuller, richer sound. These days that role is being filled by Tom Wetmore, who also plays bass with hammered dulcimer virtuoso Walt Michael, and the great Celtic musician John Whelan, among others.

Rich Bala - vocals, guitar, harmonica, mountain dulcimer

Rich has over 25 years' experience researching, collecting, and performing traditional songs of the region. In addition to his work with "The Boys", he also performs solo and with stroyteller Jonathan Kruk as "The Hudson River Ramblers". He has made a total of 5 recordings to date, and has performed with Pete Seeger, Jay Ungar & Molly Mason, Happy Traum, John Herald, and Joe Hickerson, among others.

Tom White - vocals, banjo, concertina, fiddle, hammered dulcimer, mandolin, pennywhistle.

Tom is considered a "musician's musician", has won numerous prizes at instrument competitions, has appeared on over 40 recordings, and has played with Woods Tea Co., Pete Sutherland, Sandy & Caroline (AND Dave and Robin) Paton. He also owns and operates Wizmak Studio, where The Boys' recordings were made.