Courtesy of Benya Kreuger

The Pines to bring a touch of twang to Roots N Blues

The Minneapolis-based country group will hit the stage on the festival’s second day.

By Mitchell Bird | Sept. 17, 2013

Tags: Concerts Music Roots N Blue N BBQ


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When: 2:30 p.m. Saturday Where: Shelter Insurance Stage

Think of a music star, or more specifically a country music star. Who comes to mind? Some of the first people thought of might be Johnny Cash, Carrie Underwood and Taylor Swift.

A new band, however, that has recently caught the attention of the Midwest is The Pines.

The Pines consists of Iowa natives David Huckfelt and Benson Ramsey. The two members met while living in a Mexican barrio in Arizona where they began to play together. Forming the band in 2002, they then returned to Minneapolis to continue as a group and produce their first self-titled album in 2004.

The band continued on and signed with label Red House Records and produced its first album, Sparrows in the Bell, in 2007. It released Tremolo in 2009, to much critical acclaim, and its latest album, Dark So Gold, in early 2012.

As their success expanded, so did their line up. The Pines eventually added Michael Rossetto on banjo, Jacob Hanson on guitar, James Buckley on bass and J.T. Bates on drums.

Ramsey describes the band with much enthusiasm.

“We’re based out of Minneapolis, where we laid the groundwork of our sound off a folksy blues sound which we’ve shape-shifted into our own style,” Ramsey says.

Ramsey also describes the band’s sound as “exploring the edge of the blues world and that sort of dark and atmospheric and pretty sound.”

Their songs are rooted in the old-fashioned Midwestern small town music, or what they would consider the soundtrack to smaller Midwestern towns to be: weaving and warping different styles to create a haunting and beautiful sound replicated by no other band.

The Pines will be gracing audiences with an appearance at the Roots N Blues N BBQ Festival on Saturday.

“I’m very excited,” Ramsay says. “I grew up in Southern Iowa, which is really close to Missouri borders. It’s nice to see our music spreading all over.”

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