Over the past several years, banjo legend and alt-grass pioneer Tony Trischka and guitarist Michael Davies have plumbed the depths of their shared veneration for American roots music. On the heels of a highly acclaimed new album under Trischka’s name, Great Big World, on which Davies lends both guitar and his inimitable vocal talents, the duo performed in a small townhouse that is home to a Greenwich Village music school.
Passing freely from new material to well-worn folk standards, Trischka and Daves delivered a stirring performance. Among the standouts of the set were Woody Guthrie’s “Do Re Mi,” one of the highlights of Great Big World, and the traditional favorite “Angelina Baker,” both of which showcase Davies’ exceptional vocals.
It is fitting that Trischka continues to seek out young talent in the Americana music scene, having been a guiding light in the idiom for decades. Daves grew up playing bluegrass music, learning from such legends as Del McCoury, Norman Blake and John Hartford. Those influences he wears on his sleeve, even as he continues to grow as a musician. His collaboration with mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile garnered a Grammy nod and a weekly gig at a New York music hall has helped him hone his chops. Trischka, as ever, is in good company, and the new album and the live show are not to be missed.
– Eric Russ