Music series

Lonesome Ace Stringband closes its musical series

Special for the News Herald

HICKORY – The Sails original music series will wrap up for the year this Friday, September 30 with the Lonesome Ace Stringband. The free concert starts at 7 p.m. under The Sails on the Square in downtown Hickory.

“The Lonesome Ace Stringband is a fascinating old band with bluegrass tracks playing virtuous folk and country music,” said Bob Sinclair, coordinator of Sails Music.

The band’s music incorporates a depth of groove and a sense of space not often heard in bluegrass today, a level of instrumental interaction and vocal mixing uncommon at the time, and a report on stage that transcends all that.

Three Canadians lost in the weird and wonderful traditional country music of the American South, band members Chris Coole (banjo), John Showman (fiddle) and Max Malone (bass) are each fellow musicians and veterans of some of Canada’s top roots bands. (New Country Rehab, The David Francey Band, The Foggy Hogtown Boys and Fiver).

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The instrumentation alone instantly sets the sound of Lonesome Ace Stringband apart: Consisting only of fiddle, clawhammer banjo and double bass, the band moves freely between a sound so powerful it doesn’t seem like it should come from a trio and a fragility that attracts the listener and refreshes the ear. All three are compelling lead singers, each with their own character and range.

Beginning in 2007, Lonesome Ace Stringband (LAS) took up residence in Toronto’s legendary Dakota Tavern, regularly playing 10 sets of music each weekend. LAS spent seven years as a house band before taking the show on the road or recording a note. Those years were a period of gestation that allowed a kind of looseness and intuition to develop, something that can only come from experienced musicians logging hundreds of hours on stage together.

For the concert, audience members are encouraged to bring lawn chairs in addition to the seats available in Union Square. A variety of nearby bars and restaurants offer food and drink in the Hickory Downtown social district.

Hickory’s Sails Original Music Series presents great musical entertainment from across the United States with the help of many sponsors.

Special thanks to local businesses Atriax, PLLC and David E. Looper & Company, and returning sponsors Bob Sinclair Music, Larry’s Music & Sound, Pfahlert Creative Labs, Olde Hickory Brewery and Crowne Plaza.

For more information on the Sails Original Music Series, visit and follow the Sails Original Music Series Facebook page,