Slight Departure News
Sorry about the gap in news. The fact is we have been gigging much the same as ever. We played a number of private events for conferences that there wasn’t much point in listing on our schedule. The big change in 2012 is that Slight Departure has a slightly new look and sound thanks to the introduction of Molly Barrett on fiddle. Molly began joining us at the Orchard at Altapass over the summer and wowed us all with her smooth lilting style of playing. Although she is steeped in classical training, Molly’s ability to improvise “off the book” on any popular tune is delightful. Just check her bio:
Molly Barrett began her study of the violin at the age of four. Graduating from Appalachian State University with a music degree, she was a member of the Appalachian State Orchestra and the Liberace Quartet. Later, she returned to Emory and Henry College in Virginia where she completed Suzuki Violin teacher training with SAA Teacher Trainer, Libby Armour. Currently, Molly holds the Assistant Principal 2nd violin position with the Western Piedmont Symphony. She also enjoys old time and Celtic fiddle music and in 1999 she was awarded the title of Junior Old Time Fiddle Champion at Fiddler’s Grove in Union Grove, NC.
Also it has been brought to our attention that we never submitted a bio for Jon Dana, our journeyman flute, bass and guitar player. So here goes:
Jon Dana comes from a musical family and has been playing since he was a kid. As a student he played trombone and tuba in High School concert, jazz, and marching bands. Sometime in there he heard Bob Dylan and the Beatles, and everything changed (sorry dad!). As an acoustic and electric guitarist and electric bassist he has played folk, country, rock, blues, Irish/Celtic, jazz, classical, and Americana music. Slight Departure is the perfect fit for him, since they touch on all of those genres in the course of a good season of performances!
The bios for founding members Alan Darveaux, Sherrill Keever, and Jeff Haslam originally resided on Alan’s former dulcimer website which is now incorporated into Alan’s existing Facebook page. We will place that information on this website in the near future.
Altapass recently sold out but has been remastered and is available again. We are getting inquiries as to how to hear sound clips of our music. Just go to the music section of our website and click on your choice of the CD you want to hear. The link will take you to CDBaby where you can hear samples of each song and download singles if you like.
We are looking forward to our next event: The Brown Mountain Lights Symposium at CoMMA in Morganton November 3 and then diving into some new recording sessions through the winter.
Thanks for keeping in touch!
Slight Departure ended up the season at the Orchard with another live recording session October 14. We have scheduled our 2008 dates there and they will be posted shortly.
Jim Clark returned to the band to pinch hit
for Jon on the upright bass at the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival in
Asheville and also for the Old Time competition at the North Carolina
Mountain State Fair. His efforts did not go unrewarded as we took the
Unfortunately, there was no dulcimer competition but we know who would have walked away with that prize. Speaking of Alan, his popular dulcimer classes will again be offered at the Orchard this summer. He played to a full house at a house concert in Minocqua, Wisconsin December 29. The rest of us have stayed closer to home over the holidays and we’re all looking forward to seeing you in the 2008 music season.
The opening of the Dogwood blossoms has signaled the beginning of another season for Slight Departure. The Orchard dates are scheduled, plus a few others with more to come.
Sales of Altapass have continued despite our Winter break from gigging
and at this point we are happy to report that the CD has paid for itself.
During our “off” season, we have been busy on a number of side
And the biggest news of all: please welcome our new bass player,
Jon Dana. His pictures will be posted shortly. Jon recently moved
from Charleston, where he played in the house band at Tommy Condon’s
Irish Pub. He is well versed in guitar as well and will be picking one
up with Slight Departure from time to time.
We look forward to seeing our old friends and meeting new ones in the months to come. Thank you for keeping up with us and come back soon.
Slight Departure Releases Altapass, Long Awaited Second CD on Little King Records®
Altapass is a celebration of the special relationship that often develops between
a band and a certain venue where they play time and again. The liner notes
in the CD describe this relationship in detail: "Something just clicks
between the staff, the audience, and the band, and the relationship becomes
some kind of ongoing process that acquires a life of its own and influences
the musical direction of the band." We say "long awaited"
because the basic tracks were recorded live at The Historic Orchard at
Altapass in Little Switzerland, N.C. in 2004. The tracks mostly languished
while the band continued to tour and tried to maintain their day jobs
and family lives. Jeff Haslam, mandolin player for the band, retired from
teaching in February 2006 and began work in earnest editing out the dog
barks and other glitches. He added parts from other mandolins to flesh
out the "old timey" feel of the songs, never having the luxury
of being able to switch instruments in mid-song onstage. Some studio effects
were added here and there, including creative left/right panning and occasional
reverb. Jeff and Keever's vocals were treated with megaphone effects on Five Foot Two, Eyes of Blue. A Waltz for Uncle John,
Marshall Ballew's heartfelt remembrance of Jerry Garcia was dressed up
with a rousing Cajun-style percussion and accordion celebration at the
end, featuring Greg Hils and Patti Peake (that's Marshall's holler during
the final romp, copied and pasted from a previous recording by Radiation
Blues Banned produced also by Scorpion Hill Sound). Says Jeff, "I
was able to combine the two bands that I play in to produce what was always
my ideal conception of how to record that song."