Island duo unite for special Space Craft show

Hometown musicians Wes Corbett and Simon Chrisman will return to Bainbridge Island for a special Space Craft concert at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, May 19.

It is an especially important how, Chrisman said, as the duo are about to release their first recording.

“Wes and I both grew up on the island and now both make our livings as touring musicians,” he said. “Wes, based out of Nashville, and myself, based in northern California. We’ve both played on the island many times, together or with different bands, but are especially excited for this show, as we’re about to release our record.

“And Bainbridge is our hometown,” Chrisman added.

The show is all-ages appropriate. Tickets, $15 in advance, $20 at the door, are available

Seattle singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Lydia Ramsey will open.

Both Corbett and Chrisman cut their musical teeth playing together but, in spite of that, have rarely gotten to play concerts as a duo. Nowadays, they spend their lives traveling and playing music, both as sidemen and with their own bands. This concert will be an opportunity for these old friends to reconnect with, and share, their roots and to see what new branches that tree has grown.

Their first duo recording will be available later this spring.

A native of the Pacific Northwest, Corbett has been playing the banjo since he was 16, after a split from the classical piano. He has performed with many of the most influential acoustic musicians of the day, including Mike Marshall, Darol Anger, Bruce Molsky, Sarah Jarosz and Laurie Lewis (among many others), as well as touring internationally with the “indie-popgrass” band Joy Kills Sorrow.

From 2011-2015, he was the professor of banjo at Berklee College of Music in Boston.

Hammer dulcimer virtuoso Chrisman brings an unusual style to an instrument that has previously been thought to have limited range. His inventive virtuosic touch and sophisticated rhythmic sensibilities are earning the attention of musicians from all over the world.

He tours with the Jeremy Kittel Band and the Bee Eaters, and has performed with Darol Anger, Bruce Molsky, Mike Marshall, Laurie Lewis and Seamus Egan.

Ramsey has been praised for the almost vintage quality of her voice. Her songs convey both the wildness and free nature of traditional folk music and feature melodic fingerpicked-guitar backing.

She is also a member of the band St Paul de Vence, alongside Bainbridge Island’s Benjamin Doerr.

Premiering on NPR’s “First Watch,” her first single “Ghosts” is a wonderfully southern-inspired folk tune that showcases Lydia’s natural fingerpicking guitar ability, her banjo playing and her lovely vocal harmonies. Her songs “Show Me The Stars” and “Shake Me” from “Bandita” were featured as KEXP’s “Song of the Day” and “Music That Matters.”

Ramsey has recently returned from her first international tour, where she received praise from the UK Americana Music Association describing her music as an enticing combination of folk and country that sparkles as modern Americana.