Fast paced and highly energetic, the band performs both original and traditional bluegrass with a style and delivery uniquely its own.
Fashioned from the heart of tradition and infused with adrenaline, the Urban Monroes’ contemporary bluegrass style is an outgrowth of the combined skills of some of the Pacific Northwest’s finest talent. As individuals the Urban Monroes have earned bluegrass instrument championships, a National Endowment for the Arts award and songwriting accolades. They have been featured on the Emmy award winning PBS series Art Beat and their musical experiences have taken them around the world. As a band they have excited audiences from some of bluegrass’ biggest venues with a fully charged stage presence and an intricate delivery.
Like the band’s name itself, the music is a combination of the traditional and the original with each influencing the other. Bluegrass has the ability to be sledge hammer hard, technically intricate, highly arranged and spontaneously explosive all at the same time and that’s the energy the band wants to capture.
Urban Monroes take their name from “the Father of Bluegrass,” Bill Monroe who, in the late 1930’s, developed a style of music that drew upon his entire musical experience. The Kentuckian Monroe and his Blue Grass Boys established what became to be known as bluegrass, and though the same influences that molded that sound would also give birth to both modern country and rock music, Monroe’s style was uniquely his own.
All the founders of bluegrass were innovators. Each band’s sound was original in its own way, but each stayed true to the framework established in the genre’s infancy. This is what the Urban Monroes are attempting to do as well.
“Our goal is to create new music within that framework. We are taking what could be considered the language and vocabulary of bluegrass and telling our own story with it rather than reciting by rote all that has been said before. Put more simply, it could be said that the band is putting a new spin on traditional material and a traditional spin on new material.”
Monroes have three full-length CD’s that have met with
critical acclaim in the press.
Not claiming for ourselves the genius of our musical predecessors, we only attempt to pay homage to them through our own version of their vision.
high flying fun” -The Oregonian
and instrumentally exciting album suitable for
a broad range of listeners”
-The Statesman Journal
“Honest like a hard day’s work and tasty like cold beverage at the end of that day” -The Columbian
“Their musical savvy and obvious ability
make their albums compelling listens”
"With a panoramic view through inspiring originals and a driving rootsy style unrelentingly their own, Pavement and Pathways is a joyride down the Appalachian Trail's fast lane. " -The Fireball Mail
-"Timeless bluegrass with doses of the contemporary integrated into a fully formed sound. Gorgeous, powerful vocal style and chart topping originals like "When The Aspens Turn" make for an album rich in dynamic bluegrass performance."