All four members of this new band are veteran musicians of the Michigan music scene.
Peter Madcat Ruth is a Grammy Award-winning virtuoso harmonica player based out of Ann Arbor, Michigan. He has established an international reputation through his exhilarating, riveting virtuosity on the harmonica. His expertise on this instrument has amazed audiences world-wide. Performance Magazine refers to him as "A harmonica virtuoso who is rapidly approaching legend status." But Madcat doesn't just play harmonica. He also sings and plays ukulele, guitar, high-hat, jaw-harp, penny-whistle, kalimba, and other folk instruments from around the world. Madcat's repertoire of styles includes Blues, American Roots Music, Folk Music, Jazz, and World Music.
John Churchville is a Grammy Award winning tabla player now living in Ann Arbor, Michigan. John got his start in music in Marquette, Michigan. From there he moved to California to attend the esteemed California Institute of the Arts where he earned a degree in World Music Performance and began a decades long journey with the Indian tabla drums. Moving to Ann Arbor in 2006, John forged a unique path in both the music scene and in music education. At the same time, John was also recording, performing and developing his unique style of tabla drumming with the award winning Indian fusion group, Sumkali.
Brennan Andes has been a diverse member and bon vivant of the Ann Arbor's music scene for over two decades. Having toured nationally and internationally, he's curated an attitude towards making his friends, fans and family dance and smile. His only aspiration is to continue teaching and playing with passion and intensity. Founder of The Macpodz, he's also performed with a variety of artists from the region and beyond including Luke Winslow-King, George Bedard, Peter Madcat Ruth, Shigeto, Sumkali, The Ragbirds, Rootsand, 7 Chakras, Jamie Register, Chris Bathgate, Jen Sygit, Seth Bernard, May Erlewine, Andy Adamson Quintet, Chris Good, Dick Siegal, The Tone Farmers, Vincent York, The Pherotones, and many others.
Dan Ripke has been a professional musician and educator for nearly 30 years. He is the owner and director of Ripke Studio, providing unique performance and educational experiences to people of all ages. Dan began recording albums and organizing music festivals in 1992. He performed with the experimental jazz-folk-funk fusion band, Perplex, while studying music theory and composition at Delta College and Central Michigan University. Dan toured and performed with the rock-bluegrass quintet, Back Forty, for 15 years. The band took the stage at many of Michigan and the Midwest's largest and most prestigious venues and festivals. After Back Forty, Dan took an exploratory dive into Indian music with the band, Sumkali. He performed with Sumkali for nine years, recording two albums. His fondness for many musical genres shows in his playing. Performing a hundred-year-old folk tune followed by a funk jam is heaven for him.