Wire In The Wood

by | Jun 20, 2018 | Music

Wire In The Wood had the crowd dancing to their electric brew of bluegrass at the Ann Arbor Summer Fest Top Of The Park.

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Wire In The Wood

Wire In The Wood have been busy spreading joy through their distinctive brand of roots music. You can think of it as bluegrass dappled in Django with a splash of Bella Fleck. The band is Ryan Shea (bass), Jordan Adema (violin), Billy Kirst (vocals, guitar), and Michael Spaly (mandolin). They hit our radar when Billy Kirst stopped his car as we were walking Larry (our dog and mentor) and said hello. You see both Ryan and Billy are Northside Ann Arbor neighbors. It turns out they have been jamming for a while and recently recorded a studio and live album. It truly is a small world.

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All Fall Apart and Live Wire Volume One

All Fall Apart is Wire In The Wood’s studio album from 2017. It features seven original songs crafted by the band with wit and wonder. Frisky mandolin, nimble guitar, sweetly singing violin, and bounding bass mark many of the songs including “Hold” and “Madison”. Billy’s vocals call to mind Arlo Guthrie, Tom Petty, and John Lennon. Wire In The Wood stretch outside of the confines of traditional roots music with the reflective “Raindrops in a Cartoon Sunrise” and the nomadic drifting of “The King and Queen”.

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The most recent offering from Wire In The Wood is Live Wire Volume One recorded live at Otus Supply in Ferndale. The bluegrass fusion of Wire In The Wood comes to life with this recording. The band jumps out of the gate with “Across The Broken Dam” and keeps up the traditional bluegrass feel on tunes such as “Hold” and “Money, Liquor, Women and Crime”. The beauty of this album is the extended Django-estque jams of “E.M.D” and “Anomalous Magnetic Moment”. Each tune is brimming with stellar performances by the entire band which quickly induces foot stomping and booty shaking.

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Wired at Top Of The Park

Finally, after missing Wired In The Wood during their bluegrass jams at The Filling Station and tearing it up at Otus Supply, we marked our calendar for their set at the Ann Arbor Summer Fest’s Top Of The Park. Top Of The Park has brought us a lot of great music over the years with Kate Peterson, Abigail Stauffer, Captain Ivory, The Whiskey Charmers, Jennifer Westwood and the Handsome Devils, and the Bluescasters. This year is no exception.

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With the sun slowly fading on this beautifully warm evening, Wire In The Wood took us to the hills for a tangy taste of Americana. Their spritely performance quickly drew a crowd. There were plenty of kids in attendance who found the music irresistible. Given the number of adults moving to the music and the hearty cheers after each song, I think Wire In The Wood have a solid following which they will surely continue to grow.

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