Julian Lage and Chris Eldridge craft songs that sound familiar but are never easily classified. Percolating with tinges of bluegrass and folk, insinuations of jazz and pop, and hints of classical and avant-garde composition, their music rarely settles into any one particular category; rather, it dances around the territory between genres, never announcing its innovations and prizing soulfulness above chops at every turn. From first note to last, the duo push themselves to find new ways to play their flat-top steel-string acoustic Martins together - creating what the New Yorker calls a “familiarity with the fretboard...so extravagant and capacious that they bring flourishes to this music that it simply hasn’t enjoyed before.”
The Grammy-nominated Lage has been highly regarded in jazz and new music circles for his own work as well as for his collaborations with such artists as Nels Cline, Fred Hersch, and John Zorn among many others. Fellow Grammy-nominee Eldridge, an Oberlin Conservatory grad who studied with bluegrass guitar legend Tony Rice, is equally noted in the progressive bluegrass world for his stints with the Seldom Scene and The Infamous Stringdusters, which led to his joining Chris Thile’s adventurous quintet, Punch Brothers. Lage and Eldridge first met backstage in Boston following a Punch Brothers show. Over the course of several years, a casual friendship led to a solid musical partnership that produced the 2013 EP Close to Picture, 2014’s full-length release Avalon, and most recently, 2017’s GRAMMY-nominated Mount Royal.