"Just Twistin' Hay" - curious about the name? It's a bit of Irish "slang", that is loosely translated to mean "makin' merry mischief with no harm done"...That's a bit of what we're about!
By now you might've realized some of our Band Members are very familiar...We're fortunate to have the amazing talent and ability, and the warm, friendly collaborative efforts, of the following:
Sharon Hartmann is an extraordinary fiddle player (40 years with bow-in-hand!), - winning State contests, playing for dance contestants in Canada, judging, teaching, playing in various bands from Traditional Irish to Bluegrass - her talent knows no genre 'though she is most familiar to us in the last decade +, as the fiddle heading up "The Barnstorm Quartet" - playing everything from swing and pop tunes to great old-time dance music. She's played with the "Titanic 3rd Class Steerage" band, as well, along with some of our other members. Sharon has a "bottomless" repertoire of Irish and Scottish traditional tunes and songs - her knowledge and experience give us a creative edge - her harmony vocals lend interest to the arrangements. An all-around talent!
On to the family acts:
Bobby Brannen's (Son!), honest, warm vocals have been heard locally at McK's Tavern and Malony's Pub for a few years, now. Bobby's expressive guitar, uilleann pipes, and whistle playing give us a unique and exciting presence...there's nothin' more fun than watchin' that guy "suit-up" with those pipes - wait'll you hear their sweet, sweet sound.
Mark Brannen (Father!), brings his exceptional, traditional bodhran-playing to our group - Solid, exciting, powerfully expressive - he and Jacob (our other drum), "play nice together". Mark's also got a great voice, we've discovered...and has quite a few songs he delivers with that same power and expression he applies to his drumming - There's never a dull moment! Mark and Bobby have played together as a duo for a few years locally, at Malony's Pub, and have a vast repertoire of traditional Irish music to lend the group. They are steady additions to the few Irish Sessions that cook up around town - You might have the pleasure of hearing them at McK's in Daytona Beach, or at the Claddagh Cottage in Orlando, sometime.
Dave Clipp (a former trombonist!), is an "all things string" musician, playing mandolin, fingerstyle- and rhythm guitar, and banjo for over 17 years with a band called "Bardicrose" and has recently been a member of the "Titanic 3rd Class Steerage" band, as well. He possesses the unique ability to find his way around any stringed instrument. He'll be the one onstage with 4 or 5 instrument cases behind him! Dave adds his knowledge and sense of harmony and rhythm to our group which helps us build such full and interesting arrangements, as he chooses which instrument sounds best and what part must be filled.
Jacob Butler is a newfound talent on the bodhran - you won't see or hear anything like his unique sound - Incredible speed, steady rhythm, syncopation, changing tones, and smooth, easy-going style - an exciting complement to the traditional music, and a fantastic soloist. He's played highland pipes, bluegrass and clawhammer-style banjo, electric guitar, and bass, and brings his innate musical talent and creativity to bear on the Band. Jacob also provides vocals and finds graceful harmonies with ease. He's a student at Stetson University and participates in many local creative events in Deland.
Linda Clipp (Wife to Dave, Mom to Jacob!), is a steady "second-fiddle", if you will, adding interesting backup and harmony or melody to Sharon's fiddle - and you'll hear her chunkin' some syncopated rhythm mandolin, and singin' some backup vocals, too. Linda's been fortunate to have played with "Somethin' Else", and with "Marybeth and Friends", in the past, and has taken her turn at the trombone (once in a "silly song" contest!). She's actually the one who saw all of this and realized how well it would fit together...Linda keeps the collaborative spirit alive and continually brings fresh music to light - she provides the drive and inspiration for "Just Twistin' Hay".
We all hope you'll hear us play sometime, and feel same warmth and joy we experience when we share this music together.