Hawks and Owls string band

the Barn


Bruce Ling, one of Michigan's finest musical treasures, is a River-side mystic, eloquent storyteller and passionate caretaker of America's collection of traditional music. 

Raised in a multi-faceted musical family, Bruce found his calling at the ripe age of eight, earning his first $5 playing in a garage on Chicago’s South Side for a birthday party.

He grew up learning from many older musicians, becoming the recipient of a vast amount of “Oral Tradition”: songs and stories passed on from older to younger generations.  He has since honed an extraordinary repertoire of traditional string-band tunes from near and far. He plays with equal flair and skill on fiddle, mandolin, flat-picked guitar, and banjo.  With stage performances that combine the expressive style of Garrison Keillor or Will Rogers, he paints musical portraits celebrating the colorful history of rural America with a broad repertoire of both original and time-savored traditional folk songs. 

Providing the rhythm and tempo behind their tunes and songs is Becca Ling, widely recognized as an authority on Appalachian style rhythm guitar. A student of the "walking bass" chord change popularized by the late great Riley Puckett (of Georgia's Gid Tanner and the Skillet Lickers fame), Becca is a one woman band on the guitar.

Becca, starting out as a student of Classical Piano, was overcome by the music and community of string band festivals, picked up an old Gibson J-50, and never looked back.

As singer and songwriter, Bruce understands the importance of keeping the history of this timeless musical genre alive and well. He shares his knowledge with caring and passion, and his inspiration has propelled a legion of young musicians to continue playing these songs...a true testament to his talents as a teacher and mentor.

     "Bruce is an all around musical genius. He plays mandolin, fiddle, guitar, and sings as a great bass vocalist. He is one of the best around." --  Wheatland Music Festival, Remus, MI

Bruce's original songs showcase both his eclectic life and the unique characters that he's met along the way, and are inspired in great measure by his experiences spent living alongside Michigan's wild and scenic Rivers and the denizens and creatures who inhabit them.  

SEPT. 15-17 2017


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