ST. JOHNSBURY – Bob and Sarah Amos will celebrate the release of their new album, “Ever Onward,” with a concert at Catamount ArtPort in St. Johnsbury’s Green Mountain Mall on Saturday, May 20, at 7 p.m. Joining them will be their all-star band featuring Matt Flinner on mandolin, Andy Greene on guitar, and Kirk Lord on bass. Admission is by donation
Northeast Kingdom bluegrass legend Bob Amos was an award-winning songwriter with a band long before he began partnering with daughter Sarah. Bob Amos was touring with Front Range before Sarah was born, and he remained the band’s guitarist, lead vocalist, and songwriter through much of Sarah’s childhood, performing major venues and festivals like the Lincoln Center and Telluride while Sarah was in grade school.
“I grew up going to his concerts,” Sarah recalls. “I learned how to fall asleep in the front row of a bluegrass show—which is no small feat.”
That’s not to say Sarah wasn’t paying attention. “I always loved watching my dad nerd out over bands he loves. I’ve had the entire Beatles catalog memorized since I was eight because of him! And I always saw him as the best musician ever.”
Indeed, Bob’s song “One Beautiful Day” won the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Gospel Recording of the Year, and many of his recordings with Front Range, as well as his solo work, have been on the national Bluegrass and Americana charts. His songs have been recorded by Bluegrass artists including three-time International Bluegrass Music Association male vocalist of the year Danny Paisley, who recorded “Blink of an Eye,” which spent two months at No. 1 on the National Bluegrass Song Survey chart.
Sarah began performing with her dad over 15 years ago. Today, they perform as a duo and also in a full band format.
“Singing and performing with Sarah,” Bob says, “has been the highlight of my long musical life. It’s just been such a natural fit. I wouldn’t say it’s effortless, but it sure feels and sounds that way.”
On Saturday, May 20th, the father-daughter duo will release their album “Ever Onward,” with a the concert at Catamount ArtPort.
“We had been planning to do this album for several years,” Bob says, “but COVID kind of got in the way. We decided to wait until we knew we could release it with a concert event.”
For Sarah, the album has literally been a lifetime in the making. “As long as I can remember, I’ve admired my dad as a musician. (That admiration) has deepened as I’ve come to understand the nuance and skill behind his musicianship and songwriting ability.” For the album, Sarah dug deep into Bob’s back catalog. “I pulled out songs that I’ve always loved that he may not have considered bringing back.”
“This album is really special,” adds Bob, “because it features some of our favorite duet vocals—songs we just love to sing together—originals as well as older traditional songs.”
“I just feel lucky,” says Sarah, “that this person, who I have infinite respect for as a musician, just happens to be my dad. Not only that, but I get to work and perform with him.” When Sarah, like her dad, nerds out on music she loves, she marvels over what Bob creates and brings to the world. “I could write a dissertation analyzing his music,” she says. “He’s my Beatles.”