An 18th-century French botanist trekked 8,000 miles of Appalachia, foraging for unclassified flora. Along the way, he plucked a fresh, furled fiddlehead here and picked another one there.
Fast forward more than two centuries later, and the Fiddleheads do the plucking and picking. In 2009, four guys jamming in Dahlonega, Georgia, finished the night as a band: Zak McConnell (mandolinist), Michael Wallace (guitar), Trygve Myers (bass), and Jake Larios (banjo). Adam Kersh, with a powerhouse voice, joined soon after. The Fiddleheads pay homage to their bluegrass roots but with a twist on contemporary sounds. Honest, fresh, with a heartstring tug.
When did I catch on to their tunes? They competed on “America’s Got Talent” (AGT) in 2011. My second cousin Michael became a family (and friends) FB phenom, as did the rest of his crew.
Of course, Michael, his dad Brian, his brother Christopher, and our cousin Bill have serenaded us for years at Christmas reunions. As my Jersey boyfriend put it the first time he showed up for the festivities—“Who are you people, the Waltons?”
The Fiddleheads made the top cut for the AGT L.A. competition but were squeezed out by judge (qualified?) Piers Morgan of CNN fame. Go figure.
The group is still on top in their backyard South, hitting venues like The Opry House in Nashville and opening for the likes of Tim McGraw. Give their first album, Goodbye L.A., a listen. (You’ll find three tracks on their home page.)
What’s with that album title anyway?