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Cardboard Fox creates some sturdy musical sounds

Often as an entertainer, I get the chance to share some time with other talented musicians. I was afforded that opportunity recently while spending a couple of hours with a talented group of musicians from England.

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Cardboard Fox

While I heard them jamming with a different line up than their norm with their bassist playing banjo, the sounds of Cardboard Fox impressed me.

The band is made up of John Breese on double bass and vocals; Charlotte Carrivick on guitar and vocals; Laura Carrivick on fiddle and vocals; and Joe Tozer on mandolin.

Cardboard Fox is fast becoming one of the most exciting young acts on UK the acoustic scene.

The band’s unique blend of modern folk and progressive bluegrass, combined with original song writing and energetic performances, is giving them a growing presence on the UK Folk

and acoustic music circuit.

I was able to listen to the 2015 Spiral Earth award winner’s latest CD – “Out of Mind.”

The project features ten originals and three covers.

While not conventional bluegrass, the music is amazingly offered and sure to appeal to listeners in every age bracket but especially those who look for a unique mix of present and past in their tastes.

Between them, the band have contributed eight original songs and two tunes to ‘Out of Mind’.

The two tunes featured are Joe Tozer’s ‘Gone, Not Forgotten’ and Charlotte Carrivick’s high–‐octane fiddle tune, ‘Hiding in Hi Vis’. Spread across the album are also three covers, perhaps the

Most surprising being Ingrid Michaelson’s pop hit, ‘Girls Chase Boys’. The band have also included a subtly re-harmonized version of Dirk Powell’s ‘Waterbound’ and a bluegrassy cover

Of the famous Bob Dylan song, ‘Don’t Think Twice, It’s Alright’. The original songs range

From acoustic pop with catchy riffs (‘More Than You and Me’, ‘Out of Sight is Out of Mind’), to

Modern bluegrass, with the addition of John’s banjo playing on ‘Couldn’t Find the Time’ and

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Cardboard Fox jams at the IBMA World of Bluegrass in Raleigh, N.C.

Twin fiddling on ‘I’ve Gotta Run’. The band’s signature mandolin, fiddle, guitar and double bass line up is augmented on ‘Felicity’ with an electric ‘Fun Machine’ organ, which turned up on the street outside Joe’s house while the band were in the studio.

Recorded and produced by Josh Clark at Get Real Audio (Miranda Sykes & Rex Preston, Damien O’Kane, Nizlopi) in Bath, mastered by Nick Cooke (Kate Rusby, False Lights)

The group has performed at festivals across the UK and Mainland Europe, performing at Glastonbury and showcasing at the English Folk Expo and European World of

Bluegrass Festival. They traveled to the U.S. to appear at the IBMA World of Bluegrass.

I want to encourage you to check out their CD on iTunes, amazon, and Spotify. You can visit their website, www.cardboardfox.co.uk and find them on social media www.facebook.com/CardboardFox, www.twitter.com/CardboardFox1, www.instagram.com/CardboardFox1.

Director/Actor Randall Franks to direct IBMA Awards segment

Randall Franks will direct a segment of the annual International Bluegrass Music Association Awards Show featuring the Distinguished Achievement Awards.

“Bluegrass music is one of my greatest loves,” he said. “Playing a part in honoring the greats of our industry for their lifetime of commitment, as well as those we recognize for their special industry awards is an outstanding honor.”

Recognized as an International Bluegrass Music Museum Legend for his work with over 30 hall of famers including the legendary Father of Bluegrass Bill Monroe, Franks is also known as an actor/director around the world. Franks, who appeared as “Officer Randy Goode” on TV’s “In the Heat of the Night,” has directed documentaries, music productions for television, stage plays, and dozens of hours of new media content. Franks starred in three TV series and 15 films with his latest film “Broken” starring with Soren Fulton and Joe Stevens.

Franks returns for his fourth year of directing working alongside segment producer Tom Kopp. The IBMA Awards Show are Thursday, Sept. 29, 2016 at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts in Raleigh, N.C. This special segment of the IBMA Awards Show including the Distinguished Achievement Awards, the organization’s second highest career honor, and its industry awards are presented at the Raleigh Convention Center earlier in the day.

“It is a pleasure to work with Tom Kopp and the IBMA staff who bring together a wonderful and always moving presentation for this segment,” Franks said “I often find myself being pulled into the moment along with the recipient during their acceptance speech sometimes choking up right along with them.”

Franks became a bluegrass and country music personality as a youth beginning appearances at major country, folk, bluegrass and gospel events such as Country Music Association Fan Fair, National Folk Festival, National Quartet Convention, World of Bluegrass, National Black Arts Festival and for the Grand Ole Opry. With 24 career albums in four genres, he has performed to over 145 million fans around the world. Musically, he is an Independent Country Music Hall of Fame member. His latest CD is “Keep ‘Em Smilin’” featuring Christian music and comedy.

Learn more about Franks connections to bluegrass, https://www.randallfranks.com/appalachian-and-bluegrass-music/.

Franks highlights many of his music heroes in his Encouragers book series, the latest in the series is “Encouragers III: A Guiding Hand” which include these bluegrass personalities: Eddie and Martha Adcock, Kenny Baker, Byron Berline, Jerry and Helen Burke, Vassar Clements, Peanut Faircloth, John and Debbie Farley, Otis Head, Bobby Hicks, Bill Monroe, and Tater Tate.

For more information about the IBMA Awards visit ibma.org.