Yonder Mountain String Band nationally releases its sixth full-length studio album, Black Sheep, on its own Frog Pad Records at the 42nd Telluride Bluegrass Festival on Tuesday, June 16, 2015. On Black Sheep, Yonder Mountain continues to redefine bluegrass music, expanding the traditional acoustic genre beyond its previously established boundaries by pushing the envelope into the realms of rock n’ roll and improvisation. Produced by YMSB, Black Sheep marks the first time the band utilizes (throughout an entire record) the conventional five-piece bluegrass instrumental line-up of guitar, mandolin, banjo, fiddle and bass. Two standout musicians, violinist Allie Kral and mandolin virtuoso Jacob Jolliff, were recruited for the recording and the forthcoming tour dates.
With the release of Black Sheep, Yonder Mountain begins a new era. It’s instantaneously apparent that Black Sheep is the work of a new Yonder Mountain String Band, one with a strong commitment to re-exhibiting itself, broadening its parameters following the departure of a founding member. While it’s certainly recognizable as YMSB music, there’s undeniably a raw aesthetic to the studio tracks — a sense of daring is embedded in both the instrumental interaction between the five singular players and in the lyrical content of each song.
Leading up to the release of Black Sheep, YMSB hits the road for a spring tour on March 24, 2015 and they’ll traverse the country in support of Black Sheep throughout the summer, fall and winter. YMSB returns to Colorado this summer for a special hometown show at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Friday, August 21, 2015 with good friends Greensky Bluegrass and Fruition.