Larry Keel and Natural Bridge Connecting traditional songs of yesterday with their own original and inventive sounds of today, Larry Keel & Natural Bridge create astonishingly powerful acoustic music rich in heritage, heart and hot licks! With a style that evokes both atomic rock energy and dynamic tonal purity, Keel and his ensemble are intent upon taking their instruments and their voices to their fullest potential for emotion and amazement. While paying respect to the legacy left by the forefathers of bluegrass, Keel bridges the gap between traditional and contemporary American Mountain Music. Larry Keel & Natural Bridge includes flatpicking guitar master Larry Keel (guitar, vocals), Jenny Keel (bass fiddle, vocals), Mark Schimick (mandolin, vocals), and, Jason Flournoy (banjo, vocals). Born and raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, Larry Keel is a young veteran musician who has always been immersed in the traditional ways and etiquette of playing mountain music. Both Larry’s father and brother (themselves skilled and versatile acoustic musicians) influenced the younger Keel to thoroughly master the foundations of acoustic guitar (tune, timing, tone) before venturing into his own original territory. From a very young age, Larry made it his goal to honor and preserve the discipline of the Traditional Bluegrass music he knows and loves, while expressing his own ideas through acoustic music. At 18 years old Keel became a contracted musician to play Bluegrass at the Tokyo Disneyland theme park in Japan for 7 months (6 shows a day, 6 days a week). Back in the States Larry joined up with like-minded Bluegrass pickers young and old to travel the festival and fiddler’s convention circuit of the entire east coast. Keel’s long time friend and banjo player Mark Vann (Leftover Salmon) encouraged him to travel to Colorado to attend the Telluride Bluegrass Festival and compete in its prestigious guitar competition. That year he won first place, and by 1995 he and long-time Bluegrass peer Will Lee (son of Ricky Lee from Ralph Stanley’s band) led their string band Magraw Gap to victory in the Telluride Bluegrass Festival band competition. Moreover, Larry again competed in and won first place in the guitar competition at Telluride that year. In fact, the band and all its incredibly talented members won awards in the competitions in 1995. Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.