Gordie MacKeeman & his Rhythm Boys
Gordie MacKeeman exemplifies the term natural showman. An ace fiddle player nicknamed “crazy legs” for his frenetic loose-limbed step- dancing, he just loves to perform. Combine that exuberance and onstage dynamism with the stellar musicianship of his multi-instrumentalist comrades His Rhythm Boys, and you have an unstoppable roots music force. That potent combination has made the group highly sought-after performers on the international roots music circuit, thrilling audiences from Adelaide, Australia, to Edinburgh, Scotland.
The group comprises Gordie MacKeeman (fiddle, acoustic guitar, feet percussion, vocals), Peter Cann (guitars, banjo, vocals), Thomas Webb (guitars, bass, banjo, steel guitar, vocals), and Jason Burbine (bass, percussion, guitar, vocals). They have been together for six years, but many of the members played together in different combinations prior to that, as is audible in their aural chemistry. The fact that each member is skilled on multiple instruments gives Gordie MacKeeman and The Rhythm Boys a high-powered musical arsenal. The result is an eclectic signature sound that draws upon bluegrass, old time country, folk, rockabilly, swing, Celtic, and other styles in genre-defying fashion.
Both live and on record, Gordie MacKeeman and His Rhythm Boys serve up a neat balance of traditional tunes and well-crafted group originals, in both instrumental and vocal styles. “For the traditional tunes, I try to find ones that are a little more obscure, though it’s nice to have a few that are very recognizable as well,” says Gordie. A fine example of that on Laugh, Dance & Sing is the lovely cover of Gene MacLellan’s “Song To A Young Seagull,” a comparatively little-known composition by the East Coast songwriting great.