Catherine “Banjo” Bowness (known as “BB” to her friends and admirers) and Alex Rubin, starting at opposite ends of the world, met in the exuberant Boston acoustic music scene in the winter of 2012. In 2014, they started to perform together as a duo. Since then they have performed around the northeast, including performances at the Freshgrass Music Festival and Club Passim, as well as completing a country-wide tour of New Zealand. BB received the Frank Winter memorial award at the Auckland Folk Festival allowing her to travel to the USA, where she studied with banjo players Tony Trischka, Alan Munde and Noam Pikelny. In 2009, she became the first banjo player accepted to the New Zealand School of Music, graduating in 2011 with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance. BB currently tours with her band “Mile Twelve” who are making waves as one of the tightest young bluegrass bands in the United States and have multiple IBMA award nominations. Alex is a Boston-based guitarist who, after completing an undergraduate biology degree at Cornell University in 2011, returned to the Boston music bluegrass scene, studying privately with Berklee professor John McGann. Alex proudly joined the April Verch Band in March 2016 and has been touring full time since then.
This is BB and Alex’s third visit to Whangateau, and they have always been a real crowd pleaser!