Steam Machine

Big Sky Concert Series

Steam Machine is a midwest based old time/bluegrass music project fronted by award winning Minneapolis fiddler AJ Srubas and Twin Cities old time music & dance instigator Rina Rossi on guitar. A shortlist of spectacular musicians perform with the band on banjo and bass, and when possible, mandolin. Originally formed in Minneapolis in 2017, Steam Machine brought to the national stage a midwest influenced string band aesthetic that didn’t draw such hard lines between bluegrass and old time music. Smooth powerful fiddling, driving three finger banjo, front-of-the-beat rhythm backup combined into a “suspiciously entertaining” sound. Two time Appalachian String Band Music Festival (Clifftop) Traditional Band Contest ribbon winners and Folk Alliance Midwest Official Showcase Artists, since 2018 they have been touring the region and the country performing at diverse venues from roots music hubs to bluegrass and Americana festivals, and teaching workshops at traditional music epicenters across the country from the Augusta Heritage Center (WV) to Festival of American Fiddle Tunes (WA) with many others in between. At home in Minneapolis, they are heavily involved as organizers in many of the local community old time and bluegrass institutions. While not purists, Steam Machine does listen closely to the “old stuff” and strives to capture the essence of what makes these tunes and songs special, as they hear it. The project continues to be an evolving vehicle for playing music they love and honoring the brilliance left behind by old time heroes like Lyman Enloe, Cyril Stinnett and more. Equally at home playing for an oldtime/bluegrass loving crowd or listeners new to these sounds, Steam Machine aspires to keep midwest style old time bluegrass music alive and well wherever they go. They perform both as a trio (fiddle/banjo/guitar & vocals) and as often as possible as a four piece with bass. Their self-titled album Steam Machine, released in 2018, received glowing reviews across the country. In spring 2023, Rina and AJ completed a new duo project, Sweet Bunch of Daisies, a collection of midwest fiddle guitar duets and assorted songs. Per Fiddler Magazine, “a great overview of Midwest and Missouri old-time, played with a ton of spirit and talent.” Both releases are available on bandcamp.

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Big Sky Music Studio

Music recording studio and venue

9732 rt 96  Trumansburg, NY  14886