Special Guests
Saturday, March 9, 2002


Mike Dowling

MIKE DOWLING was raised in central Wisconsin and began his professional musical career in high school. He had spent a lot of time playing along with his parents' records; he recruited a couple of friends into an electric guitar band, never expecting that it would lead someday to playing with the likes of Joe Venuti and Vassar Clements.

He worked at it, ultimately moving to Nashville and becoming a sideman, a session player, band leader, a solo act and a composer. He had a string of song-writing successes in his ten years in the Music City, tunes recorded by Emmy Lou Harris, the Nashville Bluegrass Band, Tim O'Brien, Kathy Mattea, Claire Lynch and Del McCoury; he and his wife Jan wrote a #1 hit for Canadian country artist George Fox. And he's recorded three instructional videos on the Homespun label. His fourth CD album, String Crazy, was released in 2000.

The Dowlings moved to DuBois, Wyoming, in the fall of 1996, where he set up Wind River Guitar in their home, a school for master instruction in fingerstyle, flatpicking and slide guitar. He is still composing music and still touring; he'll be in England for most of the month of April.

He has received high praise from a lot of places: Vassar Clements said "Mike's one of the finest guitar players there is, anywhere," and Jethro Burns said: "I don't play guitar when Mike's in the band. You don't take the game warden fishing."


Stephanie Davis

STEPHANIE DAVIS: At her home in Montana these days there are calves in the bathtub and on the porch; new ones are arriving daily and they're born wet and vulnerable to the cold, which is what it's been around there this week. They bring'em in, dry'em off, see to it they have a good healthy breakfast and take'em back out to their mothers. There's a reason to set the calving for Februray and March: by next fall most will weigh in the neighborhood of 650 pounds. There are people on the ranch who haven't slept much these past few days and who would welcome a return of the mild weather, but Stephanie is personally pleased to see the winter start. She claims it's easier to write songs when it's cold and the coyotes are howling. That would be if she had any time to write songs. . . . .

CINDY CASHDOLLAR will be joining the Guy's All-Star Shoe Band for this weekend's performance. Cindy was born in Woodstock, New York. She started in music at a young age, learning guitar at age 11 when she was captivated by the Delta blues, and mastering the dobro later on. She started touring with bluegrass masters John Herald, Levon Helm, and Rick Danko of The Band, and she later recorded and toured with Leon Redbone. She's won 5 Grammy Awards, and has recorded with artists like Manhattan Transfer, The Dixie Chicks, George Strait, Willie Nelson, and Reba McEntire, among others. She can also be heard on Bob Dylan's Grammy-winning Album of the Year Time Out of Mind. With 3 instructional videos for steel guitar and dobro issued on Homespun Tapes, Cindy is regarded as a talented educator (as well as performer), and she frequently conducts guitar and dobro workshops across the nation. Cindy worked with the Western swing band Asleep at the Wheel for 8 years, cutting 6 albums and learning more about the steel guitar in the process. In early 2001, Cindy left Asleep at the Wheel and since then she has been a featured guest on Beausoleil's 25th anniversary tour, as well as becoming a member of a new group, Hen House.

APHC veteran PETER OSTROUSHKO will also be sitting in with the Guy's All-Star Shoe band. Peter grew up listening to his shoe-maker father play traditional Ukrainian songs and taught himself to play the piano, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, banjo, bass, and other string instruments. He is well-known to APHC listeners both as a frequent guest performer and as the former musical director. He also performs orchestral works and has appeared with both The Saint Paul Chamber and Minnesota orchestras, among others. During the '70s, Ostroushko worked as a session musician in Nashville. His first recording session was an uncredited mandolin set on Bob Dylan's Blood on the Tracks. He has followed that with work on more than 100 albums with artists like Jethro Burns, Emmylou Harris, Willie Nelson, Chet Atkins and Johnny Gimble. His debut solo album, Sluz Duz Music (Rounder Records) was released in 1982. Subsequent albums include Blue Mesa and Pilgrims on the Heart Road (both on Red House), and Down the Streets of My Old Neighborhood (Rounder). The title track from Heart of the Heartland (Red House) was the theme for Meriwether Lewis in Ken Burns' film, Lewis and Clark, and has earned Ostroushko comparisons not only to the great composer Aaron Copland but also to photographer Ansel Adams. The album also earned a N.A.I.R.D. Indie Award, the highest honor from the independent music recording industry. His newest CD, Sacred Heart (Red House), was released in April of 2000.

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

Old Sweet Songs

Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).

Available now»

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