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Guts. Glory. Soul. Sweet Yonder is a fired-up, all-women, bluegrass band -- think Steel Drivers meets the Carter Family. They deliver a soulful punch in every performance with straight up instrumental attitude and truly inspiring vocal harmonies. The driving mix of banjo, mandolin, guitar, fiddle, and bass combined with powerful vocals makes this a show you don't want to miss.
From compelling originals to masterful covers of the great bluegrass classics, Sweet Yonder crafts a show tailored to each audience. They even include their own spin on American classic rock.
Recommended If You Like: Rhonda Vincent, Della Mae, Earls of Leicester, The Carter Family, Uncle Earl, Dolly Parton, The Steel Drivers, Emmylou Harris
Carolyn Eyerly - Guitar, Vocals.
Carolyn grew up in Fairfax, Virginia listening to Southern Rock and Bluegrass. Her music career began with a classical and children's music program at her church. She graduated from the National Conservatory of Dramatic Arts and pursued acting. She was selected to perform with the Maritime Voices Ensemble of the Washington Revels.
After exploring the local folk scene, she was recruited as a vocalist for the Washington, DC-based folk group Shenandoah Run. With Sweet Yonder, Carolyn is springing into a new role as both vocalist and rhythm guitarist. "I thought I was going to start acting professionally but my first dream of being a rock star has come true!" Carolyn still participates fully in the music programs at church. Most of all, she wants to learn all the great Bluegrass Gospel songs to sing "comfort music" to the homeless.
Janine Lewis - Fiddle, Vocals.
Janine grew up in the Appalachia where bluegrass was born. She started playing violin and piano early in life and spent many Saturdays clogging and enjoying traditional mountain and folk music at the Carter Family Fold. Most of her musical life, she played classical violin in chamber groups and orchestras including the National Institutes of Health’s Philharmonia. Since 2012, she rediscovered her roots and started fiddling at local bluegrass jams in the DC area and music festivals. She was thrilled to become a Sweet Yonder in 2017.
Mary DeGuire Romagnoli - Mandolin, Vocals.
Mary started playing guitar, piano and writing simple songs at age 12. With a love of mathematics and music, she found herself in good company as a Computer Science major at the University of Maryland where she also studied voice and performed musical theater. Later, she explored musical instruments of all sorts including fiddle, piano, banjo, bass, ukulele, alto recorder, and doumbek then focused primarily on the mandolin. She performed for five years as a vocalist and mandolinist for the acclaimed folk band Shenandoah Run.
In late 2013, Mary wanted to start a new band, an all-women progressive bluegrass band. The Americana music scene was exploding with new roots artists. She searched for musicians who could play and sing with passion and conviction and synergy. In a few short months, Sweet Yonder was formed. She is currently writing new songs for the band's next album.
Rachael Vohrer - Banjo, Guitar, Vocals.
Rachael has been playing guitar and banjo since 1993. Her musical influences include Dolly Parton, Stevie Nicks, Fleetwood Mac, Amanda Vincent, Norman Blake and Doc Watson.
Rachael grew up in eastern Tennessee. She relocated to the Washington, DC area to start a new job then began playing banjo at the local bluegrass jams. Her strong banjo technique and authentic vocal style quickly landed her a spot in Sweet Yonder.
Sarai Rivera - Bass, Vocals.
Sarai was raised in North Carolina. Her father and step mother played in a bluegrass band and taught her to play the bass in their kitchen. She quickly picked up the bluegrass standards and soon after learned to sing lead.
Sarai favors both traditional Appalachian bluegrass as well as slightly edgy, bluesy, progressive bluegrass styles. A northern Virginia resident since 2006, Sarai joined DC area bluegrass jams and was drawn to the crowd at Frying Pan Park. Her effortless bass playing and haunting vocals quickly stood out from the crowd and Sarai found herself in demand. Her genuine musicality and bluesy sound are a perfect fit for Sweet Yonder.