Chris Hillman, John Jorgenson on guitar, Herb Pedersen on banjo/guitar, and Bill Bryson on bass.
With a blend of country-rock, bluegrass, and honky-tonk, topped with a touch of singer/songwriter intimacy, the Desert Rose Band was one of country music’s hottest tickets throughout the 1980s and 1990s, earning numerous Top 10 and Number 1 hits. The band was formed in 1985 by Chris Hillman, formerly of The Byrds and The Flying Burrito Brothers and has been hailed for its ability to blur the lines between rock, folk, and country music.
Known for powerful live shows and electric stage presence, The Desert Rose Band has an array of top 10 and number 1 Hot Country Songs Billboard hits, including “He’s Back and I’m Blue” and “I Still Believe In You”. Additionally, the Desert Rose band was nominated for three Country Music Association Awards, including nominations for the Horizon Award and Best Vocal Group of the Year award in 1989 and 1990. They have also received two Grammy nominations for Best Country Performance by a Group.
John Jorgenson is known as a pioneer of the American gypsy jazz movement; however, he first came to national prominence with The Desert Rose Band. During this time, John won the ACM’s “Guitarist of the Year” award three consecutive times. Following the Desert Rose Band, John formed another award-winning group, the virtuosic guitar trio The Hellecasters. Originally conceived as a “one off” gig for fun, the group went on to produce three acclaimed CDs and a live video, winning both “Album of the Year” and “Country Album of the Year” from the readers of Guitar Player Magazine for the stunning debut effort Return of the Hellecasters, released in 1993.
Herb Pedersen began his career in Berkeley, California in the early 60’s playing 5 string banjo and acoustic guitar with people like David Grisman, Butch Waller, David Nelson, and Jerry Garcia. His recording discography is like a who’s who of the singer/songwriter scene, so prevalent in the 70s and 80s. Pedersen’s work with The Desert Rose Band and The Laurel Canyon Ramblers illustrates why he is so respected in the industry.
Bassist Bill Bryson is best known for his work within the California scene and its mellow melodic strains, country rock overtones and laid-back rhythms. He appears are on several Ry Cooder soundtracks and even did a little bit of banjo picking as part of the incidental music for The Long Riders. Bryson is also an accomplished songwriter. The most well-known of Bryson’s original songs is “The Girl at the Crossroads Bar,” recorded by the Grateful Dead as well as the Laurel Canyon Ramblers.
The Desert Rose Band’s impeccable musicianship and three-part harmonies, from country rock to bluegrass, promises to deliver a not-to-be-missed reunion show.
What Other People Have Been Saying...
“In the opening number of their 90-minute set, the first of just a handful of shows the group will play over the summer, guitarist Jorgenson coaxed riffs that magically segued from bluegrass to Beatles in the course of a single phrase while he, Hillman and Pedersen knocked off exquisite three-part harmonies almost without batting an eye.”-LA Times