Currently i perform as a solo banjoist and as band leader of The Electric Mountain Rotten Apple Gang, The Scrambled Yeggs and in a duet with my brother Darrin Kobetich as The Kobros.
I've been playing banjo seriously since 2003, but i had been a metalhead since i was 9, listening to Black Sabbath and Judas Priest. I first decided to play banjo when i was in a band called conniptionfit in 1992-94, never played banjo with conniptionfit.
I did play banjo with Amillion Pounds on one song, i got a banjo in 1995. By then i was listening to bluegrass which led me to Old Tyme and then stuff like Bad Livers and Sixteen Horsepower. My brother encouraged me to start what became, The Electric Mountain Rotten Apple Gang. From there i met some folks that play Songs From The Traveler Community, Pirate Songs and Story Tunes, and Klezmer, some folks named That Damned Band, these folks had a great influence on my music..
I founded The Electric Mountain Rotten Apple Gang in 2004 for about four years which was the beginning of a new music journey! I let "The Gang" go dormant and co-founded The Susquehanna Hat Company with accordionist Mila Ringo in 2010. In the fall and Spring 2016 i was/will be part of the Middle Eastern Ensemble at UT under the direction of Roberto Riggio. I have also appeared on stage with That Damned Band, Mazel Tov Kocktail Hour, Sick's Pack, Country Willie, Robert Steel, and Jarrett Killen, Amanda Kitchens, Manny and the Brokeback Boys, James Hinkle, The Black River Devils, Darrin Kobetich, Jennifer Stewart, 800 Mile Monday, Convict Hill, The Barton Strings Band and The Scrambled Yeggs.
i have recorded with: Amanda Kitchens, Convict Hill, Jason Chromer, Ted Haji, The Rogue Gypsies, The Barton Strings Band, The Electric Mountain Rotten Apple Gang and The Susquehanna Hat Co.
About, This Guy
I am utterly in love with banjo music. I love hard driving bluegrass and old time/ mountain string band music. Each time i hear either of these styles of music i swoon all over again. And now i say the same for Balkan folk musics, i utterly LOVE the music of Macedonia and Bulgaria.
As time passes i become more and more obsessed and dedicated to the banjo.
The banjo has many more musical uses than most folks suspect.
I try to learn other styles of music to play on banjo, i have mastered none of them but i have gradually been learning how to play some songs from Eastern Europe, specifically Macedonia, Greece and some Klezmer tunes as well as continually going back to basics and honing the bluegrass chops. because for me and banjo everything goes back to Bluegrass banjo (and the Master, Earl Scruggs!), the techniques used in bluegrass can be applied to other styles as well ( i can say the same for old time banjo pickin' as well, i have learned some eastern European stuff clawhammer style too but i do spend more practice time on the three finger styles). It presents a bit a challenge in fuse these ideas and a great deal more study is required to continue this idea.
I oft seem to find myself playing with Accordion players..... which only stands to reason because why should not the two most hated instruments on the entire planet team up?
The Susquehanna Hat Company
SHC can also be found on Spotify.
SHC is inactive as far playing live, it has pretty much been incorporated in to The Rotten Apple Gang.
The Electric Mountain Rotten Apple Gang
Street Grass: bluegrass/Balkan hybrid with a dash of Thrash.