Introducing... Gourd Splitter

Gourd Splitter is the latest sonic brainchild of mandolin player/multi-instrumentalist/  songwriter John Kruth. The San Francisco Weekly dubbed John “The Madman of the Mandolin,” while The Milwaukee Journal said “Kruth shows us just how hard a mandolin can rock. A fascinating argument for the mandolin as a prime tool of rock and roll.” “Kruth picks mandolin as well as anybody on the planet. He’s also an engaging frontman playing everything from folked-up funk to blitzkrieg bluegrass,” wrote The Isthmus (Madison, WI).

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When Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant caught a set by Kruth in Albany, NY a few years back, he went backstage and exclaimed: “Great mandolin playing mate! I used to be in a band with a mandolin player once, y’know!” But it was Ornette Coleman who summed it up best when he told Kruth: “Your tone sounds like flesh and blood. You didn’t choose the mandolin. It chose you, to play its eternal melodies through.”   As a sideman John has played with Allen Ginsberg, Laurie Anderson, Ornette Coleman, Violent Femmes, James “Blood Ulmer,” Sex Mob, Lambchop, John Prine, Rick Danko, Garth Hudson, Hal Willner, King Missile, and the Meat Puppets.

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Keyboard and accordion player, Kenny Margolis joined Mink DeVille in 1979, recording their highly acclaimed album, Le Chat Bleu for Capitol Records, as well as Coup de Gras, and Where Angels Fear To Tread for Atlantic. He has also toured and recorded with alt-rockers Cracker, Elliott Murphy, The Smithereens, The Silos, Del Lords and Marshall Crenshaw and backed up the late great Shane MacGowan.

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Lap steel guitarist Premik Russell Tubbs is a woodwind virtuoso, a master of all saxophones, flutes and clarinets. Premik was greatly influenced by and privileged to study with Ornette Coleman, and has toured the world, performing and/or recording with Carlos Santana, John McLaughlin and The Mahavishnu Orchestra, Ravi and Anoushka Shankar, Sting, and Herbie Hancock, and the list goes on…

Bassist Ray Peterson brought the funk to legendary soul/jazz saxophonist Eddie Harris’s live shows and recordings for ten years. He can be heard on Harris’s albums, Eddie Live in BerlinListen Here Hi Life and Live at Fabrik. In the past Peterson also gigged with Blood Sweat & Tears, and Trinadad-born jazz steelpan player Othello Molineaux.

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Drummer Eric Halvorson has performed and recorded with jazz saxophonists Dave Liebman, James Moody, chanteuse Ute Lemper, soul singer Ben E. King and the legendary blues pianist Pinetop Perkins to name a few. 

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