Episode 3 of “In The Tradition” Alan Kaufman with special guests: Martin Grosswendt and Susanne Salem-Schatz.
Martin Grosswendt (vocals, lead guitar, banjo) began his musical career as a session player at the original Philo Records in Vermont, recording with and backing musicians including U. Utah Phillips, Jim Ringer, Mary McCaslin, and Rosalie Sorrells. A master of pre-war country blues, Martin has released three albums featuring the music of legendary bluesmen such as Robert Johnson and Blind Blake, as well as his own compositions. A multi-instrumentalist, Martin sings and plays bass (and occasionally fiddle, guitar, and accordion) with the popular Cajun dance band Magnolia, and plays guitar and sings with the Rhode Island bluegrass supergroup the Pegheads.
Susanne Salem-Schatz (vocals, guitar,mandolin) came of age in Chicago’s folk scene, listening to the likes of John Prine and Steve Goodman in clubs and playing in local coffeehouses such as Chicago’s No Exit and, later, The Ark in Ann Arbor, Michigan. On arriving in Boston, she strayed from the folk scene following her heart to the soulful twang of country music. With Austin-based Michael Maddox and soon-to-be husband Art Schatz, she fronted the band Western Union, which brought its own twist to a mix of western swing, country and bluegrass. With a keen ear for harmony, Susanne and Martin’s singing brings back the best of the classic country duets.
Martin and Susanne currently perform with Boston’s twang-filled, vintage country/western swing band, Honky Tonk Masquerade. They also perform as an acoustic duo, presenting soulful renditions of songs from the blues, old-time and early country songbooks.