This group interprets music from the folk and old-tyme American traditions on modern instruments with treasured songs and lively instrumentals — we find great joy in bringing this music to modern ears.
The core of Ampersand is Beth Lawton and Dick Hogle, whose duo work shines with the spark of vocal harmonies and a shared musical sensibility.
The Ampersand name is particularly appropriate since the whole of this group is definitely more than the sum of its parts!
Band manager and mother hen, Beth, incorporates a wide range of vocal styles to her music, adding harmonies that range from sultry to playful. Guitar, hammered dulcimer, and occasionally a banjo or mountain dulcimer, are her instruments of choice.
Bringing a warm bluesy style to the group, Dick offers guitar leads, a wonderful baritone voice, and more recently, some nice mandolin leads and banjo pickin’ to the mix.
ChrisTOPHER’s mellow baritone voice and foot-stompin’ bones-playing add a depth to all the gigs he joins in on. Topher’s specialty is Early Music, including shape note singing, but he is willing to play those “modern” colonial-era tunes when need be. Cello, bouzouki, and penny whistles round out his offerings.
Eastern Shore musician Dave Moore brings guitar, harmonica, banjo, and bass to the group, adding his marvelous voice to our rich harmonies.
Sharing her great smile and bright spirit, newest member Beth R. brings her classical training to enliven our traditional songs and tunes.
When we visit the north, Ampersand features fiddler friend Francis, whose joy in playing becomes evident when you watch his feet fly and dance as fast as his fiddle bow does!
Our friend from Sandy Spring, MD, John’s fiddle, mandolin, and vocals are a joyful addition to our sound.