Born in Wheeling, West Virginia on March 16, 1954, Grammy winning singer songwriter and multi instrumentalist Tim O’Brien grew up singing in church and in school, and after seeing Doc Watson on TV, became a lifelong devotee of old time and bluegrass music. Tim first toured nationally with Colorado bluegrass band Hot Rize, who last year marked 40 years as a band. Kathy Mattea scored a country hit with his song Walk The Way The Wind Blows in 1986, and soon more artists like Nickel Creek and Garth Brooks covered his songs. Over the years, Tim has collaborated with his sister Mollie O’Brien, songwriter Darrell Scott, and noted old time musician Dirk Powell, as well as with Steve Earle, Mark Knopfler, Bill Frisell, and Steve Martin.
This year’s March release, Tim O’Brien Band, features his regular touring band of well known players Mike Bub (bass), Shad Cobb (fiddle), and Patrick Sauber (banjo/guitar), and Jan Fabricius (vocal). Shaping O’Brien’s Blues, Jazz, and Celtic influences within a string band setting, they transform five originals and some well- chosen covers into his own unique brand of bluegrass.
Other notable O’Brien recordings include the bluegrass Dylan covers of Red On Blonde, the Celtic-Appalachian fusion of The Crossing, and the Grammy winning folk of Fiddler’s Green. His 2017 release Where the River Meets the Road paid tribute to the music of his native West Virginia. O’Brien formed his own record label, Howdy Skies Records, in 1999, and launched the digital download label Short Order Sessions (SOS) with his partner Jan Fabricius in 2015.