The five women who make up HeartStrings are a diverse bunch, having grown up in different parts of the country and performed in a variety of settings. Brought together by a mutual love of acoustic music, the women have developed a unique harmony blend that lends a fresh new voice to bluegrass.
The members of the band also write songs and tunes and are accomplished instrumentalists. Members of the band include Bo Jamison (guitar) whose talent for songwriting and powerful and emotive vocals has become a cornerstone of the HeartStrings sound. Bo’s background has led her through the East Coast bluegrass circuit during the 1980s. Then wanting to be closer to her family, she moved back to her home in Middle Tennessee. Her songwriting prowess has resulted in numerous first place awards. Marilyn Barclay (bass) is an accomplished soloist and a harmony singer. She hails from Michigan where the chameleon blend and rich timbre of her voice was nurtured in a household of harmony-singing sisters. A music teacher by day, Marilyn also sings with the Concert Chorale of Nashville and the Nashville Opera Association. Rounding out HeartStrings’ unique harmony blend is Karen Pendley
(fiddle), one of the featured lead singers and songwriters. Carrying on the Carolina fiddling tradition of her father, Carl Joyner, Karen moved to Nashville in 1991. Since then she has toured the U.S. with the Nashville Country Music review, was the staff fiddle player and featured vocalist at the Nashville Palace, and performed at Opryland Theme Park. Chris Lewis (mandolin) lends a traditional, Monroe-based style to the band sound and furnishes a steady back seat. Originally from Texas, Chris cut her musical teeth on the San Francisco Bay Area bluegrass scene where she was a founding member of the Fog City Ramblers and the All-Girl Boys. Last, but not least Sally Wingate (banjo) drives the band with her solid timing and her tasteful banjo licks. A student of bluegrass legend Ted Lundy, Sally began honing her craft in 1965, playing at Sunset Park in West Grove, PA and appearing as a guest on stage with The New River Boys. In 1971, Sally teamed up with Louisa Branscomb to form one of the first all-female bluegrass groups, The Bluegrass Liberation and was a member of the band Cherokee Rose in 1981.
Five talented women, with beautiful harmony, singing and playing bluegrass. That’s something that just can’t be beat. Don’t miss a minute of one of their sets.