“We really try to put our friendship first, and it shows in the music,” says Bevin Foley, fiddle player for roots quintet Trout Steak Revival. The band, comprised of Foley, Travs McNamara (banjo), Steve Foltz (mandloin, guitar), Will Kester (dobro), and Casey Houlihan (upright bass), is currently on tour supporting their third and latest record, Brighter Every Day. “Recording it was a great experience. We worked with Chris Pandolfi from The Infamous Stringdusters,” recalls Foley. “He helped us arrange some things beforehand before we went into the studio in Denver.” The group is on the road with fellow contemporary bluegrass outfit Yonder Mountain String Band, and will appear at Nashville venue 3rd & Lindsley on Sunday, February 14th.
The members of Trout Steak Revival are based in Colorado, which has become a hub for the string-centric genre. “The bluegrass scene in Colorado is really amazing, and it just gets better every year,” explains Foley. “People are moving there; the Infamous Stringdusters have moved there, so has Greensky Bluegrass. I think it’s always been a hotbed for that style of music, especially for people who are newgrass and jam band fans. We’ve been lucky to be a part of it. We’ve been embraced by the scene and the people, we’re really blessed to be in that area of the country.”
While bluegrass is generally thought of as “old-timey” music, Foley says the band’s fanbase is very diverse. “We have cross-generational fans, young and old, who love traditional bluegrass and people who are in the jam band scene—from people who follow bands around to people who have 9 to 5 jobs.” The fanbase is proof positive that Trout Steak Revival has mastered the art of keeping the genre fresh and relatable. “All five of us write songs, and whenever you write a a song, you’re putting your voice and your experience in it,” explains Foley. “We have a lot of roots in different areas—Americana, indie, folk, electronic, 70s classic rock, The Beatles, all kinds of amazing bands that aren’t bluegrass. We take things from all of our influences and put them into our songs.”
Touring with Yonder Mountain String Band has been a fun experience, and Kester and Foley have even been asked to sit in and play with them several times. Trout Steak Revival is also happy to be spending their Valentine’s Day in the Music City: “How romantic! It’s going to be a great night of music. I think the guys’ girlfriends are coming to town for the show,” says Foley with a laugh. “I might give everyone Star Wars Valentine cards from Target.”