No Depression Spotlight article, HERE
Tui (too-wee) is an internationally touring old-time duo made up of Jake Blount and Libby Weitnauer. They draw inspiration equally from rare archival recordings, the music of their peers, and extensive experiences with other genres of music; Blount spent years as a funk and metal guitarist, and Weitnauer has an M.A. in classical violin performances from NYU. Tui's diverse influences enable them to create music that is innovative and technically demanding, yet accessible and affecting as only old songs can be. They released their debut album, Pretty Little Mister, June 28, 2019.
Jake Blount is an award-winning banjoist, fiddler, singer and scholar based in Providence, RI. He is a 2020 Strathmore Artist in Residence and a board member of Bluegrass Pride. He is a 2020 recipient of the Steve Martin Banjo Prize. Although he is proficient in multiple performance styles, he specializes in the music of Black and indigenous communities in the southeastern United States, and in the regional style of Ithaca, New York. He foregrounds the experiences of queer people and people of color in his work. He has studied with modern masters of old-time music, including Bruce Molsky, Judy Hyman (of the Horse Flies), and Rhiannon Giddens and Hubby Jenkins (of the GRAMMY-winning Carolina Chocolate Drops).
Fiddler and singer Libby Weitnauer has degrees in classical violin performance from DePaul University and New York University, but she finds her voice in the traditional music of Appalachia. She has performed in a wide array of venues and concert halls from Broadway to presenting research at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.