What do you get when you take the mandolin from Woodenspoon, mix in the drums and guitar from moe., and add the fiddle/banjo and upright bass,? A knee-slappin’, foot stompin’, head bobbin’, skirts-a-twirlin’ good time.
Floodwood is Al Schnier & Vinnie Amico of moe., Jason Barady (mandolin) of Woodenspoon, plus Nick Piccininni (fiddle and banjo) and Zachary Fleitz (bass). This isn’t the first side project for Al and Vinnie. They have been playing together in Al & The Transamericans for over a decade. This quintet came together about a year and a half ago, but on stage they gelled like they’ve been doing it much longer. The fun interactions between bandmates added to the warm vibe in the room as they pulled out a unique mix of bluegrass, Americana, and progressive string – or as the band would call it “Madgrass”.
While the snow may have kept some people home on Friday night, the ones who showed up got a pleasant treat. There was even one person who drove all the way in from Boston to see the show and was heading to Oneonta the next night for a double-dose of Floodwood.
The band mingled with the crowd during opening act Rebel Darling, a trio featuring two guitars and a harmonica. There were a lot of familiar fans (some of whom were family and friends) there to see the local musicians. Floodwood seemed to be right at home at The Putnam Den. In fact, during the second set, Nick Piccininni jumped down off the stage to play fiddle and dance with the many smiling faces on the dance floor.
It was a great time for those who braved the slippery conditions. If you are one of those who stayed safely at home Friday night, you will be able to catch Floodwood as they play the Fiddler’s Picnic festival this year with other local favorites like the Rumpke Mountain Boys, The Blind Owl Band, Eastbound Jesus, Jatoba, and many others. But those courageous souls who made it — they got to be a part of Floodwood’s intimate, and successful, Saratoga debut.