Niles Foley is groundbreaking Kentucky rock-n-roll: a combustible mix of dazzling violin pyrotechnics, twangy guitar chimings, vocal harmonies, and contagious grooves guaranteed to put a wiggle in your middle. It’s a sound as unusual as it is instantly familiar: original songwriting, creative arrangements, echoes of musical heroes past and present, with a commitment to doing something new and having fun doing it! Previous appearances include Forecastle, Terrapin Hill Harvest Festival, and with the Louisville Orchestra.
(Scott Moore (violin, guitars, lead vox) was born and came of age in rural Kentucky. He began his career as a violinist and composer as a four-year-old in New York. He's been a soloist with a number of fine orchestras, played Mozart for the Archduke of Austria, and given an impromptu recital in Carnegie Hall for an audience of ghosts. He's been an organic farmer and a professional driver, and has been to jail—in a tuxedo. He's learned fiddle tunes from old-timers in the hills of eastern Kentucky, drunk bourbon with rock stars on a steam-powered riverboat, and played music on four continents.
"Staggeringly versatile and gifted" (LEO Weekly), he has built a formidable reputation for "skillful and inventive fiddle playing" (Country Music People) and a "stand-out" (Wildy's World) approach to a variety of genres—both alone and in collaboration with peers including the 23 String Band, Ben Sollee, Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Waxfang, Houndmouth,Will Oldham (Bonnie "Prince" Billy), Rachel Grimes, James Lindsey, Daniel Martin Moore, Teddy Abrams, Basia Bulat, Jason Sellards (Scissor Sisters), Tyler Ramsey (Band of Horses), and countless others.
He makes his home in Louisville, home of Hunter S. Thompson, where he climbs trees, dabbles in yoga, and routinely breaks the speed limit—on his bicycle. When not cooking, practicing, writing, recording, or sleeping, you may find him tinkering with a 1968 Triumph Bonneville.
Scott met Charlie Patton (guitar, cello, vocal harmonies) at a classical summer camp in Tennessee in 2004 or 2005—the cello player playing mandolin backstage before a concert. Later they were roommates in college, enjoyed many a back porch hang, went separate ways as many years passed, and were brought back together by fate and a mutual love for music and music-making. Never mind that Charlie had to learn electric guitar; he's still an excellent cellist, too.
Seth Folsom (bass, vocal harmonies) and Scott got acquainted after both finished music school. Seth had studied composition in Sweden, gotten into oldtime folk music, made banjos for Bela Fleck, and toured with the Crooked Jades. Scott had played the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto and a senior recital, graduating at the top of his class, only to immediately step out of academia and classical music, and onto an organic farm, with an enthusiastic new interest in roots—musical, cultural, ecological. Soon they were playing fiddle and banjo tunes, old country and blues, and 1930s Louisville jug band music, with the Jawbones. They even made a record. And then Scott got busy with the 23 String Band, and Seth did other stuff, and that was that. For a while...until Seth traded his jug for a j-bass and rejoined the band. Niles Foley, that is.
Scott and Neil Lucas (drums) grew up ten minutes from each other, out in the country in Breckinridge County. They had many of the same teachers and knew some of the same kids. Then they both ended up in Louisville, playing in various bands, a couple of which became pretty popular: the Pass, and the 23 String Band. And yet, they never met until the dress rehearsal for their first show together, a Louisville Concerto afterparty on Teddy Abrams' back porch. The hang was fun, the gig was awesome, a band was born. Records were made, shows were played—but not too many, 'cause Neil only jumped on board in fall 2015. But we're working on a new record, actually two, and they're gonna sound dope. And we're playing more shows, too. Hope you'll check 'em out.