The Duhks

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The Duhks
Origin Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Genres Folk, Roots
Years active 2002 (2002)–present
Labels Sugar Hill (former)
Members Leonard Podolak
Jessee Havey
Kevin Joaquin Garcia
Colin Savoie-Levac
Rosie Newton
Past members Sarah Dugas
Christian Dugas
Jordan McConnell
Scott Senior
Tania Elizabeth

The Duhks are a North American eclectic folk band, formed in 2002 in Winnipeg. Featuring banjo, fiddle, guitar, percussion, and vocals, The Duhks blend folk music together with various Canadian and American traditional styles, including soul, gospel, old-time country string, and zydeco. The band also commonly plays traditional Irish dance music, integrating Latin-influenced percussion as well as often Celtic- and Cajun-influenced fiddle-playing.


In 2002, Appalachian-influenced clawhammer banjo player Leonard Podolak founded The Duhks in Winnipeg with singer Jessee Havey, fiddle player Tania Elizabeth, and Celtic-influenced guitarist Jordan McConnell—all Canadian musicians. The name "Duhks" comes from Scruj MacDuhk, Podolak's defunct previous band.[1]

The Duhks' first album, Your Daughters & Your Sons (2003), was nominated for a Juno award, leading to a contract with Sugar Hill Records. A new percussionist, Latin-influenced Scott Senior, joined the band, who then released their eponymous second album (2005), produced by Béla Fleck, which won a Juno for Best Roots & Traditional Album by a Group. "Heaven's My Home," from their third album, Migrations (2006)—produced by Tim O'Brien—was nominated for the 2007 Grammy award for Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal.[1]

In March 2007, Jessee Havey left the band to pursue other interests and was replaced as the lead singer by Sarah Dugas. The group was joined in November 2007 by Sarah's brother, Christian Dugas, as a replacement for percussionist Scott Senior, who left to spend more time with his family.[2] In October 2007, The Duhks Sustainability Project was launched to raise awareness about ways to live a more economically viable and ecologically sustainable lifestyle.[3] The following year, the website FestivaLink released The Duhks' first live album as well as the first to feature Sarah Dugas as lead vocalist and Christian Dugas as percussionist; the album is a compilation of old and new songs, largely recorded at a post-Earth Day benefit in Nederland, Colorado on April 2008.

Fast Paced World (2008), produced by Jay Joyce, was the first official studio album to feature the Dugas siblings. It also received a Juno nomination for Best Roots & Traditional Album. In 2009, FestivaLink released The Duhks' second live album, featuring several guest musicians and recorded primarily at that year's MerleFest in North Carolina.

On January 15, 2010, fiddler Tania Elizabeth announced that she would be moving on.[4][5] She was temporarily replaced by fiddler Casey Driessen. As of 2010, the whole band was on semi-hiatus, playing far fewer shows. In April 2011, the band announced on their website that this pace would continue, including some shows with former members Havey and Senior, as the Dugas siblings had begun recording and performing as an independent duo.

In January 2013, the band announced a reformation of the band featuring original lead vocalist Jessee Havey, fiddler Tania Elizabeth, Jordan McConnell on guitar, Scott Senior on percussion, and Leonard Podolak on banjo. This lineup entered the studio in March 2014 after successfully using crowdsource funding site Indiegogo to raise money for the recording of a new album, planned for release in Spring of 2014.[6] Also in spring of 2014, Kevin Garcia (the first American member of the previously all-Canadian band) began touring with The Duhks in place of percussionist Scott Senior and, temporarily, Tania Elizabeth's new husband, blues-influenced Andy Stack, in place of guitarist Jordan McConnell,[7] though Stack himself was soon replaced by Colin Savoie-Levac. Tania Elizabeth announced that while she will "always be a Duhk" she too was leaving the band for now, to be replaced by Scottish-influenced American fiddler Rosie Newton.[8]

In June 2014, The Duhks released a new album, Beyond the Blue, and has since been touring with their largely new lineup.


Current members[edit]

  • Leonard Podolak – banjo and vocals (2002–present)
  • Jessee Havey – lead vocals (2002–2007; 2011–present)
  • Kevin Garcia – percussion (2013–present)
  • Colin Savoie-Levac - guitar and bouzouki (2014–present)
  • Rosie Newton – fiddle (2014–present)

Former members[edit]

  • Sarah Dugas – lead vocals (2007–2011)
  • Christian Dugas – drum kit and percussion (2007–2011)
  • Jordan McConnell – guitar (2002–2013)
  • Scott Senior – percussion (2002–2007; 2011-2013)
  • Tania Elizabeth - fiddle and vocals (2002-2010; 2012-2014)
  • Casey Driessen - fiddle (2010-2011) (live shows only)
  • Andy Stack - guitar (2014) (live shows only)


Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart
US Heat
US Indie
2003 Your Daughters & Your Sons
2005 The Duhks 30 40
2006 Migrations
  • Release date: September 12, 2006
  • Label: Sugar Hill Records
2008 Fast Paced World
  • Release date: August 19, 2008
  • Label: Sugar Hill Records
2014 Beyond the Blue
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Live albums[edit]

Year Album details
2008 FestivaLink presents The Duhks at the Backdoor Theater, Nederland, CO 4/29/08
  • Live at the Backdoor Theater, Nederland, CO, April 29, 2008
  • Release date: 2008
  • Label:
2009 FestivaLink presents The Duhks at MerleFest, CO 4/24/09
  • Live at Hillside Stage, Merlefest, NC, April 24, 2009
  • Release date: 2009
  • Label:


Year Title Album
2004 "Mists of Down Below" The Duhks
2006 "Out of the Rain" Migrations
2008 "Fast Paced World" Fast Paced World
"You Don't See It"

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The Duhks". iTunes. Apple Inc. 2013. Retrieved November 5, 2013. 
  2. ^ Rotter, Joshua (February 14, 2008). "The Duhks continue to play despite changing lead singer, percussionist". The Record. Retrieved December 13, 2008. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Big Changes for The Duhks!". Retrieved January 23, 2010. 
  5. ^ "Tania Elizabeth News – January 25, 2010". Retrieved June 28, 2010. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Performances: The Duhks." The West Kortright Centre.
  8. ^ news posted ? retrieved May 6, 2014
  9. ^ "The Duhks Album & Song Chart History – Heatseekers Albums". Billboard. Retrieved September 24, 2010. 
  10. ^ "The Duhks Album & Song Chart History – Independent Albums". Billboard. Retrieved September 24, 2010. 

External links[edit]