Dry Branch Fire Squad
The Dry Branch Fire Squad is a traditional-style bluegrass band fronted by Ron Thomason. The band is known for its showy performances and for Thomason's humorous interludes. The Dry Branch Fire Squad is the host band of Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, formerly called the Winterhawk Bluegrass Festival. The band also hosts the High Mountain Hay Fever festival in Colorado as a fundraiser for a local medical clinic.
Dry Branch Fire Squad was founded by Thomason, a former member of the Clinch Mountain Boys, in October 1976. The band has gone through many lineup changes; Thomason has been the one constant, serving as the band's MC, lead singer, and mandolin player. He also plays banjo and guitar on occasion, and during performances often demonstrates hambone technique which he learned as a child.
In 1978 the band released a self-titled debut album, and in 1979 they performed at Bill Monroe's Bean Blossom Festival.
In 1981 the Dry Branch Fire Squad signed with Rounder Records, and released the first of many recordings with that label.
The band has performed at the annual Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco every year since 2003.
Long-time members Brian Aldridge and Dan Russell retired at the end of 2015. Former member, Adam McIntosh, rejoined the band playing guitar and mandolin and assuming tenor singing duties. Jeff Byrd also joined replacing Dan Russell on bass.
In 2017 a performance by the band was filmed for inclusion in the film Bluegrass Court Jester.
- The Dry Branch Fire Squad - 1978
- On Tour - Live at the Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival - 1979
- Born to be Lonesome - 1981
- Antiques and Inventions - 1981
- Fannin' the Flames - 1982
- Good Neighbors and Friends - 1985
- Golgotha - 1986
- Tried and True - 1987
- Fertile Ground - 1989
- Long Journey - 1991
- Just For The Record - 1993
- Live! at Last - 1996
- Memories That Bless and Burn - 1999
- Hand-Hewn - 2001
- Live at the Newburyport Firehouse - 2005
- Thirtieth Anniversary Special - 2007
- Echoes of the Mountains - 2009
- The Gospel Way - 2014
- Don't Forget This Song - 2014
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