Every time I think that I have reached the limit of genres of music and artists that I enjoy on the violin I come across a new performer, composer, or work that I completely enjoy.
My last birthday I was fortunate enough to receive a CD of The Quebe Sisters Band, and I have listened to them two or three times a week since then. I am not ashamed to say that they are actually creeping into the recesses of my heart where such performers as Hilary Hahn, Zino Francescatti, Mark O’Connor, Nathan Milstein, Mark Wood, Sarah Chang, and Rachel Barton-Pine reside.
Sophia, Hulda, and Grace Quebe were raised in the that thriving North Texas Metropolis…Krum. They were home schooled and began playing fiddle in 1998, taking lessons from Sherry McKenzie. The girls showed remarkable talent, and soon their coaching was taken over by Sherry’s husband, Joey (An able teacher as evidenced by the fact that he is 3-time World Champion Fiddler, World Series of Fiddling Champion and 5-time Texas State Guitar Champion). The trio began playing with Joey on guitar and Drew Phelps on bass. (Drew’s credits include a Bachelor of Music degree from North Texas State University, he received a full scholarship to attend the School of Fine Arts at the Banff Centre in Canada, and a National Endowment for the Arts jazz fellowship to study privately with legendary string bassist Dave Holland.)
The Quebes learned to play fiddle by ear, and received no classical training. They’ve won numerous contests and awards. They have appeared in such places as the Grand Ole Opry, the Kennedy Center, and Lincoln Center in New York City. Their musical style includes such musical styles as western swing, hot jazz and swing standards, western and cowboy songs, vintage country and bluegrass.
If you can listen to these ladies and not want to tap your feet, dance, or move down to the Fort Worth area, you’re a stronger man than I. We’re in the midst of arranging an interview with them, so watch Violin Student Central for an update on the Quebes!
Want to see them live? They post their schedule on their website.