Darol Anger and Mike Marshall - FreshGrass


Darol Anger’s thirty-year career as a violinist has been filled with path-breaking episodes: the Turtle Island String Quartet brought its wild fusion of bluegrass, Indian classical music, funk, and jazz into classical concert halls, while Psychograss, with Mike Marshall and Tony Trischka, expanded the genre from within. Darol has been a deep presence at FreshGrass since its beginnings, turning each weekend into a whirlwind of collaborations, workshops, and impromptu jams. He’s here this year for a special duo set with Marshall, a mandolin wizard and all-around musical polymath who has been a pioneer of New Acoustic music for four decades, delving deep into folk, Brazilian, classical, and jazz traditions with equal virtuosity and openheartedness.

“As an acclaimed maestro on a variety of stringed instruments (violin, mandolin, guitar) Mike Marshall can call upon just about anyone in the field of progressive bluegrass to accompany him on an album… More than thirty years since Marshall started his professional career as a teenager, Mike Marshall is looking ahead and embracing the next generation of acoustic stringed instrument wizards.” – No Depression


Fiddler, composer, producer and educator, Darol Anger is at home in a number of musical genres, some of which he helped to invent.

Exceptional among modern fiddlers for his versatility and depth, Anger has helped drive the evolution of the contemporary string band through his involvement with numerous pathbreaking ensembles such as his Republic Of Strings, the Turtle Island String Quartet, the David Grisman Quintet, Montreux, his Duo with Mike Marshall, and others.

He has performed and taught all over the world with musicians such as Dr. Billy Taylor, Bela Fleck, Bill Evans, Edgar Meyer, Bill Frisell, David Grisman, Tony Rice, Tim O’Brien, The Anonymous 4, Marin Alsop and the Cabrillo Orchestra, the Detroit Symphony, Mark O’Connor, and Stephane Grappelli.

Today Darol can be heard on NPR’s “Car Talk” theme every week, along with Earl Scruggs, David Grisman and Tony Rice. He was also the violinist on the phenomenally popular Sim City computer games.

In addition to performing all over the world, he has recorded and produced scores of important recordings since 1977, is a MacDowell and UCross Fellow, and has received numerous composers’ residencies and grants. He has been a featured soloist on dozens of recordings and motion picture soundtracks.

He is an Associate Professor at the Berklee School of music. He recently began an ambitious online Fiddle School at ArtistWorks.com.


Mike Marshall made his Carnegie Hall debut at the age of 20 with jazz violin legend Stephane Grappelli as a member of the David Grisman Quartet. In 1985 he would perform in that famed hall with his own classical ensemble The Modern Mandolin Quartet in 1985.

Mike has been at the forefront of New Acoustic music for over 40 years having been the founding member of many groups including the Montreux Band, Psychograss, Choro Famoso and The Anger Marshall Band. He is indeed a living compendium of musical styles and has the ability to seamlessly blend his American roots background with a deep understanding of European classical music, Brazilian choro and other world music. Mike is a fluid Jazz improviser and a master on mandolin, guitar, mandocello and violin.

Between 1999 and 2003 Mike collaborated with Joshua Bell, Edgar Meyer, Bela Fleck and Sam Bush on two separate projects. These groups toured the U.S.A. extensively and performed at the Aspen Music Festival, San Francisco Performances and Chamber Music at Lincoln Center, NY. Both ensembles were nominated for Grammy Awards for their Sony Classical releases.

In 2014 Mike was nominated for his third Grammy Award for his recording with the Turtle Island Quartet.

Currently Mike is touring with German mandolin virtuoso Caterina Lichtenberg. The two have released two cds on the Adventure Music label and have performed at the Carmel Bach Festival, The Savannah Music Festival, the Bach Haus Liepzig, Germany and the Rockygrass Bluegrass Festival in Colorado and have been soloists with the New Century Orchestra under Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, and Orchester l’arte del mondo from Cologne, Germany.

Their most recent recording is a CD of Johann Sebastian Bach duets performed on mandocello and mandolin.

Mike’s past duet projects have included tours and Cds with mandolinists Chris Thile, violinist Darol Anger, bassist Edgar Meyer, Brazilian Mandolinist Hamilton de Holanda and pianists Jovino Santos Neto and Andy Narell. His recordings can be found on the Windham Hill, Sony Classical, Rounder, Sugar Hill and Compass labels as well his own Adventure Music label.

As a music educator Mike is committed to passing on his knowledge through a variety of channels. He currently directs the Mike Marshall School of Mandolin through the ArtistWorks on-line educational company where he is teaching hundreds of mandolinists from around the world. He has published six books on mandolin technique and has produced three video instruction DVDs.

Since 2012 Mike has been the director of the Acoustic Music Seminar at the Savannah Music Festival where he hand-selects fifteen of the brightest young acoustic music virtuosos from around the world (ages 15 – 22) for a week of intensive study and musical inspiration.

Between 2003 and 2015 Mike directed the Mandolin Symposium at the University of California in Santa Cruz with partner David Grisman and in 2017 he will be launching the Global Mandolin Retreats project, which will be a mandolin educational experience located in various inspiring locations around the world.

Mike splits his time currently between his home in San Francisco, CA and Wuppertal, Germany where his wife, Caterina Lichtenberg holds the position of mandolin professor at the Cologne Music Conservatory.


Darol Anger:

Mike Marshall: