Since forming in 2006, The High 48s have been making music that combines the soulful sound of classic bluegrass with a modern attitude, original songs and a wide range of influences far beyond Bill Monroe, the Stanley Brothers, and Flatt and Scruggs.
In a genre created and dominated by artists from the South, The High 48s were born and raised in the Upper Midwest. And in a music scene where playing standards is the norm, The High 48s are a band of songwriters who perform their own material in addition to the “festival favorites.”
The band takes its name from railroad slang for the boxcars originally used to transport troops on the front lines in WWI that could carry 40 soldiers or 8 horses, and were later used in the US on fast-moving “hot shot” freight trains by train hoppers looking for work during the Great Depression.
In the winter of 2014, The High 48s honored their namesake by recording an album of train songs in Nashville with Grammy-winning engineer and producer Randy Kohrs (Jim Lauderdale). The album features songs from the likes of Greg Brown, Robin and Linda Williams, Becky Schlegel, Darrell Scott, Muddy Waters and the 48s’ own Anthony Ihrig and Eric Christopher.
This album is the 48s’ sixth release and the culmination of many years of hard work. With band members who honed their bluegrass chops playing with Grammy-nominees Special Consensus and traditional bluegrass legend James King, as well as the many road miles logged since their win at the RockyGrass Band Competition in 2008 brought them national recognition, the 48s have never sounded better.
Video credit: Directed by John Whitehead
Cover art by Richard Borge
Praise for The High 48s
“I consider you guys the real deal in bluegrass. Don’t often see or hear your level – even in the pros. Across the board you guys had more fun on stage than any other band Bluegrass Tuesdays has hosted…the magic was there.”
Jim Johnson, booker/promoter of Bluegrass Tuesdays, Indianola, IA
“The High 48s are a professional group of musicians who play well, sing well, and put on a very entertaining show. The audience loved them!”
Linda Sandersen, President of the Milwaukee Area Bluegrass Music Association
“I saw you perform this past weekend and was thoroughly entertained. Yours was the first concert in a long long time where I was really engaged and involved. To use an oft times overused cliché, it was a magical night.
“I really enjoyed the music selection, the banter and the “presentation” overall. You folks are one tight and together band. I really appreciate the musicianship you bring to the genre and look forward to other CD releases and future concert dates.”
John, a fan, RockyGrass Bluegrass Festival, Lyons, CO
“High 48s were FANTASTIC!!! Stayed late to help the students, gave 100% of their time/talents, and they did a first for me – they incorporated the jam camp into their Saturday night headline set. The best ambassadors I’ve ever had for the jam camp.”
Martha Galep, Minnesota Bluegrass and Old-Time Music Association Jam Camp Coordinator
“Just wanted to tell you how nice it was to see you guys at the Norsk Hostfest in Minot. I love your playing. I loved how seamless and unobtrusive Anthony played banjo. Right on the money and within the mix of the other instruments.”
Joe Bonsall, The Oak Ridge Boys
“Many people told me that the music was the best ever for any Fiddles, Vittles and Vino. I know your band had a lot to do with that. Have a great rest of the year!”
Mark Gardner, booker/promoter of Fiddles, Vittles and Vino in Colorado Springs, CO
Stage Plot and Technical Info
For most performances, we provide our own microphones. We use a combination of large and small diaphragm condenser mics and put nothing in the monitors except for the upright bass, which goes direct (and is the only instrument that goes direct). The bass uses an LR Baggs Para DI, which we can provide.
The High 48s stand during their performances — no chairs are needed.
To download a copy of our stage plot, click here.
Booking and Press Inquiries
Please contact Eric Christopher at 651-271-4392 or using the email contact form below.