We are members and supporters of the Australasian Bluegrass and Old Time Music Association. And if you are a bluegrass, old time, or Americana string band, you should be too!

We always joke that we can say with full confidence that we are one of the top ten bluegrass bands in New Zealand (because there are only 9). So we set out to find the other 8. OK, maybe we’re in the top twenty.

  • Cabin Fevre from Hawkes Bay. Their repertoire includes more old-timey than bluegrass but there’s plenty of hot pickin’ in the mix.
  • The Chaps from Dunedin. Not really bluegrass, but these guys can hold their own in a jam session and we love them. So.
  • Beverley and the Clench Mountain Boys from Auckland.
  • The Eastern from Lyttleton. Cross-genre: Bluegrass Americana Alt Country Celtic Folk. Holy wow.
  • Federal String Band A recent addition to the bluegrass scene, but already making a big impact.
  • The Frank Burkitt Band from Wellington.
  • HAMILTON COUNTY BLUEGRASS BAND. The royalty of New Zealand bluegrass bands. The first, the best known, the still rockin’ HCBB.
  • Hot Diggity. New Zealand’s only all-female bluegrass band. Jenine’s other band. They look even better than they sound, and they sound pretty damn awesome.
  • Johnny Possum from Christchurch
  • Kim and Dusty from Wellington.
  • Rainberry Pie. New band made up of musicians from Wires and Wood and Hot Diggity and a few other bands.
  • Ruahine Rangers from Palmerston North. Love the tagline: A four-piece bluegrass band with three members. Hmmmm…?
  • Rural Delivery in Christchurch. Playing bluegrass since 1978. Current line up is Russell George banjo and vocal (formerly of High Country Bluegrass and Hard to Catch of Dunedin); Barrie McDonald mandolin and accordion; Steve Moffatt electric bass and vocal; John Clark guitar and vocal; Errol O’Daniels percussion, harmonica, uke, accordion and vocals; and occasionally Krissy Clark vocals. Contact John Clark for more information.
  • Valley Bluegrass from Dunedin.
  • Wires and Wood from Auckland. We didn’t actually have to search for them. These guys are great. 😀

The maybe list. Bands we’ve seen or heard of, but not sure if they were short time arrangements or are ongoing concern We’ll keep updating as more info comes available.

  • Sawmill. Not sure if this was a one-time thing or an ongoing concern. But they were really good. Maybe more Old Timey than Bluegrass? Close enough for government work.

That’s what we know about for now. If you’re a bluegrass band in New Zealand, get in touch!