press photo

photo: Kimberly N.

 

"I don't make lists like this, but [Ben Sturdevant is] in my top 10 of best lyricists of all time." -Bryan Ranney

Ayesirowl is the collaborative project of singer/songwriter Ben Sturdevant, folk fiddler Kelsey Meigs, and bassist/drummer Dalton Wilson. The mission statement of Ayesirowl is "to do for folk music what unicorn lunch boxes did for peanut butter and jelly." Ben Sturdevant is a long time multi-instrumentalist and recording artist. Besides his work with Ayesirowl, he has written and recorded 5 solo albums, and made quite a few paintings that he hangs up in his dad's pizza joint.

Kelsey Meigs started playing the fiddle at age 9 and was a member of several fancy groups of talented folk children. She studied for a time in Johnson City before moving to St. Louis to practice Music Therapy.

Dalton Wilson a.k.a. "Stickbag" is a multi-instrumentalist par excellence. He did the drum and bugle corps thing, and now has an undefineable yet unsatisfied artistic compulsion that he is constantly striving to understand. It is possible he just needs a rubber ducky.

The name "Ayesirowl" originated from closing our eyes and randomly pointing at lines in Allen Ginsburg poems. We eventually landed on the line "aye aye, sir owl!" in some poem (I don't remember which). We called the band "Aye Sir Owl." However, as we began to play out we found ourselves increasingly billed with other bands that had three word names, one of which was an animal name, such as "Cowboy Indian Bear," and "Frogs Against Humanity." We were afraid of being lumped into this category of band, so the decision was made to remove the spaces between the words.

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