Down From The Hills Bluegrass Band

Current Musicians - Biographies

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Bill McWilliams - Bill plays 5 string Banjo - His day job is Structural Engineering - He lives on the westside in Madison <> Bill was exposed to Bluegrass TV as a child on Hootenany, Andy Griffith & The Beverly Hillbillies. His first stringed instrument was the Ukelele in middle school. He took up the banjo after watching John Hartford's weekly banjo solos for the Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour. Always playing or singing somewhere, he's been harmonizing with DFTH since 1985.

Dan Hildebrand -- Dan plays Guitar, Mandolin and Fiddle. Dan had a Chicago Blues band in High School and later toured with Del Shannon in the early 70's. Got started on Guitar while living in Chicago when he was 12 years old. For the last ten years he's also been playing Jazz Mandolin and Old Time/Bluegrass Fiddle. He now leads a Beginners Bluegrass Jam class for The Southern Wisconsin Bluegrass Association and lives in Madison.

Brad Wolbert - Brad plays the doghouse bass and has re-joined the band after a four-year stint in Austin, Texas, where he played with a number of bluegrass and country bands. He started out as a musician playing in blues bands on electric bass, but gradually switched to mostly acoustic bands in the Madison area before giving Texas a try. He also sang in the choruses of the Madison Opera and Symphony. He is an environmental manager and lives and works in Madison.

Pat Downing - Pat plays mandolin, fiddle & melodeon. He is a luthier & piano tuner/technician living in SW Dane County. The band leader, Pat began making music at age 5 banging on kitchen pots & pans. At 12 he took up the trombone & in his 20's almost took it along instead of a guitar while hitchhiking around the USA to play the campfire circuit. In later years, he played session music in Ireland & jammed with Cajun musicians in Louisiana. His aim is to bring live music to folks. If they dance too, Big Fun!

Jim Lottridge - Jim plays Mandolin, Guitar, Dobro & Bass - Jim manages the Montessori School in West Madison <> We feature Jim often, he has played off and on with DFTH since 1999. Jim's dad is a retired UW music professor, and it seems Jim has music in his blood, every lick is 'sweet' as sorghum molasses.

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Patrick Downing, 256 Tyvand Rd. Blanchardville, WI 53516 (608)-527-2472