El Portal Sedona Hotel invites you to enjoy the music, the entertainment, the artistry and excitement of the 2011 Sedona Bluegrass Festival. From Wednesday, May4th through Sunday, May 8th enjoy some of the best bluegrass music in the USA! Headlining this year’s festival is the Claire Lynch Band, with Mark Schatz (Bass, Clawhammer Banjo, Percussive Dance), Jason Thomas (Mandolin, Fiddle & Vocals), and Matthew Wingate (Guitar, Mandolin & Vocals).

Make El Portal your home for the Festival. Located in the heart of Sedona, we are steps away from Creekside and Los Abrigados. We are a pet friendly Sedona hotel and have enclosed pet patios for our four legged guests, so you won’t have to worry about them while you are at the festival!

For additional information on the Festival visit Chamber Music Sedona, or call El Portal boutique hotel at 1-800-313-0017.

About Claire Lynch (from chambermusicsedona.org)

A native of Kingston, New York, who has lived in Northern Alabama since the age of 12, Claire was offered a position in the band Hickory Wind, decided she was going to be a bluegrass singer, and that was pretty much that.  After changing its name to the Front Porch String Band, the group worked regularly throughout the Southeast over the next several years, becoming fan favorites on the strength of its open-minded musical approach and incredible lead singer.
But by 1981, despite a handful of well-received albums (including Claire’s first solo effort, Breakin’ It) and increasing word-of-mouth acclaim, the band had tired of the grind and called it quits.  During the following decade, in addition to raising a family, Claire launched dual careers as a songwriter (her songs have been recorded by Patty Loveless, the Seldom Scene, Cherryholmes, Kathy Mattea, the Whites and Stephanie Davis) and a session vocalist.  Her exquisite harmonies have graced albums by such leading artists as Emmylou Harris, Dolly Parton, Linda Ronstadt, Patty Loveless, Pam Tillis, Kathy Mattea, Jesse Winchester, Sarah Watkins and Ralph Stanley.
A re-energized Front Porch String Band roared back onto the scene with their 1991 album, Lines and Traces.  The success of that album and the band’s resumed touring led to Claire’s second solo album, the critically-acclaimed Friends for a Lifetime in 1993.  Next came the Grammy-nominated Moonlighter in 1995, followed by 1997’s sublime Silver and Gold, which also received a Grammy nomination.  During the next several years the Front Porch String Band evolved into one of the sharpest, most exciting post-modern bluegrass bands on the circuit.  Their last recording effort was Rounder’s Love Light, a collection more-than-half comprised of original Claire Lynch songs and which was described as “a masterpiece… an Americana programmer’s true delight.”
In 2000, husband and mandolinist Larry Lynch, founder and instrumental mainstay of the band from the beginning decided to follow his ever-increasing musical passion for Celtic style picking.  For the next few years, Claire enjoyed another hiatus from the road while searching out new players.  In the fall of 2004, she formed the Claire Lynch Band and begain extensive touring.
In the Winter of 2005, Claire signed her second three-album deal with Rounder Records.  The first release, New Day (March ’06), was a top favorite pick for several publications, scored a #1 song on the National Bluegrass Survey and an IBMA nomination for “Song of the Year”.  Next came the anthology collection, Crowd Favorites (October 2007) which earned another couple of top ten positions on the survey.  Ms. Lynch describes her follow-up CD, Whatcha Gonna Do (September 2009) as “Americana-inflected bluegrass.” It took the #1 spot on the January 2010 BMP national bluegrass CD chart and was included in several “Top Pick” CD lists for 2009.

More about all the performers at the Festival coming soon to El Portal’s blog!