The Dithers is an Old Time Fiddle Duo based in Santa Barbara, California that plays instrumental, Old Time American Fiddle Tunes. They play for all types of occasions, from casuals to weddings, parties, corporate events, clubs, pubs, and festivals. They have a repertoire of hundreds of tunes, all of them infectiously fun with a tendency to incite spontaneous, involuntary dancing! People of all ages love The Dithers.
Erika Smith, fiddle, is a California native and well-known to those around the central coast’s Old Time Music scene. With over forty years experience of down-home fiddlin’ and close to fifteen years playing for Contra Dances in and around Santa Barbara, Erika has earned a solid reputation for being “the real deal” in authentic American Music.
Greg Korzen, guitar, hails from the rock ‘n’ roll capitol of the world, Cleveland, Ohio. Greg’s colorful musical journey through life has been almost like a movie that leaves you thinking, “c’mon, did that really happen”? A guitar player since 1978, he developed a keen interest for Roots & Folk music as well as Rock and Soul Music. This was in part due to the fact that Country and Hillbilly Music were in the air all the time. “I had families that lived on my street that came straight from West Virginia and Kentucky to work in the automobile plants, some of them looked like they walked right out of The Grapes of Wrath“. Television in the ’70s proved to be fertile ground for musical inspiration, especially guitar playing. Paying close attention to TV shows as musically diverse as, Hee Haw, Soul Train and Don Kirshner’s Rock Concert, Greg fell in love with the guitar. Moving to Los Angeles in 1980, he assimilated himself into the fresh landscape of the Rock ‘N’ Roll, Punk and New Wave music scene that was in full bloom at the time. By the ripe old age of 16, he was already playing gigs and recording with several bands involved with the legendary Mystic Records in Hollywood. Making a name for himself and forging a reputation for being a solid player he received much encouragement from his musical peers at the time, such as Bruce Moreland (Wall Of Voodoo) and Derf Scratch (Fear). There were some legendary jams at clubs around Hollywood in the 1980’s, playing guitar with the likes of Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers), Slash (Guns N Roses), Frank Infante (Blondie), Michael Monarch (Steppenwolf, Detective), Gary “Starchild” Shider (Parliment Funkadelic), Bobby Durango, and Andy Panik (Rock City Angeles) to name a few. Greg says finding old time music and learning how to play it has been like “reverse engineering rock ‘n’ roll”. “This music is the roots of everything.”
A selection of tunes from their repertoire:
Old Chattanooga, Henry King’s Reel, Hawks Got A Chicken, Elk River Blues, Dandy Lusk, Tombigbee, Shove That Pig’s Foot A Little Further Into The Fire, Old Joe, Altamont, Valley Forge, Fly Around, Winder Slide, Logan County Blues, Five Miles From Town, Bonaparte Crossing The Rhine, Coleman’s March, Rachel, Purple Lilies, Rose In The Mountain, Yellow Rose Of Texas, Texas, Doney Gal, Jimmy Shank, Half Past Four, Ways Of The World, Sandy Boys, Waterbound, Comin’ Through the Canebreak, Possum’s Tail Is Bare, Single Footing Horse, Forked Deer, Kiowa Special, Charleston Girls, Grand Picnic, Ragtime Annie, Porter’s Reel, Ask That Pretty Girl, Sandy River Belle, Goodbye Liza Jane, Kansas City Rag, North Carolina Breakdown, Rebel Raid, Waynesboro, Abe’s Retreat, Cold Frosty Morning, Goodbye Girls, I’m Going To Boston, Great Big Taters, Icy Mountain, Old Yellow Dog, Watermelon Pie, Paddy On The Handcar, Cookhouse Joe, Hangman’s Reel