The Foreign Landers – Sails Music Series
The City of Hickory’s 2023 Sails Original Music Series continues with The Foreign Landers on Friday, May 12. The free concert begins at 7 p.m. at Union Square in downtown Hickory.
THE FOREIGN LANDERS
Drawing their name from the traditional song of the same title, The Foreign Landers is a duo hailing from opposite sides of the Atlantic united by their love of bluegrass and traditional folk music and their love for each other.
Mandolinist David Benedict grew up in South Carolina, while Tabitha Agnew Benedict started playing 5-string banjo at a young age in her homeland of Northern Ireland. Together, the married couple combines the musical styles of their respective homelands, along with their instrumental prowess and haunting vocals to create something new.
Individually these two are no foreigners to music. Before forming their duo, Tabitha performed with BBC Radio 2 Young Folk Award finalists Cup O’Joe from Northern Ireland and Island Records signed British bluegrass band Midnight Skyracer. While in Nashville, David toured with Grammy-nominated, 10-time International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) Bass Player of the Year Award recipient Missy Raines, and later, in Boston, with 2020 IBMA New Artist of the Year Award recipient Mile Twelve. These opportunities led to both Tabitha and David receiving Instrumentalists of Year Momentum Awards from IBMA as well.
Their paths first crossed with a chance meeting at the 2017 IBMA Convention in Raleigh, North Carolina. There was an immediate spark between the two upon realizing they had so many personal and musical similarities in spite of being from distant places. The result of this first encounter led to thousands of skymiles earned and culminated with an international wedding in 2019, when Tabitha and David tied the knot near Tabitha’s home in County Armagh, Northern Ireland. The couple now resides in Travelers Rest, South Carolina.
Their authenticity and originality in songwriting, tasteful multi-instrumental prowess, evocative vocals and unique, transatlantic touch all combine together to create something inexpressibly foreign and yet strangely familiar. To quote Bluegrass Unlimited, “…be forewarned… The Foreign Landers have arrived. Listening to their music is like reuniting with an old friend. So, open up your door, welcome them in and put their music on. You will be glad you did.”
The Sails Original Music Series is able to bring excellent musical entertainment from all over the United States with the help of numerous sponsors, including Atriax, Neill Construction Company, Protection Products, Bob Sinclair Music, Larry’s Music & Sound, Pfahlert Creative Labs, Olde Hickory Brewery, and Crowne Plaza.
Audience members are encouraged to bring lawn chairs or blankets. Union Square businesses will sell beer and wine in special marked cups that may be consumed on Union Square. There are a variety of close-by restaurants to also patronize.