McLemore Twins and Driven

Frank) And we’re back again. Happy Wednesday morning to you and we’re in November and it’s a time too when there are family gatherings here as we get into Thanksgiving and Christmas and all that. And then you start thinking about music and maybe family sing alongs and all of that. And that’s kind of a little bit of a cue to you to start talking about what our next story has to do with. (Deb) You might think of family sing alongs, unless you’re like me and you can’t sing, and you’d just rather not sing along with the family. I am the one person, I grew up immersed in music, and I have no music ability whatsoever. I wrote a book on Kansas music and I talk about that. You know, I grew up in an era where, and a place where, everybody can sing, everybody can play, but me. I’m the one that just gets to talk about it, I guess. But talk about family harmonies and as you well know in the music business there’s so many legendary family harmonies, you know the Everly Brothers, I mean it just goes on and on. The McLemore Brothers, add those to your list. Those boys are incredible. And I got to see them down in Winfield earlier this year. And they’re just amazing. So, if you get a chance to hear them play and sing anywhere, whether it’s with their band Driven or anybody else, by golly, you take advantage of it. Let’s take a look at that very talented family. Sibling harmonies enjoy a long history in bluegrass music, and the McLemore twins from Colby carry on that tradition with a driving energy. Their band in fact, is called Driven and watching them perform leaves no doubt. Brandon and Blake were born just after their parents Bob and Susan McLemore had attended the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield and were inspired to take up instruments. Winfield became a family custom and the boys lives had a soundtrack. They often fell asleep with the sounds of their parents and their friends making music. By 10 they had begun playing themselves. For 10 years they joined their parents in band simply called The McLemores. These days Driven is in high demand. The other band members Jimmy Campbell and Jake and Rebekah Workman are a perfect fit for the duos’ high energy performances. When Driven isn’t performing, they play cowboy western swing music with friend Allen Bailey as part of Marshall Allen Bailey and the Silver Bullets. The twins, their parents and brother Ryan all help a committee of close friends put on the Picking on the Plains Bluegrass Festival in Colby, Kansas. Their hope is to spread their love of Bluegrass to others. I first saw Jake perform at the little grill in Manhattan, where he often joined Chris Biggs and Steve Hendricks. Jake was in school at K-State and connected with Chris, who in turn reconnected him with other old music friends, which in turn led to the formation of the band Kansas Heart, with Bob Atchison and Mike and Vickie Theobald. The group opened for Charlie Daniels at Salina’s Stiefel Theatre. It was a real treat sitting with Chris and his brother John, also an accomplished musician and watching Driven on stage at Winfield. Jake Workman had borrowed Chris’ Martin guitar and the sound was amazing. The reaction of the crowd? Well, they were driven into a frenzy. Literally.

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