Damn Tall Buildings
…The Carter Family for the millennial generation……” – The Boston Globe
“If you like your bluegrass served with a little punch, attitude, grit and gravy … Damn Tall Buildings will slide in nice as a welcome edition to your listening rotation. Bluegrass at heart, but pulling from a wide range of influences including swing, ragtime, jazz, and even a hint of contemporary perspective in the songwriting, they offer virtually unmatched energy and enthusiasm, underpinned by intelligent songs that don’t skimp on the infectiousness…” – Savingcountrymusic.com
Representation and Touring Formats
Touring Formats: Trio
Witty & engaging, Damn Tall Buildings’ energizing music finds beauty and glory in the mundane workaday struggle of everyday life: time keeps passing and the seasons come and go, you scroll too much, you smoke too much, you lose yourself, only to sit with yourself & find yourself again, you laugh with your friends, and you look out the window & dream about what else might be out there. It all keeps coming around. You carry on, intent on flourishing and thriving. This is what Damn Tall Buildings sings about, what they seek to share with their audience.
In their early days, Damn Tall Buildings didn’t rehearse – they busked. Now, whether live or on record, the trio still radiates the energy of a crew of best friends playing bluegrass on the street. Anchoring that energy is their instrumental chops, their strong songwriting, and their varied influences that stretch beyond bluegrass, even beyond American roots music altogether. Whether sharing lead vocals and instrumental solos or blending their voices into high-spirited harmony, Damn Tall Buildings is a tight unit that contains more than the sum of its parts.
Primary vocalist and lyricist Max Capistran’s singing recalls old blues and The Band-style roots-rock, whereas Sasha Dubyk’s time studying musical theater is evident in her rich vocal tone and soulful flair. Avery Ballotta’s fiddle brings stratospheric dimension to the churning rhythm section of Capistran’s guitar and Dubyk’s bass. The band’s harmony singing is tight without being too slick – they sound like three individual voices joined together in celebration, not a perfectly polished machine. Their choruses are the kind you sing along to with a glass raised into the air.
In 2013, then students at Boston’s Berklee College of Music, the band took their instruments to nearby street corners and jammed for hours on old bluegrass and blues songs, traditional fiddle tunes, and eventually their own original music. Busking, a continuous test of one’s ability to command an audience’s attention, cemented their closeness and fostered their infectious, captivating performance style. It’s how they learned half of their repertoire, and it’s where Dubyk first picked up the bass.
Since their busking days, Damn Tall Buildings have grown to new heights over the course of their decade of creating together. They’ve made four albums: 2014’s Cure-All, 2015’s self-titled, 2019’s Don’t Look Down and 2022’s Sleeping Dogs. The band has also relocated to Brooklyn, NY and toured widely, appearing at festivals like Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, Philadelphia Folk Festival, Freshgrass Festival, Ossipee Valley Festival, Walnut Valley Festival, Blissfest and Merlefest. Now based in Brooklyn, NY, they have begun to travel the globe playing bigger and bigger stages, making lots of friends wherever they go. They carry with them a connective spirit, welcoming audiences to join in the moment with the band as they take us on a journey through a well-crafted show. The trio has a knack for making any room feel a little more like home.
Album Review: Damn Tall Buildings, ‘Sleeping Dogs’
by Kim Ruehl, Folk Alley
This year has been full of new releases that were written—or at least recorded—during pandemic lockdown. It’s been interesting to see all the artistic directions people were taking during that giant pause in the world. While many folks spent the time ruminating on life’s big questions and how to navigate a new paradigm, it would seem Damn Tall Buildings came away with a certain trench humor on their new album, Sleeping Dogs (out today).
All things considered, it’s refreshing to hear them couch dark, emotional lyricism amid such throw-your-cares-to-the-wind instrumentation. Yes, times are hard. We’re all lonesome and exhausted and overwhelmed. But we can still have fun.
There’s a certain chaos and resignation to the disc, but also a determination to find joy. It is as though someone handed Pippi Longstocking a banjo. read more…
Bluegrass Among the Damn Tall Buildings
by Stephen Yusko, NYS Music
Bluegrass grows among the Damn Tall Buildings in Brooklyn. Music discovery is quite an expedition; you never know what you’re going to find. Brooklyn is a melting pot, with its cacophony of beautiful genre influences, which can be heard moment by moment as you walk down its litered city streets. Discovering the band, Damn Tall Buildings is an absolute joy.
Assembled now as a trio, this Americana-Bluegrass band hails from various points around America, from Montana, Pennsylvania and New Hampshire. Max Capistran is the main lyricist, playing guitar and banjo while contributing vocals. Avery Ballotta, plays the fiddle and banjo and vocal harmonies. Sasha Dubyk completes the vocal trifecta with her beautiful voice while playing the Upright Bass.
On September ninth, they released their latest album, Sleeping Dogs. Playing their album and getting to know the band, I interviewed two members on the The Long Island Sound podcast. Max Capistran, and Avery Ballotta recounted their beginnings and their decade -long relationship which resulted in a friendship that is clearly exposed in their newly released album. Starting out as buskers on Newbury Street in Boston, they began touring nationally, and then moved the band to Brooklyn in 2017. They connect in the day to day interactions and hope their music brings joy to be spread around. read more….
|10/07/2023||Ol\' Front Porch Music Festival
|10/13/2023||Ottawa Memorial Auditorium
|10/14/2023||Bicknell Family Center for the Arts
||Belle Plaine, KS|
||New York, NY|
|10/20/2023||WAMC Performing Arts Studio
|10/21/2023||Farmington Valley Acoustic Festival
|10/22/2023||The Parlour Room
|11/02/2023||New Spire Arts Stages
|11/04/2023||Glema Mahr Center for the Arts
||Kokomo , IN|
||Des Moines, IA|
||Cedar Rapids, IA|
|11/11/2023||The Thrasher Opera House
||Green Lake, WI|
|11/16/2023||City Winery Boston - Haymarket
|11/17/2023||Groton Hill Music Center
|11/18/2023||Blackstone River Theatre
|2/01/2024||Walton Arts Center
|2/09/2024||City Winery Philadelphia - Loft
|2/17/2024||Pollsky Theatre, Midwest Trust Center
||Overland Park, KS|
|3/01/2024||The Ellen Theatre
|3/08/2024||Alaska Center for the Performing Arts