Formed in 2001 Packway Handle Band has emerged at the national forefront of bands that use this gather-around-the-mic style. Theirs is not a mission to preserve historical styles- it's just how they do what they do the best. The band now plays upward of 200 shows a year in the United States and in 2008 Packway embarked on an overseas tour to play the Celtic Connections Festival in Glasgow, Scotland as well as a string of other dates throughout the UK, Belgium, Holland, and
The beginning of 2008 marked the release of the band's third full length self-titled album. It captures some of their best songwriting sharing interpretations of wild whiskey induced nights, the end of the world, the blues, and even outer space. If you think you've got an idea of what Packway Handle is by listening to one song, you'll probably change your mind several times before the end of the next.
But, it's obvious their enthusiasm and sense of humor are honest, and that what they do appeals to broad audiences, even those who don't normally listen to bluegrass. You're not going to say you've heard this band before, unless you actually have.
Here’s a sampling of the press:
"One thing is obvious to all: The Packway Handle Band is not your father’s bluegrass band.”
-Bluegrass Now Magazine
"The Packway Handle Band mixes dark themes and old-time religion with a uniquely modern folk aesthetic that pins down just what American music is all about."
– Splice Today
"Packway Handle's strength is in its cohesiveness. Vocal Harmonies and string syncopations lock together like Legos.…"
– Aspen Daily News
“Where can we go in our labeling of bands when bluegrass isn't quite right and neither is the passé term ‘newgrass’?…Call it ‘ubergrass.’"
– Idaho Mountain Express
"If you like Chatham County Line and/or The Avett Brothers, then you should catch this perpetually touring five-piece for a trad-absurdist experience delivered from exceptionally seasoned youths."
– Flagpole Magazine