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Front Range

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Biography

Virtuoso instrumentations and luscious three- and four-part vocal harmonies have made Front Range one of the best bands on the contemporary bluegrass circuit. While their albums are rooted in the traditional sounds of Bill Monroe and Flatt & Scruggs, the band has incorporated influences ranging from the Beatles, Robert Johnson, Celtic and classical music. One Beautiful Morning, Front Range's third album, was named Best Gospel Recording of 1995 by the International Bluegrass Music Association; Ramblin' on My Mind, their fourth album, reached the number three slot on the National Bluegrass Survey compiled by Bluegrass Unlimited magazine and spent several weeks in the Top Ten of the Gavin Americana charts in 1997. Front Range is very much a group effort, with the personnel remaining consistent from the beginning. Delaware-born Bob Amos sings lead vocals, plays acoustic guitar and writes most of the band's songs. The product of a musical family, Amos grew up listening to everything from opera to folk music, turning to bluegrass after hearing a recording by the Stanley Brothers. With a master's degree in geology, Amos worked as a geologist in Denver during the 1980s. He currently lives in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, and is working on his first solo project, co-produced by David McLaughlin. Amos' song "Where the Wild River Flows" was covered by Hot Rize. A native of Wichita, Kansas, Ron Lynam plays banjo and guitar and sings bass vocals. Lynam's earliest exposure to bluegrass came when he attended a concert by the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band in 1971. While attending Wichita State College, where he received a degree in anthropology, he performed with numerous local bands. In 1978, Lynam moved to Colorado with a band, playing music at night and working as a carpenter by day. In 1985, he returned to college to get his teaching certificate. The same year, he won the Telluride Bluegrass banjo contest, joined Front Range after receiving a phone call from Amos. In 1997, he was named Best Banjo Player at the Rocky Mountain Bluegrass Festival. Denver-born Mike Lantz, who plays mandolin and sings tenor vocals, has balanced his musical career with his work with kids at the Children's Hospital and Denver school system. Bass player and baritone vocalist Bob Dick, a native of Massachusetts, is the younger brother of banjo player Dave Dick of Salamander Crossing. In addition to playing with several New England-based bluegrass bands and filling in with such groups as the Tony Rice Unit, Dick solidified his musical knowledge by studying jazz bass at Berklee College of Music in Boston. ~ Craig Harris

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