GROTON — The Los Angeles-based Watkins Family Hour is set to perform at the Groton Hill Music Center on Saturday, Oct. 29, the venue announced in a press release.
The Americana musical collaborative, led by Sara and Sean Watkins, will be one of the first groups to perform at the new venue, which is set to open this September. The siblings founded the bluegrass group in Los Angeles back in 2002.
Both shared their excitement for the upcoming performance as the former musical variety show celebrates 20 years together.
“During the pandemic, we crossed the 20-year mark,” Sara Watkins said. “And we wanted to celebrate that. I am kind of amazed that we’re still doing it.”
“It doesn’t feel like it’s been 20 years. But when I think about the number, I think, ‘Wow, there were so many transitions that happened in that period where the Family Hour work could have just petered away. And we kept choosing to do it,” she said.
“It’s a great reminder to appreciate what we have,” Sean Watkins said. “Nothing lasts forever, but recognizing that, at this point, things are as strong as ever with the Family Hour.”
As part of the anniversary celebration, the group is also set to release its third studio album, titled Vol. II.
The 11-track record will feature longtime friends of the show – including Fiona Apple, Jon Brion, Jackson Browne, Madison Cunningham, Lucius, Gaby Moreno, Benmont Tench and Willie Watson – and will “encapsulate where Watkins Family Hour started, how the project grew and where it could be headed in the future,” according to the press release.
As they continue to work on solo and other side projects, both Sara Watkins and Sean Watkins said the Watkins Family Hour has remained an “invaluable resource and respite” that has offered them a “familiar” but “ever-evolving” space where they can be creative, test new ideas and meet new collaborators.
“It’s been really exciting to be part of this thing that is happening and growing and enables us to dig deep into this musical community,” Sean Watkins said.
“The consistency has been invaluable to both of us, as musicians,” Sara Watkins added. “But also, in life, the Family Hour has been and continues to be a huge part of making us feel anchored in the crazy city of Los Angeles.”
The Groton Hill Music Center is set to host a number of artists later this year, including Brian O’Donovan’s Celtic Roots & Branches on Oct. 22, Grammy-winning Bluegrass artist Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper on Nov. 5, jazz vocalist Catherine Russell on Nov.11, global music luminaries Balla Kouyaté and Mike Block Band Nov. 18, Bill Frisell on Nov. 19, Seamus Egan on Dec. 2, jazz saxophonist Miguel Zenon, Dec. 10 plus chamber music concerts and more.
The Groton Hill Music Center is a non-profit that is supported, in part, by the Massachusetts Cultural Council and is home to a regionally recognized music school that provide music education, performance opportunities and impactful outreach programs to 1,200 students of all ages and abilities.
For more information on the Groton Hill Music Center or any upcoming events, visit https://www.grotonhill.org.