Genre: americana, Old Tyme
George Clements (MA), Patrick M’Gonigle (BC) and Allison de Groot (MB) met in Boston and formed Barren Oaks out of a common love for traditional American music. From upbeat old-time tunes to sweet bluegrass harmonies, these three musicians have a deep appreciation for American roots music, and that is evident in their music.
George started playing guitar at ten years old, and began performing after college in New York City folk venues with his brother Charles. A move to Portland, Maine, led George to learn and start performing bluegrass music and he soon after enrolled at Berklee College of Music to study songwriting. He and Patrick are currently busy performing and writing together in the Boston based bluegrass group The Lonely Heartstring Band.
Patrick grew up playing classical music, started playing jazz in his late teens and fell in love with bluegrass music in his early twenties. He graduated from the American Roots Program at Berklee College of Music and received his masters in Contemporary Improvisation at New England Conservatory.
Allison learnt to play clawhammer banjo in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She founded the Winnipeg based quartet Oh My Darling, which toured extensively throughout Europe and Canada, was nominated for Western Canadian Music Awards and were played regularly on CBC. In 2012, she was awarded the Slaight Family Scholarship to study banjo performance at Berklee College of music, and is currently performing with the Boston based band The Goodbye Girls.
Together, the trio has found a sweet spot with fiddle, guitar, clawhammer banjo and vocals among the deep rhythms of the Appalachians, ballads and songs from long ago and the acoustic music scene of Boston.