Act of Congress Friday, August 23


The Sundilla Acoustic Concert Series is proud and thrilled to bring Act of Congress back to Auburn on Friday, August 23, at the historic AUUF on Thach Avenue. Showtime is 7:30, and admission is $15 at the door; advance tickets cost just $12 and can be purchased at Spicer’s Music, Mama Mocha’s Coffee, and online at
I could say all sorts of great things about Act of Congress– and I will– but the best thing that can be said is what many of YOU said the last time they were at Sundilla: “This is the best concert I have ever been to.” Yes, we heard that quite a bit two years ago, probably more than we have ever heard it before, or since. (Only Lipbone Redding might have elicited more “best concert ever!” comments. Now think about those who are NOT on that short list, and you get a good idea of just how good these guys– and girl– are.)
No one this young should have a resume this impressive. How impressive? Well, consider this: following their Sundilla appearance, they have one more public appearance before heading off to do an eight-shows-in-eight-days tour of… the United Arab Emirates. Not impressed? They have also played in Bali, Thailand, East Timor, Palau, Australia, and the Philippines. Not bad for some kids from Birmingham who have been together for six years or so.
So what makes them so universally popular? Talent, of course, and the organic sound that combines hook laden melodies, compelling songwriting, and intelligent acoustic instrumentation that’s rapidly gathering attention throughout the country. Act Of Congress’ sound is grounded, approachable and technically masterful.

With lush harmony, articulate instrumentation and a live show that will leave you speechless, Act of Congress’ musical vistas sweep from the ground breaking sounds of Nickel Creek, Mute Math, and John Mayer to the weaving soundscapes one might find sprinkled throughout Matthew Perryman Jones or Radiohead. Timeless compositions of masterful lyrics and musicianship abound throughout each song, combining vintage acoustic instrumentation with sweeping layers of varied musical roots to create a truly magical experience.

Chris Griffin (guitar/dobro) and Adam Wright (mandolin/guitar), became friends in college. Wright, a pianist turned guitar player turned mandolin player, says ” After being exposed to progressive bluegrass music, Chris and I both became very interested in modulating our singer songwriter/rock knowledge to acoustic instruments. That style evolved from a casual jam to one that requires an extraordinary high level of musicianship,” Says Wright, “The playing is very demanding. This is not a style of music where you can not play for a month then get up and do a show again. We work really hard on keeping the songs up to par. Vocally, it’s equally demanding as well. But in the end, there’s nothing else we’d rather be doing.”

In late 2006, Tim Carroll (upright bass) was hired to perform with Chris on several tracks for Ferret Recording Artist Maylene and the Sons Of Disaster’s II album. A friendship and respect developed between the three, and the notion to create a new progressive acoustic band originated. Almost a year later, Bethany Borg, fiddle champion in ten states, relocated from a two year stint performing in Branson Missouri, and after hearing her play at an afternoon rehearsal, the quartet solidified. Following the release of “Declaration” Borg semi-retired, and was replaced by longtime AoC friend Connie Skellie. But the group never missed a beat, and has since released two more acclaimed CDs: “Worth Fighting For” and “Live at Workplay.”

Act Of Congress’ sound is grounded, approachable and technically masterful. In two short years, the band had been recognized by the likes of Paste Online, SXSW, Disney, Woodsongs, NACA, APCA (voted a finalist in the APCA 2010 Best Band competition) and Billboard (chosen from over 2000 submissions to compete and ultimately win the 2008 Disc Makers IMWS Award.) AOC has also worked with Live Nation, opening VIP areas for artists such as John Mayer, Toby Keith, Alan Jackson, and Brooks and Dunn.

Act of Congress will be appearing in concert on Friday, August 23, as part of the Sundilla Acoustic Concert Series’ 20th year of bringing the world’s best music to Auburn. The concert will take place at the AUUF; showtime is 7:30, and admission is just $15 at the door. Advance tickets can be purchased for just $12 from Spicer’s Music, Mama Mocha’s Coffee and online (If Spicer’s and Mama Mocha’s are out of tickets, YOU CAN STILL BUY THEM ONLINE!) There will be free coffee, tea, water and food, though as always attendees are invited to bring whatever food or beverage they prefer.