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Tallgrass Express String Band

Traditional & Acoustic Music
Contact Person:Annie Wilson
Email:[email protected]


Whether playing on a flatbed trailer at a ranch, doing roving music at Symphony in the Flint Hills, playing for guests at the Governor’s Mansion, or entertaining in an art gallery in Kansas City, Tallgrass Express has been bringing the look and sound of the Flint Hills to delighted listeners since 2004. Author Cheryl Unruh writes, “This band is the real deal.

Their music rises from the land they love.” On lead vocals and guitar is founding member singer-songwriter Annie Wilson, who was named the Flint Hills Balladeer by the State of Kansas for her songs celebrating the Flint Hills region. (See her description and bio as solo artist also in this Kansas Touring Roster).

Other members are vocalist Carl Reed on fiddle and harmonica, and Derrick Doty on fiddle, mandolin and banjo. Also singer-songwriters, they contribute immeasurably to the band’s sound with their vocals and versatile instrumental skills. In their trademark historic western dress, the group will share brief stories on the background of songs, humorous observations on rural life today, and frequent references to the heritage, land and culture of their beloved region, the tallgrass prairie of the Kansas Flint Hills.

Their music has been featured in KANSAS! Magazine and on Sunflower Journeys. For two decades, they have delivered hundreds of performances at community and regional festivals, historic conferences, camps, museums, galleries, senior ed programs, colleges, schools, as well as numerous private events.

Primary Program Description

CONCERTS: Tallgrass Express tailors concerts to fit each audience. In addition to their original songs of the Flint Hills, concerts can include fast-driving old timey and bluegrass favorites, folk ballads, Western swing tunes, beautiful Celtic melodies, early American gospel hymns, and beloved Cowboy and Western standards. They can also provide top quality instrumentals for background music at social events.

Program Fee

$750 – $850 – depending on length of program and sound system requirements. Travel expense needed for programs further than 75 miles from Manhattan. Lodging expense will be needed if overnight stay is required.

Educational Activity Information

Artist talk/workshop: “What is a Regional Band?” – about sharing music that is place-based and celebrates the region in which it is played.

  • What are some songs about your region?
  • How do you research traditional local music?
  • How to write new music about your region. What sorts of topics and stories can be featured in regional songs?
Additional Activity Fee

Additional Activity Fee – $200 for additional one-hour program

$150 per 30-minute program

Community Activity Information

Tallgrass Express can present a mini-concert for school classrooms or senior groups.