Ethan Setiawan

Ethan Setiawan at CommArts

Straddling the bounds of roots music, bringing tradition to light with deep innovation, mandolinist Ethan Setiawan brings worlds together. A Boston-based mandolin player who’s won such accolades as the National Mandolin Championship and the RockyGrass Mandolin Championship, he’s a member of bands Corner House, Mudskippers, The Harmolodic String Band, and freelances with musicians including Darol Anger and Tony Trischka. In 2015, he attended the Acoustic Music Seminar at the Savannah Music Festival, a program where participants work with musicians like Mike Marshall, Julian Lage, Casey Driessen, and Bryan Sutton. Later that year, he guested on A Prairie Home Companion (now known as Live From Here.) A move to Boston in August of 2015 to attend Berklee College of Music on a full ride scholarship brought about a new chapter in Ethan’s life. He’s been a catalyst for several projects in the Boston area and elsewhere, including Corner House, which draws from Scottish, Appalachian string band, and bluegrass styles, the Harmolodic String Band, which plays the music of Ornette Coleman on bluegrass instruments, and the Band of Friends, a collaboration of like minded roots and bluegrass truth seekers. As befits a musician in the 21st century, you can also find him teaching lessons or classes at the Passim School of Music, or recording colleagues' projects on a day at home.

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