Ladies sing the ‘‘blue­grass’’ with a retro flair

The Tribune (NZ) - - CONVERSATIONS - RICHARD MAYS

New Zealand’s only fe­male blue­grass band, Hot Dig­gity has been around since 2014, but its mem­bers de­light in vamp­ing it up in fashions from ear­lier eras such as the 40s and 50s.

‘‘Our two band lead­ers Heather Carrigan and Deb­o­rah Macken­zie are very fond of 1950s fash­ion and styles,’’ lead vo­cal­ist and string bass player Je­nine Abar­banel said.

The ef­fer­ves­cent en­sem­ble, wear­ing de­light­fully retro out­fits plays the Hokowhitu Bowl­ing Club on Satur­day night.

As an ex­cla­ma­tion of joy and

‘‘Our two band lead­ers are very fond of 1950s fash­ion and styles’’ Je­nine Abar­banel

de­light ‘‘hot dig­gity’’ had been around at least since the 1920s.

‘‘We called our­selves that be­cause that’s how we felt when we played to­gether.’’

The fe­male five-piece mixes tra­di­tional with orig­i­nal songs writ­ten by Carrigan (man­dolin, guitar and vo­cals) and Macken­zie (guitar and vo­cals).

Abar­banel said her voice had been likened to Natalie Mer­chant and Gil­lian Welch.

Banjo pluck­ing Sue Drake had played guitar since child­hood, but bought a banjo on im­pulse six years ago and hadn’t looked back. The band’s fid­dle player Krissy Jackson from New Ply­mouth Abar­banel said is one of the finest fid­dle play­ers in New Zealand.

En­try to the 7.30pm Hokowhitu Bowl­ing Club per­for­mance is $20.

PHOTO: SUP­PLIED

The Hot Dig­gity blue­grass band - Sue Drake, Deb­o­rah Macken­zie, Heather Carrigan, Je­nine Abar­banel, and Krissy Jackson

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