September 21, 2016

Cotton Wood celebrates 15 years

Local bluegrass band Cotton Wood turns 15 years old this month and is putting on a show Oct. 1 in celebration.
“September 2001 we became a bluegrass band,” said Jill Wiese, who performs upright bass, guitar and vocals for Cotton Wood. “I really believe most of us did not think when we started we would all still be going.”
Wiese started the band with banjo player Lee Benjamin, vocalist Keith Koch and guitar/mandolin player Dan Foster, who all still perform together at regular shows, along with one new member.
“As we get older and some of our band members are retiring, we adjust to new schedules and even have a new member of the band as of the past two years, Reid Buckley on the fiddle,” Wiese said.
Over the years, the band has traveled together across the United States, but most of their concerts end up being close to home.
“We have literally played in all four corners of North Dakota and we have played Duckfest in Bowdon, Horse Fest in Taylor, and on a sandbar on the Missouri River in Bismarck for a crow-shoe tournament,” Wiese said. “We have played several bluegrass festivals in Montana, South Dakota, Minnesota and North Dakota.

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