Lilac Wine is best described as a sweet and heady musical recipe. The main ingredients are unexpected song choices, skillful musicianship and adventurous arrangements that magically combine into music that both alluring and hypnotic for the listener. For Rob Henson, founding member and bassist, Lilac Wine provides the ideal ensemble that can passionately play many musical genres other than the typical jazz and folk styles most commonly associated with acoustic groups.
As one of Atlanta's most versatile musicians, Rob has played and/or recorded as a bass player with a wide array of musical groups including the Yacht Rock Revue, the Atlanta Symphony, Telegram, the Atlanta Opera Orchestra, Jukebox Fiasco, the Atlanta Ballet, and numerous singer-songwriters such as Shawn Mullins, David Ryan Harris and Vince Gill. From 2006 - 2012 Rob recorded and toured the United States with singer/songwriter Corey Smith, playing over 150 shows a year, as well as recording five studio albums, and opening for legendary acts such as ZZ Top, Willie Nelson, Cheap Trick, Snoop Dog, and Eric Church.
In late 2013, Rob recruited first-call guitarist, singer, arranger, and multi-instrumentalist Grant Reynolds to be the Swiss army knife of the future Lilac Wine lineup. Relocating from LA to his hometown of Atlanta in 2008, Grant has worked with many respected local music artists including Heather Luttrell, Brian Collins Band, Gareth Asher, Davin McCoy, Lefty Williams Band, Francisco Vidal, Sonia Leigh, and Yacht Rock Schooner. Known for his technical proficiency, adaptability, and well-rounded musicality, Grant also co-founded the electrifying Reynolds & Williams Band with Joel Williams (former Zac Brown Band guitarist), and has most recently toured and recorded with Collective Soul frontman Ed Roland's new endeavor, "Ed Roland & the Sweet Tea Project."
In sharp contrast to Grant and Rob, music in the beginning for vocalist Larissa Mia was simply a means of escape, as opposed to expression. Lilac Wine is really her first band - just a year ago she would only sing in private at home. Along with teaching herself how to play the guitar, Larissa's curiosity for public performance came only after graduating from Vanderbilt University and returning to Atlanta to start a career in HR. She soon came to the conclusion that she would much rather sing than do anything else and decided to take her talent to the next level by performing at Atlanta-area open mic competitions. At one such event, fate would introduce to her Rob and Grant. Her voice was soulful and sultry, like mist on a cool damp night.
JIM CULLITON & ROB HENSON DUO
The spirited duo of multi-instrumentalist Jim Culliton and bassist Rob Henson have performed together throughout Georgia over the past decade with their unique blend of instrumental string music. Their underlying philosophy of no stylistic boundaries always keeps the music fresh and exciting.
Along with Rob, whose background is described above, the duo features Jim Culliton, an accomplished musician who plays banjo, guitar, mandolin, fiddle, dobro, bass and more. Jim plays many venues in the Atlanta area and is also a gifted teacher who frequently leads workshops and classes in bluegrass and other playing styles. Jim and Rob will perform some of the original compositions from Jim's 2000 release CD recording Everyday A New Life on Ladybug Records and put their own twist on songs by other artists.
Jim Culliton has performing experience at The Fox Theatre, Symphony Hall, and many other concert venues. This versatile multi-instrumentalist is one of the early innovators in the New String Acoustic Movement, incorporating jazz, bluegrass, world music, rock, and classical with occasional vocals in the mix. Put all of this in a high speed blender and you get truly a innovative, entertaining, and dynamic musician. Jim was chosen to be a Musician in Residence for the National Endowment of the Arts and Humanities, as well as a former instructor of music at Huntingdon College and Auburn University (AUM).
Come and enjoy a great meal at Steve’s while being treated to two fine acoustic performances.