Brooklyn Loves Mountains | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth
Release Date: 
Sunday, February 15, 2015
Press Contact: 
Danielle Bias
Communications Director

Brooklyn Loves Mountains
Inaugural Benefit Concert on Saturday, March 28 at JALOPY THEATRE

Brooklyn Loves Mountains will present a benefit concert on March 25, 2015 at 8 p.m. at Red Hook’s Jalopy Theatre (315 Columbia St., Brooklyn, NY). The concert will benefit Kentuckians For The Commonwealth’s Canary Project and send a message of solidarity from Brooklyn to those working for an end to the most destructive aspects of surface coal mining, mountaintop removal and valley fills in Appalachian communities.

The concert will feature performances by some of the New York City area’s best country, bluegrass and hip hop bands, including Gangstagrass, Demolition String Band, The Down Hill Strugglers, and Cropdust. Alex Battles and Jan Bell will serve as hosts. Advanced tickets to the show are $25 and can be purchased in person at Jalopy Theatre or at A limited number of tickets will be available at the door for $30.

The concert is organized by Janette Wernegreen, Founder and Director of Brooklyn Loves Mountains. A Kentucky-native and Brooklyn resident, Wernegreen explains: “I started Brooklyn Loves Mountains in February 2014 to help raise awareness about mountaintop removal mining here in Brooklyn. Mountaintop removal mining is a horribly destructive and very dirty form of coal mining impacting both Appalachian communities and the global climate. It affects all of us -- no matter where we live. “ She continues, “I believe in the power of people and music – join us on March 28 and help send a message of solidarity to those fighting to protect and preserve the environment against mountaintop removal mining.”

Proceeds will benefit Kentuckians For The Commonwealth (KFTC), a statewide grassroots organization working on issues like mountaintop removal, voter empowerment, and economic justice. KFTC’s Canary Project, launched in 2003, is working for an end to the most destructive aspects of surface coal mining, mountaintop removal and valley fills.

About the Peformers:

GANGSTAGRASS is the brainchild of Brooklyn-based producer and musician Rench, who has been pioneering the combination of country and hip-hop for over a decade. Rench’s audio production studio was home to his honky-tonk hip-hop recordings, but also served as a spot where Rench would produce albums for local NYC rappers. In 2007 Rench decided he needed to scratch a musical itch that had been on his mind since listening heavily to 1970s recordings of Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys. The result was a genre-demolishing blitz called Rench Presents: Gangstagrass. It appeared on the Internet as a free download and people took notice. When the album garnered a positive mention on the influential blog, hundreds of thousands of downloads followed creating an intense underground buzz. In 2010, their theme song “Long Hard Times to Come” for FX Network’s Justified was nominated for an Emmy Award.

DEMOLITION STRING BAND blurs the lines between these musical styles, with a shared passion for country, rock ‘n roll, bluegrass and mountain music. Led by Elena Skye (Chicago, IL) and Boo Reiners (Charlotte, N.C.), the NYC- and Hoboken-based Demolition String Band has thrilled audiences for more than a decade now with their original material mixed with traditional and not-so-traditional songs. They have released five albums and toured the U.S. and Europe. Their most recent album is My Name Is New York: Ramblin’ Around Woody Guthrie’s Town, a three disc set which includes a historic walking guide of all the places where Guthrie lived and wrote songs during his 27 year love affair with the city.

THE DOWN HILL STRUGGLERS are an old time string band based out of Brooklyn, NY. They have released an album on Smithsonian Folkways Recordings and are featured on the soundtrack to the Coen Brothers film, Inside Llewyn Davis, produced by T-Bone Burnett. Besides being excellent musicians on fiddle, banjo, guitar, pump organ, and harmonica, they sing with the high voices that echo the sounds of young artists heard on the old 78s, evoking the spirit of the “Golden Era” of recording, and the mystery of their own identity.They have built their repertoire from some of the best music of the past and they keep it alive and lively.

CROPDUST is a lively Brooklyn-based string band who play original roots music inhabited by the spirits of the old west.  Founded in 2013, Cropdust released their first album, Old Man Hustle, in October 2014. Recorded live in a brick castle along Brooklyn's Prospect Park, this debut album hustles like a hootenanny, haunts like a stranger's glare, and kicks like grandpa's whiskey before he moved onto the clear stuff.

For more info about Brooklyn Love Mountains, please visit: