The Quebe Sisters swing into Bayou Theater for an evening of three-part fiddlin' fun
The Quebe Sisters are real-life champion fiddling siblings who sing classic, three-part close harmony vocals in a what they call a “progressive Western swing” style. Hulda, Grace and Sophia are bringing their innovative blend of archtop guitar, upright bass and fiddles to the Bayou Theater at University of Houston-Clear Lake Friday, March 3 at 7:30 p.m.
“We are Texas girls,” said Hulda Quebe. “We love to play in our home state. Texas people get us,” she said. “We have played in the Bayou Theater before and we are so glad we are coming back.”
Quebe said that she and her sisters originated a style they call “progressive Western swing” because they wanted to continue playing Western swing—but with their own special twist.
“For us, ‘progressive’ just means a new, fresh way of adding to the style known as ‘Western swing,’” she said. “We draw from every kind of music, but our band instrumentation is different because we do not have drums. The triple fiddling is original to the style. We want to play more than just the songs everyone knows from the hit parade.”
Over the course of their 15-year career that began in childhood, the sisters were taken to the Grand Ole Opry by the legendary Ricky Skaggs when Hulda was just 13.
“We started taking lessons when we were small, then our teacher suggested we do arrangements together, and then we started doing fiddling competitions together,” she said. “It made sense for us to play gigs together when we were teenagers. A lot of doors opened for us. One of the biggest moments was performing for President George W. Bush at the Kennedy Center when I was 16,” she said.
Their style, she continued, was about preserving Western swing and adding their own particular kind of innovation.
She added their concert would be a mixture of cover songs and originals. “We compose a lot of the songs we like in swing and jazz, and we’ve always been influenced by the Mills Brothers and Django Rhinehardt, who’s Willie Nelson’s favorite guitarist, among others,” she said.
Due to Covid, Quebe said the group was not able to properly promote their 2019 self-titled CD, but would be performing several tracks at the Bayou Theater. “It’s our fourth album and it has a lot of originals with a different kind of feel,” she said. “We are working on our next album now.”
She said there’s nothing like sharing a song onstage. “It’s a unique act, you don’t often see triple fiddles, and our vocals remind people of a bygone era,” she said. “We love being on stage. You can talk to someone all day, but there’s nothing like sharing music with people.”
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