• About the Mamas •
The Marshgrass Mamas are a bevy of Johns Island musical gals. The roots of their music stem from traditional bluegrass and Appalachian old-time, but over the decades the sound has morphed into a unique sound of their own. Band members consist of Hazel Ketchum and Cary Ann Hearst pickin’ the guitar, Kristen Meierer thumping the doghouse bass, Dee Payne wailing on the banjo, Gina Perez & Chandler Marburg sawing on the fiddles, Lauren Bevins Cahill putting the chop on the mandolin, and Caitlin Cahill Pape singing harmony and plucking the banjolele.
Beautiful harmonies mixed with ridiculousness are sure to melt your heart and keep you around for more. The Marshgrass Mamas are known for being entertaining on stage while stomping out their own signature sound.
HAZEL KETCHUM plays lead guitar for the Mamas and provides lead and harmony vocals. Since receiving her Masters of Music degree from the University of Southern California, Hazel has had a lively performing and recording career in a variety of musical styles. Hazel is proficient at a number of different musical instruments and has many recordings available for sale. She has performed throughout the U.S. and Europe. In addition, Hazel writes songs and has her own group called the Hungry Monks. Hazel lives on James Island, South Carolina, where she teaches and operates Hungry Monk Music with her husband John Holenko.
KRISTEN MEIERER plays acoustic bass and provides lead vocals. Kristen was born and raised in Eustis, Florida. Kristen’s Uncle John played guitar and sang in various bands. Because of his influence, Kristen picked up the guitar at a young age. After marrying her husband Jeff, they decided to use their wedding money to buy an upright bass and they formed a band called YeeHaw Junction. Kristen has performed bluegrass music throughout the South and as far away as Great Britain. Kristen resides on Johns Island, SC and is self-employed as a CPA.
CHANDLER MARBURG plays guitar and fiddle, and also provides lead and harmony vocals. Chandler is the daughter of folk/bluegrass musician Bill Clifton and was born in Charlottesville, VA. She grew up in England where she attended school until the age of sixteen and then returned to the US finishing school in New Hampshire. Her enthusiasm for traditional folk and bluegrass music grew from listening to her father and traveling to various music festivals and concerts around Europe and in the United States. She has been a Montessori educator for over 30 years and lives on Wadmalaw Island, SC.
GINA PEREZ was born and raised in South Carolina. Her love of the fiddle began in her twenties when she began learning Appalachian Old-Time Fiddle tunes. Her joy of playing fiddle tunes led her to eventually play in bands like The Butterbeans, The Brillers, and Cane Creek String Band. During those years Gina also began playing upright bass. She has learned to read bass cleft and play with her daughter in the Lowcountry American String Orchestra (LASO) and local bluegrass bands.
Gina enjoys playing music with her daughter Rayna who is becoming an accomplished fiddler. When not playing music they grow indigo, vegetables and cruise the Lowcountry waterways.