Photo: © 2004 Laura Boyd - Great Blue Heron

Photo: © 2004 Laura Boyd - GrassRoots Festival

Diana Andersen and Shane Lamphier are the backbone of Paso Fino, "the five piece acoustic duo" that calls the fertile musical ground of Ithaca, NY their home. Bringing together soundscapes of South America and East Genoa, NY, Paso Fino's music is a swirling mix of Latin, folk, blues, rock, and whatever else it drinks in from the surrounding waters...

Shane got his start as a teenager playing mandolin in the Bubba George String Band with friends Jeb Puryear, Jordan Puryear, and Richie Stearns (also of The Horse Flies). You can still catch them opening the Fingerlakes GrassRoots Festival of Music & Dance in Trumansburg, NY every year! From there, they all went on to help form Donna the Buffalo. Shane was the original drummer for the band, where he recorded and toured for 7 years. He can also be found on Donna the Buffalo lead singer Tara Nevins' Mule to Ride, playing electric guitar.

In 1993, Shane and Diana first played together in the band Boojum Twist, an electric outfit. From there, the two went on to tour and record with Good Dog Bad Dog. While in this band, the duo opted to branch out and record Mystified, an acoustic side project that truly served as the birth of Paso Fino.

For their I-Town Records debut, Should've Bought a Pony, Diana and Shane relied on the Ithaca-area music community to put the finishing touches on the songs. There are special guest performances scattered throughout, including: Tara Nevins (Donna the Buffalo) on electric fiddle; Bill King (Jennie Stearns Band) on drums; June Drucker (The Horse Flies) on bass and ashiko drum; and Peter Dodge (formerly of The Horse Flies) on trumpet.

 

With this album, Paso Fino garnered a bevy of solid airplay across the country at college, community, and AAA stations that report to CMJ and FMQB, such as WNCW, WUMB, and WFHB. The band also hit #25 on the Folk Music Chart in the Roots Music Report. The closing song of Should've Bought a Pony, "On the Outside," appeared in the motion picture "The Year That Trembled," released in 2003. The opening song, "Fiery Ride," was featured in three episodes of Knock First, a reality TV show for teens on the ABC Family Channel.

Since then, Paso Fino has been playing around the Northeast, with Jim Armstrong, Nick Papador, Levy Lorenzo on percussion, and Kristin Sharkey on harmony vocals. They perform annually at GrassRoots, where this year they shared the stage with Los Lobos, Jim Lauderdale, and The Johnny Dowd Band, among others.

Now, Paso Fino has just released their much-anticipated second album on I-Town Records, Into the Cactus Plain. Honing the knife's edge balance between clarity and complexity of sound, intensely rhythmic, with evocative lyrics, soulful guitar work, and powerful voices, this album will take you on a journey to plumb the depths of your heart's desire.

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"The Latin influenced guitar licks & rhythms which roll off Shane's steel and nylon strung guitars, and Diana's powerful expressive voice, are a natural combination... It is mystifying that they can create such rich,complex music with so few instruments."
(Beth Wolf, Ithaca Times)

"Great voices and tight songs...Shane's guitar playing is...masterful, to say nothing of fun to listen to... The feeling is there. Faith in the message of the lyrics. Tunes so tightly put together...Simply good music."
(Adirondack Daily Enterprise)

"The playing, singing and production on "Should've Bought a Pony" are top-notch... Andersen's voice is in the upper-alto range, well-suited to the material - a little raspy when called for, or with a catch in the right places... As a songwriter she has a talent to be reckoned with."
(Gary Whitehouse/Peter Massey, GreenmanReview.com)

"I cannot say what is more impressive: the writing or the singing & playing."
(Marilyn Beyer, Music Director WUMB/Boston)

"This is a CD you put in your personal rotation, not on the shelf. And they're here live at GrassRoots, which is a gift."
(Fingerlakes GrassRoots Festival Program)

"...Everyone's beginning to seek more, from the best kept secret that is Paso Fino." (Loudon Temple, Maverick July 2004)

Into the Cactus Plain and Should've Bought a Pony are available through pasofinomusic.com and Itownrecords.com.