The mandolinist-composer Vivian Li thrives between bluegrass and classical music. No two genres are more hard-set in their ways, but Li and her Pickled Campers apply heat to tradition and the walls come tumbling down; the result is Li's promising debut, Growing in the Cracks.
We all have appliances we were so excited about at the time, but don't use anymore, right? Some sit on the kitchen counter for a while as appliance architecture, before they are banished to the graveyard. Some have never been used.
Some of the loudest cheers of the night came as Bella hit all the right mandolin notes on her solo turns, smiling throughout while looking remarkably poised for a tween playing before the biggest audience of a career that's just blooming.
Commerce has no shame -- it really doesn't. From 1919 to 1923, Lloyd Loar worked for the Gibson company, making F-5 mandolins whose quality has never been matched. So why is a Japanese company putting his name on theirs?