Old Salt is an Americana band based out of Ghent, Belgium, performing original and traditional music since 2015. The international members have individually influenced Old Salt with their heritage sounds from the USA, Belgium, Sweden, France and Scotland. Ever since, they’ve run a remarkable course with gigs in Belgium at Dranouter Festival and at the Gentse Feesten, in Sweden at Urkult Festival and in USA in the Guthrie Center in Great Barrington MA, just to name a few. Old Salt received the “European World of Bluegrass” award for 2017. In 2018, the band made his debut in the UK, Ireland, Austria and Germany.
Old Salt pulls it’s influences from the streets of New Orleans up through Appalachia to the folk revival of the North Eastern States and jumps the pond to the many sounds from old Europe where the band currently resides. They successfully mix the session with stage and street to bring a folk sound with grit, dynamic, spontaneity and tight arrangements. Old Salt’s first album “Up River Overseas” was recorded in Sweden in 2016. In may 2019 the band is due to release their second album where they worked closely together with producer and sound engineer Leander Meuris (Young Partners in Art) in GAM Studio (The Ardennes Belgium). The album is mixed in Nashville, USA by Sean Sullivan (The Devil Makes Three, Del McCoury Band, …) and combines original songs by Dan Wall and Johannes Wannyn as well as traditional tunes arranged by the band. Old Salt performs as a core four member band featuring:
Dan Wall (USA): Lead Vocals - Banjo - Violin - Blues Harp
Lotte Remmen (Belgium): Violin - Vocals
Lara Rosseel (Belgium): Double Bass - Vocals
Johannes Wannyn (Belgium): Guitar - Vocals
The other original members of the band who can jump in as guests are:
Anton Teljebäck (Sweden): Five String Viola
Toby Kuhn (France): Cello
Dave Barfoot (Scotland): Bodhran and Percussion
The band met back In the summer of 2013 when Dan Wall, a then carpenter and street musician from New York, found his way to a world music conference in the Istria region of Slovenia. During this two week period he met and collaborated with many talented and inspiring musicians from around the globe some of whom backed him up on his first festival show. These musicians (Anton Teljebäck, Dave Barfoot, Lotte Remmen, Johannes Wannyn) are now fast friends and continue to play with Old Salt today. Not long after their adventures in Slovenia, they were able to rendezvous in February 2014 when invited to a music festival in Umeå, Sweden. This road wound down to Ghent Belgium, where bass player Lara Rosseel joined the group and where the band is based today. In 2017 the band was completed with the entrance of French cellist Toby Kuhn and today Old Salt performs as a quartet or a septet. Between street performing, numerous festival stages and folk venues the momentum has naturally grown to bring them to the fore as a band that pushes the limits of folk music. In the summer of 2018 they recorded their second album in GAM Studio (Belgium), the release is planned for May 2019.
Banjo, Violin and Lead Vocals
Dan Wall found his passion for music back in 2008 when he stumbled upon a street band in New Orleans. Riveted by the positive vibe, the social interaction, and a rootsy Americana sound, he quickly picked up the Banjo and found travel, street performance, songwriting and musical collaboration to be his new mission.
He initially divided his time between working at home in Hudson, New York as a carpenter and traveling through Europe as a street musician. He's now is based in the south of Germany and focuses his time on building a musical career. Together with his wife, Magdalena Kriss, he forms the duo ‘Tante Friedl’.
Violin and Vocals
Lotte Remmen was born in 1986 in Belgium. She started her musical career at the age of 8 years old and immediately chose the violin as her favorite instrument. From the age of 12 Lotte started to play with several youth orchestras (Euregio Jeugdorkest, Kempisch Jeugdorkest) and became section leader. At that age she also started to develop in other genres like folk and jazz music.
Lotte graduated as a Master of Music for violin (classical department) at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, but soon after this she decided to focus on improvisation in a jazz violin course and different kinds of world violin workshops with international teachers. In meanwhile she worked as a classical violin player in ‘Amos String Quartet’, ‘Brussels Philharmonic Orchestra’, ‘DeFilharmonie’ and ‘Banshee Duo’. Lotte plays as a freelance musician in many folk, world music and cross over projects. Based in Gent, today she is the violin player of Old Salt and Strograss and forms the duo ‘Bipolar Bows’ with cellist Toby Kuhn.
Contrabass and Vocals
Lara Rosseel was born at the Belgian seaside in Veurne in 1985. She got her bachelor in classical guitar at the Lemmens Institute in Leuven (Belgium). Later she graduated as a Master of Double Bass (jazz department) with Nicolas Thys (Taxi Wars, Chris Defoort...) and Jos Machtel (BJO). Lara studied one year in Göteborg (Sweden) with double bass virtuose Anders Jormin (Bobo Stenson trio ECM).
In 2008 Lara traveled to Mali where she specialized in Malinese music. She worked together with Zap Mama, and Pierre Van Dormael and recently released the album 'Home and Old Story's' with Chris Joris.
With this wonderful mix of styles, Lara gathered enough inspiration to start her own band: Lara Rosseel band and their first album is about to be released soon.
Guitar and Vocals
Johannes Wannyn started his musical career at the age of 16 as an autodidact by playing in the band Stro. This band still exists, but is currently called Strograss. Strograss is one of Johannes' main projects, a crossover americana - oldtime - singersongwriter project in which originals of both Johannes and his brother Joachim can be heard.
Johannes always had a passion for music in the Dutch language, called 'kleinkunst'. He has his own project in which his originals are arranged into beautiful acoustic songs. Johannes regularly performs with 'Kleinkunstkollektief', in which they cover Flemish and Dutch song. He recently started playing in a new band, called ‘People in Houses’.
After Etno Histeria in 2013, he met Dan Wall, and is one of the founders and core members of Old Salt.
Viola Pomposa (5-string Viola)
Born 1982 and raised in Umeå, Northern Sweden, Anton brings the Scandinavian touch to the band, both musically and in general view of life. He is currently working as a folk music teacher in Umeå and is an experienced workshop leader at Northern Swedish folk sessions. Anton is Producer of the Allspel concert, a huge musical manifestation taking place during the folk music festival Umefolk every year in February.
Anton is also known as the `viking` of the band and plays viola in the pirate-band 'Ye Banished Privateers'.
French cellist Toby Kuhn is a post-classical musician with a taste for improvisation and folk music of all persuasions. Always on the lookout for new ways to play his instrument, his unorthodox approach wins admiration and acclaim from a variety of music-lovers, from the concert stage to the pub, from Japan to Slovenia via Sweden and Canada, bringing the full potential of the cello with him on his journey across style and invention.