Monthly Archives: September 2010

Maria Petersen’s “Zither Extravaganza” Awarded Traditional Folk Music CD of the Year

Maria Petersen was warmly received on stage this month accepting the honor of Traditional Folk Music CD of the Year for Zither Extravaganza, one of three CDs recorded at Tesco Productions.  The USA Rural Roots Music Commission, a subsidiary of the National Traditional Country Music Association presented her the award at the 35th National Convention in LeMars, IA.  Bob Everhart, who presented the award says “This is an incredible accomplishment.  Maria Petersen, perhaps our only zither player left in the upper Midwest, has taken an incredible amount of time, patience, and expense to record her ‘history’ of the zither.  [Maria goes] all the way back to when she was a small girl in Bavaria, learning from her zither-maker father how to play well, to her own growing up with the music, leaving her beloved homeland, traveling to America, becoming a citizen, and adding her own American favorites to the brew.  And what a brew this is.”

Zither Extravaganza (exclusively instrumental), Hausmusik and Fond Memories of My Bavarian Childhood comprise the three recordings by Maria.  Bob adds “Maria is also an accomplished yodeler in the old Bavarian style, as well as a lovely vocalist of the old songs.  This is indeed an incredible journey through time… My suggestion, get all three.”  (Tradition Magazine, Fall 2010 Festival Issue)  To hear a sampling of all her music drop over to our audio clips gallery.  If you would like to contact Maria send us an email on our contact page and we’ll be glad to put you in touch with her.

‘High Road’ awarded Contemporary Gospel CD of the Year

Sarah Davison and Anna Grace Kimbrough comprise the duo known as ‘High Road’.  Among three CDs they recently released is Turn Your Radio On which was awarded Contemporary Gospel CD of the Year from the USA Rural Roots Music Commission – a subsidiary of the National Traditional Country Music Association.  The award was given at the 35th annual National Convention held this September in LeMars, IA.

It is always a privilege to be part of the on-going career of an artist, and such is the case with Sarah Davison.  Sarah first arrived at Tesco Productions with her dad, Scott when she was nearly “Sweet Sixteen” (CD title).  Keys in hand, leaning out her dad’s bright red truck door reveals the story.  Scott accompanied her on banjo with additional rhythm guitar by the late Charlie Johnson.  This recording was a combination of piano renditions along with traditional country and gospel vocal tunes.  (To see Sarah and her dad a “few years later” visit our photo gallery).  Her latest appearance here was with the Cowboy Church Band which is based around Braddyville, IA where her dad and several others perform and provide music ministry in the area several times a year.  That CD released in 2007 also featured her piano and vocals which were overdubbed in Franklin, TN and mixed in at Tesco Productions.  You can hear excerpts from the Cowboy Church Band in our audio clips gallery.

The music of ‘High Road’ is a delightful mix of time-honored hymns and old country favorites – performed sometimes in a very traditional style, and on others the old classics are given new life and soul through a vibrant and fresh presentation.  Their recordings and concerts also feature originals written by the duo.  Anna Grace nicely provides fiddle and vocal duets alongside Sarah’s piano and vocals.  You can find more information on ‘High Road’ at or on

Thank you for allowing us to be a small part of your musical journey and may you always choose the ‘High Road’.