Too Hot! Acoustic music as you’ve never heard it  –redefining American roots music on the accordion.

Main Stage | 3pm Sunday, October 7


Jazz pianist turned roots musician, Sam Reider is redefining American music on the accordion. He has been featured at Lincoln Center and on NPR, and performed alongside pop stars, virtuosos, and folk musicians around the world, including Jon Batiste and Stay Human, viral YouTube sensation CDZA and T-Pain, Americana singer Jim Lauderdale, and Grammy Award-winning Venezuelan musician Jorge Glem. Reider’s debut record, Too Hot To Sleep, presents his distinct compositional voice alongside an ensemble of top-drawer musical collaborators and compadres called The Human Hands.

Sam Reider and The Human Hands are a collective of virtuoso jazz and bluegrass musicians from Brooklyn, NY. Along with Sam, they include violinist Alex Hargreaves (Turtle Island Quartet, Sarah Jarosz, Béla Fleck), mandolinist Dominick Leslie (Michael Daves, Tony Trischka, The Deadly Gentlemen), guitarist Roy Williams (Stephane Wrembel), and bassist Dave Speranza (Jim Campilongo).

Reider grew up in San Francisco, the son of a musical theatre composer and klezmer musician. He began performing at a young age, and was interviewed on Marian McPartland’s “Piano Jazz” on NPR when he graduated high school. At Columbia University, he fell in love with American folk music. While writing his senior thesis comparing the songwriting of Woody Guthrie and Ira Gershwin, Sam began studying bluegrass and old-time music, transcribing the fiddle melodies for the accordion and learning to sing the songs.

This set him off on a journey that has taken him from back porches and dive bars to concert halls and major festivals in practically every state in the country. Representing the U.S. Department of State as a musical ambassador, Sam has travelled to China, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar, Vietnam, Turkey and Azerbaijan, carrying his accordion on his back everywhere he goes and collaborating at every opportunity with international artists.

Now he’s surrounded himself with a crew of some of the most in-demand young acoustic musicians on the scene in Brooklyn. The Human Hands have developed a dedicated following and a reputation for mind-bending sets of high-energy, improvised music.

“Dashes of folk influences from around the world are sprinkled into its string band aesthetic. Reider’s accordion is the unyielding anchor, giving a dose of soulful, raw timelessness, but with a modern crispness and confidence.” – The Bluegrass Situation

Not to worry! If you didn’t catch Sam at the Fair — or if you just need more! — see Sam and the Human Hands at a special concert at the Old School in Waterford on November 1!

Click here for more info and tickets.