klondike5 String Band from Tulsa, Oklahoma consists of :
Matt Skelton - guitar/vocals
Eric Fransen - banjo/mandolin/vocals
Carmen Skelton - fiddle/spoons/vocals
El Gaucho Loco - bass fiddle
Josh Gifford - washboard/mouthharp

If Tulsa had mountains the string band, klondike5, would live deep within them. People coming together to make music is an age-old tradition and it doesn't stop with klondike5. We came together in 2004 to perform rootsy old time bluegrass music for local taverns and festivals both in and around Oklahoma. Klondike5 provides a fresh look on old times and serves Tulsa by helping to bring back a love and appreciation of old time music. We've had much success through determination tempered with an unwillingness to give up. Many of the local taverns, festivals and local news channels have also helped support our talent. Our music makes one want to get out of their seat and move their feet to the beat. Our fans tell us we bring out the inner hillbilly they never knew they had.

The string band currently consists of six members; Matthew Skelton, Eric Fransen, Carmen Skelton, Victor Wandres & Josh Gifford. Matthew came out singing and paid special attention to the country music he was raised on. After a jump start on guitar he quickly developed a niche in leading songs on festival grounds. Matthew's booming gritty voice is backed by a solid rhythm guitar. Eric was planted in Kentucky, grew his first limbs in Arkansas, then struggled through the mean streets of Muskogee, Oklahoma. He was introduced to the banjo while toiling in the red dirt of Stillwater, Oklahoma. He used to imagine himself on Earl Scruggs lap just like the old book portrayed; it didn't take long to fall all the way down the mountain to the bottom of the darkest hollow where through a series of fits and starts he honed his skills as a claw-hammer frailer. Carmen was raised on big band and oldies by her parents; her surroundings supplied her with the country sounds she has in her heart. Piano at the age of four was her first foray into music; five years into orchestra she left the clarinet. Carmen is now back on the other side of the mound pursuing the fiddle full force and dabbling among the banjos and guitars with her eye on percussion such as stomp box, jaw harp, spoons and toe taps. On the upright bass, Victor sewed his seeds in New Orleans and he brings the soul from that city with him to every performance. Washboard and mouth-harp player extraordinaire Josh Gifford keeps everyone in check.

Klondike5 digs deep into the the dark corners of the traditional music songbook and resurrect numbers that are hundreds of years old, song that have just always been there. Plus original tunes that are guaranteed to get your feet a stomping. Like Carmen's song about her drinking and lolly gagging and her man leaving her just like he said he would, or Matt's song about being reborn as a hillbilly (Reintarnation). Eric's claw hammer banjo melodies that sound like they flow fresh from the Big Piney river in the Ozark Mountains (most of them do)!

Typically our music is performed acoustically in a tight circle giving it a certain intimacy and making it feel so special; some nights the picking will continue till dawn. It was not until the crowds became larger and the need for amplification was a necessity for the band to be heard - which was quite different direction for the band. Our fiddle player is quick to urge fans to pick up an instrument of their own and come on down to the next jam. “There is nothing better than playing late into the night and acquiring new skills from a stranger who soon becomes a friend”, she says. In fact that is how some of the members met one another - though a picking circle. Klondike5 has positive energy that is contagious to those who hear it.

Shows we have played since 2003:

Porter Peach Festival 2010 - Porter, OK
Tulsa Mayfest 2010 (Main Stage)- Tulsa, OK
Skiatook Bluegrass Fesitval - Skiatook, OK
The Cookson Jubilee - Cookson, OK
Kenfield Bluegrass Festival - Tulsa, OK
Deep Fork Bluegrass Festival - Chandler, OK
Blue Dome Art Festival – Tulsa, OK
Music on the Square - Tulsa, OK
OklaTravelNet.com - Tulsa, OK
River Parks Floating Stage Tulsa C.A.R.E.S. Fest - Tulsa, OK
Art and Crafts Fair – Ozark, AR
Route 66 Marathon - Tulsa, OK
DFEST, Dirty's Tavern -Tulsa, OK
Exit 6c - Tulsa, OK
The Colony - Tulsa, OK
Soundpony - Tulsa, OK
Bob's (Cain's Ballroom) – Tulsa, OK
Summer Solstice Frisbee Tournament -Tulsa, OK
Oklahoma Folk Life; Sauced Fountain Stage- OKC, OK
KOTV News On 6 - Tulsa, OK
KTUL Studio Channel 8 - Tulsa, OK
The Continental - Tulsa, OK
Plan B Bar - Tulsa, OK
15th Street Studio Square Dance - Tulsa, OK
The Skiatook Bluegrass Association Chili Concert - Skiatook, OK
Tulsa Scooter Rally; Blue Dome - Tulsa, OK
Harvard Avenue Baptist Church - Tulsa, OK
Tsunami Sushi - Tulsa, OK
Fourth of July Church Bash – Tulsa, OK
St. Micheal's Alley – Tulsa, OK
Stage5 - Winfield, KS
Cherry Street Farmer's Market
Pearl Street Farmer’s Market - Tulsa, OK
Mike's College Bar - Stillwater, OK
Stage 7 – Winfield, KS
Crossroads Sound Stage- Skiatook, OK
Green Country Bluegrass Assoc. - Catoosa, OK
Route 66 Roadhouse - Tulsa, OK
Tulsa Historical Society - Tulsa, OK
Galileo’s Bar and Grill – Oklahoma City, OK
Casino - Anadarko, OK
Brookside Bar - Tulsa, OK
IV play - Tulsa, OK
Uncle Bentley's - Tulsa, OK
Mansion on Main - Broken Arrow, OK
Nite Spot – Tulsa, OK


Folk/Acoustic Rock/Americana
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900 Miles

old time bluegrass
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Updated tour dates can be found at WWW.REVERBNATION.COM/KLONDIKE5



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klondike5 String Band