The Onlies (Leo Shannon, Riley Calcagno, and Sami Braman with Vivian Leva) are prominent young interpreters of Old-time Appalachian music.Leo, Riley and Samistarted making music together at age seven (2005), and quickly became immersed in fiddle music and tradition in their home of Seattle, down the West Coast, and across the world. In recent years, they have developed their sound with the addition of Vivian Leva, an acclaimed talent of old-time, country, and Americana.
The Onlies have developed an individual sound, with original songs that “demonstrate an enviable ability to move beyond the immediacy of their lives to touch at deeper truths, and...covers of traditional songs and tunes (that) harken to the original but are unleashed with the kind of wild, free abandon that only youth provides” (Kithfolk). Their albums have charted on radio stations around the country, and they have had the opportunity to perform and collaborate with Elvis Costello, Darol Anger, Bruce Molsky, Laurie Lewis, Altan, Tristan Clarridge, and John Herrmann. In recent years, the Onlies have found a musical center in Old Time Appalachian stringband music, and their fiddle, banjo, and guitar playing have become a fixture in a wave of young people who are studying and engaging with the old time tradition with a deep respect for the history of the music and people who make it, as well as a curiosity about how old time music fits into contemporary sounds and culture.