Allan Combs II and Tanner Bingaman, also known as Tanjo & Crow, will play at Brasserie Louis, Lewisburg.

Local acoustic duo Tanjo & Crow has taken up residency at Brasserie Louis in Lewisburg where they have been performing since February, once a month on Sundays for brunch hour. The duo will continue their Sunday shows with a performance Sunday and on April 23 at 11:30 a.m., at 101 Market St.

Tanjo & Crow features Mifflinburg musician Tanner Bingaman (Tanjo), currently based between Central Pennsylvania and Northern Virginia, and Allan Combs II (Crow) from Bloomsburg and also currently based in Central PA.

“The Brasserie residency we are doing is once a month on Sundays over brunch hour,” Bingaman said. “It is less of a show and more of a hang out, where AC II and I play as a duo and dial in tunes we’re working on in front of a crowd — fully acoustic, no sound system.”

Bingaman and Combs are largely self-educated musically, as well as by the local scene itself. They have both spent roughly a decade studying musicians and writers they admire across a large breadth of influences.

Bingaman has played shows extensively throughout the Mid-Atlantic region and beyond, with a recent international feature. Combs has played a massive number of shows for the past seven plus years in Pennsylvania and beyond, often logging over 250 gigs a year.

Bingaman and Combs met about five or six years ago, when Combs was playing in an old dive bar in Bloomsburg, which has since closed.

“It was a place I played frequently during my time at university, and I stopped in that evening to see who was behind the mic,” Bingaman said. “I dug Allan’s vibe, then told him I had a banjo in my car and proceeded to crash his gig. We had an improv jam and parted ways, only recently connecting again to make music together about a half decade later.”

Fellow local musician Billy Kelly is a good friend of both Bingaman and Combs and also performs at Brasserie Louis on Friday nights.

“I’ve known Tanner and Allan for many years,” he said. “They are both absolutely stellar musicians — great singers, phenomenal players, and terrific performers. There’s magic between these two when they play together. Their style pulls from several different genres and mixes them up into something unique and exciting.”

The Tanjo & Crow duo is just part of their full band Tanjo & Crow Project, a no-holds-barred exploration of roots music through distinctive songwriting, Appalachian arrangements, and improvisation. The project draws upon the diverse musical backgrounds of both Bingaman and Combs; and with varied influences is not easily identifiable. For this residency, the duo plans to perform a mix of original and traditional songs.

“We are not easily genre bound,” Bingaman said. “The best way to hear our style is to come see us perform.”

Bingaman plays primarily banjo and guitar for this project, while Combs plays guitar and the occasional harmonica. The duo’s shows are laid back and highly improvisational. Their full four-piece band also includes Eric Avey on upright bass/vocals and Brian Maag on saxophone.

Some of Tanjo & Crow’s recent highlights include performing at the Zoetropolis Theatre in Lancaster and the Capitol Theatre in Chambersburg. Bingaman also performed recently in New Zealand for a flood-relief fundraiser.

Bingaman said he has always felt that music is meant to be shared, and that he tends to view that process as a public service.

“It takes quite a stressful level of planning and self-management to make a career in the arts function smoothly,” he said. “But to make the days and years of fans’ lives more enjoyable is a beautiful experience.”

Kelly said Brasserie Louis is his favorite performance space in the area, as it has a cozy vibe with great acoustics and a proper stage — not to mention truly amazing food.

“I just had brunch there on Sunday and it was great as always,” he said. “I’ve had the pleasure of doing a few shows there with Tanner over the past year; and if my experience is anything to go by, their show on Sunday will be some of the best music you’ll hear in these parts.”

The first show at Brasserie Louis will be a warm-up for Tanjo & Crow Project, as the full band is billed for the West Shore Theatre in New Cumberland on Sunday evening, as well as a lineup of festivals and special shows ahead for 2023, including a short Pennsylvania to South Carolina tour in the fall.

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