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Playing Around: Robin and Linda Williams 

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I'd heard the names of Robin and Linda Williams floating around acoustic music circles for a few years, and I just figured they were another fair-to-midlin' husband and wife singing old Appalachian folk songs -- nothing to write home about. But one day I was listening to Prairie Home Companion and heard such a wonderful song that I actually turned to look at the radio. It wasn't the lyrics; I don't even remember what they were about. It was the music and vocal harmonies -- intricate layers of guitar, fiddle, bass and voice quietly drifting down and settling into each other to create a fine and beautiful melody.

Of course, it was Robin and Linda Williams & Their Fine Group. Prairie Home Companion was just one stop on their performance schedule -- they've also graced the stages of the Grand Ol' Opry, E-Town and Austin City Limits. For over two decades the Williams have toured the country, finding time in between towns to write songs for Emmylou Harris, Tim and Mollie O'Brien, Mary Chapin Carpenter and Kathy Mattea.

The group embodies the best in acoustic folk and bluegrass -- a humble, simple approach to music played purely for the joy of it. The little stage out in the pines plays host to the Williams & Their Fine Group, Saturday night. Tickets are $10 to $15. Call 630-1308 for details.

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