Uncle Earl is an American old-time music group, formed in 2000 by KC Groves and Jo Serrapere. They are an all-women-band and often they refer to themselves as the g'Earls. Their fans have also been nicknamed as g'Earlfriends.
By March 2007, the release of Waterloo, Tennessee was the fifth record by the band, produced by the famed John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin fame. The number of albums created by the bandmates was an impressive accomplishment considering that the members all live in different parts of the United States.
KC Groves mentioned in an interview how the band got its name, "We just thought it would be a funny name for an all-women's group," she says. "But we are fans of Earl Scruggs, Steve Earle, and Uncle Tupelo. It did come up in our discussion that there's some important Earls in this business. And Uncles."
KC Groves and Jo Serrapere started the band in 2000. The Uncle Earl biography, however, states 1999 as founding year. Originally they had no real intention to start a band. They wanted to promote a CD with traditional material they had recorded and thus put together a small band to play a few shows. Since the shows went very well they kept on going. Until the end of 2003 the line-up of the band had changed several times. Amongst the members in this period where Tahmineh Gueramy (fiddle, vocals), Amanda Kowalski (bass, vocals), Casey Henry (banjo, vocals) and Sally Truitt (bass, vocals).
Jo Serrapere left in 2003 and plays now with the Willie Dunns.
By the end of 2003 the current line-up had fallen into place. All the band members are co-vocalists. It consists of KC Groves on mandolin and guitar, Abigail Washburn on banjo, Rayna Gellert on fiddle and Kristin Andreassen, guitarist, fiddler, and clogging. There was no permanent bass player.
In late 2009, the band members were very busy and had trouble coordinating schedules for tours. Rayna Gellert and Abigail Washburn left the band on amicable terms to pursue their other musical projects. The new Uncle Earl line up is Andreassen, Groves, Stephanie Coleman on fiddle, Paula Bradley on banjo, banjo ukulele and clogging, and Rachel Eddy on banjo, fiddle, and bass.
For nearly four years Amanda Kowalski played upright bass with Uncle Earl. Sharon Gilchrist joined the band in late 2004 and can be heard on the seven song EP Raise a Ruckus. There is a rather long list of other bassists with whom Uncle Earl have performed. On their website they mention Eric Thorin, Sally Truitt, Erin Coats Youngberg, Alana Rocklin, Mary Lucey, Bryn Davies, Laura Cortese, Kyle Kegerreis, Missy Raines, and Dan Rose, with whom they have recorded their album She Waits for Night. Youngberg and Thorin play bass on the album Waterloo, Tennessee.
Sharon Gilchrist left the band in early 2005 to play mandolin in the Peter Rowan and Tony Rice Quartet. However Sharon Gilchrist played again at their 2010 Australian Tour.
Rachel Eddy joined so K.C. Groves took over the Bass mostly.