The Mountain & The Moon was formed during the spring of 2015 when bassist Noah Laniakea and banjoist Casey Holmberg met at UCLA. Both musicians shared a love for bluegrass and old-time music, and as they rehearsed and performed together they began to explore a larger musical space around that idiom. ” What has emerged is a form of classically informed roots music – a blend of the string arrangements on Nico’s Chelsea Girl and the banjo playing of Béla Fleck, perhaps…” Freshgrass- 2016
In August 2016, the banjo/bass duo released their self-titled EP of original music which synthesizes folk, bluegrass, and classical music in a bold and innovative way. After which, they were invited to the Freshgrass Festival in North Adams, MA as finalists in an international competition after just a year of working together. With a solid start underfoot these musicians are cutting new ground and expanding beyond the limitations of traditions with a style completely their own.
Bassist and composer Noah Laniakea grew up in Buffalo, New York. After graduating from SUNY University at Buffalo with a bachelor’s in music performance, they furthered their studies at University of California, Los Angeles where they studied with Chris Hanulik and received their master’s degree, also in music performance. A self-taught composer, Noah seeks to write music that is both immediately accessible to the listener while synthesizing diverse sounds and styles in an organic way. They currently reside in Cupertino, CA, with their husband, where they continue to write and perform original works for solo bass as well as bass and small ensemble, further exploring the artistic potential of their chosen instrument.
Banjoist, singer and performer Casey James Holmberg was born and raised in Petaluma, CA where gold rolling hills and chickens were dear neighbors. Studying with Banjo virtuoso Tim Weed in Point Reyes, Casey saw the banjo used as a complete instrument, not restricted by genre or style. He furthered his studies in music at UCLA becoming an excellent bluegrass banjoist while branching into classical and jazz music. Holmberg writes music influenced by his past and present with an emphasis on creating strong distinct feeling and narrative. He currently resides in Los Angeles, CA where he teaches, performs original works, sings in a brother duo and writes scores for film.