Coolgrass win and delight audiences with their hilarious take on bluegrass, and are favourites throughout Australia and New Zealand. They have been featured at Australia’s National Folk Festival, the Auckland Folk Festival, Port Fairy, the Harrietville Bluegrass Convention, the Redlands Bluegrass Festival, the Fairbridge Folk Festival, the Tamworth Music Festival and many more, plus many folk clubs, wineries, town halls, arts councils, pubs and so forth across Australia and New Zealand. They have recorded 4 CDs – Toad Rage (2004), Jaguar Breakdown (2006), Never Put The Banjo Down (2009) and Most Peculiar (2012).
Jim Golding (banjo, vocals) challenges the traditionalists with bebop-banjo, rock’n roll-banjo, bossa-banjo, Mozart-banjo, etc and he also belts out many a fine bluegrass break. Among Jim’s other claims to fame are his extraordinary parodies and other comic numbers, such as “The Banjo Picker from Hell”. Jim is also frequently called upon to conduct workshops on the banjo at conventions and festivals around the country.
Bruce Packard (mandolin, vocals) has recorded and travelled widely with “New Dogs Old Tricks”, folked-up jazzers “Straight Ahead” and trad bluegrass band “Sleight of Hand”. He’s equally comfortable on double bass and mandolin, and plays mandocello in Melbourne’s mandolin orchestra, Concordia. He has composed and recorded music for film and stage, and also finds time for a bit of acting and sound engineering.
Angus Golding (double bass, vocals) is the youngest member of Coolgrass, but he already has a wealth of music experience under his wing, including leading the a capella group D’Caf, singing in the Da Capo Singers, playing keyboard in heavy rock groups, and doing music-for-children shows around the state. Angus brings extra strength (and mischief) to the vocal harmonies.
Doug Wallace (guitar, dobro, vocals) has one of the longest histories of any Australian (well, Scottish) bluegrass musician, having been part of the Hayes Brothers (generally regarded as Australia’s first bluegrass band) not to mention many other top outfits over the past few decades, including “The Promised Band”, “The Melbourne Bluegrass Band” and the “Blue Grass Souls”.


"Bluegrass – with a twist!" was the promise made by banjo-player Jim Golding before the gig… Playing to a packed room, this quartet from Melbourne was skilled at adapting the instruments and vocal style of bluegrass to songs and melodies from many different musical traditions. (I will never again hear “Duelling Banjos” without thinking of the Russian mafia!) From my place, I not only had a great view of the band but also of the delighted expressions of the audience at the flashy playing, the quirky costumes and productive gags. Jim, bass-player Angus Golding, mandolinist Bruce Packard and guitarist Doug Wallace each provided lead vocals for various songs. James Brown would be proud of Angus’ I Feel Good….
Mike Hall, Bluegrass Gippsland, February 2007

Your concert performances were outstanding, demonstrating your wonderful musical talents, your awesome vocal skills and your wicked sense of fun. Your workshops were superb and totally inspirational to all who attended. What a great banjo player Jim is, and his Bluegrass Banjo workshop was really well received. Your “Bluegrass Rules & When to Break Them” workshop was just brilliant, and the little folkies absolutely loved hearing you sing about Bluegrass Animals and Other Strange Beasts. People are still talking about your performance in the final concert on Sunday night. What a fantastic way to finish the festival! It will go down in the annals of the Auckland Folk Festival as one of the best ever!
Auckland Folk Festival, February 2010

Having seen Coolgrass on their previous visit to the WBS and also on YouTube, I thought I had them sussed. Boy was I ever wrong! Apart from being highly competent instrumentally, it wasn't until this concert (WBS 30th October) that their wide range of talents were uncovered, at least for me. Some material was repeated but they introduced a whole raft of new songs that were entirely original and deviously clever. Their tight three part harmonies and their wicked sense of humour, not to mention their constant changes of silly hats, led to an extremely funny and very, very entertaining evening. Where did the 2½ hours go? I cannot recall when I last laughed so hard or so much at a bluegrass concert (or any for that matter). They have taken bluegrass music and turned it on its ear. I was expecting their well known send up of 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show' ('Let’s play some bluegrass again') and they didn't disappoint. But their workup of tunes from the movie 'Mary Poppins' was nothing less than brilliant.
Wayne Robinson, Wellington Bluegrass Society, November 2010

The Coolgrass band was among my favorites, with their very wicked sense of humor. I hope they get to perform in the US, I think the American audience would love what they do.
Barry and Holly Tashian,, July 2009

Words fail me! What a simply brilliant group!! Their musical and vocal talents are simply superb. They are an absolute joy to watch and their comedic timing is fantastic. We want more, more, more.
The Entertainers’ Club Newsletter, October 2009

Coolgrass’s irreverent take on the genre was very popular with large crowds at their two shows, with new material demonstrating their vocal and instrumental arranging capabilities are still top notch. This band has a great grasp of dynamics, and after many years with the same line-up, have developed a seamless stage show that is very entertaining. April 18th, 2009

A wonderful festival…and, perhaps to top it off, Coolgrass, on the Saturday night concert, brought the house down with their amazing comedy bluegrass routine.
Geoff Morris Wall-To-Wall Bluegrass Nov 2007