American Patchwork Quartet (APQ) is a groundbreaking project from Clay Ross, the Grammy-winning founder of chart-topping Southern roots music group Ranky Tanky. A native of South Carolina, Ross moved to NYC in 2002 and has since collaborated with artists as diverse as Gregory Porter, Cyro Baptista, Snarky Puppy, and Bobby McFerrin. Winning multiple grants through the U.S. State Department, he has toured worldwide as a Cultural Ambassador in over 30 countries since 2006.
APQ is Falu Shah (vocals), Clay Ross (guitar/vocals), Clarence Penn (drums) and Yasushi Nakamura (bass), all highly acclaimed artists and educators. Together they are on a mission to reclaim the immigrant soul of American Roots Music, showcasing the dynamic diversity of contemporary culture by re-imagining timeless songs from America’s past.
In concert, APQ performs 75 – 90 minutes of music. In each performance, the group draws on a repertoire of centuries-old American folk songs that highlight America’s immigrant roots and showcase its dynamic present by combining the diverse talents of four U.S. citizens, each with a unique cultural background. In this group, songs are made new through creative arrangements that highlight the exceptional and well-honed skills of each member.