Nigel Frydman



Nigel is an immensely experienced bass player, having featured in many bands covering most mainstream genres, most notably as Billy Bragg’s bass man. From world tours, to huge concert venues and top recording facilities, he has been there and done all of that. Now he uses this incredible experience to give the Hollow Mountain String Band a solid base with a funky edge.

Michelle McAnally
"Washboard Slim"
Drums, percussion


Michelle is the band's token American. With deep Texas and Tennessee roots, she was raised in the Mississippi Delta and has played drums and percussion with blues, country and rock bands for more than 15 years. Oozing 99 pounds of Southern fried sass, Michelle is back to her roots playing Americana influenced music, and her steady beat lends a juke joint meets honky tonk vibe to the band's sound. 

Rab Woods
"Bobby Donny"

Lead and harmony vocals, guitar, mandolin, banjo, dobro, harmonica, fiddle.  


The main problem Rab has is deciding which instrument to play next. He plays guitar, mandolin, banjo, dobro, harmonica and vocals, with finely honed skills in rhythm and lead that are solid, lively, and show an adept understanding of the genre, as well as the ability to use the right instrument to create the right mood at the right time. 

Rab has also recently brought song and tune writing into the mix, and his original compositions bring a new exciting element to the Hollow Mountain String Band 's repertoire.

Ann Barlow
"Annie Jane"

Lead and harmony vocals, fiddle.  


Ann has spent her life steeped in Scottish traditional music and has now made the leap across the ocean. After dipping her toe in the deep pool of Americana, she taking to it like a duck to water. Her experience and ability as a fiddle player, teacher, singer, arranger, conductor and performing artist have augmented Hollow Mountain String Band ’s sound and helps bring a more rounded, complete feel to their arrangements.

John McMahon
"Matty John"

Lead and harmony vocals, guitar, harmonica. 


John is the ideal front man, meeting each gig head-on, and his energy drives the show from start to finish. During his lively performances he can be seen dancing around the mic while belting ‘em out and knocking ‘em dead, with driving rhythms and powerful, yet soulful, vocals. John also plays a mean harmonica, which brings a bluesy feel to some of the Hollow Mountain String Band ’s arrangements.

Looking for a great band for hire to add some brilliant live music to your event in Scotland? Then look no further. The Hollow Mountain String Band will wash your blues away, and you may find it hard to stay in your seat.


The Hollow Mountain String Band are a five piece band based in Oban, Argyll on the west coast of Scotland. We call our brand of foot stompin' originals and fun covers "AmeriCeilidh" because we blend Americana influences with Scottish roots. 

John McMahon and Rab Woods, two long-time friends and musical associates, formed The Hollow Mountain String Band in 2011. They have been playing traditional music together for many years, and share a passion for American traditional music. The band takes its name from Ben Cruachan, a local mountain that was hollowed out to make way for a hydro electric power station.

About Us

Hollow Mountain String Band's set takes listeners on a transatlantic musical journey via country, old time, honky tonk, ragtime and blues, with some Celtic traditional thrown in for good measure. Lively, fun and energetic performances, combined with up-tempo arrangements and driving rhythms are the hallmarks of the band, with classic songs, original compositions, fine traditional tunes, and the occasional surprise. Members of the band for hire have many years’ experience in the ceilidh circuit and dances are part of their repertoire. Hollow Mountain caters for all occasions in Scotland or the UK! 

Hollow Mountain String Band

Looking for a band for hire in Oban, Argyll, the Highlands or further afield in Scotland? We bring you a lively blend of originals and covers, with a a mix of country, old time, honky tonk, Celtic traditional and western swing that bridges the gap between Scottish and Americana music, along with an electrifying live show that is sure to get the crowd up dancing- it's AmeriCeilidh!

"The music was amazing and so real - everyone thoroughly enjoyed every minute and the band's humour added to the special performance. We'd be happy to welcome them back any time and would highly recommend anyone else booking." Jenn Tapner, Mermaid Leisure Park

 "The musical talent, energetic performances, customer interaction and fantastic array of songs make this band a must to book." Wil Craig, Lord of the Isles bar & restaurant, Craobh Haven.

"If HMSB were a beer we know it would probably be the best (fizzy fun) lager in the world. Book em!" -Campbell Cameron, Victory Hall Gigs, Benderloch

© 2016 by Imagine Alba

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Foot stompin' Scottish Americana!