Brian Lindsay was surrounded by both contra dance and Irish music and dance throughout his childhood, spending much of his youth going to sessions in the New York area and studying with respected Irish fiddle player Brian Conway. He competed in both Irish music and step dancing at an international level, but also continued to find influences of many other musical styles and traditions make their way into his playing. The dynamic, living tradition of contra dance embraces the new and the old, and Brian’s playing draws on both a wealth of traditional influence and an enthusiasm for new things. That enthusiasm is also observed in Brian’s proclivity for other instruments, as he has picked up (and, for the most part, taught himself) the tenor banjo, whistle, and flute. When not playing music (which is not very frequent), Brian works in environmental conservation, and enjoys hiking, climbing things, and eating tasty food.
Alex Sturbaum grew up in a house that was always filled with traditional music. When Alex was 13, his father (himself a talented multi-instrumentalist) bought Alex a bodhran for Christmas and told him to beat it. Alex has been playing traditional music ever since, picking up the guitar, button accordion, mandolin, bouzouki, tenor banjo, and piano in addition to the bodhran. He was first exposed to contra dance in his first year at Oberlin, and immediately fell in love with the dancing, the scene, the people, and the style of music. He uses his guitar and varied background to add Irish, Newfoundland, and modern rock and pop influence to create Countercurrent's unique sound.
In addition to his work in Countercurrent, Alex is a prolific songwriter, writing songs in both traditional and modern idioms as well as interpreting traditional and other folk songs. He is also a lover of sharks and snakes, and enjoys making extravagant chocolate desserts.
Brian and Alex are also both members of the Ohio-based band Gallimaufry