Dr. Dom Flemons, is a musician based in the Chicago area and he is famously known as The American Songster® since his repertoire covers over one hundred years of American roots music. Flemons is a songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, music scholar, actor, slam poet, record collector, and the creator, host, producer of American Songster Radio Show on WSM in Nashville, TN. He is considered an expert player on the banjo, guitar, harmonica, jug, percussion, quills, fife and rhythm bones. In 2022, he received a degree as a Doctor of Humane Letters from his alma mater Northern Arizona University and was the commencement speaker at the graduation ceremony for the Class of 2022. In 2020, Flemons was selected for the prestigious United States Artists Fellowship Award for the Traditional Arts category which was generously supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. In March 2023, Flemons released his highly anticipated solo album “Traveling Wildfire” on Smithsonian Folkways label which included original songs along with a 50 page liner notes booklet designed with custom artwork, tin type photos, and images taken by world renowned photographers. In June 2023, Dom Flemons premiered his new four part documentary series “The Real Wild West” on CuriosityStream. As the Narrator and a commentator on the series, Flemons guides viewers through this definitive story of the American west, where a diverse group of pioneers shaped a country and built the foundation for modern America. “The Real Wild West” was created by Roller Coaster Road Productions and the opening theme song for the entire series is Flemons’ original song “Traveling Wildfire”.
In 2005, Dom Flemons created the Carolina Chocolate Drops with Rhiannon Giddens and Justin Robinson. The group honored the legacy of Joe Thompson who was their mentor and the traditional string band music of North Carolina. In 2007, Flemons had an acting role as a Juke Joint Musician along with recording songs with the Carolina Chocolate Drops for the Golden Globe nominated, Oprah Winfrey executive produced, Denzel Washington directed feature film The Great Debaters, starring Denzel and Forest Whitaker. In 2010, they won a GRAMMY for their album Genuine Negro Jig and then received a 2012 GRAMMY nomination for their album Leaving Eden which were both released on Nonesuch Records. Flemons toured with the group from 2005 to 2013 and officially left the band to pursue his solo career in 2014. In 2016, the Carolina Chocolate Drops were inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame and they no longer exist as a band. The CCDs are featured in the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture and at the National Museum of African American Music.
As a solo artist, he has toured over a million miles all across America and has had a successful tour throughout Canada, Ireland, the U.K., Spain, France, Germany, Hungary, Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Australia, and Malaysia. He has represented America at internationally acclaimed venues and festivals, like the Rainforest World Music Festival in Malaysia, the YodelFest in Germany, and the Cecil Sharp House in England. Flemons has performed at historic venues throughout the U.S. including the Grand Ole Opry, the Ryman, the Kennedy Center, Abraham Lincoln’s Cottage, Appomattox Courthouse, National Cowboy Poetry Gathering, Smithsonian National Museum of American History, and the opening ceremony for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.