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About Barrel Flash

Sitting in the corner of a pub, your tapping foot follows a country beat. Suddenly, an unexpected melody and a turn of phrase hits you in the gut where the whiskey burns and that melancholy feeling (the one you thought you left at the door) sneaks back in. 


Our songs build stories rooted in seemingly mundane experiences and use upbeat melodies and instrumentation to sneak past listeners’ defenses into the loneliness that hides at the core of being human. Like a bright fall day with a chill in the air, when you stay out too long and sundown catches you without a coat, the music tricks you into feelings you thought you’d left alone. But that’s the thing about music - as long as you’re listening, you’re never really alone.


Barrel Flash is a Minneapolis/St. Paul-based trio coming out of the folk traditions of the US, UK, and Ireland. Julia, Priscilla, and Ross met in the vigorous music and brewery/taproom/club scene in the Twin Cities. With each member bringing a different bouquet of musical influences, the trio applies their unique stylings to original work and new interpretations of what we consider classics, creating an honest and vibrant sound of our own.

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JULIA BROWN - Julia has been performing around the Twin Cities since 2007. With roots in musical theater, art song, Irish folk, and jazz, she is now a nonprofit arts administrator by day and Jack-of-most-trades singer by night. She is a proud member of the Unity Singers in St Paul. Her last band, Sister Theda, released their EP in 2017, and she’s been lucky enough to add some backing vocals to Bring Prudence’s upcoming album.


ROSS JOHNSON - Ross has been a singer/player in the Twin Cities since the late 90's, with a passion for blues, British folk and rock, and projects a Bluegrass lilt derived from his dad, who was a fine folk musician. He is a crack harmonica player, buys too many guitars and circulates in the singer/songwriter community backing other performers. Ross’ day job is medical communications consulting and also a visual artist/designer.

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PRISCILLA THOMAS - Priscilla is a longtime member of the area folk music community. She is part of the group Sweet Rhubarb, a trio that is active in the Twin Cities and greater midwest. Jazz, R&B, and pop sensibilities shine in her writing and playing. In Barrel Flash, Priscilla provides a tasteful foundation of bass and rhythm guitar. Her intuitive playing and vocal harmony skills are the glue that holds Barrel Flash songs together.

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