You may know Sara Watkins from her years of playing with the popular folk trio Nickel Creek, but she has recently created a name for herself as a solo artist in the folk and bluegrass scene. Watkins plays the role of both singer-songwriter and fiddle player, creating mellifluous bluegrass tunes — some of which comfort, while others electrify. Her voice is simple and pure, pairing nicely with the clear sound of her fiddle and the down-home feeling of her band. Watkins has managed to separate her songs from other bluegrass shoot-offs by playing with chord structures and orchestrations, thus adding character to a genre that can become tiresome.
Sara Watkins performs in Garrison Keillor's A Prairie Home Companion Radio Romance Tour on Thursday, August 1, 8 p.m. at CMAC, 3355 Marvin Sands Drive, Canandaigua. $20-$75. cmacevents.com.