In 1990, Peter and Kristina Cady and Sandy Morse, who had played music together for years, in the living room, at parties and festivals, and with the local fiddlers’ group, decided that they should go on the road as an acoustic trio. And Woodchucks’ Revenge came into existence.
Peter and Kristina grew up Down Country, and met at Middlebury College in the early ‘60s, at the peak of the “great folk scare.” They married and settled in Vermont in 1967. Peter retired in 2009, after 40+ years of law practice, mostly in sole practice in Pittsford. Kristina has taught French and Spanish in Rutland area schools since coming to Vermont, except for spending the 1970s as a full-time mom and part-time legal secretary; and as of 2011 still teaches part-time.
Peter and Kristina’s two children, Andrea, a family physician (and composer of some of the group’s songs), and Ian, a computer software engineer and excellent guitarist and bassist, both reside in Bozeman, Montana; which gives rise to frequent trips to the west and the occasional performance in Montana.
Sandy, the group’s token native Vermonter, grew up in the Woodstock area, with some summers in the Adirondacks where his father managed lumber camps (probably a source of bad influences for a growing boy, but of good ones for a budding folk musician). He attended Lyndon State College, also during the folk scare, and has worked in teaching, in various administrative positions, and as a chef; as well as performing with various acoustic folk and electric country ensembles. He is now employed part-time, in both sales and instrument repairs and adjustments, for Be Music in Rutland, in addition to doing instrument repairs and giving private lessons.
Sandy’s daughter and son-in-law, Dee and Todd, and granddaughters Shelby and Ashley also reside in the Rutland area.
Mike Lussen retired in 2010 after a 27-year career as a member of Woods Tea Company. Mike knew that the time had come to back off from performing full-time and touring nationally, but wanted to continue to be active in music. He asked the Woodchucks if they might be interested in him working with them. Having been fans of the WTC, in its “classic” configuration (Mike, the late Rusty Jacobs, and whoever was playing with them at any given time) for many years, the Woodchucks were most definitely interested. Mike has been practicing with the Woodchucks since summer, 2010, and has already played several gigs with us in the summer of 2011.
Mike and his wife, Lisa Miserendino, live in Warren. Frequent practices in Pittsford have given them a rare expertise in navigating the Granville Gulf and Brandon Gap highways.
Peter plays guitar, and, infrequently, bass. Kristina plays fiddle and bass. Sandy plays guitar, mandolin, and banjo; Mike plays banjo, tenor and six-string guitar, bouzouki, ukulele, and bohdran. All four members of the group sing leads and harmonies.