Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers (BAWKS) have been entertaining Midwest audiences with their cello-infused alternative pop/rock sound since 2015. Members Betsy Ade (lead vocals, guitar), Joe Adamek (guitars), Cameron Fair (cello, keyboards), John Kulas (bass guitar), and Scott Fox (percussion) have released 5 CD’s. This includes a full-length album, several EPs, and an exciting range of fun and influential videos. 

Ade’s rich lyrical gifts are essential and her vocal delivery is simply unmatched in contemporary pop/rock music. In addition to Ade’s talents, the band members have an amazing mix of musical knowledge and education that provides a unique sound that is reminiscent of familiar music from the ’90s while being expressively groundbreaking and melodically rich. They have been humbled by their success, performing with international acts that include Blind Melon, Blue October, Candlebox, The Gufs, Skerryvore, Sebastian Bach, and many more. While Ade and Adamek do most of the songwriting, it’s the band’s creative spark and sonic diversity that are the driving force behind their sound.

Well-Known Strangers grew out of a 15+ year friendship between Ade and Adamek. Then, after performing at a mutual friend’s wedding in May 2014, the two discussed the possibility of a music collaboration and began seeking out talent. In February 2015, Well-Known Strangers were born. Their name comes from the idea that they were all individually “well-known” in the local music scene when they got together, but on a personal level some of them were “strangers” to one another. BAWKS are proud supporters of the fight against human trafficking, LGBTQ community, first responders, Veterans, and the ongoing battle against cancer. Ade is especially passionate about cancer research, after losing her mother to Hodgkin’s disease when she was just nine years old. Well-Known Strangers continue to raise awareness of these important issues through community events and through their talents as musicians and artists. 

2019 was an exciting year for BAWKS! Ade was a Top 24 Contestant on NBC's "The Voice", where she had the rare opportunity to work with 3 different coaches, including; John Legend, Kelly Clarkson, and Adam Levine. Ade’s experience on “The Voice” has brought international attention to the band’s talents and charitable efforts. 


Adamek plays rhythm guitar and has spent more than three (3) decades playing drums, guitar, and bass guitar in several bands throughout the southeast Wisconsin area. Adamek knows cancer well and is deeply passionate about cancer research, having survived Liposarcoma and currently battling Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL). In addition, Adamek is a decorated Gulf War Veteran, having fulfilled eight years of active service in the US Navy and was honorably discharged.

Fair has been playing cello for approximately 14 years, in addition to experience with keyboards, bass and ukulele. Fair is currently attending UW-Parkside having received a Bachelor's degree in Cello Performance and is currently pursuing a Computer Science certificate. After college, Fair intends to start working on his Master’s in Cello Performance. 

Kulas, an all-around excellent guitarist, utilizes his diverse abilities to hone his talent on bass and is the driving force behind the band's social media successes. Kulas’, the band comedian, has a dry sense of humor that is intoxicating and helps to keep BAWKS focused on not only creating amazing music together, but having a great time doing so. Kulas and Adamek attended Grade School and High School together.

Fox considers himself a groove drummer and is known for the nuances and colors he brings to his beats and fills. Fox brings over 4 decades of experience and has been a member of many popular locals bands including, Untrained Laymen, Identity Crisis, and the PF Flyers.  His influences are Bill Bruford, Bun e Carlos, and Trey Grey.

BAWKS are now writing a new full-length album, and the first single "Forever" will be released on August 27, 2021. They are also scheduled to perform on The Melissa Etheridge Cruise in November 2021, with Melissa Etheridge, Jewel, KT Tunstall, Shawn Colvin, and many other successful artists. BAWKS have been recognized through numerous awards and nominations since inceptions. This includes, but not limited to; Winners of the 2019 Wisconsin Area Music Industry’s Best Rock/Pop Band, 2018 Shepherd Express Best Band, 2018 WAMI awards for Best Rock/Pop Band, and a monthly award for Best Song on Songwriter’s Universe. Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers music can be found on iTunes, Spotify, and Amazon, and heard on Pandora and Apple Music.