ABOUT THE BAND
Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers have been entertaining Midwest audiences with their cello infused, alternative pop/rock sound since October 2015. Members Joe Adamek (acoustic guitar), Betsy Ade (lead vocals, guitar), Brittany Lumley (multi-instrumentalist, vocals), Cameron Fair (cello), and John Kulas (bass guitar) have released several EP's (Found, 2015 and Path Away, 2018) and a full length album (Aligned, 2016). Together, the band members have an amazing mix of musical knowledge and education that provides a unique sound that is reminiscent of familiar of music from the ‘90s while being expressively groundbreaking and melodically rich. They have been humbled by their success and performing with acts that include Blind Melon, Blue October, Candlebox, The Gufs, 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.
The band 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. Proud supporters of the fight against human trafficking, LGBTQ community, and the ongoing battle against cancer, Well-Known Strangers continue to raise awareness of these important issues through community events and their talents as musicians and artists.
In 2019, Well-Known Strangers changed their name to Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers. Fronting Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers, Ade’s rich lyrical gifts are essential and her vocal delivery is simply unmatched in contemporary pop/rock music. A proud member of the LGBTQ community, Ade is passionate about cancer research, after losing her mother to Hodgkin’s disease when she was just 9 years old. In 2004, Ade won the Wisconsin Area Music Industry’s (WAMI) “Female Vocalist of the Year” award and in 2017 won Shepherd's Express "Female Vocalist of the Year". Betsy also qualified for the Voice Season 16 (2019) "Top 24" and was picked to be on John Legend's, Kelly Clarkson's, and Adam Levine's Team.
Adamek plays rhythm guitar and has spent over a decade playing drums and bass guitar in several bands throughout the southeast Wisconsin area. Adamek is a cancer survivor, who is also deeply passionate about cancer research. In addition, Adamek is a decorated Gulf War veteran, having fulfilled eight years of active service in the US Navy and was honorably discharged.
Lumley began playing guitar and writing songs in high school. While she was in college at UW-Madison, she performed and recorded with both an Indie Folk band and a Math Rock band in addition to her work as a solo singer songwriter. Brittany also sang with a jazz music ensemble at UW-Madison which has influenced her smooth, yet bold vocal style and her ability to improvise.
Fair has been playing cello for about 12 years and plays in various wedding quartets and groups around the SE Wisconsin region. Cam is currently attending UW-Parkside and working towards a cello performance degree and a computer science certificate. After college, Cam intends to work as a CNC technician until he can work on getting my 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.
Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers have been recognized through numerous awards and nominations, including the following (in addition to those listed above): Winner of 2019 WAMI "Best Pop/Rock Band", Winner of 2017 Milwaukee A-List "Best Local Band," Runner-up 2017 Shepherd Express "Best Band," and three (3) additional WAMI award nominations, "2018 & 2017 Best Rock/Pop Band" and and "2017 People's Choice Award for Best Band." Betsy Ade & the Well-Known Strangers music can be found on iTunes, Spotify, and Amazon and heard on Pandora and Apple Music.