The Port Hillbillies

Every Tuesday evening they slope from the shadows of the Port Hills.

One American (Justin Rogers on mandolin) one Aussie (Gary Elford on acoustic guitar) meet up with a six toed Kiwi banjo player (Steve Stern) to share their love of Bluegrass, Old Timey and Americana music as well as Janes chocolate chip cookies and Milo.

They play a range of toe tapping, recognisable standards to more obscure songs in the genres.   

Aecom Christmas Party, 9th December 2017

AECOM Friday team Brief "Thank you to Stephen Stern (Port Hillbillies) for the amazing music"

Elena Lebedev "Thank you so much for playing, you guys were awesome"

Civil Infrastructure team meeting " Thank you to Stephen Stern (Port Hillbillies) for taking time out of there own end of year party to provide such great entertainment"

Mark Passier "Does Stephen really have six toes?"

David Angus "Nice variety of styles of hats"

Culverden House Concert, 2nd of December 2017

A gathering of folk enjoyed a concert at Culverden...Thanks Rod for being the fantastically generous and hospitable host with the most!!!


Great concert Saturday night, Gary. Please send thanks also to the boys, impressive work on those instruments.


Have a good Xmas


Best                       R


Here are some of the comments that were in the book at the end of the evening...

Meg: FAB great music

Jim and Jo Hartnell: Awesome evening, what fantastic Music!!

Phillip &..Gudopp: Loved the evening & music was great. Great sounds I could listen all night.

Colin Heslop & Katy Pakinga: We've had such a great time listening to you all tonight. Bluegrass, hillbilly tunes in rural Canterbury. Just perfect.You're all brilliant musicians and work so well together. You can tell that you love every moment. So did we!!! Thank you.

Trev Devine: Great entertainment loved it, great music.

Norm and Sandra Williamson: Great music, good company, accomplished musos, well done.

Liz......: Such a variety- loved it all- such great skills- singing and music. 

Rachel: Great music guys!! Loved it!!

Antonia .....: Liked it a lot. Brilliant entertainment!

Christchurch Folk Club: July the 2nd, 2017

The first band to open the night shared their love of foot tapping bluegrass, and the tunes that they shared certainly achieved the need to do that.

The Porthillbillies have formed from connections made within the Folk Club where three of the members met, Steve and Kris at open mic nights and Gary and Steve as committee members. This group also has the trifecta in countries of origin also, as three originate from far off lands and all four have moved to live in Christchurch and what a bonus this is.

Tuesday night practices have encouraged the band to pull together a diverse repertoire including Rocky Top; Shady Grove, Mountain Dew, Wildwood Weed and Blue Night.

It was encouraging to hear the band say that they will take their learnings away from the night and continue to hone their skills even further. Reflection performance will ensure that this band continues to go from strength to strength.

Review by Judy Smitheram