Sara Milonovich grew up in the town of Florida. She attended Amsterdam High until her junior year, when she switched to homeschooling, allowing her to tour with local Celtic-bluegrass band The McKrells. She came to FM as an early admission student.
"I was studying full time and also touring nights and weekends, and occasionally during the week as well, with The McKrells and other bands," says Sara. "I've been working as a full-time musician since I was 16, so there was always a juggling act going on."
As an environmental studies major at FM, Sara had a great interest in science, the environment, conservation and the outdoors (and still does). She graduated from Cornell University with a bachelor of science in biology, with a concentration in systematics and biotic diversity (taxonomy).
Today, Sara lives in the lower Hudson Valley in the Newburgh-Beacon area as a full-time musician with her band, Daisycutter. "I also freelance with a number of other artists, on tour, and also in the studio. My career goal is that I am trying to accomplish a fraction of what Pete Seeger managed to get done in his incredible life. (I don't think that one will ever be met)."
Aside from her band work, Sara has a consulting service where she advises homeowners in suburban and urban areas how to set up and care for backyard chicken flocks. "It's called The Pecking Order: Backyard Poultry Planning," she says. "My other hobbies include cooking, exploring popcorn and wine pairings (try a really oaky Chardonnay with a bowl of air-popped corn with lots of butter), reading, and gardening. I also once nearly enlisted as a Civil War re-enactor (as a private - no hoop skirts here), but ended up having gigs every weekend there was an encampment, so I never got to 'fall-in' at an event. I love hiking, running, horseback riding, camping, kayaking; anything to be outdoors.
"I think it's really exciting that FM is hosting the Buck Moon Arts Festival [Saturday, July 12, and Sunday, July 13]," says Sara. "It's wonderful to bring the arts out in public anywhere, but the FM campus is going to be a really nice place to do it. We're really thrilled to be part of it, especially these days, where so much art is disseminated via the internet. I could go into the commerce side of things, and how much harder it's become to be a full-time artist of any type, but I'll just say that there is no electronic substitute or replacement for experiencing art in a live setting. I feel like Daisycutter has really evolved into a great festival band, as our sound leans firmly toward the indie-rock/alt-country camp. It's been such a wonderful, creative journey with these guys to be able to take all of our musical experiences and bring them together into something that's representative of all of our creative journeys. We're all veterans of so many different scenes; from folk to rock to world to jazz, and in my case, bluegrass and country traditions as well, that when we work up material, it's wonderfully unpredictable to see how such varied influences end up expressing themselves in the songs."
Daisycutter will be performing at the Buck Moon Arts Festival on Sunday, July 13. To learn more, visit Buck Moon Arts Festival on Facebook, www.daisycutter.net or contact festival coordinator Debra Kolsrud at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Amy Radik is the coordinator of public relations and marketing at FM.