Chris Stuart and his young Wards

Chris Stuart has announced that Chris and Austin Ward have joined his band, Backcountry. It is a fairly odd occurrence when a pair of brothers joins a professional band at the same time, even odder when they are both still in their teens. Austin will be playing bass, and Chris fiddle, along with Stuart on guitar, Janet Beazely on banjo, and Mason Tuttle on mandolin and lead guitar.

Both Chris and Austin were chosen to represent the best of young bluegrass musicians when ABC News did a feature for the CMA Music Festival which was televised in the fall of 2005.

Chris was also selected as a recipient of the first Roanoke Bluegrass Weekend Scholarship in 2005 when he was just 13 years old. He traveled to VA from his home in CA for the chance to study for the weekend with some of the top fiddlers in the country, and made quite an impression on both the faculty and the students alike.

You can find a video clip of Chris jamming along with the other scholarship recipients from 2005, Haley Stiltner and Aaron Williams, on Haley’s web site. Scroll all the way to the bottom of the page to find the video clip.

Best of luck to Chris Stuart & Backcountry with their youth movement!

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.