Donna Ulisse to Billy Blue Records

Kathy Sacra-Anderson, Ed Leonard, Donna Ulisse, Jerry Salley, and Rick Stanley

Billy Blue Records in Nashville has announced the signing of Donna Ulisse, both as a recording artist for her bluegrass and Gospel music, and as a songwriter for their newly-formed Billy Blue Publishing company.

Ulisse is the reigning 2018 SPBGMA Songwriter of the Year, and the recipient of the same honor from the IBMA in 2016. Her songs have been recorded by a who’s-who of top bluegrass artists, including Doyle Lawson, Volume Five, Claire Lynch, and Larry Stephenson, and she hosts songwriting workshops throughout the year near her home in Lebanon, TN.

Of course the primary artist who records Donna Ulisse songs is Donna Ulisse, whose popularity on SiriusXM’s Bluegrass Junction channel has created an audience for her all over the US and Canada.

Billy Blue will put out her next record, and handle publishing going forward. A fairly new entry, launching during the summer of 2018, they have already made some big moves, signing Appalachian Road Show, Barry Abernathy and Darrel Webb’s new group, The Band of Kellys, and Joe Mullins & The Radio Ramblers in less than a year. The label is a partnership between Ed Leonard of Daywind Music Group, and popular bluegrass singer and songwriter, Jerry Salley.

For Donna, working with Billy Blue is a reunion of sorts with a long time compatriot.

“My first #1 record as an artist was with a song I co-wrote with Jerry Salley and he is one of my dearest friends. We stayed at the top of the Bluegrass Unlimited Chart for two months with It Could Have Been The Mandolin. Jerry is one of the hardest working folks in the business and he brings excellence to everything he is involved with. When my husband, Rick Stanley and I decided to launch Lil House Songwriting Workshops I never had a second choice of who we wanted to partner with. Our choice was and is Jerry Salley! Jerry will laughingly tell you that I am like his sister. I follow it up with ‘I am like the sister Jerry never wanted.’ We laugh our way through co-writes and teaching, and more recently, in the artist/record label relationship.”

We hope to hear more soon about plans for a new project.

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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.