Things are moving fast in young banjo player Tray Wellington’s career. A recent graduate of the Bluegrass, Old Time & Country Music Studies program at ETSU, he already has a record deal with Mountain Home Music, and a new album on the way. While still in school, he was named an IBMA Momentum Instrumentalist of the Year in 2019, and he now has his own touring group, The Tray Wellington Band, to add to his resumé.
Today Tray has released a debut video with the band, a first look at the modern style bluegrass they have in store. Like much of Wellington’s music to date, it has an experimental feel, defined by the bluegrass these young artists have grown up with, but with the sort of pop sensibility that has catapulted Punch Brothers to mainstream success.
The group includes Tray on banjo, Nick Weitzenfeld on guitar, Katelynn Lowe on bass, and Josiah Nelson on mandolin.
For this first listen, they have chosen a song Nick wrote, Honest Lies, and shot the video live at the ETSU Recording Lab in Johnson City, TN with Dan Boner at the helm.
Tray says that the whole group was very pleased with the room sound, and the hand-held camera work, not to mention how the song turned out.
“We knew the first time we heard Honest Lies it was going to be the perfect vocal song to present for showing how the band sounds in a live environment. I think it has a good mix of instrumental fun as well as showcasing Nick’s great lead vocals.”
Have a look/listen…
The Tray Wellington Band is represented by Virginia Prater with PraterDay in Knoxville. You can catch them this weekend at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, KS, and next weekend at FreshGrass in North Adams, MA. They will also be on hand for the World of Bluegrass events in Raleigh, NC at the end of the month.