Change is something of a constant in the bluegrass world, just as it is in the arts in general. We’ve become accustomed to seeing new faces in our favorite groups from time to time, which makes bands that display consistency all the more special and rare.
The Grascals are a great example of that stability. In their ten plus years together, they have swapped out banjo and fiddle players a couple of times, but the rest of the group – the singing component – has remained intact. Until now.
Founding member Jamie Johnson has left The Grascals, to be replaced by young North Carolina vocalist/guitarist John Bryan. He’s been playing and singing bluegrass since he was a teen, with a deep, family connection to the music. John’s grandfather, Willard Watson, was a first cousin to Doc, and a fine old time musician and dancer in his own right.
Folks who follow bluegrass closely will recognize Bryan as a recent member of Larry Efaw and The Bluegrass Mountaineers.
His new bandmates are delighted by his arrival. Banjo picker Kristin Benson says…
“We are so happy to welcome John into the band! With his youth, enthusiasm, and great talent he’s sure to be a blessing to all of us in the band as well as the audience.”
…and founding member, guitarist/vocalist Terry Eldridge can’t wait to sing with him.
“I’m looking forward to working with this young man. I know he is loaded with a lot of talent and I am excited about the future! Welcome aboard, John…you are now a Grascal!”