The first piece of news we picked up when we arrived in Nashville came when we ran into Josh and Tony Williams in the exhibit area here at IBMA. Tony runs the popular Kentucky Lake Bluegrass Festival, and Josh has been the guitarist and vocalist with Rhonda Vincent & The Rage.
We had heard that Josh was no longer with Rhonda, and had been eager to see him and find out if it was true. When we approached, I noticed that the affiliation on his IBMA name badge had been blacked out, and figured I had my answer.
Tony told us that after the band’s final set at Dollywood this weekend, Josh was told that it would be his last show with the band. Josh has received several offers already but isn’t ready to make a decision just yet. Every time I’ve seen Josh since, he’s had a cell phone to his head.
Rhonda’s web site had only this brief announcement regarding the switch, dated yesterday (9/30):
Today, Josh Williams performed for the final time with Rhonda Vincent and The Rage.
He is an incredibly talented and gifted musician, and we will miss him. I thank him for his many contributions over the past 4 years, and wish him the best in his future endeavors.
We will be conducting a search for a permanent replacement.
For the time being, Josh plans to focus on completing a solo project, and perhaps start a new one with Carl Jackson producing.
No one can doubt that this gifted young man has a bright future in bluegrass, wherever he may land.