Shelby Means departs Della Mae

Shelby Means - photo by Frank BakerShelby Means, who has been playing bass with Della Mae this past two and a half years, has announced this weekend that she will be leaving the group. She will accompany the Dellas on their upcoming State Department tour as her final hurrah.

Her absence during the band’s performance on the IBMA Awards Show and Wide Open Bluegrass festival drew notice, but was explained as a result of an illness. Shelby also missed the final sessions for Della Mae’s next album, with Mark Schatz filling the void.

A new member is now being sought to start in 2015.

Here is the note Means shared with Della Mae fans and friends online:

Dear Della Heads, Della-mae-niacs, fans, and friends,

It is with much love in my heart that I (Shelby) write this message to you today. After deep soul searching, the Dellas and I have decided to part ways. It has been a very bittersweet decision for me, yet I know it is the right choice. I am thankful that it revealed itself to us in a very peaceful and loving way.

Looking back on my time as a Della, I realize I will always carry these lifelong memories with me, no matter where I go next. I cherish the wild adventures we set out upon, the roads we rambled, the stories we made, the music we played, and the friends we found all over the world. I am grateful to the Dellas, grateful to each and every person who has supported me in my musical lifestyle, and especially grateful to our fabulous fans.

I plan to continue playing music, traveling the world, practicing yoga, and expanding my community of friends. I live in Nashville and in addition to bluegrass music I look forward to playing americana, folk, country and rock. Follow me on Facebook, twitter @shelbyleemeans, and instagram @shelbass and stay up to date on my future projects. The Dellas are my sisters and I will forever feel a bond to them. We will embark upon one last epic journey together. I am proud to announce our work as musical diplomats from the United States will continue next Friday with another State Department Tour. I am so happy to have the opportunity to spread peace and love through music with the Dellas once more.

Thank you all so much for your support! You can now count me among the ranks as a Della Head!

Love, Shelby

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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.