Carl Bentley is a bluegrass singer and songwriter from eastern Kentucky whose debut, self-titled album is recently released. He has offered to share the first single with our readers today at Bluegrass Today.
Starting out in bluegrass at ten years of age, inspired by hearing Keith Whitley with Ralph Stanley, he was immediately drawn to sing the music. After his dad got him going on guitar, Carl began performing at venues around his home in Ned’s Fork. By high school he was a member of several bands, got his first taste of songwriting, and was awarded a music scholarship for his efforts.
Soon after graduation, Bentley became a member of the Mountain Jamboree, a local TV show in Pikeville, KY, where he played and sang before a live audience every week.
Then on March 3, 1996, Carl very nearly lost his life in an automobile accident. Heading in to work, he fell asleep at the wheel and drove right into a tree. He recalls that almost every bone in his face and ankles were broken, and he woke up two weeks later in the hospital with his jaw wired shut. Months of surgeries and rehab followed before he could go home again, but the music was never far from his mind.
While in college at Eastern Kentucky University, Carl was hired on to the Conway Barn Dance in Conway, KY, again singing every week on stage. Upon graduation with a degree in Computer Information Systems, Bentley moved to Indiana to find work, and also joined up with The Indiana Boys. Before long he had formed Carl Bentley and Eagle Creek, who recorded two albums for Lightning Struck Records.
Still in Indiana, this debut solo project has occupied much of his time of late, including this single, Bentley’s version of the Larry Sparks classic, These Old Blues. With Carl on guitar and lead vocals, support comes from Clay Hess on banjo, Rick Hayes on mandolin and bass, and Tim Crouch on fiddle.
They’ve kept it true to Sparks’ original, with a hard-driving bluegrass sound. Have a listen…
These Old Blues, and the full Carl Bentley album, are available now from popular download and streaming services online. Audio CDs and downloads can also be purchased directly from the artist’s web site.
Radio programmers will find all the tracks at AirPlay Direct.