Tray Wellington releases Blue Collared Dog and His Green Eyed Friend

Mountain Home Music has a new single from North Carolina banjoist Tray Wellington, an instrumental he wrote called Blue Collared Dog and His Green Eyed Friend.

Tray gets to show off his prodigious chops on this newgrassy banjo tune, with support from Drew Matulich on guitar, Josiah Nelson on mandolin and fiddle, and Katelynn Bohn on bass).

Bluegrass fans remember our young Mr. Wellington from his time as a teenager with Cane Mill Road during the several years he was with the band. During that time, he received the 2019 IBMA Momentum Instrumentalist of the Year while Cane Mill Road was named Momentum Band of the Year. Now, graduated from East Tennessee State University’s bluegrass program, Tray has moved from his native western North Carolina to Raleigh, where he works during the week for Pinecone, and spends weekends and evenings touring with his Tray Wellington Band.

He explained how he came up with the tune’s curious title.

“One late night while doing some paintings, we ended the night with two different ones. One featured a dog with a blue collar, and one featured a cat with bright green eyes. I thought about how, if I was still a kid, I would’ve created a whole story within these paintings of how these two were friends and journeyed the world together. Shortly after this thought, I picked up my banjo and just did some improv which ended up being the start of the tune. I just kept going and finished the tune in that improv session, remembered what I could and recorded it right away. I was amazed at how such a simple thought could help me create a piece of music I’m so proud of.”

The multi-part composition, which Tray wrote with Nelson goes through several changes as the melodies are carried by the several instruments.

Have a listen…

Blue Collared Dog and His Green Eyed Friend is available now from popular download and streaming services online, and to radio programmers via AirPlay Direct.

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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.