Perennial bluegrass singers and songwriters Johnny and Jeanette Williams have teamed up with returning bluegrass artist Jay Shelton for a new album and tour as Shelton & Williams. They got together just as the pandemic hit, and have been rehearsing and recording since that time.
The three of them live in Danville, VA on the Virginia/North Carolina line, and while Johnny and Jeanette have stuck with bluegrass throughout their careers, Jay took a detour into rock and pop after spending the 1970s and ’80s as a grasser. All are also accomplished songwriters, and their original music will be the focus of a new Shelton & Williams project, So Much Time, So Much Love, expected to release soon.
But the first single is a cover of a 1982 country rock classic.
“Our first knowledge of Wasted on the Way, written by Graham Nash, was the performance by Crosby, Stills, and Nash. The song is a reflection of life as it passes by, asking questions each of us think of from time to time. When choosing songs for our project this song came to mind at the beginning. It features the band’s three part harmony. This is what we are known for, so it was a natural fit. In these challenging times, our thoughts are often pulled in many unsettling directions. We were drawn to the message in this song which reminds us – don’t wait to do the things that make you happy. Treasure precious time with loved ones. Let’s stop wasting our time and our love, and get to the business of living!”
With Johnny singing lead, Jeanette on bass and harmony vocal, and Jay on guitar and harmony vocal, the group is supported by Adam Steffey on mandolin and Gary Hultman on reso-guitar.
The vocals are, indeed, first rate, and they give this familiar song a comfortable bluegrass flavor, singing three part harmony throughout.
Check out the video, which features the single audio with a gallery of images of all three artists over the course of their lives and musical career.
Wasted On The Way is available now to radio programmers at AirPlay Direct.
So Much Time, So Much Love is scheduled for release in mid-April. Keep an eye on the Shelton & Williams web site for more details.