South Carolina is the home state for the group of guys who call themselves, The Jake Bartley Band. Each member of the band spent years playing and traveling with other musical endeavors prior to seizing this opportunity to play together as a band. Their quest to create a fresh, soulful, yet roots oriented sound is realized with the release of their new CD.
The band’s namesake, Jake Bartley, is a powerful lead vocalist with a crowd winning personality. Andrew Crawford and Matt Miller handle the guitar, bass, and backing vocals, while Adam Plott adds percussion to the mix. Most recently, the band added Steven Cathcart on pedal steel and vocals. He is also a touring veteran and takes on some of the songwriting duties. Rounding out the current line-up is Bill Christmas on the saxophone.
When I caught up with guitarist Jake, the band was traveling home from Daytona Beach’s biker week where they opened up for David Allen Coe. Jake told me he got his start like many young men in a garage band with a dream to be a rock star. “Get a couple guitars and some amps and turn them up as loud as they would go,” he recalled. At 17 or 18 though, he knew playing music is what he wanted to do, “it was go time,” he said. “I lost the distractions of everything else and went straight after music.”
The Jake Bartley band has been together for about five years, but this current configuration has only been in place for about a year, with their current CD, Brotherhood, beginning circulation in November of 2018 with Bonfire Records. “We’re always constantly writing though, with the next project in mind.”
Brotherhood includes collaboration with Randy Kohrs, Robby Turner, and a popular single featuring the legendary Vince Gill, “Cannonball,” that came about after the band got to play for a party at Vince and Amy’s farm not long ago. “They were amazing people to work with,” Jake said. “It was thrill to get to record with him.”
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