Scott Slay grew up in a musical family on the gulf coast of Florida. It was a performance by Sam Bush, then with the New Grass Revival, at a small festival that grabbed six year old Slay’s attention. “My dad said that after the show I looked up at him and said, ‘I want a little guitar’ referencing Sam’s mandolin,” Scott recalled. “That Christmas I got a mandolin, and my dad started showing me a couple chords.” By the time Scott was eight years old, he was chopping chords in his dad’s bluegrass band. Within two years he was a full fledged member, touring with his dad’s band, Highway 99.
When Scott was 16 he had friends who wanted to play in a rock band, but they didn’t have any instruments. They convinced their families to buy instruments and a sound system with the understanding that Scott would teach them how to play music. “So that’s what we did,” he recalled. “It was a 90s rock band – but at the same time a friend of mine informed me that a bluegrass band called the Dog River Boys needed a guitar player – so I took the job, and my dad joined too playing the resonator guitar.” Scott kept that gig all the way through college.
Scott recalls getting hired to play a wedding gig in Virginia and hiring Sammy Shelor to play banjo – which led to a friendship – which led to the formation of an Americana band with Sammy called Big Virginia Sky. That connection led to more connections which opened up opportunities for all kinds of artists to participate on Scott’s new record – The Rail. Sierra Hull, Scott Vestal, Andy Hall and Josh Shilling also make an appearance on the project.
Scott’s five piece band of the same name combines bluegrass, country, folk, and traditional compositions penned by Scott and his friends to produce a modern sound but still steeped in the rich grass roots. The title track, also called “The Rail,” is the latest release from Bonfire Records.
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