Starting as a casual jam band back in 2008, Volume Five is a Mississippi-based group that has grown into one of bluegrass music’s most distinctive and popular acts. Soulful lead vocals by fiddler Glen Harrell along with the band’s tight instrumentals and vocal harmonies have earned the group two IBMA Awards, numerous other nominations, and many accolades. Joining Glen to create the band’s signature sound are Jacob Burleson on guitar and vocals, Aaron Ramsey on mandolin and vocals, Zach Collier on bass and vocals, and Chris Wade on banjo.
“When I put this group together, I knew the style of music I wanted us to play and the goals we wanted to achieve,” Glen explains. “It was just a matter of finding the right guys who wanted to create their own identity in the industry. I didn’t just want us to be another band that moves onto the scene and is gone in a few years, but one that would have a unique sound that players and listeners would remember for many years to come—one that sounded like no other band in the business.”
Glen even thought through how the band’s name might influence the perception of their unique approach within the bluegrass genre. “I didn’t want to do anything that ended in “boys” or “grass” or “creek” or “mountain” or “river” or anything like that…” After seeing a TV commercial for a Bose system featuring five speakers, Glen says, “I thought, I want to have something like that—five guys turning the volume up as loud as we can and just play our hearts out.”
As for his own musical background, pre-Volume Five, Glen started playing guitar at the age of nine and the fiddle at age fourteen. He was involved with various local bands during his high school years, then played in several bands performing on the bluegrass festival circuit. In 2002, he joined country music artist Marty Raybon (former lead singer of Shenandoah) and toured during the next six years, playing venues across the US and beyond.
By Dan Walsh
To find out more, visit www.volumefivebg.com. Click here for full interview.