Electronic Press Kit
ShadowGrass is a group of young musicians from Western North Carolina and Southwestern Virginia who crossed paths at local fiddller’s conventions in the summer of 2014. They began a musical journey that has led them to play and compete together.
Although they have their own style, ShadowGrass is honored to be playing in the shadow of great bluegrass legends. Holding to their bluegrass roots, fast picking, and fresh arrangements have earned the band numerous awards in youth and adult competitions across the region. In 2016 they placed 5th in the adult bluegrass band category at the Galax Fiddler’s Convention. ShadowGrass has had the privilege of playing at exciting venues, including Heartwood and The Crooked Road,The Blue Ridge Music Center, The Lincoln Theatre, The Historic Earle Theatre, and at festivals such as the National Folk Festival, MerleFest, HoustonFest, the Richmond Folk Festival, SPGBMA, and IBMA. They were honored to be chosen as a featured youth band for the IBMA World of Bluegrass Festival in 2016.
Their foot-tapping music and charming personalities continue to draw a crowd and gain encouraging fans with each new place they visit. ShadowGrass is looking forward to contributing to the heritage of bluegrass music for years to come
The band includes Presley Barker, guitar; Kyser George, bass; Luke Morris, mandolin and Clay Russell, banjo. All of the members are award winning youth musicians. ShadowGrass is striving to be the next torchbearers to carry on bluegrass music to future generations.
ShadowGrass has been called “one of the most thrilling bluegrass bands to emerge from the musically-rich Crooked Road area in recent memory” ShadowGrass has also appeared on the Today Show with Al Roker during the 2016 IBMA World of Bluegrass Week in Raleigh. Presley and Kyser have also appeared on Little Big Shots on NBC. We would love to play for your future festivals, venue or gatherings.
Please contact Jennifer Morris at 276-233-2567 or [email protected] for booking information
At age thirteen, Presley Barker has been playing acoustic guitar for six years. Living in the NC mountains and listening to Doc Watson on the radio inspired Presley to begin picking fiddle tunes and bluegrass music. He has been influenced and mentored by Steve Lewis, Wayne Henderson, and Bryan Sutton. He has quickly emerged as an astonishingly gifted flat-picker. In the summer of 2015, Presley won first place in the prestigious Adult Guitar Competition at the 80th Annual Galax Old Fiddler’s Convention and in the summer of 2016, he was named West Virginia State Flatpicking Guitar Champion. In 2017, Presley won the Wayne Henderson Guitar Competition. Presley released his first solo album entitled “JUST-TEN” in the fall of 2015.
Visit Presley’s Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/presleybarkermusic
Growing up in Galax, Virginia, 18 year old Luke Morris has always been surrounded by bluegrass music. When Luke was 12, he got his hands on a mandolin while taking a guitar class and quickly fell in love with the instrument. He enjoys playing and singing anytime he is given the opportunity individually and with the band ShadowGrass. Luke is also passionate about teaching our regions traditional music to other students. He is an instructor with the Galax JAM program at Chestnut Creek School of the Arts in Galax. Musical influences that have shaped Luke’s mandolin style are Sam Bush, Chris Thile, Mike Marshall and his music teacher, Scott Freeman. As an individual and as a part of the band he has gained a collection of prize winning youth and adult titles around the area. When he is not playing bluegrass, Luke enjoys running, biking, swimming and playing and singing with the worship team at his church
Clay is seventeen years old and has lived in Grayson County, Virginia his entire life. He received his first banjo when he was four years old and learned to pick out song melodies using his thumb. At around age ten, he began using the three finger method. A few years later he started entering local competitions and collaborated to help form the band ShadowGrass. Clay will be the first to admit his favorite part of any festival or competition is getting to meet and pick with other musicians, many of which have become great friends. Clay’s musical influences include Earl Scruggs, Jim Mills, J.D Crowe, Sammy Shelor and Ron Stewart as well as his instructor Eric Hardin.
Clay has had the opportunity to play venues including the IBMA Convention, SPBGMA, Richmond Folk Festival, MerleFest, Woodsongs, Song of the Mountains, Blue Ridge Music Center, Star Theatre, Rex Theatre, Heartwood Center, WPAQ’s Merry-Go-Round, WBRF’s Blue Ridge Backroads Show, live TV performances on WSLS, WKYT and WCYB, WAMU’s Katy Daley Show, Blue Ridge Acoustic Uprising, HoustonFest, RockyFest and WVTF’s Back to the Blue Ridge Show.
Clay is a member of IBMA’s Kid’s On Bluegrass and Tomorrow’s Bluegrass Stars. He is also a member of Brookside Baptist Church and enjoys hunting, camping and riding his four-wheeler in his spare time. Howbeit there are no immediate plans for the future, there’s no question that playing bluegrass music will in one aspect or another, always play a part in Clay’s life.
Sitting in on his father’s band practices from the week his parents brought him home from the hospital, Kyser George, age 13, of Westfield, North Carolina, grew up steeped in the musical heritage of Stokes County. Kyser received his first instrument, a mandolin, at the age of 6 and it quickly became evident that the rhythm section was Kyser’s niche. After receiving instruction from his father, David George, Kyser discovered his love of bass at age 9 and is already considered one of the most solid bass players in the area. In addition to playing bass, Kyser enjoys playing guitar and mandolin and is the drummer and percussionist for his church. When he isn’t playing music, Kyser enjoys fishing, camping and shooting sports.
Train 45 – HoustonFest 2017
Midnight Rider – HoustonFest
Get Up John – HoustonFest
Fifteen Miles to Galax (Original Song)
Little Girl of Mine in Tennessee