Jerry Salley, Creative and A&R Director of Billy Blue Records, says he’s been following the growth of Carolina Blue for a long time. “We are very excited and honored to be given the chance to work with them,” Salley says. “They are a wonderful fit for Billy Blue Records and we look forward to partnering with them to help them grow their unique brand of bluegrass music.”
From playing hometown BBQ restaurants to a rigorous nationwide tour schedule, Carolina Blue has created a palpable buzz in bluegrass. Founded by Bobby Powell and Tim Jones in 2007, the group crafts delectable original music that has resulted in consistent chart success, and a growing fan base.
This year, the International Bluegrass Music Association nominated Carolina Blue for three awards: New Artist of the Year, Album of the Year, and Instrumental Recording of the Year.
“When I heard that Jerry Salley and Ed Leonard were launching a new bluegrass record label a year or so ago, I remember feeling excited and intrigued,” Bobby Powell says. “In a short amount of time, Billy Blue Records has set an award winning standard of excellence within our industry. I believe that Jerry and Ed understand and support our passion, which is to present our original music in the same style and format that Mr. Monroe did. We are honored to be included in such a talented roster of bands and excited to get into the studio and begin our journey as part of the Billy Blue Records family!”
Carolina Blue’s music is original, with a look and feel that is pure tradition, including period attire that tips a hat to the 40’s and 50’s. With heavy fiddlin’, banjo and mandolin work, Carolina Blue adds three-part harmony, and also does bluegrass gospel quartet tunes with mandolin, guitar, and four-part singing. They are adept at engaging an audience immediately with interaction, sing-alongs, and natural charm.
Carolina Blue is comprised of Powell (guitar and vocals), Jones (mandolin and vocals), James McDowell (banjo and vocals), Reese Combs (upright bass and vocals) and Aynsley Porchak (fiddle, recipient of the 2018 IBMA Momentum Instrumentalist Award).
“We couldn’t be more thrilled about teaming up with Billy Blue Records,” says Tim Jones. “Ed and Jerry are just good fellers and we’re proud to be a part of the family there. Being on a roster with some of your musical heroes is what dreams are made of and we’re feeling blessed and excited for the future.”
New music is expected for release in Spring of 2020.