Founded in December, 2012, Bluegrass-inspired Americana group Big Virginia Sky hit the stage without the slightest idea of what they'd gotten themselves into. Within minutes of their first show, the musical conversation was evident and the audience was on their feet throughout the performance. The group later agreed to perform regularly, traveling from all over the country to make their shows.
Featuring all-original music with cameos from Sierra Hull, Tim Crouch, Brandon Bostic, and Randy Kohrs, Big Virginia Sky has a mix of Americana music, traditional instrumental tunes, and takes light flavors of the Sam Bush Band, Tim O’Brien, some modern-day Country music, and of course, the Lonesome River Band. The group’s debut album was released after a successful crowdfunding campaign on September 30th, 2015.
The group showcases talents from singer-songwriter and lead vocalist, Cole Clark-sponsored guitar player, James Adkins, with an incredible addition from vocalist and mandolin player, Scott Slay (Award winning songwriter and Gulf Coast instrumentalist).
The Lazar brothers hold the group together as a tightly knit rhythm section, often described as a “heartbeat.” Bassist Steve Lazar has won several awards for his instrumental technique, and plays a variety of instruments to include keyboards and saxophone. Steve’s brother, percussionist Dale Lazar, has also dabbled in piano and a wide array of instruments; he plays a full drum kit during live shows.
These fellas make up four of five members and consider themselves incredibly lucky to have the talents of 5-time IBMA Banjo Player of the Year, Steve Martin Award recipient, and Virginia Music Hall of Famer, Sammy Shelor of Lonesome River Band. Sammy adds flare to the group that makes them stand out amongst other Americana bands.
The group has collective talent and a myriad of experience performing with and opening up for the likes of Glen Phillips, Alan Jackson, Katie Rogers, Edgar Meyer, The Band Perry, Taylor Hicks, Lonesome River Band, Sarah Jarosz, Sierra Hull, Steve Martin and the Steep Canyon Rangers and more.
They were recently featured in September 30th, 2015 by the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) in Raleigh, NC, and were chosen out of 30 groups by the Virginia Tourism group to play the exclusive Crooked Ramble with The Church Sisters and Lonesome River Band.
Big Virginia Sky is currently endorsed by D'Addario and Planet Waves.