Fresh off his GRAMMY win for Best Bluegrass Album, Billy Strings joins Robert Earl Keen in the new episode of Americana Podcast out today in the American Songwriter Podcast Network. The Michigan-born, Nashville-based, Strings discusses growing-up playing Bluegrass, learning how to wail on guitar in his metal band days, and the inspiration behind the songs on HOME, his critically acclaimed album.
The multi-IBMA Award-winning Strings took to music early on and learned to play bluegrass from and with his father- going as far as to mimic the way his dad’s hands looked in order to obtain similar stylings. Until his early teens, Strings would play bluegrass with his dad and dad’s friends finding inspiration in the music of artists like Doc Watson, David Grisman, and Earl Scruggs. In order to play with musicians his own age, Strings turned to rock and metal music and cites groups like Black Sabbath and the Grateful Dead amongst his inspirations. These early experiences with metal would later shape String’s approach to live music, bringing an electric energy that is uncommon in roots music performances.
Billy Strings began playing full-time around 2012, and in 2017 was listed as one of Rolling Stone’s top-ten country artists to know. Although he had two records prior, Strings made waves with the release of his album Turmoil and Tinfoil in 2017, and followed-up with that same string-centered rip-roaring energy with the release of his album HOME in 2019.
Join Robert Earl Keen for this deep-dive discussion with this 26-year-old genre-expanding Bluegrass phenom on Americana Podcast: The 51st State.