Musician Tray Wellington has a truly unique story: As a teenager, he was trying to learn rock riffs on electric guitar and stumbled upon the music of Doc Watson. Shortly thereafter he heard the five-string banjo.
For the past decade, Tray has devoted himself to the instrument, attending festivals, entering banjo competitions and even studying Bluegrass, Old Time & Country Music at East Tennessee State University. He recently released his debut album Black Banjo. It’s a project where he can pursue his passion for bluegrass, newgrass and beyond. He also reveals some not-so-traditional musical influences, including interpretations of compositions by John Coltrane and Roy Hargrove.
On this week’s podcast, we chat with Tray about the record, what it’s like to be one of the few people of color in bluegrass, and how he hopes to inspire the next generation of musicians.
This episode is sponsored by Peghead Nation (use promo code FRETBOARD and get your first month free or $20 off any annual subscription); retro fret vintage guitars; Izotope (use discount code FRET10 to save 10% on your Izotope purchase); and Calton Falls.
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