Think of a young Steep Canyon Rangers, Infamous Stringdusters, or Nickel Creek; then, mix in the on-stage energy of Billy Strings and the homespun rapport of Balsam Range, and you have Cane Mill Road!
The four young men – Liam Purcell, Tray Wellington, Eliot Smith, Casey Lewis – roam the Blue Ridge Mountain backroads driving between Deep Gap, NC, and Rocky Gap, VA, to meet and make music — thus the title track of the band’s latest album, Gap to Gap. The title signifies more than just the long hours on the road touring, but the spaces between the bluegrass foundation of the band’s youth and the new spaces of music they create together. Honoring the past, the band looks to the future with a blended set of traditional and contemporary music
Rapidly rising in the bluegrass scene, the Billboard-charting artists are the youngest to garner an IBMA Momentum Band-of-the-Year nomination (2018), a feat they repeated in 2019. In addition, both mandolin/fiddle player Liam Purcell and banjo player Tray Wellington have been nominated for Momentum Instrumentalist-of-the-Year.
In 2017, Cane Mill Road landed a slot in the prestigious IBMA Ramble Band Showcase. Grey Fox Folk Festival selected them as an Emerging Artist for its line-up in 2018; and this year, they opened the main stage at Grey Fox.
In addition to Grey Fox, the band has performed at festivals including MerleFest, Wide Open Bluegrass, Delaware Valley Bluegrass, Bluegrass Island, Carolina in the Fall, Silver Dollar City, and at hundreds of other venues/festivals over the past five years. They also performed internationally with a nine-day tour of Argentina.
Growing up just down the road from Doc Watson, Cane Mill Road members rock the traditional bluegrass standards on which they were raised. They also boldly write original music with roots in the fertile grounds of bluegrass, old-time, blues, jazz, and Americana.
Signed by the Patuxent Music label, the band’s first two albums spent seven weeks on Billboard’s bluegrass albums chart and included two Top 10 debuts.