Local Musician Taylor Parks Joins Bluegrass Band Josh Grigsby and County Line

Taylor Parks. Submitted photo.

By Carol Vaughn —

Nandua High School senior Taylor Parks has been playing banjo since he was 8.

Parks, 18, of Modest Town, recently became a member of bluegrass band Josh Grigsby and County Line as their five-string banjo player.

He also plays upright bass, which he took up in earnest at age 15, and guitar.

Parks was profiled in a recent edition of Bluegrass Today magazine, which may be viewed online at https://bluegrasstoday.com/taylor-parks-to-josh-grigsby-and-county-line/
Parks grew up listening to his father’s band, No Spare Time, and fills in with the band from time to time for performances.

His father, Wes Parks, is among Taylor Parks’ major musical influences, which also include Sammy Shelor of the Lonesome River Band, Mike Lilly, and bass players Jason Moore and Barry Bales.

Josh Grigsby and County Line, based in the Northern Neck, is described in the article by John Lawless as “a rising traditional bluegrass band.”

Parks joins band members Josh Grigsby on guitar, Mark Baker on reso-guitar, Ryan Holder on bass, David Lewis on mandolin, and Crystal Grigsby on harmony vocals.

Taylor joined the band in March and has played one show with them so far, with several more performances scheduled in the coming months.

“I went down to Hampton and I met them … at a bluegrass festival. … I played with them in mid-March, just to see if it was something I was interested in and they said I had the job if I wanted it,” Parks said.

“Everyone has made me feel welcome and right at home. It will be a good way to get exposure,” he said.

Parks in addition to his music, school work, and playing street hockey, holds down a part-time job at Ocean Deli, in Wallops Island.

He plans to pursue a career in music after graduating high school.

“I think that’s going to be my main focus,” he said, adding he likely also will go to trade school to get his commercial driver’s license as a back-up plan.

Josh Grigsby and his wife, Crystal, have self-produced two bluegrass albums.

The band performs mainly around the Richmond to Washington, D.C., region.

Josh Grigsby in the Bluegrass Today article said, “Taylor fits the band like a glove and his style of playing will complement our music well. Seeing young people dedicated and in love with bluegrass music is always encouraging, as they are the future of the genre.”

The band was awarded the 2015 Bluegrass Band of Virginia Championship by the Virginia Folk Music Association, the only organization sanctioned by the Virginia governor to hold Virginia bluegrass, gospel, and country music championship contests and to induct Virginia artists into the Virginia County Music Hall of Fame, according to the band’s website, www.joshgrigsbyandcountyline.com/the-band

The band’s third CD is called “Love, Life and Misery” and includes a mixture of traditional, contemporary, and original songs, as well as some country songs played with a bluegrass flair.

The group is scheduled to play at a variety of Virginia venues, and one each in South Carolina and Vermont, this spring and summer:

April 29 to 30: Banjos by the Beach, Hideaway RV Resort, Myrtle Beach, S.C.
May 5: 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., Mr. B’s Bluegrass Festival, Woodford, Va.
May 6: Montross, 7 p.m., First Fridays, Montross, Va.
May 21: 4 p.m., Hopewell Jamboree, Saucy’s BBQ, Hopewell, Va.
May 27 to 28: TBD, Wrench Wranch, Bainbridge, N.Y.
Jun 18: 7 pm, Zion Old Firehouse Concert Series, Beaverdam, Va.
Jun 26: 1:45 pm, Bluegrass Family Day and Fly-in, West Point, Va.
Jul 2: 3 p.m., Northern Neck BBQ at the Barn, Montross, Va.
Jul 21 to 23: TBD, Danby Bluegrass Festival, Danby, Vt. (JGCL Performs Friday and Saturday)
Aug 13: 7-10 p.m., Richmond County Fair, Warsaw, Va.
Aug 20: TBD, Pocahontas State Park, Chesterfield, Va.

The band also is on Facebook.

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