Jay Armsworthy and Eastern Tradition play a variety of “hard-driving” Bluegrass music. The band’s repertoire consists of traditional Bluegrass, original ballads, energized instrumentals, and old-time gospel. With their own arrangements, Jay Armsworthy and Eastern Tradition insert a “punch” and a “drive” into Bluegrass music that is enthusing audiences of all ages. The members of Eastern Tradition are as follows:
JAY ARMSWORTHY – Guitar and lead & tenor vocals. From California, Maryland, Jay has been performing since the age of ten, and from his playing experience as being part of Ernie Bradley & Grassy Ridge Band, Jay is known for his “driving” rhythm guitar playing and “cuttin’-up” on stage. For nearly 7 years he hosted his own Bluegrass program called “Bluegrass On The Bay” that was heard on WMDM and WPTX radio stations in Lexington Park, Maryland. Jay has received many complements on his first solo recording project entitled, “Just Lookin’ For Fun”. Between shows with Eastern Tradition, Jay traveled and performed throughout the summer of 1995 with Rounder Recording Artist: David Davis & The Warrior River Boys. His hot licks and smooth voice are appreciated by all.
TOM GRAY – Bass, lead & baritone vocals. Long a familiar face in acoustic music circles, Tom Gray is the only bassist inducted into the Hall of Honor of the International Bluegrass Music Association and was inducted in 1996. He has recorded over 100 projects with many artists. He has gained a following among other bassists, attracted by his melodic bass lines. Tom Gray is best known for his years as a founding member of The Seldom Scene 1971-1987, and the Country Gentlemen 1960-1964. He is active in traditional jazz as well as bluegrass. Tom was born in Chicago, 1941, and then raised in Washington D.C.
RANDY BARRETT – Banjo, lead & baritone vocals. Randy has performed and written songs for more than 30 years. His music ranges from Bluegrass, Folk, Country, Swing, and beyond. Randy is the recipient of 5 Washington Area Music Awards (WAMA). He has released two CD’s on the Falling Mountain label, “Each & Every Day” and “Lights of Home”. Randy performed with previous bands, “The Barretones” and “Mama Tried”, a group he lead with Dede Wyland. Randy has appeared at such venues as the Kennedy Center, Birchmere, Gettysburg Bluegrass Festival, Rocky Mountain Folks Festival, Holland’s Floralia Festival, Library of Congress and the Country Roads Music Festival. His songs have been recorded by “Chesapeake”; “Auldridge, Bennett and Gaudreau”; “Dede Wyland” and “Grace Griffith”. “…..one of the best songwriters ever to come out of Washington, DC.” --The Washington Post.
LISA K. HOWARD - Mandolin, lead & tenor vocals. Lisa Kay has been tooling around the bluegrass scene playing with an impressive string of regional bands since she took up the mandolin almost twenty years ago. Lisa Kay attacks the mandolin mostly in the traditional way, a la Roland White or Country Gentlemen-era Jimmy Gaudreau. She sings impeccable harmony and contributes pure, emotion-filled lead vocals. She makes her home in Warrenton, VA. Lisa K is also well known for radio on WAMU-Washington, DC; WJMA-Orange, VA; as well as Bluegrass *NOT DISPLAYED* .
Jay Armsworthy and Eastern Tradition have played countless fairs, festivals, community and private functions throughout the Eastern United States. Both Bluegrass audiences and the general listening public enthusiastically receive them.
With guitar, banjo, mandolin, bass and effective vocal harmonies, this acoustic ensemble is suited for all functions and social gatherings.