Saturday, February 18, 2017 7:00 PM
Harvester Performance Center, Rocky Mount, VA
- Ticket Price: $10.00 - $12.00
- Door Time: 6:30 PM
- Show Type: Bluegrass
$10 in advance, $12 day of show
New Standard was founded in October, 2011 by Zach Brown, Spencer Blankenship and Mason Thomas. One month later, Stewart Scales was asked to be a part of the band as the bass player. Jason Wheeler was added on banjo in 2016. New Standard brings together a variety of styles and influences ranging from traditional artists to contemporary bluegrass and gospel artists.
We have entertained audiences in many towns across the mountains and Piedmont of Virginia. From fall festivals to church services, birthday parties to fishing tournaments, we enjoy playing traditional gospel and bluegrass music for a wide variety of audiences. If you are interested in having New Standard at your event, feel free to contact us on our Booking page - we'd love to hear from you!
Our Mission Statement
To provide audience members a quality sound and entertaining performance while keeping bluegrass music alive for our generation and future generations to enjoy.
Zach, a Franklin County native, is our fiddle player. He took his first mandolin lesson from his great uncle, the late Dewey Prilliman, when he was 11 years old. It wasn't long before he was inspired to pick up the fiddle. Zach has played mandolin with Blackwater bluegrass band since 2003. It is with Blackwater that he developed as a musician and learned to sing tenor and lead vocals. Over his career he has filled in extensively with Smith Mountain Grass, and occasionally with Mark Templeton and Pocket Change and other bands. A graduate of Virginia Tech, Zach can be found hunting, floating down a river, or climbing mountains when not picking.
Spencer started playing mandolin at age 8 and also plays several other instruments. He began playing in a family band with his parents, brother, and uncle. He then went on to play with a popular local band from Franklin County, Va called "Smith Mountain Grass." After playing with them for 5 years, he began playing with a band based out of Roanoke, VA called Sandy Ridge for 2 years. Then, Spencer joined the stage with Hard Drivin' Grass for about 2 years. He is a graduate of Virginia Tech and now teaches Agricultural Education at Liberty High School. Spencer and his wife, Bonnie live in their hometown of Bedford, Va.
Mason is from Madison Heights, Va. and has grown up to eat, sleep, and breathe bluegrass. He started playing the guitar at 7 years old. From there he progressed in his playing and singing abilities. In 2006 Mason started the group Hard Drivin’ Grass and performed for over 4 years with that band. For the past 2 years Mason has been a part of In The Tradition. He is now a graduate of Virginia Tech and works for a lumber company. Mason loves to play the old, traditional style with his own twist. Besides playing music he also enjoys to hunt, fish, and spend time with family.
Stewart, originally hailing from Big Stone Gap, VA is a Geography instructor at Virginia Tech. He plays upright bass with the band as well as banjo and guitar at jams along the Crooked Road. Stewart currently teaches a variety of courses at VT including Geography of Appalachia, Cartography, Geography of Virginia and Physical Geography. Outside of the music spectrum, he enjoys hiking, biking and many other outdoor activities.