We are excited to announce the Country Music Highway Tribute Show performers for Saturday, July 29 in downtown Paintsville. It is presented by Double Kwik. The event is FREE and will feature food trucks, other concessions, and arts and craft vendors! Complimentary shuttle service will be provided from Johnson Central High School to downtown Paintsville.
This is the first of three stops across the Country Music Highway this summer. Other events are:
August 12 | Whitesburg at the Mountain Heritage Park (FREE event)
August 19 | Prestonsburg at the Mountain Arts Center
The finale at Mountain Arts Center is a ticketed event with music beginning at 2 p.m. and running through the evening. Tickets are $15 (this includes fees) and can be purchased at www.macarts.com or the Peoples Bank Box Office. A portion of the proceeds from ticket sales will go towards arts education at the Mountain Arts Center.
The Highway of Country Music
There’s not a stretch of road in the world that has been the home to more Country Music stars and icons. From The Judds, Billy Ray Cyrus, Ricky Skaggs, Patty Loveless, Dwight Yoakum, Gary Stewart, Chris Stapleton, Tyler Childers, and the late Naomi Judd, Keith Whitley, and Loretta Lynn.
Up-and-coming stars of the Highway will pay homage to those stars and icons while performing original content.
Here’s a list of confirmed performers for the July 29 show in Paintsville.
Connor Dale and Rachel Messer
Conner Dale is a Folk/Alternative Country singer-songwriter that sings letters, stories, and the things he sees happening in the world. Kentucky-born and New Orleans-raised, he pulls from the life he’s lived in both parts of the country, creating a unique urban-folk writing style.
Rachel Messer, a singer-songwriter raised up a little holler in Fort Gay, WV, draws her inspiration from the country and bluegrass greats before her. She pens her lyrics with a straightforward “say it how you see it” style, true to her Appalachian roots. With performances all over the United States, her time on Team Blake (Season 15 of NBC’s The Voice), and fans across the world, Rachel has worked hard to spread her voice and love for storytelling.
Solid Ground with Special Guest Don Rigsby
Solid Ground is an up-and-coming bluegrass band based out of Eastern Kentucky. The group was established in March of 2023. The band consists of Andrew Rigsby on Guitar, Brayden Maxie is featured on Banjo, Price Harris playing the Bass, and Justin Lemaster on Mandolin.
Eastern Kentucky native Don Rigsby discovered bluegrass music early in life, nurturing his interest through Ralph Stanley records and hanging out with two of Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys, Ricky Skaggs (who happens to be Don’s cousin) and the late Keith Whitley. Soon enough, he would move on to make his own mark with his powerful tenor and distinctive mandolin playing.
Don first began to pursue a musical career while in college. He emerged on the national scene with the Bluegrass Cardinals. Subsequently, he hooked up with J.D. Crowe and the New South. He has also done stints with Charlie Sizemore and Vern Gosdin and eventually became a member of the award-winning Lonesome River Band. In addition, he filled in with the Seldom Scene upon the sudden death of John Duffey and has been involved with Longview, Rounder’s super-group comprised of top-ranked traditional bluegrass artists. The late ’90s found him releasing solo recordings and undertaking a series of “brother duo” albums with Dudley Connell.
The son of educators, and grandson of laborers, Luke Trimble is a storyteller, capturing the life of Appalachia. A mix of bluegrass, folk, and country, Luke’s music is made of memory, his own memory of growing up in Paintsville, Kentucky; the memory of rich cultural Appalachian history; and an instinctive Eastern Kentucky memory, passed down through family lore or, maybe, in the water that rolls in between the hills.
Today, Luke resides in Lexington, Kentucky where he continues to create melodies and write songs that describe the narrative of his roots.
Eddie Jenkins and 606 Sound
Eddie Jenkins is an up-and-coming singer-songwriter from Magoffin County. He has been performing as both a solo artist as well as band leader for over 20 years.
Two years ago, Eddie and long-time friend Doug Russell decided to put together a band to perform his original songs and cover tunes of traditional country acts. Thus, was born “606 Sound”.
The band consists of Eddie Jenkins, lead guitar and vocals; Doug Russell, acoustic guitar and vocals; brothers Ricky Howard, keyboards, and Marty Howard, drums (all from Magoffin County), Rick V. Johnson, steel guitar (Floyd County), and Mike Howell, bass guitar (Johnson County).
606 Sound has performed at festivals and special events throughout eastern Kentucky since its inception.
The Chuck Robertson Project
The Chuck Robertson Project has historically been a rotating cast of talented musicians from the Eastern Kentucky Tri-State area. In its current incarnation, it has been centered around the happenstance trio of island-born singer-songwriter Chuck Robertson, mult-instrumentalist and harmonica specialist Tim Preston, and fiddle legend Shirley Seim. The group’s sound is a wild mix of mountain folk rock, with roots in blues, bluegrass, country, and rock.
Ava Claire O’Bryan is a 15-year-old sophomore at Johnson Central High School and a member of Billie Jean Osbornes’s Kentucky Opry Jr. Pros. Ava has experience singing at different venues and for different events and also sings in her gospel group Trained Up. She is a member of the All-State Honor Choir and has received many awards as a vocalist. She is also the State Freewill Baptist vocal winner and will move on to compete at National Competition later this year.
Adalyn Ramey is an 11-year-old Appalachian singer and songwriter. She began singing in church before age 2. Adalyn has become a familiar face at the Mountain Art Center, where she is in her seventh season as a member of Billie Jean Osborne’s Kentucky Opry Jr Pros. She recently began writing, recording, and releasing her own original music. Her songs are currently being played on radio stations around the world, and her music is now available on all major music platforms. Her first release, “23 (Country Music Highway)” is an original song that pays homage to all the famous artists who have traveled this famous stretch of road in search of their dreams. This song was written specifically for a project focused on tourism for the CEDAW Future of Work Fair, for which she took home top honors.
Born and raised in the hills of Eastern Kentucky Aaron Mykal has music in his blood. Singing his entire life and playing guitar for 10 years Aaron has worked hard on his craft. At the age of 13 Aaron’s family moved to Texas where he fell in love with Texas Red dirt country. You can hear inspiration from both Texas country and the hills of US 23 in Aaron’s songs and voice.