The James King Band


Where: The Crafted Kup: 44 Raymond Avenue, Poughkeepsie, NY
When: Tuesday, July 21 @ 7:30pm
For info: 845.475.8830

It isn’t required, but If you want to ensure your seats, please let us know that you will be there.

Yes, you did read it right. How lucky can we get? Well, lucky enough to have James King and his band land in Poughkeepsie on Tuesday, July 21. And lucky enough to find the perfect spot to hear The Bluegrass Storyteller.

The band consists of James King (vocals, guitar), Eddie Lovelace (bass), Adam Poindexter (banjo), Merl Johnson (fiddle), and Nick Novia, (mandolin).

With his 1993 solo album These Old Pictures, James King was established as a top-notch bluegrass vocalist. The album, however, was only the latest step in a musical career that had begun 14 years before.

A featured member of Ralph Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys in the 1980s, King, who was raised in Virginia’s Carroll County, grew up listening to bluegrass. His father, Jim King, had appeared on Roanoke television with Don Reno and Red Smiley as tenor vocalist and guitarist for the Country Cousins, and, with his uncle, Joe Edd King, had played with the late Ted Lundy of the Southern Mountain Boys in the 1960s.

Following a stint in the Marines, King launched his musical career in 1979. His recording debut came on the long-titled album Stanley Brothers Classics with Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys and Introducing James King in 1985. His second album, Reunion with Ralph Stanley featuring George Shuffler and James King, was released three years later.

King’s 1985 self-titled debut solo outing was followed by It’s a Cold Cold World, released in 1989 and reissued as Webco Classics, Volume Two in 1996. While both albums showcased his crystal-clear lead vocals, neither featured the high-quality instrumental accompaniment of his later work.

After signing with Rounder Records, King’s career was propelled into overdrive. These Old Pictures — which featured members of the Johnson Mountain Boys (Dudley Cornell, Tom Adams and David McLaughlin) and the Lynn Morris Band (Marshall Wilborn and Tim Smith), plus ex-Nashville Bluegrass Band mandolinist Mike Compton — was named “Breakthrough Album of the Year” by Bluegrass Unlimited and led to King being nominated as Emerging Artist of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association in 1995. King’s fourth solo album, Lonesome and Then Some, featured many of the same players.

In 1997, King joined with Cornell, Wilborn, Glen Duncan, Joe Mullins and Don Rigsby to form the bluegrass supergroup Longview. The solo “Bed by the Window” followed a year later.

Now, James is also in need of a liver transplant, he has cirrhosis. He has been very sick, and missed many shows and income. Funds have been established to aid James in his battle for a new liver.

One is The James King Get Well Account set up by his friend Chip Covington. All monies donated here are deposited in an account which James can access. The other is the James King Medical Fund established at Wells Fargo Bank. Anyone can visit a Wells Fargo Branch and make a direct donation to this account, or they can be mailed to:

James King Medical Fund
c/o Deonia Jones
Wells Fargo Bank
201 S. Jefferson St.
Roanoke VA 24011

Purchases of his CDs are also a fine way to offer some financial support.

If you would like to drop him a line directly, the address is:

PO Box 2615
Salem, 24153

In the wider picture, James is doing much better than he had been earlier this year. He is able to walk under his own power, and is living with a loving family that is dedicated to his care and well being. All he needs now is to be approved for the transplant, and find a suitable donor.

He is still performing, so if you catch one of his shows, be sure to share an encouraging word. And if you can make a donation, even a small one, be sure that it will be deeply appreciated.

The Crafted Kup, a place to get great desserts, coffee, tea, cocoa, and more….and a place filled with comfortable chairs, as well, is where you want to be on July 21.

Life has been tough for James the past few years and we treasure his voice, the songs he has brought to us, and the feeling he puts into each and every song.

Don’t do anything else on July 21. How lucky can you get?


One Response

  • Last time I saw James, I was taking tickets in Yeehaw Junction FL circa 2004 . His Mini Van showed up and James head popped up from a bad sleep, to see me.
    Well after that I decided Big Steve needed me to Videotape more than scare the bands and possible ticket buyers away or to death.
    So I most likely have a video tape of the show somewhere along with others. Becky Bueller was there and the young Doerfuls.
    RIP Mr King , I even remember you with Ralph.

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