Category: N

Nadolson, Mike


  • From Lake Elsinore, California (LA area).
  • 1980, 1981 won the Four Corners Regional Flatpicking Championship in Wickenburg, Arizona.
  • Has performed with several Southern California bands, including Shadow Mountain with Ron Block and Dennis Caplinger, Damascus Road, a gospel group, Circuit Riders, and Silverado, his own band.
  • He was founder and owner of Tricopolis Records.
  • 1998, recorded first solo album Quicksand (Tricopolis).
  • 2020, died at the age of 68.

Nance, David


  • From Oak Ridge, North Carolina (lives in Reidsville, NC).
  • Early in his career, he played Dobro™ with his father in a band called The Southland Playboys.
  • 1982, he and his father worked with Bobby Atkins.
  • 1983, joined The McPherson Brothers band.
  • 1985, formed Big Sandy Bluegrass with Lynwood Lunsford, Tim Ashley and Adam Poindexter.
  • 1987, joined Jimmy Martin’s Sunny Mountain Boys. Martin nicknamed Nance “Little Sweets.”
  • 1997, released My Own Sweet Time album (no label).
  • 2010, joined The Hagar’s Mountain Boys.

Naiditch, David


  • From Los Angeles, California.
  • Has played harmonica around the L.A. area since the 1960’s (he taught harmonica at the famed Ash Grove).
  • 2011, released Bluegrass Harmonica album (no label), the first ever bluegrass album featuring the “chromatic harmonica” (which differs from the diatonic harmonica used by such notables as Mike Stevens and Charlie McCoy).
  • 2014, released Bluegrass in the Backwoods album (no label).

Nash Street


  • From Starkville, Mississippi.
  • Formed in 1996 as a kid band called The Goat Ropers. The group featured the vocals of sisters Hannah and Caroline Melby.
  • 2001, changed their name to Nash Street, the name of the street they grew up on.
  • Members: Daniel Hare (bass), Hannah Melby (fiddle), Caroline Melby (mandolin), Clay Lezon (guitar), and Jason Graham (guitar).
  • 2007, recorded first album Carry on (no label), dedicated to the victims of Hurricane Katrina.
  • 2008, won the Colgate Country Showdown, hosted by Leann Rhimes at the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville.
  • 2010, the group moved to Nashville and released Between Hope and Heartache album (no label).
  • 2013, the name of the band was changed to Hanalena, which is the name of the sisters’ flower business in Starkville. They released HanaLena, a 5-song album (no label).

Nashville Bluegrass Band


  • From Nashville, Tennessee.
  • 1984, the band was formed by Alan O’Bryant (banjo) and Pat Enright (guitar). They put together the band as part of a traveling show called “Grand Old Country with Minnie Pearl.” Original members included Mark Hembree (bass) and Mike Compton (mandolin). Blaine Sprouse was added early on to play fiddle and was later replaced by Stuart Duncan.
  • O’Bryant, from Reidsville, North Carolina, previously performed with The Bluegrass Band, a group that included Butch Robins, Ed Dye and Blaine Sprouse. He began his musical career in 1974 with James Monroe. Also worked with the Front Porch String Band (an Alabama group) and did some studio work in Nashville.
  • Enright formerly performed with Tasty Licks (a New England Band) and Phantoms of the Opry (San Francisco).
  • 1985, released their first album My Native Home (Rounder), produced by Bela Fleck. Blaine Sprouse played fiddle on this album.
  • 1986, released Idle Time album (Rounder), also produced by Fleck. This is the first album featuring Stuart Duncan on fiddle.
  • 1986, became the first bluegrass group to perform in Red China.
  • 1987, released To Be His Child album (Rounder).
  • 1988, Roland White (mandolin) and Gene Libbea (bass) joined the group, replacing Mike Compton and Mark Hembree, who were seriously injured that year when the group’s bus was involved in a traffic accident. White had previously performed with the Country Gazette, Lester Flatt’s Nashville Grass, Bill Monroe’s Blue Grass Boys and the Kentucky Colonels
  • 1988, released New Moon Rising album (Sugar Hill) with Peter Rowan.
  • 1990, released The Boys Are Back In Town album (Sugar Hill).
  • 1991, released Home Of The Blues album (Sugar Hill).
  • 1991, did a tour in Brazil with country singer Don Williams.
  • 1992, won an IBMA Award for Song of the Year (for “Blue Train.”)
  • 1993, won their 4th IBMA Award for Vocal Group of the Year (also won in 1990, 1991 and 1992.)
  • 1993, won the IBMA Award for Entertainer of the Year.
  • 1994, toured with Lyle Lovett.
  • 1994, recorded with actress/singer Bernadette Peters.
  • 1994, won Grammy Award for the album Waitin’ For The Hard Times To Go (Sugar Hill).
  • 1995, performed at a private party for the rock band R.E.M.
  • 1996, performed with Johnny Cash on the soundtrack to the movie “Dead Man Walking” starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn.
  • 1996, performed at Wynona Judd’s wedding reception.
  • 1996, won the Grammy Award for the album Unleashed (Sugar Hill).
  • 1998, released American Beauty album (Sugar Hill).
  • 2000, Pat Enright’s voice (and yodeling) was a member of the “Soggy Bottom Boys” in the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou.”
  • 2001, Roland White retired from the band and mandolinist Mike Compton returned.
  • 2002, they were on the “Down from the Mountain” tour, featuring the music from the movie “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”
  • 2004, released Twenty Year Blues album (Sugar Hill).
  • 2006, performed at the White House for a reception for Chinese President Hu Jintao.
  • 2007, released Best Of The Sugar Hill Years (Sugar Hill).

Neal, Tom


  • From Hampstead, Maryland.
  • A banjo player who has worked with Del McCoury, Bill Harrell, Cliff Waldron, Gary Ferguson, Leon Morris, and The Carroll County Ramblers to mention a few.
  • Since the early nineties, he has performed with Bluestone Bluegrass, a Maryland-Pennsylvania regional band.
  • 2013, released solo project Banjoland (Patuxent).

Necessary, Frank


  • From Ruckersville, Virginia. He was born in Boone’s Camp, Kentucky and worked in the Baltimore/Washington DC area as well as in Ohio.
  • Played banjo and was the leader or co-leader of several bands including the Stone Mountain Boys, Buzz Busby, the Spruce Mountain Boys and Eastern Tradition.
  • He played banjo in the style of Don Reno.
  • 1976, released Al Jones, Frank Necessary & The Spruce Mountain Boys album (Rounder).
  • 1987, released “Frank Necessary, Al Jones and Buzz Busby” album on Old Homestead Records.
  • 2011, died at the age of 76.

Nefesh Mountain


  • From New Jersey.
  • A husband-wife duo: Eric Lindberg (banjo, mandolin, guitar) and Doni Zasloff (vocals). Their band has included Alan Grubner (fiddle), Tim Kiah (bass) and Thomas Cassell (mandolin).
  • They are Jewish-Americans and their music reflects their religious heritage. It is sometimes called “jewgrass.”
  • Nefesh is a Hebrew word that is equivalent to the English word soul or life.
  • Many of their songs are sung in Hebrew or Yiddish. They perform frequently for Jewish Shabbat (sabbath) worship services and festivals.
  • 2016, released first album Nefesh Mountain (no label).
  • 2017, released Beneath the Open Sky album (no label) featuring Sam Bush, Tony Trischka, Jerry Douglas and David Grier as backup musicians.

New Coon Creek Girls, The


  • From Renfro Valley, Kentucky.
  • Formed in 1980 by John Lair of the Renfro Valley Barn Dance to carry on the tradition of the original Coon Creek Girls. Multi-instrumentalist Vicki Simmons was the first member of the band to sign on.
  • The original Coon Creek Girls were a popular female hillbilly band led by Lily Mae Ledford in the 30’s and 40’s performing primarily on the old Renfro Valley Barn Dance out of Cincinnati, Ohio. They were one of the first—if not the very first—country music acts to perform at the White House. They did so in 1938 for then-President Franklin D. Roosevelt. They disbanded in 1957. Simmons met Lily Mae Ledford before she died and learned to play clawhammer-style banjo from her. Ledford gave Simmons permission to use the name Coon Creek Girls to carry on the tradition of the original group.
  • They were one of the first all-female bluegrass bands.
  • The band went through many personnel changes over the years with Vickie Simmons being the only original member to remain. Other members of the band included Pam Perry, Ramona Church Taylor, Pam Gadd, Deannie Richardson, Katie Penn and Dale Ann Bradley.
  • 1988, released Pictures album (Turquoise).
  • 1989, released Playing Our Respect album (Turquoise).
  • 1991, released So I’ll Ride album (Turquoise).
  • 1994, released L & N Don’t Stop Here Anymore album (Pinecastle).
  • 1995, released Ain’t Love A Good Thing album (Pinecastle).
  • 1996, released gospel album Everything You Do (Pinecastle)
  • 1997, the group’s name was changed to Dale Ann Bradley and Coon Creek.
  • 1998, released Our Point Of View album (Pinecastle).

New Grange


  • From Nashville.
  • An Americana band featuring Tim O’Brien, Mike Marshall, Alison Brown, Darol Anger, Todd Phillips and pianist Philip Aaberg.
  • 1998, the group was formed by Anger and Marshall to record a Christmas album (it was eventually re-released on Compass Records: A Christmas Heritage.) They decided to stay together, tour nationally and record again.
  • 2000, released New Grange album (Compass).
  • Three of them (Phillips, Anger and Marshall) were original members of the David Grisman Quintet.

New Grass Revival


  • From Louisville, Kentucky.
  • Formed in 1971 by 19-year-old Sam Bush.
  • Original members: Sam Bush (mandolin), Courtney Johnson (banjo), Curtis Burch (guitar and Dobro™), Ebo Walker (bass). Bush, Johnson and Walker had previously worked together in the Bluegrass Alliance.
  • First gig: Elizabethton, Tennessee. There were 12 people in the audience.
  • First album: 1972 “Arrival of the New Grass Revival” (Starday).
  • 1970’s, toured with John Hartford, Leon Russell, and Cheech and Chong.
  • 1973, Butch Robins replaced Ebo Walker on bass.
  • 1974, John Cowan (bass) replace Butch Robins.
  • 1975, released Fly Through The Country album (Flying Fish).
  • 1977, released When The Storm Is Over album (Flying Fish).
  • 1981, Burch and Johnson left the band for personal reasons. For a short time, Sam and John performed together as the “Two Grass Revival.”
  • 1981, Pat Flynn (guitar) and Bela Fleck (banjo) joined the group.
  • 1984, released On The Boulevard album (Sugar Hill).
  • 1986, released New Grass Revival album (EMI).
  • 1987, released Hold to a Dream album (Capitol).
  • 1989, released Friday Night in America album (Capitol).
  • 1989, released Live album (Sugar Hill).
  • 1990, the group broke up. Bush went to work with Emmylou Harris and the Nash Ramblers. Fleck formed a band called the Flecktones. Cowan formed a group called the Sky Kings. Flynn worked as a solo artist, studio musician and record producer in Nashville.
  • 1996, Courtney Johnson died. The band reunited for one show that year to benefit his widow.
  • 1997, Bush and Cowan reunited to form The Sam Bush Band and a blues band called Duckbutter.
  • 1997, Garth Brooks recorded two NGR songs: “Do What You Gotta Do” (written by Pat Flynn) and “Callin’ Baton Rouge” (with NGR providing instrumental backing).
  • 2009, they reunited for a performance of one song “White Freightliner Blues” at Merlefest.


New Quicksilver, The


  • A short-lived group formed in 1986 featuring Terry Baucom (banjo), Jimmy Haley (guitar), Randy Graham (bass) and Alan Bibey (mandolin).
  • Baucom, Graham and Haley were members of Doyle Lawson’s band Quicksilver until 1985. They left to form their own band and decided to take the name Quicksilver with them. Lawson, however, claimed ownership of the band name, so Baucom and company added the word “New” to their name.
  • 1988, disbanded.
  • 1991, Baucom and Haley joined two other former members of Doyle Lawson’s band (Russell Moore and Ray Deaton) to form “IIIrd Tyme Out.”
  • 1998, their album was reissued under the name Baucom Bibey Graham & Haley (Rebel), which led to the formation of a new band, BlueRidge.

New River Line


  • From Flatgap, Kentucky.
  • Formed in 2002 by Dave Carroll (guitar) and Ron King (mandolin).
  • Carroll has written songs for the Lonesome River Band (“The Game is Over”), Blue Moon Rising (“This Old Martin Box”) and many others.
  • 2011, released album I’m Moving On (Kindred) dedicated to the memory of band member Jerry Chaney (Dobro) who was killed in an auto accident as the album was being completed.

New Road


  • From Knoxville, Tennessee.
  • A gospel group that performed primarily in churches throughout the southeast.
  • Formed in 1995 by Stuart Wyrick (banjo), Randall Massengill (guitar), Mike Ramsey (mandolin), Vic Graves (Dobro™) and Scott Payne (bass).
  • They recorded four albums on their own label which they sold primarily at their concerts.
  • Disbanded in 2009.

New Tradition, The


  • From Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Formed in 1988 and won “best band” at the SPBGMA awards show. This led to a record contract with the gospel music giant, Brentwood Music, the label’s first bluegrass act.
  • 1990, released Bluegrass Gospel At Its Finest (Brentwood).
  • 1991, released Seed of Love album (Brentwood).
  • Danny Roberts (mandolin) is married to the former Andrea Campbell of Petticoat Junction.
  • 1993, released Closer Than It’s Ever Been album (Brentwood).
  • 1994 lineup: Danny Roberts (mandolin), Ray Cardwell (bass), Ken White (guitar) and Richie Dotson (banjo).
  • 1997, released A Piece at a Time album (Pinecastle).
  • 1998, released Daddy on His Knees album (Pinecastle).
  • 1998 lineup: Roberts, Aaron McDaris (banjo), Daryl Mosley (bass) and Jamie Clifton (guitar).
  • 1999, released Stand & Be Counted album (Mountain Home).
  • 1999 lineup: Roberts, McDaris, Clifton and Brandon Rickman (bass).
  • 2000, released Cradle Cross Crown album (Mountain Home).
  • 2000, broke up for good.
  • 2002, Mosely joined the Osborne Brothers.
  • 2004, Roberts joined The Grascals.
  • 2004, Mosely formed a duo with Tim Graves.
  • 2016, Cardwell formed a new band called Tennessee Moon.

New Vintage


  • From Cary, North Carolina.
  • Formed in 1989 by Russell Johnson (mandolin) and Earl Lewellyn (guitar).
  • 1993, won first place at the Pizza Hut International Bluegrass Showdown national finals in Owensboro, Kentucky.
  • 1993, won “best band” at the SPBGMA Award Show in Nashville.
  • 1993, released first album “Timeless” (New Time).
  • 1995, Julie Elkins (banjo) joined the band.
  • 1995, released No Time for the Blues album (Pinecastle).
  • 1996, released Sands of Time album (Doobie Shea).
  • 1997, Jody King (banjo), James Doncsecz (bass) and Kim Gardner (Dobro™) join the band.
  • 1999, released Changing Times album (Pinecastle).
  • 2000 lineup: Johnson, Llewellyn, Gena Britt (banjo), Greg Martin (bass) and Kim Gardner (Dobro™).
  • 2000, played last show at IBMA Fan Fest.
  • Johnson (mandolin, lead vocals) writes much of the band’s original material. He has also recorded as a solo artist and performs with a band called The Grass Cats.
  • Before forming New Vintage, Johnson performed professionally as a magician.
  • 2007, the group was re-formed by Johnson (who is also in the Grass Cats).

Newfound Road


  • From Franklin, Ohio.
  • The group formed in 2001 as a gospel group featuring vocalist Tim Shelton who had recorded previously as a solo artist. The group eventually transitioned to a progressive bluegrass band.
  • Original members: Carl “Junior” Williams (banjo), Tim Shelton (guitar), Tim Caudill (bass) and Rob Baker (mandolin).
  • 2002, released first album Newfound Road (Mountain Home).
  • 2003, released Full Heart album (Mountain Home).
  • 2004, released Somewhere Between album (Mountain Home).
  • 2006, released Life In A Song album (Rounder).
  • 2009, released Same Old Place album (Rounder).
  • 2010 lineup: Tim Shelton (guitar, lead vocals), Jamey Booher (bass), Joe Booher (mandolin), Josh Miller (banjo).
  • 2011, released final album Live At The Down Home (Rounder).
  • 2013, Shelton disbanded the group and signed with Lonesome Day Records to record several solo projects.
  • 2015, the group returned to performing selected dates.
  • 2019, disbanded again, this time for good.

Newton, Garrett


  • From Benson, North Carolina.
  • Began playing the banjo at age 10. Took lessons from Steve Dilling.
  • 2016, at age 16 formed his own band and was being featured at Lorraine Jordan’s Coffee House (he also works as a barista there) and appears with her on the road.
  • 2017, released first album Young Man, Old Soul (Pinecastle).
  • 2019, released Bluegrass Barn album (Pinecastle).
  • 2022, formed a Hank Williams tribute band called Garrett Newton and the Lovesick Drifters.

Newton, Mark


  • Originally from Padukah, Kentucky and lived in Fredericksburg, Virginia for many years. Moved to Nashville in 2004.
  • At age 14, played in his father’s band, called Frog Newton and the Tadpoles.
  • Mid-70’s, put together his first band, Cabin Hill.
  • 1976, joined the Heights of Grass.
  • 1978, joined the Knoxville Grass.
  • 1981, re-joined the Heights of Grass.
  • 1983, formed the Virginia Squires with four of the five members of the Heights of Grass.
  • 1988, quit the music business.
  • 1990, formed the Mark Newton Entertainment Agency and began promoting the Graves Mountain Bluegrass Festival in Virginia.
  • 1992, teamed up with banjo legend Bill Emerson to form The Bill Emerson and Mark Newton Band.
  • 1995, joined the Tony Rice Unit.
  • 1998, recorded his first solo album Living a Dream (Rebel) with Bill Emerson, Ralph Stanley, Tony Rice, Dudley Connell, others.
  • 1999, formed the Mark Newton band and recorded an album Follow Me Back to the Fold (Rebel) featuring duets with Rhonda Vincent, Lynn Morris, Claire Lynch, Dale Ann Bradley, other women singers.
  • 2001, won IBMA award for Recorded Event of the Year (for his album Follow Me Back to the Fold).
  • 2002, released Reborn album (Rebel).
  • 2003, released No Boundaries album (Rebel).
  • 2006, released Hillbilly Hemingway album (Rebel).
  • 2011, formed “Mark Newton’s Stillhouse Band” with Andrew Blythe (banjo) and Leah Needham (guitar, resonator guitar).
  • 2013, teamed up with fiddler/vocalist Steve Thomas to record Reborn album (Pinecastle).



  • From Lexington, Kentucky
  • Formed originally as the Kati Penn Band. They changed their name to NewTown in 2011.
  • Band members: Kati Penn-Williams (fiddle), Junior Williams (banjo), C.J. Cain (guitar), Clint Hurd (mandolin), and Terry Poirier (bass). James Kee was the original mandolin player (2010-2012)
  • Kati Penn-Williams began playing as a youngster. At 12 (1995), she performed and recorded with the “Young Acoustic All-Stars” a group coached by Pete Wernick. She has worked with Wild Rose, the New Coon Creek Girls, Dale Ann Bradley, the Jim Hurst Band, Bill Anderson and J.D. Crowe. In 2003, she recorded her first solo album “Crazy or Not.”
  • Junior Williams (married to Kati) is a former member of NewFound Road.
  • 2010, released first album “My Turn to Cry” (no label).
  • 2011, released Newtown album (no label).
  • 2013, released Time Machine album (Mountain Home).
  • 2016, released Harlan Road album (Mountain Home).
  • 2019, Kati Penn and Junior Williams divorced and Newtown was disbanded.
  • 2020, Kati Penn joined the Kentucky-based Hancock and Shouse (Arthur Hancock and Chris Shouse).
  • 2020, Williams joined his old bandmate Tim Shelton in The Tim Shelton Syndicate.
  • 2020, Kati Penn joined Alan Bibey and Grasstowne.
  • 2021, Kati Penn married banjo player Justin Jenkins (also a member of Grasstowne).

Nicholson, Darren


  • From Western North Carolina.
  • 2007, was a founding member of Balsam Range (playing mandolin). He previously worked with the Alecia Nugent Band, Audie Blaylock, Hazel Creek and the Crowe Brothers.
  • He also fronts his own group, The Darren Nicholson Band. Members include Steve Sutton (banjo), Kevin Sluter (bass) and Griff Martin (guitar).
  • 2007, released Darren Nicholson (Bearded Baby).
  • 2014, released Things Left Undone album (Bearded Baby) featuring special guests Rhonda Vincent, Carl Jackson, Tim Surrett, John Driskell Hopkins, Audie Blaylock, Aaron Ramsey, Steve Thomas and others.
  • 2018, released Fret a Spell album (Bearded Baby), all instrumentals.
  • 2021, released Man on a Mission album (Mountain Home).
  • 2022, released “Songs of Hope and Inspiration” album (Bearded Baby).
  • 2022, left Balsam Range to purse a solo career.


Nickel Creek


  • From Vista, California (near San Diego).
  • First appearance: 1989 at the San Diego Bluegrass Festival (Lake Henshaw, CA). They also began making regular appearances at “That Pizza Place” in Carlsbad, CA).
  • They began as a “kid band” featuring Sean and Sara Watkins (brother and sister on guitar and fiddle), Chris and Scott Thile (father and son on bass and mandolin). The three kids were all under 12 at the time.
  • They were mentored and taught by John Moore and Dennis Caplinger of Bluegrass Etc.
  • Their band name came from a tune on one of Byron Berline’s fiddle albums. Nickel Creek is actually a ranch in Texas where Byron wrote the tune. When the ranch owner found out about the Nickel Creek band, he invited them to perform there—their first out-of-state gig.
  • 1991, released first album on cassette “Nickel Creek” (no label). Sean was 14 years old; Chris and Sara were both 10 years old.
  • 1994, released second album on cassette “Little Cowpoke” (no label).
  • First DJ to play Nickel Creek on the radio: Wayne Rice, KSON-FM San Diego!
  • 1995, group was split geographically when the Thiles moved to Murray, Kentucky.
  • 1997, released “Here to There” album (no label).
  • 1997, got first national TV exposure on the Statler Brothers Show (TNN).
  • 1999, recorded Nickel Creek album, produced by Alison Krauss.
  • 2000, had a hit video on CMT. Signed by the William Morris Agency.
  • 2000, won IBMA award for Emerging Artist of the Year.
  • 2001, received two Grammy nominations: Country Instrumental Performance and Bluegrass Album.
  • 2001, worked several shows with Dolly Parton.
  • 2001, won the IBMA award for Instrumental Group of the Year. Chris also won award for Mandolin Player of the Year.
  • 2001, were featured in a double-page photo spread and article in TIME magazine as one of the top 100 “Innovators of the Year.”
  • 2001, was nominated for Vocal Group of the Year and the Horizon Award at the CMA Awards. Performed on the show.
  • 2003, won Grammy Award for This Side album (Best Contemporary Folk Album)
  • 2004, “This Side” album was certified Gold.
  • 2004, did a “Mutual Admiration Society” tour with Glenn Phillips (Toad the Wet Sprocket), Pete Thomas (Elvis Costello) and John Paul Jones (Led Zeppelin).
  • 2007, did their farewell tour before disbanding.
  • 2007, Chris Thile formed a bluegrass band called the Tensions Mountain Boys, which later became the Punch Brothers.
  • Since the band breakup: Sara and Sean Watkins have been performing and recording as a duo, as solo artists, as The Watkins Family Hour and The Fiction Family. Sara has appeared on, and guest-hosted Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion radio broadcast. She is also a member of I’m With Her (with Aoife O’Donovan and Sarah Jarosz). Chris has recorded solo projects as well as with the Punch Brothers and became full-time host of NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion (now called Live from Here with Chris Thile).
  • 2014, Nickel Creek reunited to record A Dotted Line album and to tour in support of it, celebrating their 25th anniversary as a band.

Nickerson, Ross


  • From Baltimore, Maryland. Also has a home in Tucson, Arizona.
  • Best known as a banjo teacher and writer of banjo instruction books. Own a studio in Baltimore called “The Banjo School.”
  • Twice won the Telluride Banjo Contest.
  • 2001, a member of the Maryland Banjo Academy.
  • Has a band called Ross Nickerson and the Fast Brothers.
  • 2003, released Blazing the West album (Pinecastle).
  • 2009, released an album called “Let’s Kick Some Ass” with Blue Highway (excluding Jason Burleson). A year later, he re-released it with a less-controversial title Lets Kick It (Bones).



  • From Southwest Ohio.
  • Formed in 2010 by Richard Propps (guitar), Rick Hayes (mandolin), Tony Kakaris (bass), Tim Jackson (Dobro™) and Ronnie Stewart (banjo). Nightflyer’s Stewart is not the same Ronnie Stewart who has performed with the Boxcars, Seldom Scene, etc.
  • Hayes is a well-known bluegrass luthier (Rick Hayes Instruments) and promoter (opened a bluegrass venue in Covington, Kentucky). He previously performed with Blue and Lonesome and the The Gibson Brothers.
  • 2012, released first self-titled album Nightflyer (no label).
  • 2015, relased Rail, River and Road album (no label).
  • 2019, released Flight album (Pinecastle).

Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, The


  • From Los Angeles, California.
  • Also called “The Dirt Band.”
  • Formed in 1966 by John McEuen, Jimmy Fadden, Jeff Hanna, Jimmy Ibbotson.
  • Started out as a jug band, incorporating elements of country-rock and bluegrass.
  • 1970, released Uncle Charlie & His Dog Teddy (Capitol) which included several bluegrass cuts like “Clinch Mountain Backstep” and “Jesse James.”
  • 1972, scored first #1 hit: Jerry Jeff Walker’s “Mr. Bojangles.”
  • 1972, they appeared in the movie “Paint Your Wagon.”
  • 1972, recorded a platinum-selling, Grammy-award winning album Will the Circle Be Unbroken (Capitol) with guest artists including Earl Scruggs, Roy Acuff, Mother Maybelle Carter and Jimmy Martin.
  • During the 1980’s, the NGDB had 17 consecutive #1 songs on the country charts including “Dance Little Jean” and “Long Hard Road.”
  • 1988, John McEwen quit the band to pursue a solo career and other musical interests.
  • 1989, released Will The Circle Be Unbroken, Vol. 2 (MCA Nashville), also featuring numerous special guests. It also won a Grammy Award in the Bluegrass category (for Bruce Hornsby’s “The Valley Road.”)
  • 2001, John McEuen returned as a member of the band after a 15-year hiatus as a solo artist.
  • 2003, released Will the Circle Be Unbroken, Vol. 3 (Capitol Nashville) which won the IBMA Award for Recorded Event of the Year.
  • 2017, McEuen left the band, citing differences with the band’s management.

Nixon, Blevins and Gage


  • From Raleigh, North Carolina.
  • An acoustic trio featuring Larry Nixon (guitar), David Blevins (guitar) and Steven Gage (bass).
  • Nixon is an engineer and is also host of The Pinecone Bluegrass Show on WQDR in Raleigh. He plays a thumb-picking style of guitar.
  • Blevins is also an engineer from Raleigh and plays a flat-picking style of guitar.
  • Gage is originally from Columbus, Ohio and is a psychotherapist in Raleigh.
  • They have released seven albums, their latest being “Pickin’ on Doc” (2016, no label), a tribute to the music of Doc Watson.

Nixon, Michelle


  • From Goochland, Virginia.
  • Nixon learned to sing in church. Began singing with country bands at age 14.
  • 1989, she and husband Nick formed a country band called Slate River.
  • 2002, formed Michelle Nixon and Drive with mandolin player Vernon Hughes (formerly with the Heights of Grass, Appalachian Drive) and bass player Jim Green (formerly with Bluegrass Etc., Fastest Grass Alive).
  • She owns a hair salon.
  • 2003, released It’s My Turn album (Pinecastle).
  • 2005, released What More Should I Say? album (Pinecastle) with special guest Bill Anderson.
  • 2011, after taking several years off for her family, she returned to performing with a new album A Place I Belong (Mountain Fever).

No Grass Limit


  • From Minneapolis, Minnesota.
  • Formed in 2011.
  • Members: Chuck and Sandi Millar (fiddle and guitar, husband and wife), Clint Birtzer (guitar), Mike Hedding (banjo) and Vaughn Asselstine (bass).
  • 2011, won first place in the Minnesota Bluegrass and Old Time Music Association’s “Race for a Place” band contest.
  • The Millars are founders of Lesson Pros, a well-known music instruction studio in Minneapolis.
  • Birtzer has won the Minnesota State Flatpick Guitar championship several times.
  • 2013, released “Originals” album, produced by Randy Kohrs.

No One You Know


  • From Jackson County, West Virginia
  • Band members: Don Anderson (bass), Ramie Bennett (banjo), Lance Gainer (guitar), Bruce Jones (Dobro™), Rachel Burge (mandolin).
  • Formed in 2009.
  • 2010, won SPBGMA band contest.
  • Bennett is two time Maryland State Banjo Champion, and one time West Virginia State Banjo Champion.
  • 2010, released first album Calm Before The Storm (Mountain Fever).
  • 2012, disbanded.

No Time Flatt


  • From Humboldt, Tennesee (between Nashville and Memphis).
  • Formed in 2015 by Patrick Cupples (bass), Steve Moore (banjo,guitar), Kevin Wright (guitar), Becky Weaver (fiddle) and Kevin Keen (mandolin).
  • Their fans call themselves “Flattheads.”
  • 2017, 2018 won Bluegrass Band of the Year at the Tennessee Music Awards (held in Memphis).
  • 2017, released self-titled album (no label).
  • 2019, released Calling After Me album (no label).

Nob Hill Boys, The


  • From Madison, Wisconsin.
  • Formed in 1998.
  • There is a place called Nob Hill in Madison, but none of the band actually live there.
  • Members: Jon Peik (banjo), Paul Kienitz (fiddle), Fabke (mandolin), Seth Foerster (guitar), and Mark Hembree (bass).
  • Banjo player Jon Peik has a degree in theology.
  • Mandolinist John Fabke has a bluegrass radio show in Madison.
  • Hembree was a member of the Nashville Bluegrass Band and the Dreadful Snakes.
  • 1999, released Country Blues album (Orchard).
  • 2001, released Someday, Sometime, Somehow album (Orchard).
  • 2005, released Live! @ Mother Fools album (Orchard).

Norman, Holly


  • From Powell, Tennessee (near Knoxville).
  • A singer/songwriter who performed for many years as a cast member at Dollywood Theme Park in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
  • Her grandfather Bill Powell was a friend of Roy Acuff’s and a member of his first band.
  • She was the featured baton twirler for the University of Tennessee’s “Tennessee Pride” Marching Band.
  • 2014, released first bluegrass album Appalachian Angel (no label).
  • 2016, released “Taking Care of Bluegrass: A Tribute to Elvis” album (no label) featuring bluegrass covers of Elvis Presley songs.

Norris, Kody


  • From Mountain City, Tennessee.
  • Band members: Kody Norris (guitar), Mary Rachel Nalley (fiddle),  Josiah Tyree (banjo) and Charlie Lowman (bass).
  • Their “show” moniker comes from their wardrobe: colorful, tailored suits adorned with rhinestones, ties, classic hats and ornate boots.
  • 2017, released When I Get The Money Made (no label) which won the award for Bluegrass Album of the Year by the National Traditional Country Music Association.
  • 2023, released Rhinestone Revival album (Rebel Records).
  • 2023, made their first appearance on the Grand Ole Opry (August 9).

Northern Lights


  • From Boston, Massachusetts.
  • Formed in 1975.
  • Founding members: Taylor Armerding (mandolin), Bill Henry (guitar) and Bob Emery (bass).
  • Alison Brown was a member of the band in the early-1980’s while she attended Harvard University. Later replaced by Mike Kropp.
  • Armerding is also a reporter and assistant editor for North Shore Sunday, a weekly magazine based in Danvers, Mass. His father was a minister and the former president of Wheaton College.
  • 1984, released Before The Fire Comes Down album (Revonah).
  • 1990, released Take You to the Sky album (Flying Fish).
  • 1991, released Can’t Buy Your Way album (Flying Fish).
  • 1995, Taylor Armerding’s son Jake joined the band, playing fiddle.
  • 1999, made appearances with with Tom and Ray Magliozzi (AKA “Click and Clack), hosts of the PBS radio program Car Talk.
  • 2000, released a live album Three August Nights (no label) with guest Vassar Clements on fiddle.
  • 2002, Henry recorded a solo project Red Sky (OMS).
  • 2003, Armerding left the band after 28 years to pursue his own musical interests. Performs occasionally with The Bluegrass Gospel Project, Southern Rail and the Jonathan Edwards trio. He was replaced by Ben Demerath, formerly with Sugarbeat. Also joining the band: Dave Dick (banjo) and John Daniel (bass.)

Northern Pacific


  • From Woodinville, Washington.
  • Band members: Rich Jones (guitar); Joseph Wilmhoff (bass); Nick Hornbuckle (banjo), John Tubbs (mandolin).
  • Jones previously worked with Kenny Baker and Josh Graves.
  • Hornbuckle previously worked with Kathy Kallick. He subsequently joined John Reischman and the Jaybirds.
  • Tubbs won the Western Canadian Mandolin Championship (1996).
  • 1997, released “Lone Pine” album.

Nothin’ Fancy


  • From Buena Vista, Virginia (Shenandoah Valley).
  • Formed in 1994.
  • Several members of this group were previously in The East Coast Bluegrass Band.
  • Members: Mike Andes (mandolin), Gary Farris (guitar), Mitchell Davis (banjo), Chris Sexton (fiddle) and Tony Shorter (bass). Andes writes most of the band’s material and sings lead.
  • 2001, hosted their 1st annual bluegrass festival in Buena Vista.
  • They have won the SPBGMA’s “Entertaining Band of the Year” award multiple times.
  • 2002, released Once Upon a Road album (Pincastle).
  • 2004, released Reflections album (Pincastle).
  • 2006, released Album #7 album (Pinecastle).
  • 2009, released Lord Bless This House album (Pinecastle).
  • 2012, guitarist Gary Farris departed; was replaced by Justin Tomlin.
  • 2014, Tomlin left the group and was replaced by Jesse Smathers.
  • 2015, Smathers left the group and was replaced by Caleb Cox.
  • 2015, released By Any Other Name album (Mountain Fever).
  • 2018, released Time Changes Everthing album (Mountain Fever).
  • 2019, released Undeniable album (Mountain Fever).
  • 2021, Jake Lauzon joined the band, replacing Caleb Cox on guitar. Current lineup: Andes (mandolin), Sexton (fiddle), James Cox (bass), Jacob Flick (banjo) and Lauzon (guitar).
  • 2022, Lauzon left the band and was replaced by guitarist Curt Gausman.
  • 2023, James Cox (bass) left the band and was replaced by Jenkins (that’s his stage name).
  • 2023, released Here We Go Again album (Mountain Fever).



  • From Siler City, North Carolina.
  • Formed in 2003 by a husband-wife duo Carolyn and Daniel Routh (bass and guitar). Other band members: Levi Austin (banjo) and Austin Koerner (mandolin).
  • Shortly after the band’s formation, Carolyn had a series of strokes which affected her ability to talk and walk. After several years of therapy, she recovered fully and was able to resume her singing career.
  • 2009, signed by Pinecastle Records just a few months before the label went out of business.
  • 2010, under new ownership, Pinecastle Records released their album Nights.
  • 2011, released second album Blu-Disc (Pinecastle).
  • 2012, released Nail By Nail album (Pinecastle).
  • 2013, signed with Rural Rhythm Records and released Ten album (celebrating their tenth anniversary as a band.)
  • 2014, released All The Way album (Rural Rhythm) with guest Sam Moore of Sam and Dave.
  • 2017, released Vagabonds album (Voxhall).
  • 2018, band lineup: Daniel and Carolyn Routh (guitar and bass respectively), Justin Harrison (mandolin/fiddle), Calder Baker (banjo).
  • 2019, banjo prodigy, 14-year-old Austin Hefflefinger replaced Baker.

Nugent, Alecia


  • From Hickory Grove, Louisiana.
  • 1988, began her professional singing career at age 13 with her family band Southland Bluegrass (AKA The Nugent Family Band). This band had been performing together since 1973.
  • 2001, released a solo album For Love’s Sake (no label) produced by Carl Jackson under her married name Alecia McRight. It was re-leased in 2004 as Alecia Nugent, her first album for Rounder Records.
  • 2006, released A Little Girl… A Big Four-Lane album (Rounder).
  • 2009, released Hillbilly Goddess album (Rounder).
  • 2020, after taking ten years off to raise her children, she returned to performing with a country album “The Old Side of Town” (no label).

Nunally, Jim


  • From the San Francisco Bay area.
  • A guitarist and vocalist who performs with many bands: John Reischman and the Jaybirds, The David Grisman Bluegrass Experience, Nell Robinson, Bangers and Grass, Dix Bruce, Keith Little, Judy Forrest, and Due West.
  • He is a two-time winner of the Western Open Flatpicking Championship.
  • 1991, played guitar on the CBS-TV special “Snoopy’s Reunion” (based on the Peanuts comic strip).
  • 1994, played guitar on the soundtrack to the feature film “The Beverly Hillbillies” with Bela Fleck, Mike Marshall and Sam Bush.
  • He is a record producer and engineer at a SF recording studio (won Grammy award for his work on “True Life Blues: The Songs of Bill Monroe.”)
  • 1995, released From Fathers to Sons album (no label) with guitarist Dix Bruce.
  • 2001, joined John Reischman and the Jaybirds.
  • 2003, released Brothers at Heart with Dix Bruce (FGM).
  • 2003, joined David Grisman’s Bluegrass Experience band.
  • 2007, released Gloria’s Waltz album (no label).
  • 2013, released an album with vocalist Nell Robinson House & Garden (no label).
  • 2017, released Baby Let’s Take the Long Way Home album (no label) with the Nell Robinson and Jim Nunally Band.

Nygaard, Scott


  • From the San Francisco Bay area. Originally from Athens, Ohio.
  • A highly regarded flat-pick guitarist.
  • 1988-1991, worked with Laurie Lewis and Grant Street.
  • 1991-1997, worked with Tim O’Brien and the O’Boys.
  • Has since worked with Jerry Douglas, Chris Thile, Tony Furtado, David Grisman, Darol Anger, Sharon Gilchrist, Kleptograss, other bands. Also performs as a solo act.
  • He has released two solo projects on Rounder Records: No Hurry (1990) and Dreamer’s Waltz (1996).
  • He is editor or Acoustic Guitar magazine.