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Rodney Dillard & The Dillard Band perform at the Paramount

October 20, 2010

Rural Rhythm Recording Artist Rodney Dillard has had a long and varied career that has so far resulted in 2 GRAMMY® Nominations, induction into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame, a well-known acting stint on The Andy Griffith Show, many other movie and television appearances, receipt of the Outstanding Missourian award, and worldwide acclaim for his over 50 years of recording both traditional bluegrass and his own brand of "Dillardgrass". Rodney first became a music star in the 1960s when Rodney (guitar), his brother Doug Dillard (banjo), Dean Webb (mandolin) and the late Mitch Jayne (string bass), formed a new group, known as "The Dillards". The Dillards impressed an Elektra Records representative at a Los Angeles club and were subsequently signed to the label. A producer with The Andy Griffith Show heard about the Elektra signing and asked The Dillards to audition for the newly created role of The Darlings, a bluegrass-playing family whose patriarch was to be played by actor Denver Pyle. Andy Griffith and the producers loved the authentic sound and felt the group was perfect. Rodney, Doug, Dean, and Mitch were cast immediately and to this day The Dillards are seen nearly every day somewhere in the world (thanks to the still enormous popularity of The Andy Griffith Show re-runs).
Rodney continued to modernize and re-imagine the sound of bluegrass as he wrote and collaborated with others to write such now classic songs as "There is a Time", "The Darlin? Boys", "Ebo Walker", and "Dooley". By the late 60s Rodney had transformed The Dillards into the driving force creating new sounds in the West Coast music environment. Later called "The Father of Country Rock", Rodney was among the first bluegrass musicians to "electrify" traditional bluegrass instruments while also adding drums and a steel guitar. The band?s unique flair for songwriting and arrangement affected a broad range of important future musicians in the bluegrass and pop music world alike, and Rodney is credited with helping set the stage for the country rock movement and the burgeoning progressive sounds of bluegrass. Albums such as "Wheatstraw Suite" and "Copperfields" remain legendary paradigm shifters and influenced many musicians who are now household names. Groups and performers as diverse as The Byrds, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Ricky Skaggs, The Eagles, and Elton John have all expressed appreciation for what Rodney and his bandmates accomplished.

Rodney Dillard and The Dillard Band will perform at the Paramount Center for the Arts on October 22 @ 7:30PM, Tickets are $10 General Admission. To puchase a ticket call the Paramount Box office 423-274-8920 or go on-line www.etix.com. Concert is sponsored by the Crooked Road General Store to benefit Cross Roads Medical Mission.