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Leadbetter leaves Grasstowne

Saturday, February 13, 2010 – Phil Leadbetter announced Saturday he was leaving bluegrass band Grasstowne for both musical and non-musical interests. Leadbetter, who plays Dobro, did not specify what those interests were. The group released two CDs on the now-shuttered Pinecastle Records label.

In an email Leadbetter said, "I want to announce that today, I am stepping down as a member and partner in the band Grasstowne. I started this band along with my friends Steve Gulley and Alan Bibey in December 2006. I have had a good run of 3 years and 2 successful CDs here, but I have decided to pursue a few others interests."

"Some of these are musical, and some are non-musical. It just seems like the right time, and I didn't want to leave the guys hanging during the upcoming festival season. This will allow plenty of time for a replacement to be found."

"I have really enjoyed working with Alan, Steve and Jason (Davis) as well as Lee Sawyer, Jamey Booher, Travis Greer and Dale Perry who have also been members of the band. Thanks to everyone who has supported me and been a friend."

Leadbetter has been a member of JD Crowe & the New South and Wildfire. His 2005 solo release, "Slide Effects," was named the International Bluegrass Music Association's Instrumental Album of the Year.

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The Next Move CD review - The Next Move
Phil Leadbetter is one of the best resophonic guitar players in bluegrass and country music. He's played with Grandpa Jones, Vern Gosdin, JD Crowe, Wildfire, Grasstowne and, most recently, Dale Ann Bradley. He was the 2005 IBMA Dobro Player of the Year. Sidelined for over two years by cancer, and now fighting a second battle with its return, he managed to record a CD between bouts of illness that was a dream project for him: recording with a list of some of the best in bluegrass and country. »»»
The Other Side Of Towne CD review - The Other Side Of Towne
Two years ago, the trio of mandolin player Alan Bibey, Dobro/slide guitarist Phil Leadbetter and vocalist Steve Gulley joined forces to form Grasstowne. Joining this dynamic trio were Jason Davis on banjo and Travis Greer on bass. Following up their initial success, Grasstowne now releases another tradition laden record. With a mixture of up-tempo high steppin' songs, stories of sorrow and woe, along with inspiring gospel, Grasstowne does an exceptional job. Davis opens the record with a »»»
The Road Headin' Home CD review - The Road Headin' Home
If there is one thing bluegrassers agree about, it is changes in band lineups are inevitable. Still, it was something of a surprise to see Steve Gulley and Phil Leadbetter leaving bands they helped start for a new venture - but what a group this is. Joined by Alan Bibey and filled out with Jason Davis and Jamey Booher (who joined after this CD was recorded), they have the elements to be one of the best on the bluegrass scene. Their debut certainly supports those expectations. »»»
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