Junior Sisk is widely recognized as one of today’s top bluegrass vocalists and is a constant reminder that traditional bluegrass is still alive and well. A longtime resident of the Virginia Blue Ridge, his bluegrass pedigree runs deep. Influenced by a father who wrote songs and played guitar and a mother who sang, Sisk first learned to play around age 14.
His early influences included The Stanley Brothers, Larry Sparks, and Dave Evans, but he often credits the Johnson Mountain Boys with inspiring him to pursue bluegrass professionally. Sisk first made his mark in bluegrass as a songwriter in the early 1990s, penning classic Lonesome River Band songs like “Game (I Can’t Win)” and “Tears Are Blinding Me.”
As a member of Wyatt Rice & Santa Cruz and Blueridge, he helped define the sound of driving, modern traditional bluegrass. Sisk founded Ramblers Choice in 1998, releasing Sounds of the Mountains on Rounder Records. After leaving Blueridge in 2006, he reformed the group and began a successful career with Rebel Records. His 2011 album Heart of a Song helped bring the band into the spotlight and eventually was named IBMA Album of the Year in 2012. Its single “A Far Cry from Lester and Earl,” which Sisk co-wrote, became a rallying cry for a resurgence of traditional sounds in bluegrass and received the 2012 Song of the Year Award from the IBMA. Sisk was furthered honored when he was named 2013 IBMA Male Vocalist of the Year, while his band earned the 2014 SPBGMA Bluegrass Band of the Year award. In 2016, “Longneck Blues,” a collaboration with noted singer-songwriter Ronnie Bowman, was named Recorded Event of the Year by the IBMA. Most recently, Sisk received the 2017 Male Vocalist of the Year award from SPBGMA. He and his band now record for Mountain Fever Records, and are currently promoting their third album for the label, LOAD THE WAGON. LOAD THE WAGON, spent a consecutive SIX months at the #1 spot on the National Survey Chart in 2020 and became Junior’s most successful album to date amidst the pandemic. A brand new single has just been released, “I Wanna Be Where You Are,” the first from a forthcoming new album due out at a date yet to be announced by Mountain Fever Records.
Solidifying the success of the latest album, Junior Sisk has received a landslide of nominations in the IBMA Awards for 2021, including Album Of The Year, for LOAD THE WAGON, Song Of The Year, for “Just Load The Wagon” and Male Vocalist Of The Year. SPBGMA also recognized Junior’s recent music releases with two WINS in February 2022, for Album Of The Year, for LOAD THE WAGON, Song Of The Year, for “Just Load The Wagon!”
Mountain Fever has released three singles ahead of Junior’s next album so far, with “I Wanna Be Where You Are,” “Patches On My Heart,” and the newest “Up There On A Hillside,” and there is no doubt that the album anticipation is building among his fans worldwide.
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