january 2009

Graduation In Sight, Sierra Hull Forms Touring Band

Sierra Hull: 'I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, I want to be a musician and travel, and play as much as possible.'

With her high school graduation date within sight, 17-year-old bluegrass mandolin phenom Sierra Hull has answered the question as to what her next move will be by forming a touring band. According to a release from Hull's label, Rounder Records, artist and band will be on the road extensively in '09, playing festivals, clubs and performing arts centers stateside.

Supporting Hull in her band will be former Mountain Heart guitarist Clay Hess; bassist Jacob Eller, formerly with No Speed Limit; and her close friend and musical companion of long standing, Cory Walker, on banjo. No tour dates have been announced yet.

In the cover story of the May 2008 issue of TheBluegrassSpecial.com, Hull expressed an interest in going on to college after graduating from high school, but clearly was ready to scratch the itch of her burgeoning professional career.

"It's not like I'm trying to be a slacker and not go to college, but I'm not exactly sure that that's what I want to do right away," Hull said then. "I do know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I want to play music, I want to be a musician and travel, and play as much as possible. I don't know that I want to go straight into college, but then again I may decide that I should. It's kind of a hard decision right now. It's not that I wouldn't want to or totally be for it, but I would also not want to start and get so busy that I drop out. I look at it both ways, I guess. I'm not sure yet, but eventually I want to be playing music."

A young lady of great faith, Hull sees her long-term prospects as being in God's hands. She knows, however, what makes her tick. "I feel like as long as God will allow me to keep doing what I'm doing and that's what He wants for me—to play music and make that my career, and hopefully have people enjoy what I do—then that's what I hope to be doing from now till I'm 80 years old, if I can. I love playing music; I can't think of one single thing I'd rather do. That may sound like something I'd say in any interview but seriously, I cannot think of another thing I would want to do. I can't imagine doing anything else. And I really just hope that I can be playing music and still loving it, and you know, just finding my voice, finding whatever I can call my own."

Sierra Hull's tour schedule through September 2009 is available online at www.sierrahull.com/schedule.php. The 7th Annual Sierra Hull Bluegrass Festival, held in Hull's home town of Byrdstown, TN, is scheduled for September 12.

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