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Pinecastle Records signs new artists, Newton and Thomas

Published 9:36am Monday, January 14, 2013

Pinecastle Records of Columbus recently announced that it has signed Mark Newton and Steve Thomas to its roster.

Their debut album is titled “Reborn” and will be released on April 9. Both men are native Virginians who struck out separately in the music business decades ago. Now they are eager to blend their various musical flavors together to share with bluegrass and Americana fans. Bass player Matt Wallace rounds out the trio to tour the country.

Newton, born into a musical family, became interested in bluegrass and county music at 6 years old. In 1983 Newton teamed up with Rickie and Ronnie Simpkins and Sammy Shelor to form the Virginia Squires. Newton then went on to perform with the Tony Rice Unit and The Seldom Scene. In 1997 Newton teamed up with Bill Emerson and recorded A Foot in the Past, A Foot in the Future for Pinecastle Records. Newton is especially proud of Follow Me Back to the Fold, a tribute to women in bluegrass that won IBMA’s “Recorded Event of the Year” in 2001. His most recent album, Hillbilly Hemingway, was nominated for an IBMA award in 2007.

At an early age Thomas started playing in his father’s gospel band. That early experience and an influential championship fiddle player propelled him on to play with the Roanoke Youth Symphony, after which he cut his chops with Roanoke area bands East Virginia Grass and The New Grass Revue. Thomas teamed up with Tim Austin to form the Lonesome River Band as well as stints playing with Del McCoury, Jim & Jesse and the Virginia Boys, The Whites, The Osborne Brothers, not to mention country stars like Aaron Tippin, Brooks and Dunn, LeeAnn Womack, Kenny Chesney, John Michael Montgomery, Ronnie Bowman and Lorrie Morgan.

– article submitted

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