Nashville honky-tonk star coming to WBHS

Mead concert set for March 18

Fans of Merle Haggard, Johnny Horton and George Jones take notice. Chuck Mead and His Grassy Knoll Boys are bringing their Americana honky-tonk brand of country music to the Wittenberg-Birnamwood High School auditorium for a 4 p.m. performance on March 18.

For the past 20 years, Mead has been at the forefront of what has come to be known as Americana music.

Raised in Lawrence, Kansas, Mead has been a professional musician since the age of 13 playing in his parents’ country band.

He landed on Nashville’s Lower Broadway in 1993 where he co-founded the famed 1990s alternative country quintet BR5-49. The band’s seven albums, three Grammy nominations and the Country Music Association award for best overseas touring act of 1997 built an indelible bridge between authentic American roots music and millions of fans worldwide.

Mead has also co-produced popular tribute albums to Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings, guest-lectured at Vanderbilt University and became a staff writer at one of Nashville’s top song publishers.

Since 2009, he has released four solo albums and continues to tour clubs, concert halls and international rock, country and rockabilly festivals with his band.

The Grassy Knoll Boys are Mark Miller on bass, Carco Clave on steel guitar and Martin Lynds on drums.

Mead’s 2012 release, “Back at the Quonset Hut,” was recorded at Nashville’s legendary Quonset Hut Studio where Patsy Cline, George Jones, Merle Haggard, Roger Miller, Loretta Lynn, Johnny Cash and others cut some of country music’s greatest tracks. The album of classic covers features guest appearances by Old Crow Medicine Show, Elizabeth Cook, Jamie Johnson and Bobby Bare.

Mead is working up new material for a 2018 record release. He is taking time from his busy schedule to make an appearance with his Grassy Knoll Boys in Wittenberg.

The show is presented by Rubber Soul Productions and Ho-Chunk Gaming-Wittenberg and sponsored by Hanke’s Sentry Foods. Best Western-Wittenberg is a community partner for the event.

Tickets start at $25 and are available at the service counter at Hanke’s Sentry Foods in Wittenberg or online at

Rob Wyman, of Elderon, founder of Rubber Soul Productions, coordinated four shows at the high school last year — Williams and Ree, Pam Tillis, the Gibson Brothers and Brandy Clark.

In 2018. in addition to Mead, Wyman has also booked Bobby Bare for a show on April 29.

Wyman has said it is a challenge to book a small room while keeping tickets reasonably priced.