Lost & Found, New Standard Bluegrass


Harvester Performance Center

450 Franklin St. , Rocky Mount VA

Crooked Road Concerts


7:30 PM

There are of course many bands in bluegrass, but Lost & Found has managed to stand out with a signature sound, great singing and songwriting, and uniquely creative instrumental work. Formed in 1973 in Martinsville, Virginia,Lost & Found originated with musicians that were “lost” in other bands, but “found” each other through their shared love of bluegrass. The band recorded its first album in 1975 for a local label, which produced the now classic song and bluegrass standard “Love of the Mountains,” written by founder and original member, Allen Mills. In 1980, they joined Rebel Records, for whom they still record. The first Lost & Found release with Rebel produced the signature song "Leftover Biscuits," and later the band made such popular recordings as "Wild Mountain Flowers for Mary," "Ida Red," and "Harvest Time." The band continues to be an influential force in bluegrass with its current lineup: Allen Mills, on bass fiddle and vocals; Ronald Smith, on banjo and vocals; Dan Wells, on guitar and vocals; and Scott Napier, on mandolin and vocals.

Throughout its existence New Standard Bluegrass Band has had a clear mission: to provide present-day audiences with entertaining, high-quality live bluegrass music while also helping to keep the music genre alive for future generations. Committed to performing traditional and contemporary bluegrass as well as bluegrass gospel, New Standard has appeared at a range of events, including festivals, church services, birthday parties, and fishing tournaments, and the band has earned a strong following across the Southwest Virginia mountains as well as in the Virginia Piedmont.

The band's fiddler Zach Brown, a Franklin County native and a Virginia Tech graduate, took his first mandolin lesson at 11 years old from his uncle, the late Dewey Prilliman. In 2003 Zach joined Blackwater Bluegrass Band, playing mandolin, before co-founding New Standard--and switching to fiddle--in 2011. Spenser Blankenship, from Bedford, Virginia, began learning mandolin at age 8, and he performed in his family's band before playing in Smith Mountain Grass for 5 years. He subsequently had stints with two other bluegrass bands (Sandy Ridge and Hard Drivin' Grass) before co-founding NewStandard. A graduate of Virginia Tech, Blankenship teaches Agricultural Education at Liberty High School. Mason Thomas, from Madison Heights, Virginia, started playing the guitar at the age of 7. In 2006 he founded Hard Drivin' Grass before joining the band In The Tradition and then becoming a founding member of New Standard. A graduate of Virginia Tech, Thomas works for a lumber company. Stewart Scales, from Big Stone Gap, Virginia, has played upright bass with NewStandard since the first month of its existence, and he frequently jams with other musicians along The Crooked Road. He is a geography instructor at Virginia Tech. The newest member of New Standard, joining in 2016, is talented banjoist Jason Wheeler.