Getting To Know Musician Lee Townsend

Lee doing a solo during a performance with the Tumblin Creek Bluegrass Band at P.K. Yonge High School in Gainesville
Lee Townsend

(For bookings or to contact Lee send an email to dltownsend3@gmail.com or call  352-672-7574)

The following YouTube Videos are from some of Lee Townsend’s various bluegrass performances around North Central Florida.   (Read about Lee’s musical story and see pictures of Lee below the You Tube videos)

 

Jessie and Lee Townsend

Jessie and Lee Townsend

Lee and Jessie Townsend’s CD Sampler is ready.  Click here to listen to highlights.

On Friday, April 29th, 2016 Red and Chris Henry along with David McBrady joined Jessie and Lee at Gatorbone Studios to begin recording six additional songs for their new CD called, “Tribute.”  Here’s a sample of one of the recordings, “Oh Kissimmee River,” written by environmental troubadour Dale Crider from Windsor, FL.  The song points out the folly of the government’s effort to straighten Florida’s Kissimmee River.

Lee and Jessie recently performed at the 27th Annual Will McLean Music Festival.  Here’s one example of the songs they performed, the late Jim Ballew’s “When I Die”

Here’s Lee and Andy Garfield performing “Up 18 North” on the Azalea Stage.

To see more highlights from Jessie and Lee’s performances at the Will McLean Festival click here:

To see highlights from Jessie and Lee’s performances at the Florida Folk Festival click here:

 

Homecoming Service at the New Cross Creek Baptist Church

On April 26, 2015 Jessie and Lee Townsend performed “What Wondrous Love Is This” at the Homecoming Services of the New Cross Creek Baptist Church on April 26, 2015

 

2015 Will McLean Festival

On March 15th, 2015 Lee and his sister Jessie performed Will McLean’s “Macclenny Farewell” during the Hour of Power on the Main Stage accompanied by David McBrady on bass.

 

Lee and Jessie also made great harmony on the Azalea Stage at the 2015 Will McLean Festival performing Townes Van Zandt’s, “If I Needed You” with help on the bass and harmony by David McBrady.

 

The trio even got in some bluegrass with “Drivin’ Nails In My Coffin.”

 

Lee playing banjo on Wild Hog by Will McLean performed by Whitey Markle and the Swamprooters at the Will McLean Festival 2015

 

 

Blue Linewalkers at the 2013 Florida Folk Festival

“Cold Sheets of Rain” with Erik Alvar on bass, Andy Garfield on acoustic guitar and vocals, Lee Townsend on banjo, Amanda Anderson on fiddle and vocals and Christian Ward on fiddle

“The

Lucky One”“Little

Boy of Mine In Tennessee”

“Ookpik Waltz”

“Bury Me Beneath the Willow”

 

Lee Townsend and Amanda Anderson

“Down In The River To Pray” and “A Living Prayer” presented at the New Cross Creek Baptist Church, January, 2012

 

Orange and Bluegrass Band Performing in Waldo, 2013

“Little Boy of Mine In Tennessee”

“I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry”

“Nine Pound Hammer”

“Soldier’s Joy”

 

 

Jamming at Lis and Lon Williamson’s Porch in 2013

 “Groundspeed”

 

Tumblin’ Creek Bluegrass Band On The Main Stage At Florida Folk Festival, 2013

 

Performing “Landslide” at the P.K. Yonge High School Graduation in 2011

 

“Foggy Mountain Breakdown”– Jamming at the Hippodrome

 

 

 

Lee guitar0002
Lee at around three years old

Lee Townsend loves to play music, especially bluegrass. Even at the young age of 3 he wanted to play the guitar.

 

 

 

 

Pat & Dorsey Lee Townsend, Sr

His love for music isn’t a total surprise.  His grandpa Dorsey Lee Townsend was a great guitar player who played with his brother Jesse Townsend around the Cross Creek area in the 1930s through the 1970s.  His other grandpa, Sterling Green from Missouri, also played the guitar and had a family band.

 

 

 

Lee Mace's Ozark Opry
Lee’s mom and her siblings singing in a talent show accompanied by members of Lee Mace’s Ozark Opry

  Lee learned his first music chords from his mom (Donna Green-Townsend) and dad (Dorsey Lee Townsend, Jr.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lee jamming with his dad in Cross Creek, FL
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Lee with his mom Donna Green-Townsend

 

 

 

 

 

 

David Cook gave Lee his first professional guitar lessons.

Lee and his first guitar teacher David Cook
Lee and his first guitar teacher David Cook
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Singer-Songwriter Jon Semmes from Dunnellon

 

 

 

 

 

 

His parents along with musician and singer songwriter Jon Semmes from Dunnellon helped purchase his first “real” guitar. It wasn’t long before he decided he also wanted to try out playing the banjo. His Aunt Linda and Uncle Jim Johnson provided his first one.

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Randy Hollinger and bluegrass band members playing for runners in a Gainesville marathon

At P.K. Yonge High School Lee had the opportunity to take Mr. Randy Hollinger’s instrumental ensemble class. The class included not only a bluegrass band, but a rock band, blues band and a girl’s punk rock band.

 

 

 

 

Free Bird Playing 4 best so far
Finale of one of the P.K. Yonge Instrumental Ensemble concerts.

The bands put on a big show every May on the school’s performing arts center stage. But the bluegrass band had a life of its own and soon the Tumblin’ Creek Bluegrass Band began performing at a variety of venues, including the Will McLean Folk Festival, the Florida Folk Festival, United Downtown in Gainesville, the Micanopy Fall Festival, and the Alachua Downtown Festival among others.

 

 

 

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Members of the Tumblin’ Creek Bluegrass Band
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The Tumblin’ Creek Bluegrass Band performing in 2013 at the Will McLean Folk Festival

 

 

 

 

 

Not surprisingly, when Lee went on to college he joined a bluegrass club and a band soon formed called Orange and Bluegrass.

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First gathering of the Gator Bluegrass Club
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Orange and Bluegrass Band performing at a Waldo bluegrass festival

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Blue Linewalkers performing on the main stage at the Florida Folk Festival on Memorial Weekend in 2013

As with many acoustic bands, there’s always a mix and match of performers at various festivals. On Memorial Weekend of 2013 one of those mix and match groups became the Blue Linewalkers who performed on the Main Stage of the Florida Folk Festival.  Performers included Erik Alvar on bass, Andy Garfield on vocals and guitar, Lee Townsend on banjo, Amanda Anderson on Fiddle and vocals and Christian Ward on fiddle.

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