"Chelsea McBee's style of voice plays wonderfully into her roots-sounding mantra, all while maintaining her loyalty to a clear country music-bred background. Or, in other words, think about what it would be like if Norah Jones and Dolly Parton could have a daughter and that daughter just happened to grow up in West Virginia." - Colin McGuire, Frederick News Post
For the last 6 years McBee has been touring and recording and is quickly gaining popularity. Born and raised in Shepherdstown, WV, McBee quotes the old-time WV banjo tunes that she learned as major influences in her style of playing and her songwriting. She began playing claw-hammer banjo in the summer of 2005 and has been working on traditional tunes as well as writing original songs since then. Her unique, inviting voice pairs well with the distinctive sound of her 5-string. Artists such as Gillian Welch, Anais Mitchell, Feist, Bonnie Rait, Steve Earl, Tom Waits and John Prine have all inspired this young songstress. "I love good songwriting and I love interesting vocalists. I strive to achieve both".
Chelsea McBee and The Random Assortment consists of McBee on banjo, Ben Witman on mandolin, Jeremy Rodgers on upright bass and they are occasionally joined by Teresa McBee and Melody Massimino singing those down-home mountain harmonies. The group has been playing and performing together for the better part of a year and continues to grow as a group. Their creative interpretation of the traditional tunes along with instrument swapping and medleys make for an entertaining show!
McBee will get up and sing a WV tune, a catchy melody, a bare-boned a capella, and then a sultry tango piece all with the banjo. She worked with The Fox Hunt (www.myspace.com/lefoxhunt) for her debut album 'Don't Close Your Eyes'. Their WV string band energy behind McBee's lyrics make for an entertaining mix. Her tunes offer a variety of sound and heart stirring emotion, which will only serve to broaden her fan base. McBee's latest projects include a sophomore release titled 'Put This In Your Jar (and sip it)' which features some original tracks as well as some traditional tunes, and introducing some new band members to her live show, including her mother and sister adding the classic family style harmonies that always steal the show. Chelsea McBee and The Random Assortment will be hitting the road this year to support the new release.