Artist: Smooth Kentucky
Hometown: Baltimore
Members: Ed Hough (guitar, vocals); BJ Lazarus (mandolin); Cris Jacobs (guitar/vocals); Dave Frieman (bass); Patrick McAvinue (fiddle); Jordan Tice (guitar, vocals)
Sound: New grass with Grateful Dead roots
Fact: The band's sound is influenced by what Cris and Ed's parents listened to
Project: A Few More Miles is out now.
Next Gig: Mick O'Shea's, July 16 and Aug. 2; 7 p.m.

"The Baltimore Brewing Company used to have a bluegrass happy hour every Friday night," Hough says. "Cris had a connection with the girl who put it on, and she told him to put together a bluegrass band. He called me up and we needed a name because the City Paper was about to go to print. We got 'Smooth Kentucky' off the back of a whiskey bottle and it stuck."


"I was 16 years old when I met Ed," Jacobs says. "My band needed a drummer, so we made an ad that just said 'DRUMMER WANTED' and put a Grateful Dead symbol at the bottom. He was 23 or 24 and showed up at my parents' house in a VW bus. We hung out in the basement for a few hours and we've had a musical connection ever since."

Catch Baltimore Unsigned for the full interview at 8 Tuesday night on 89.7 WTMD, listener-supported radio from Towson University. Check out WTMD on the web at

Ed Hough photo by Sam Friendman