On The Jerry Douglas Band’s debut studio album, What If (released August 18 via Rounder Records), the 14-time Grammy Award-winning and three-time Country Music Association Musician of the Year, Jerry Douglas and company decisively merge jazz inclinations with the bluegrass, country, blues, swing, rock, and soul that Douglas spent his life absorbing and performing, forging a sound that flies beyond the boundaries of anything he, or anyone else, has done before. The 11-track album received a 2018 Grammy Award nomination for “Best Contemporary Instrumental Album.”
As soon as he graduated from high school, Douglas headed to Washington, D.C., to join Charlie Waller, Ricky Skaggs, and Doyle Lawson in the Country Gentlemen. He’s since performed in so many incarnations; at one point, he counted membership in eight bands--simultaneously. His recent history includes his band the Earls of Leicester-his version of the Flattand Scruggs band-with Shawn Camp, Charlie Cushman, Jeff White, Johnny Warren, and Barry Bales; their self-titled 2014 debut earned Douglas his 14th Grammy. He’d already picked up eight with Alison Krauss & Union Station, with whom he’s closing out his second decade, and shared the Album of the Year win for O Brother, Where Art Thou?, the film soundtrack that helped replant traditional roots music in the modern American psyche.