With a strong passion for traditional music and music theory, Jason Wheeler has been a dedicated mandolinist for more than 15 years. He has, and continues to study with mandolin master Don Julian, Bruce Ling and Don Stiernberg among many others as well as often attending music camps and workshops. Jason has also participated in numerous recordings, some of which have been recognized for various local music awards, used in commercials and also in corporate promotional materials.
Wheeler joined the nationally touring neo-bluegrass outfit Fauxgrass (www.fauxgrassmusic.com) in 2011 and has performed more than 500 shows with the band since that time. In June of 2013, a chance encounter brought Wheeler together with long time rhythm & blues guitarist, singer and bandleader Junior Valentine. The two began performing roots music in 2013. Wheeler has performed with Bill Kirchen, Hal Ketchum, The Matt Flinner Trio, Fauxgrass, Glean Infusion, Hawks & Owls Stringband, Karisa Wilson, Heather Maloney and many other notable artists over the years, playing everything from mountain to island music, hoping to bring joy and love through it all!
Jason teaches mandolin, guitar lessons, festival workshops and is the president of The Chris Wheeler Family Foundation which focuses attention on music, art, community, environmental and basic human needs. Through the blessing of music, Jason continues to develop and strengthen a healthy community, weaving his love for music with his love for family, farming and non-profit work. Jason is a fine instrument collector and appreciator, a father and a truly dedicated student of mandolin and its infinite possibilities. Contact Jason at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hawks & Owls Stringband – ‘Farmers Valuable Friends’ – 2009
Glean Infusion – ‘From the Dust’ – 2010
Standing Together Compilation – 2010
Fauxgrass – ‘Fauxgrass’ – 2011
Glean Infusion – ‘Alive and Well’ – 2012
Karisa Wilson String Ensemble – ‘Stronger’ – 2012
With nearly thirty years of experience, Junior Valentine has become very accomplished as a guitarist, singer, bandleader and teacher. Junior’s history touches on many styles of blues, rhythm & blues, swing, and American roots music that touch on eras from the 1940s to the present. Valentine has played many venues in Chicago and the West Coast as well as throughout Michigan and has toured nationally with the James Harman Band. Since 1990, he and his bands have entertained at many weddings, parties, clubs and corporate events in West Michigan and beyond.
As a teacher of acoustic guitar, electric guitar, electric bass guitar, and ukulele, Junior Valentine shares over 20 years of experience and a personal, well-crafted approach. Instruction is offered on beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. As well as giving the student a solid knowledge of the instrument and how it works, general fundamentals of music are presented during lessons and are applied to the styles and techniques under study. Personal enjoyment is key. Lessons normally occur once per week and are taught at a home studio.
Junior has recently teamed with Jason Wheeler (Mandolinist with locally, regionally & nationally popular alt / bluegrass band Fauxgrass) to form a duo featuring many kinds of American roots music. New Orleans rhythms mix with Rhythm & Blues tunes…funky Southern grooves…roots Rock&Roll…Island rhythms…and dance tunes for all ages…8 to 80. Junior and Jason are often joined by a percussionist (Brandan Grinwis) to create a gumbo of styles and dance rhythms. We are available for club dates…parties…special events…and weddings.