Farley finds success with bluegrass group

Published 12:40 pm Thursday, February 15, 2018

While rap and country music may be the most popular among today’s teenagers, Harlan County High School junior Trey Farley prefers a much more old-school style.

Farley has found quite a bit of success at a young age as a member of Stevens Family Tradition, a local bluegrass band that has an album called “The Call” currently in the second spot on the Singing News Bluegrass Chart.

Farley plays the guitar in a band that also includes his father, Frank, as the lead guitarist. Brad Stevens, Jim Harp and Donnie Stevens are the other members of the band.

“I’ve always been interested in music from a young age and I kind of played a few chords here and there,” Farley said. “My dad has been a real inspiration to me because he’s been a bluegrass musician for 35 years probably, so my dad’s a big influence on me.”

Farley also plays the dobro, mandolin and bass and hopes to continue learning.

“In the Stevens Family Tradition, I play a resonator guitar, but most of the time, people play on the square neck, and I play on the regular guitar,” he said. “I’m gonna try to learn to play the dobro part of it, which is the square neck.”

Trey is self-taught when it comes to guitar.

“He just walked in and said that he wanted to learn guitar,” said Tina Farley, Trey’s mother. “He started strumming a few chords on his dad’s guitar and that was it.”

Farley joined the band in the fall of 2017 and had an immediate impact on the group’s “sound and soul,” according to Stevens.

“We are just too proud and blessed to have a fine outstanding young man like Trey to be a part of our ministry,” he said. “He is professional in his playing, appearance and stage presence. We really cherish out camaraderie, and Trey brings plenty of laughter and good times to the table.”

Farley plans to make music a career and attends the Hyden School of Bluegrass, under the direction of Dean Osborne, a well-known bluegrass performer who has been on the stage his cousins, the Osborne Brothers, as well as J.D. Crowe and Ralph Stanley.

“I’m going to the School of Bluegrass in Hyden and I’m hoping that I can maybe further that into a bigger university like Eastern Tennessee State University or Morehead State in the near future after I get out of high school,” he said.

Stevens Family Tradition performs at events and churches throughout Kentucky and the group has branched out to other states, including Tennessee and Ohio.